NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An unlikely cast makes up “The Front Line Choir And Friends,” who are rehearsing for a show called Let Us Entertain You.
“Theater is empty right now, so we’re going to bring theater to you,” said Michael Merritt.
Merritt is a registered nurse, and playwright.
“Now a producer,” he said and laughed.
Merritt was moved to make a difference beyond the emergency room. In fact, he can remember the exact day.
“May 12th,” he said.
That’s when he read the heartbreaking news that theater would remain dark until September. It has since been extending through the rest of the year.
“Oh my goodness, what are my theater friends going to do?” he said. “I just started to think, what can I do? What can I do to help?”
He sent emails to talented strangers and friends, and quickly something bigger than he dreamed became reality: Brave Hearts For Broadway.
Those brave hearts are front line workers devoted to healing not just the body, but theater too, using their voices.
“Who knew? When I first started I thought I’d have three or four nurses and doctors that wanted to sing,” Merritt said.
Now, “The Front Line Choir” is more than 50 voices strong. One of those voices belongs to medical assistant Tasha Keys.
“I love people and I love to help,” she said.
Another to Dr. Dan Egan.
“I hope that people in the arts will feel that people are looking out for them,” he said.
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Both say they’re thrilled to pour their passion into the project and can’t wait to watch Let Us Entertain You at 7 p.m. on September 23rd.
Watching the fun unfold on Playbill.com is free, but donations are greatly appreciated. Each dollar raised benefits The Actors Fund. because while the lights stay out on Broadway, The Actors Fund extends a lifeline to all in the theater community. It provides emergency assistance for food, insurance, prescriptions, utilities and so much more.
“The Actors Fund is doing all they can, shoveling the funds right out the door to help these people. So I want to shovel it back in,” Merritt said.
By entertaining the masses with the help of fellow front line workers and celebrities too.
More than 120 volunteers from around the world donated thousands of hours and a whole lot of love to make Let Us Entertain You possible.
For more information on Brave Hearts For Broadway and how you can watch the variety show, CLICK HERE.
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