Broadway stars fill the night with music for Haiti relief

A veritable galaxy of stars of the Broadway stage, the Metropolitan Opera, Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall came together for a benefit concert, "Sending our Love to Haiti," at the Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood, New Jersey. The real stars of the evening, though, were the churches, synagogues and mosque from northern New Jersey that organized and supported the February 21 concert to support relief efforts for survivors of the January earthquake in Haiti.

Broadway start perform at benefit for Haiti
Judy McLane, Beth Leavel and Allison Briner of Broadway's Mamma Mia! were among the entertainers at the "Sending our Love to Haiti" benefit concert. Photo: Bruce Pomerantz

By Lesley Crosson/CWS

A veritable galaxy of stars of the Broadway stage, the Metropolitan Opera, Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall came together for a benefit concert, "Sending our Love to Haiti," at the Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood, New Jersey.  The real stars of the evening, though, were the churches, synagogues and mosque from northern New Jersey that organized and supported the February 21 concert to support relief efforts for survivors of the January earthquake in Haiti.
 
"This was an amazing example of faith in action--people from different faith communities coming together in a compassionate gesture of care and concern for people who have suffered because of the devastating earthquake," said Church World Service Deputy Director, Head of Programs Maurice A. Bloem.
 
Church World Service, which began providing relief for survivors of the quake immediately following the disaster, was a beneficiary of the event, which raised money through ticket sales, contributions and a silent auction held at the event.  The event was underwritten and organized by The Presbyterian Church at Tenafly and Temple Sinai of Bergen County and sponsored by more than twenty houses of worship in Bergen County.
 
For more than two hours, current and former lead actors from some of Broadway's biggest hits, including Phantom of the Opera, Wicked, Mamma Mia, Showboat, The Drowsy Chaperone, Chicago, Les Miserables and others, thrilled the audience with musical selections.  In a special guest appearance, Haitian quartet Buyu Ambroise & The Blues in Red Band entertained guests with jazz from their homeland at a cocktail party preceding the concert.
 
The evening also included performances by principal clarinetist Mark Nuccio and violinist Michelle Kim of the New York Philharmonic and baritone John Hancock, now in his 10th season with the Metropolitan Opera.
 
"In addition to being a great philanthropic outpouring for the people of Haiti, for which we are grateful to the Presbyterian Church at Tenafly, Temple Sinai of Bergen County, the faith community of Bergen County, the entertainers who contributed their time and talent to this cause and all the other supporters, it was an evening of incredible entertainment," said Bloem.


More stories, video and other resources on the CWS response in Haiti>>

Media Contact:
Lesley Crosson, 212-870-2676, lcrosson@churchworldservice.org
Jan Dragin, 781-925-1526, jdragin@gis.net


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