On August 27, members of the Broadway community gathered with theatre fans to support The Actors Fund at the Celebrity Paddle Battle. Hosted at SPIN NYC, Broadway favorites—including The Band's Visit Tony winner Ari'el Stachel and Jelani Alladin, Timothy Hughes, Noah Ricketts, and Adam Jepsen of Disney’s Frozen—played ping-pong in a festive evening.
After guests enjoyed playing alongside Broadway names like Tony nominee Anthony Boyle (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child), Josh Canfield (The Great Comet), Alex Gibson (SpongeBob SquarePants), Hunter Ryan Herdlicka (A Little Night Music), Aaron Lazar (upcoming Dear Evan Hansen national tour), Julia Murney (Wiked), Wesley Taylor (SpongeBob SquarePants) and Tony nominee Max von Essen (Anastasia)—SPIN kicked off a mini-tournament.
Alladin took down von Essen, but it wasn’t long before Boyle triumphed over the Frozen star and then Taylor in what turned out to be quite the show. Leave it to Broadway performers to bring out the entertainment—even in a casual evening out.
Raffle winners, announced by Murney, took home prizes such as Broadway show tickets and getaway packages.
While the Celebrity Paddle Battle welcomed all supporters of The Actors Fund, it is part of the larger initiative by the Fund to re-invigorate their Young Professionals division. Re-launched this summer, The Actors Fund Young Professionals are socially conscious arts-lovers between 18 and 40 years old. Personal and professional experiences span a variety of fields and interests, but YPs share an appreciation for the performing arts and the work done by The Actors Fund to support the entertainment community.
To join The Actors Fund Young Professionals Program, you can become a member of The Fund at any level (memberships begin at just $25 a year). Members receive benefits such as advance notice of special performances & events, volunteer opportunities, invitations to social gatherings and networking nights, and access to the Fund's house seats program.