Al Pacino, Bebe Neuwirth and Michael J. Stengel were honored last night at the annual Actors Fund Gala which attracted a celebrity guest list as well as raised money for the non-profit Actor’s Fund. The event was held at the New York Marriott Marquis and was generously sponsored by Marriott and United Airlines. The Actors Fund benefits all members of the theatre, performing arts and entertainment.
From Al Pacino: “I’m honored to receive the Lee Strasberg Artistic Achievement Award from The Actors Fund. From my decades of work in theatre and film, I know firsthand the importance of our community giving back to support those in need. Actors, musicians, directors, crew members and so many others-they are all a part of our community. And when they need a helping hand, we know The Actors Fund will be there.”
Guests of the Actor’s Fund Gala enjoyed a cocktail hour followed by dinner and an awards presentation. Bebe Neuwirth, Michael J. Stengel and Marriott International were honored with “The Actors Fund Medal of Honor” and Al Pacino was awarded “The Lee Strasberg Artistic Achievement Award.”
Co-Chairs of the event included celebrities such as Alec Baldwin, Annettte Bening, Jordon Roth and Lizzie and Jon Tisch. Celebrity guests of The Actors Fund Gala included Angela Lansbury, Kathie Lee Gifford and Stephen Baldwin.
From Bebe Neuwirth: “When anyone in our community of performing arts and entertainment needs a place to turn, The Actors Fund is there. But as a dancer, I know from personal experience the challenges of a career in the arts. Through The Dancers Resource, The Fund addresses the distinctive needs of dancers facing health problems or injuries because of their demanding work, coupled with the significant financial challenges of earning a living in dance. I hope dancers, and everyone in our community will remember The Actors Fund when they hear of colleagues and friends in need.”
The Actors Fund was founded in 1882 in order to provide charity services to professionals in the theatre profession. At that time there were prejudices towards the theatrical profession and many actors were denied charity services from other organizations. The Actors Fund filled the gap and was able to provide assistance to theatre professionals as needed.
To learn more about the Actor’s Fund, please visit actorsfund.org
To view photos from the 2011 Actors Fund Gala, please click on the slideshow to the left of this article.