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Laura Benanti to Be Honored at Very MARY Christmas Benefit logo
Laura Benanti
(© Joseph Marzullo/WENN)
Tony Award winner Laura Benanti, currently appearing on Broadway in Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, will receive the Broadway Speaks OUT! Hero Award at the second annual Very MARY Christmas, to be held on Monday, November 29 at Dixon Place. She replaces previously announced honoree Judith Light, who has had to bow out of the event due to scheduling conflicts.

Hosted by Marti Gould Cummings, the performance will be directed by Drexel D Heard II and have music direction by Kristen Lee Rosenfeld. The benefit will raise money for The Ali Forney Center.

The event will feature appearances from Krystina Alabado, Scott Alan, Malan Breton, The Broadway Dolls, Danny Calvert, Chase Davidson, Michelle Dowdy, Matt Doyle, Alex Ellis, Annie Golden, John Arthur Greene, TJ Kelly, Taylor Mac, Jack Mackenroth, Tracy McDowell, Scott Nevins, Ryan Nickulas, Kate Pazakis, Megan Reinking, Brian Charles Rooney, Kate Shindle, Matt Shingledecker, and Marcus Simione. In addition, author, political strategist, and civil rights activist, David Mixner will be the night's Keynote Speaker.

The Ali Forney Center was started in June 2002 in response to the lack of safe shelter for LGBT youth in New York City and provides short and long term housing, free medical care, HIV testing, mental health services, showers, food, computer access and job training and placement at its drop-in centers in Chelsea and Brooklyn.

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