Gypsy of the Year Competition

Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is pleased to announce the 19th Gypsy of the Year Competition will take place on 17 & 18 Dec 2007 at the New Amsterdam Theatre. Gypsy of the Year Competition will be hosted this year by Jackie Hoffman (Xanadu), Bob Saget (The Drowsy Chaperone) and Mary Testa (Xanadu) is produced by and benefits BC/EFA.

This year�s Gypsy of the Year Competition will be one for the history books as BC/EFA will create a special opening number in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the original Broadway production of West Side Story. The number, a medley of songs from the show, will feature two time Tony Award winner, Chita Rivera (Anita) and her original West Side Story co-stars including Mickey Callan (Riff), Carol Lawrence (Maria), Ken LeRoy (Bernardo), Jamie Sanchez (Chino) and Reri Grist (Consuelo) who debuted the now classic ballad �Somewhere�.

They will be joined by cast members from the run of the 1957 landmark production including: Genii Charnin, Harvey Evans, Marilyn D'Honau, Alan Johnson, Gene Gavin, Ronnie Lee, George Marcy, Liane Plane, Martin Charnin, Grover Dale, Bill Guske, Ed Kressley, Sandy Leeds, Tony Mordente, Carole D'Andrea, Frances Davis, Lowell Harris, Julie Oser-McLeod, Noel Schwartz, and Gina Tricones. These legendary gypsies will be joined by gypsies from currently running shows.

The original production of West Side Story, produced by Robert E. Griffth and Harold Prince, conceived and directed by Jerome Robbins, book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim opened on September 26, 1957 ran for 732 performances, closing on June 27, 1959. Mr. Robbins won the Tony Award� for Best Choreography.

Gypsy of the Year Competition opening number, which will recreate the original Jerome Robbins choreography, is being staged and directed by Joshua Bergasse with musical direction by Ben Cohn.

Gypsy of the Year Competition is the event of fall theatre season as the New York theatrical community gathers to see �gypsies,� chorus members from Broadway and Off-Broadway shows, participate in a competition/variety show known as the Gypsy Of The Year Competition. The competition is traditionally the culmination of intense fundraising efforts made by the theatrical community. During the recent Broadway work stoppage, many Broadway shows� fundraising efforts were interrupted.

Tom Viola, executive director of BC/EFA said, �We are thrilled that Broadway is back and we look forward to everyone coming together to celebrate Broadway at this year�s Gypsy of the Year Competition at the New Amsterdam Theatre.

�During the work stoppage, we received an outpouring of support from our friends across the country to see what they could do. Broadway shows that weren�t affected by the work stoppage redoubled their efforts to raise funds. In addition, shows Off-Broadway, on tour, and among the country�s regional theatres reached out and joined in to do all that they could to help.

�Now that Broadway is back in full force, our friends across the theatre district have eagerly jumped back into fundraising efforts. On behalf of the staff and Board � but most importantly the thousands of individuals and hundreds of AIDS and family service organizations we support, especially The Actors� Fund, we offer our most sincere and heartfelt �thank you.��

Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS (BC/EFA) is the nation�s leading industry-based, nonprofit AIDS fund raising and grant making organization. BC/EFA is the on-going, committed response from the American theater community to an urgent worldwide health crisis. By drawing upon the talents, resources and generosity of this community, BC/EFA raises funds for AIDS-related causes across the United States. Since it�s founding in 1988, BC/EFA has raised over $140 million for critically needed services for people with AIDS, HIV and other related illnesses.

Originally published on

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