The Ebb Foundation, which is funded by royalties from the late Tony-winning lyricist's work, previously broke the record last year with its gift of $1 million to BC/EFA. "Fred Ebb’s lyrics abounded in an ebullient energy, wry humor and zest for living," BC/EFA executive director Tom Viola said in a statement. "With John Kander, Fred gave us some of the most delightful, smart, hilarious and heartfelt songs in more than a dozen groundbreaking and acclaimed musicals of the last 50 years. Fred’s creative genius has also become a legacy of his great generosity of spirit with his on-going support of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. This astounding award of $1.2 million this year from the Fred Ebb Foundation is the largest single donation made to Broadway Cares in our history. It enables us to secure and increase our support for the essential safety net of social services provided by The Actors Fund, as well as hundreds of HIV/AIDS and family service organizations nationwide at a time when other funding sources are cutting back as more and more men, women and children reach out for assistance. What an incredible gift Fred has given them. ‘Long as we pull together, we can do anything, anything, anywhere,’ Fred wrote in The Rink. Thank you, Fred! Your most generous gift will allow BC/EFA to act on those wise and kind words."
Late lyricist Fred Ebb was a recipient of the Tony, Grammy, Emmy, Olivier and Kennedy Center Honors Lifetime Achievement Awards. With his longtime collaborator John Kander, he first penned the song "My Coloring Book" in 1962. The team would go on to create their first musical with Hal Prince, Flora, The Red Menace, starring a young Liza Minnelli. Their works also include Cabaret, The Happy Time, Zorba, Chicago, The Act, The Rink, Kiss of the Spider Woman and Curtains. His Tony-nominated musical The Scottsboro Boys arrived on Broadway last season. The Actors' Fund staged a concert of the Kander and Ebb musical The Visit in November.
BC/EFA is one of the nation’s leading industry-based, nonprofit AIDS fundraising and grant-making organizations. By drawing upon the talents, resources and generosity of the American theatre community, since 1988 BC/EFA has raised over $195 million for essential services for people with AIDS and other critical illnesses across the United States.