More than 20 Broadway producers are offering a $1 million challenge match to double the impact of donations to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS’ recently launched COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund.
The fund, administered by The Actors Fund, is helping those onstage, backstage, and behind the scenes impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The Actors Fund is processing applications for help from 5,000 people that have been submitted in the last 10 days.
The challenge was initiated by Spencer Ross, who pledged $50,000 and began recruiting other producers to join with the same amount. Rebecca Gold Milikowsky followed suit and joined Ross to co-lead the recruitment effort. Over the next few days, 20 producers came on board, collectively offering the $1 million pledge.
Producers include Ross, Milikowsky, Elizabeth Armstrong, Bill Damaschke, Diana DiMenna, Jeanne Donovan Fisher, S. Asher Gelman, John Gore and Lauren Reid of The John Gore Organization, Louise Gund, Judi Krupp, Larry and Beth Lenke, Carmen Pavlovic and Gerry Ryan, Marc Platt, Daryl Roth, Jordan Roth, Scott Rudin, Jeffrey Seller, Jana Shea, Iris Smith, David Stone, and Barbara Whitman. (Reid, Roth, and Stone also serve on the Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS Board of Trustees.)BroadwayCares.org/Help2020.
Broadway Cares launched the emergency fund March 17 with an initial seed of $250,000. To date, $580,000 has been raised, including $52,000 generated by Tony winner Lin-Manuel Miranda during a segment of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. With the producers' pledge, the goal for Broadway Cares’ COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund has now been increased to $2 million by April 12.
Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS 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 Broadway Cares has raised more than $300 million for essential services for people with AIDS and other critical illnesses across the United States.