The annual holiday extravaganza SPARKLE: An All-Star Holiday Concert returned to New York City on December 1 for its 8th consecutive year, once again benefiting the programs and services of The Actors Fund.
Hosted and produced by TV personality Scott Nevins (Bravo’s “The People’s Couch”), SPARKLE took place at The Green Room 42 (570 Tenth Avenue, NY, NY). 2019 Tony Award Winner André De Shields (Hadestown, The Wiz, The Full Monty, Ain’t Misbehavin’) was this year’s special guest to read Twas the Night Before Christmas, but when Music Director Brian Nash started to play “So You Wanted to Meet The Wizard”, De Shields surprised the audience with the song. The evening featured Grammy Award Winner Nathan Lee Graham, Chris Weaver (“The Voice”), Singer/Songwriter Randi Driscoll, Multi-MAC Award Winner Natalie Douglas, Marty Thomas (Wicked, Xanadu), Lexi Lawson (Hamilton), Natalie Joy Johnson (Kinky Boots, Legally Blonde), Jesse JP Johnson (SpongeBob, Wicked), Haviland Stillwell (Les Miserables, Fiddler), Kevin Smith Kirkwood (Kinky Boots), Erin Quill (Avenue Q original Broadway company) and Julie Garnyé (Come From Away), accompanied by backup vocalists Chase Kamata, Melody Madarasz and Marissa Rosen, Music Director and Arranger Brian Nash on piano, Phil Coiro on drums and Sean Murphy on bass.
Check out the set list below:
“Christmas (baby, please come home)”
Melody Madarasz, Chase Kamata, Marissa Rosen
Jesse J.P. Johnson – “This Christmas”
Haviland Stillwell – “Santa Baby”
Lexi Lawson – “This Christmas Song”
Marissa Rosen – “Run Run Rudolph”
Randi Driscoll – “Hard Candy Christmas”
Erin Quill – “Hanukkah in Santa Monica”
Julie Garnyé – “Coventry Carol” in “O Holy Night”
Andre De Shields – “So You Wanted to Meet the Wizard” and “Twas The Night Before Christmas”
Marty Thomas – “What Christmas Means to Me My Love”
Natalie Joy Johnson – “Merry Christmas, Darling”
Natalie Douglas – “”Children, Go where I Send You”
Natalie Douglas. Photo by Lia Chang
Nathan Lee Graham – “White Christmas”
Chris Weaver – “Mary Did You Know?”
Kevin Smith Kirkwood and Company – “Joy To The World”
Haviland Stillwell – “All I Want for Christmas is You….”
SPARKLE: AN ALL-STAR HOLIDAY CONCERT began when TV personality and host Scott Nevins had the desire to present a “small holiday concert” in Palm Springs, CA to help raise funds for a worthy organization. The event was an instant hit, quickly moving to a much larger venue, and earning 4 consecutive sold-out years as the holiday musical event of the season in the desert. Nevins then expanded on the idea by producing very successful all-star versions of the show in New York City and Los Angeles, both benefiting the programs and services of The Actors Fund. Sparkle has featured a remarkable cast of the industry’s most legendary and iconic performers like Carol Channing, Harvey Fierstein, Mitzi Gaynor, Florence Henderson, Richard Kind, Lorna Luft, Loni Anderson, Richard Simmons (in his last public appearance), and Jo Ann Worley, along with some of today’s biggest and brightest from TV, Theatre and Film such as Tony Award winners Billy Porter, Melba Moore and Lillias White, Emmy Award nominee Tituss Burgess, Tony Award nominees Daisy Eagan, Andrew Rannells, Stephanie J. Block, Robin De Jesus, Norm Lewis, Max von Essen, Constantine Maroulis and Bobby Steggert, Emmy Award winner & recording artist Liz Callaway plus Bobbie Eakes, Lea Thompson, Nick Adams, Erich Bergen, Christina Bianco, Emerson Collins, Wilson Cruz, Matt Doyle, Ilene Graff, Blake McIver, Sharon McNight, Anthony Rapp, Jai Rodriguez, The Skivvies, Shayna Steele, Marty Thomas, columnist & TV personality Perez Hilton, and many more!
THE ACTORS FUND is a national human services organization that fosters stability and resiliency, and provides a safety net for performing arts and entertainment professionals over their lifespan. Through offices in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, The Fund serves everyone in film, theater, television, music, opera, radio and dance with programs including social services and emergency financial assistance, health care and insurance counseling, housing, and secondary employment and training services. Visit actorsfund.org.
Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.
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