It Gets Better Project's Fundraiser for the Ali Forney Center
By Todd Plummer
Photo by Carlos Gustavo Monroy
Organized by the It Gets Better Project, this weekend's charity event raised funds for Ali Forney Center's West Chelsea drop-in center that was destroyed during Hurricane Sandy.
“It Gets Better reached out to us wanting to help, and proposed doing this event or us," Carl Siciliano, Ali Forney’s executive director, said. "We’re extraordinarily grateful. The kind of amazing support we’ve gotten from the community has enabled us to recover since our drop-in center was destroyed.”
Although Dan Savage, who was recently legally wed in Seattle, couldn’t make it over from the West Coast for the event, It Gets Better Board Member Stephanie Laffin assured the crowd that he would have been there if he could. “He just loves Broadway voices!”
Guests gathered for a cocktail hour and exhibition of famed Brazilian photographer Victor Haim’s work, and then filed into XL Nightclub’s cabaret section for drag queen duo Haus of Mimosa’s opening act, featuring a spirited rendition of “Waterfalls” by TLC. Highlights of the evening included Tony-nominated actress Condola Rashad (Smash, Sex and the City 2, the Steel Magnolias remake) performing original music off her forthcoming debut album The Letter.
Newsies’ adorable Andrew Keenan-Bolger admitted that, although he gets lots of charity performance requests, something about this one struck a chord. “I honestly don’t think that there is a more important cause than helping homeless LGBT youth,” Keenan-Bolger told Out. “When there is someone on the street completely disenfranchised and kicked out of their house, we need to take care of them. The second I heard this event was for the Ali Forney Center, I knew I had to do it.”
For more information on the Ali Forney Center and how you can help, visit the website.