16th April 2021
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Broadway Backwards 2021 Show To Stream Online In March

Broadway Backwards 2021 Show To Stream Online In March
By Michelle Sciarrotta

Broadway Backwards will take a hopeful, musical look toward post-pandemic life in an online show with a lineup of Broadway’s best on 30th March.

This virtual edition of Broadway Backwards will explore how the isolation of the COVID-19 pandemic has specifically affected the LGBTQ community. The show will feature Jay Armstrong Johnson as an isolated New Yorker who dreams a fantastical journey guided by a late night television host, portrayed by Jenn Colella. New performances will be merged with full numbers from previous editions of Broadway Backwards to create a Broadway Backwards that feels distinctly of the moment.

The line up

This year’s streaming event includes a special opening number featuring Stephanie J. Block, Deborah Cox and Lea Salonga, plus performances and appearances by Matt Bomer, Darren Criss, Ariana DeBose, Robin De Jesús, Cynthia Erivo, Joshua Henry, Cherry Jones, Kelli O’Hara and Jim Parsons.

Creator Robert Bartley will return as writer and director for this virtual version of the show. He will be joined by Mary-Mitchell Campbell as music supervisor, Ted Arthur as music director and Eamon Foley as director of photography and video editor. Joshua Buscher-West joins as associate director, Nick Connors as orchestrator, Benedict Braxton-Smith as music producer and audio engineer, Matt Kraus as sound designer and Samantha Rodriguez as costume designer.

Broadway Backwards is produced by Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and benefits Broadway Cares and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center in New York City.

The free online event, where gender doesn’t matter but love does, can be viewed here and on the Broadway Cares YouTube channel. It will be available on demand until 11:59 pm Saturday, 3rd April.

More of this year’s special guests will be announced in the coming weeks.

Save the date

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What began as a small, grassroots concert performed at The Center in 2006 quickly grew into a highly anticipated event presented in Broadway’s best theatres. In total, Broadway Backwards has raised more than $5.3 million for Broadway Cares and The Center.

The presenting sponsor of this year’s Broadway Backwards is Morgan Stanley. The event also is generously sponsored by The New York Times.

Watch highlights from the last in-person edition of Broadway Backwards from 2019.

About Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS

“Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS helps men, women and children across the country and across the street receive lifesaving medications, health care, nutritious meals, counselling and emergency financial assistance.

We are one of the nation’s leading industry-based, non-profit AIDS fundraising and grant-making organisations. By drawing upon the talents, resources and generosity of the American theatre community, since 1988 Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS has raised more than $300 million for essential services for people with HIV/AIDS and other critical illnesses in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Washington DC.

Broadway Cares

Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is the major supporter of essential social service programs at The Actors Fund, including the HIV/AIDS Initiative, the Phyllis Newman Women’s Health Initiative and The Friedman Health Center for the Performing Arts. We also award annual grants to more than 450 AIDS and family service organisations nationwide.

Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS began as two separate organisations.

Equity Fights AIDS was founded in October 1987 by the Council of Actors’ Equity Association. Money raised through the efforts of Equity theatre companies across the country was specifically earmarked for The Actors Fund’s HIV/AIDS Initiative.

Broadway Cares was founded in February 1988 by members of The Producers’ Group. Money raised was awarded to AIDS service organisations nationwide, including Equity Fights AIDS.

In May 1992, Equity Fights AIDS and Broadway Cares merged to become Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. The Board of Trustees of this newly established not-for-profit fundraising organisation assumed the missions of the previously separate organisations.

Unlike most other nonprofit, grant-making organisations, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS must raise every dollar of our philanthropic budget each year in order to fulfil our mission. In turn, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS works hard to ensure that the money we raise is spent carefully and wisely on programs where these hard-earned funds can have the maximum possible impact.”

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Also by Michelle Sciarrotta:

Accessibility At The Smith Center Series: Part One

James “Fitz” FitzSimmons Interview: The Boys In The Band On Netflix

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