World of Wonder Productions and the official 501(c)(3) of The Stonewall Inn, The Stonewall Gives Back Initiative, today announced that on Thursday, April 23rd at 8PM ET/7 CT, the partnership will present a live-stream concert event benefiting the LGBTQ+ nightlife industry directly impacted by COVID-19.
Hosted by Michelle Visage and Tyler Oakley, guests and performers at the event will include Alan Cumming, Allie X, Betty Who, Carlie Hanson, Darren Hayes, Dave Mizzoni, Greyson Chance, Issac Dunbar, John Cameron Mitchell, Kim Petras, Kristin Chenoweth, Leland, Lorna Luft, Matt Rogers, MUNA, Nina West, Our Lady J, Pabllo Vittar, Peppermint, Rufus Wainwright, Shoshana Bean, Todrick Hall, Troye Sivan, TUCKER, VINCINT and a special performance by Cyndi Lauper.
The event is being executive produced by Erich Bergen, who recently produced The Rosie O’Donnell Show fundraising event as well as the “Saturday Night Seder” streaming event which raised $2.9 Million. “I think this pandemic has made it even more clear just how vulnerable some of our communities actually are,” said Bergen. “We are coming together to respond to this crisis in a collaborative way, through music, which is the great unifier.”
Co-Producer and Golden Globe-nominated songwriter and producer Brett McLaughlin adds, “So many careers are built and sustained by the support of the LGBT nightlife community. It’s our turn and duty to support them during this time of need. I’m so grateful that many of my friends jumped at the chance to give back when asked. This is going to be an incredibly special evening.”
Streaming live on World of Wonder’s YouTube channel WOWPresents, all proceeds from the event will go directly into a fund where industry professionals can apply for emergency assistance. These funds will then be distributed as $1,000 grants based on need, on a first come first serve basis to those who have lost their livelihood due to the coronavirus pandemic and are struggling to afford basic necessities. Impacted industry professionals can apply for a grant at www.stonewallgivesback.com.
“The Stonewall Inn in New York City has, for decades, served as a beacon of hope in the LGBTQ+ community,” said World of Wonder co-founders Randy Barbato and Fenton Bailey. “World of Wonder similarly strives to build opportunities and access for the community, while standing beside them and The Stonewall Inn in the struggle for equality. In that same spirit, we are thrilled to partner for this one-night-only concert to offer help and support to the LGBTQ+ community during this difficult time.”
While the effects of COVID-19 are felt globally, The Stonewall Inn and World of Wonder recognize the increased hardships the virus presents to the LGBTQ+ community. As an often-marginalized group, the community is more likely to feel isolated during this crisis and have less access to resources.
“In general, LGBTQ bars and nightlife have been decimated due to the mass closures during the Covid-19 pandemic,” says Stacy Lentz, CEO of The Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative. “These are the original safe spaces for our community, which often makes us feel less alienated and alone. They are a true refuge where we can be ourselves. This industry is now gone and employees of those bars, venues and event spaces are struggling. They rely on tips and gig work and are no longer able to make ends meet. We need this moment to come together as one and help those who keep the LBGTQ nightlife industry thriving.”
Don’t miss this one night only event. Tune into WOW Presents on Thursday and help give back to an important part of the LGBTQ+ community.