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Easter Bonnet Competition Raises Over $3.7 Million for BC/EFA

By New York City
Harvey Fierstein, Faith Prince, and David Hyde Pierce
(© Tristan Fuge)
Harvey Fierstein, Faith Prince, and David Hyde Pierce
(© Tristan Fuge)
At the conclusion of the 22nd Annual Easter Bonnet Competition, held on Tuesday, April 29 at the Minskoff Theatre, it was announced that over $3.7 million had been raised for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.

Dozens of Broadway shows, Off-Broadway shows, and national tours have spent the past six weeks raising funds for the cause. The Broadway company of Rent raised the most money, with the Chicago company of Jersey Boys leading all national tours in fundraising, and August: Osage County raising the most money for any play.

The two-day Broadway spectacular featured the companies of more than 15 Broadway, Off-Broadway, and touring productions singing, dancing, and donning original Easter bonnets. Among the notable performers who participated in their companies' skits were Clay Aiken, Hannah Waddingham, Laura Benanti, Anthony Rapp, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Priscilla Lopez, and Daniel Breaker.

The award for Best Bonnet Presentation went to Sunday in the Park With George, in which child stars Kelsey Fowler and Alison Horowitz -- who alternate in the role of Louise -- played the roles of George and Dot singing "We Do Not Belong Together." A special award for Best Designed and Constructed Bonnet was given to Passing Strange for a hat designed to emulate Kevin Adams' lighting design for the show.

This year's celebrity judges included Sebastian Arcelus, Stephanie J. Block, Dylan Baker, Norm Lewis, Chris March, S. Epatha Merkerson, Matthew Morrison, Albert Poland, and Bernie Telsey.

This year's special guest presenters included Harvey Fierstein, Faith Prince, David Hyde Pierce, Kate Shindle, Tom Wopat, Nathan Lane, Laurie Metcalf, Roger Bart, Megan Mullally, Sierra Boggess, Tituss Burgess, Daniel Evans, Jenna Russell, Jonathan Groff, Lea Michele, Ron Kunene, Tshidi Manye, Laura Osnes, Max Crumm, Allison Fischer, and Phylicia Rashad.

In addition, Jackie Hoffman and a quartet of real-life contestants from Project Runway participated in the opening number; Don Richard and Jen Cody returned as those popular characters Officer Lockstock and Little Sally from Urinetown; 104-year-old original Ziegfeld girl Doris Travis Eaton danced to "Singin' in the Rain"; and Tony Award winner Anika Noni Rose -- currently starring in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof -- sang David Friedman's anthem "Help Is On The Way."

TheaterMania will post a photo feature on the event later this week.

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