Friday, April 20, 2012

Hands Up Together in Birmingham on May 3

Birmingham’s Collat Jewish Family Services will hold its annual Hands Up Together gala on May 3 in the inaugural community event for the new Dorothy Jemison Day Theater at the Alabama School of Fine Arts.

The venue has 150 more seats than previous Hands Up Together venues, and all seats will be reserved. Sponsors have priority seating.

Philanthropist Jimmie Hess will be honored in celebration of her 90th birthday, with a reception following the performance, sponsored by her friends. Euan Morton will be the featured performer. After graduating from Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts in London, Morton spent many years working in various aspects of the craft, from Profitshare Theatre to film and television. In 2002 his performance as Boy George in the West End production of the musical “Taboo,” earned him nominations at the Whatsonstage Awards and at the prestigious Laurence Olivier Awards. He also starred in the Broadway version of “Taboo” and won a Theatre World Award for Outstanding Debut Performer on Broadway. He was nominated for five more awards, including the Tony Awards.

Recently, Morton received rave reviews for playing the title role of Tony Kushner’s adaptation of “Brundib├ír” at The New Victory Theatre, and won an Obie Award for starring in “Measure For Pleasure” at The Public Theatre. Over the last years he has been performing at sold-out concerts in New York City at The Oak Room at the Algonquin, Joe’s Pub, The Zipper Theatre and Town Hall, as well as at The Signature Theatre in Arlington, Va. He released his debut solo album, “NewClear” in March 2006. He is releasing his second album, “Caledonia - The Homecoming” with LyricPartners.com.

Tickets for the 7 p.m. show are $100, while sponsorship levels range from $500 to $5000. Proceeds will benefit the work of CJFS, whose goal is to fulfill the unmet social, emotional, educational and financial needs of the Jewish community as well as the greater Birmingham community.

For more information, go to www.cjfsbham.org.