Broadway Inspirational Voices (BIV) is presenting their BETTER DAYS: Fundraising Cocktail Party and Award Ceremony on Monday, October 24 at 7:00pm in the American Airlines Theatre’s Penthouse Lobby, 227 W 42nd St in New York.
A fancy, fun, fabulous, and unique evening curated just for your joy. BIV will also be presenting special awards to Tony, Emmy and Grammy Award winner André De Shields (Death of a Salesman, Becoming Lincoln, Hadestown), Tony Award winning LaChanze (The Color Purple, Producer:TopDog/Underdog, Kimberly Akimbo), and three-time Tony Award winner Alex Lacamoire (VIVO, Dear Evan Hansen, Hamilton), and honoring them for being true agents of INSPIRATION in using the arts as a conduit for social change. Beloved Stars In The House hosts Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley will lead the way as guests revel in special guest performances curated by BIV Artistic Director Allen René Louis including Shoshana Bean (Mr. Saturday Night, Waitress), Tituss Burgess (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Annie- Live!), the Broadway Inspirational Voices choir, and more.
In the intimate setting of the American Airlines Theatre’s beautiful Penthouse Lobby, BIV supporters will have the opportunity to engage with honorees and performers throughout the evening. Not only will guests be bathed in BIV’s glorious musical sound and spirit, there will also be a chance to learn about BIV’s innovative Arts & Education programs, and have the opportunity to further support the work that BIV has wholeheartedly done for more than 25 years.
“At BIV, we celebrate resilience! Better Days is our first major fundraising event since 2020. With your help, BIV will continue to inspire more beautiful tomorrows. Come join the fun, and have your best day yet!”- Allen René Louis – BIV Artistic Director
In a career spanning more than half a century, André De Shields has acquired a number of sobriquets, among them–“Broadway Deity,” “Professional Charmer” and “Papa Dré.” A showstopper at age 76, André was the triple-crown winner of the 2019 award season, garnering Tony, Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk and Grammy Awards for his universally praised role as Hermes, Messenger to the Gods, in Hadestown. De Shields has also distinguished himself as director, philanthropist and educator. His defining theatrical performances include roles in the original Broadway productions of The Full Monty (Tony Award nomination), Play On! (Tony Award nomination), Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Emmy Award) and the titular role in The Wiz. De Shields is the Narrator for the History Channel’s Podcast series, Becoming Lincoln, which aired recently and he is currently recording Becoming Grant as well as Becoming Washington. He is also the voice of Hermes in the podcast Live From Mount Olympus, jointly produced by Apple and The Onassis Foundation. New filming will begin this winter for the next season. In addition, The André De Shields Fund through The University of Wisconsin in Madison was recently created and will provide support to the students of The University of Wisconsin’s BIPOC community. The Fund will support artistic projects and performances created, performed, designed, or produced by BIPOC and other people who are historically underrepresented on stages and in audiences. Currently, De Shields is experiencing growing pains as he prepares for his next adventure as Actor/Activist, eradicating the inauthentic while elevating the inexplicable. Ubuntu! www.andredeshields.com
Broadway Inspirational Voices (BIV) is a diverse community choir of Broadway professionals united to change lives through the power of music and service. BIV is committed to supporting and strengthening communities in need.
In 1994 more than 32,000 people died from AIDS or AIDS-related complications in the U.S. Many of those deaths came from within the Broadway community. As Broadway grappled with the loss of an entire generation of artists, Tony and Grammy-nominated Michael McElroy (founder of the Broadway Inspirational Voices) saw in the community a profound need for hope, unity, and inspiration. He envisioned an organization where professional performers would come together and volunteer their talents to provide comfort, joy, and the promise of a better day–and as a result, The Broadway Gospel Choir was born. This magical synergy of
authentic Gospel soul and Broadway bravura was re-imagined as the Broadway Inspirational Voices (BIV) in 1999 and they have been the theatre community’s center of support and celebration ever since. In 2019, The Tony Awards Administration Committee presented the Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre to four outstanding contributors to the Broadway industry, and Broadway Inspirational Voices was a recipient. The Tony Honor was a resounding endorsement of BIV’s enduring work and impact and in celebration of 25 years of service. In 2020, McElroy hand picked composer/singer Allen René Louis to become the new Artistic Director for BIV. BIV’s diverse membership has represented over 140 Broadway shows since its inception. For more information – and for ways to DONATE – go to www.BIVoices.org. You can also find them on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at handle @BIVoices.
Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer, activist and an Award winning filmmaker and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Lia is also the host and Executive Producer of BACKSTAGE PASS WITH LIA CHANG, a new Arts and Entertainment program that airs on Sundays at 6:30pm on FIOS 34, RCN 83, Spectrum 56/1996 and MNN2.
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. Her short film, When the World Was Young recently garnered a 2021 DisOrient Film Audience Choice Award for Best Short Narrative. 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. She stars in and served as Executive Producer for the short independent films Hide and Seek, Balancing Act, Rom-Com Gone Wrong, Belongingness and When the World was Young. She is also the Executive Producer for The Cactus, The Language Lesson, The Writer and Cream and 2 Shugahs. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations.
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