(OCEAN, NJ) -- The Axelrod Performing Arts Center, like every other theater in America, has gone dark in the wake of COVID-19 and postponed or modified its programming. Despite its financial worries, the Axelrod put its focus on the community first, creating a star-studded music video to raise funds for FULFILL, formerly the FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties.
As demand for food rises in New Jersey by 50%, the executive staff and board of the Axelrod reached out to seven leading talents who've appeared at the theater to help feed the local community.
“While this is a difficult time for the arts community in New Jersey, we have chosen to look at the bigger picture,” says Artistic Director Andrew DePrisco. “The arts feed our souls and refresh our spirits, but only food can nourish our bodies. We are happy to focus our efforts on helping the great team at Fulfill continue to fight hunger in Monmouth and Ocean Counties.”
Among those artists sharing their talents on the new music video, are "American Idol" celebrity, Ace Young and his wife, Diana DeGarmo. Ace appeared in the Axelrod's production of "Elton John and Tim Rice's AIDA" last summer, and Donna will perform at the theatre this fall.
Soul and rock singer Remember Jones, a regular at the theater, performs a stirring rendition of Leon Russell's "A Song for You." Remember will soon star as Teen Angel in the theater's upcoming production of "Grease."
Two of the Axelrod’s award-winning jazz artists, Gabrielle Stravelli and Danny Bacher, also raise their voices (and a soprano saxophone) for this great cause.
The video also features Broadway veteran Brian Charles Rooney, last seen playing Trunchbull in the theater's truncated run of "Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical" and with Michelle Millardi. She appeared as Donna in the theater's production of "Mamma Mia" last season.
The video, produced by Hahn Films, can be found on the Axelrod Performing Arts Center’s Facebook page and website, www.axelrodartscenter.com or YouTube. Patrons who wish to support Fulfill can donate at fulfillnj.fenly.org.
The Axelrod Performing Arts Center is one of New Jersey's newest professional theaters, a regional theater located on the Jersey Shore that focuses on musicals, original concerts, ballet, film, arts education, and more. The Axelrod is the home of the Axelrod Contemporary Ballet Theater, Monmouth County's only professional ballet company, and the Axelrod Rising Stars Youth Performing Arts Program, which presents fully staged musicals and workshops and classes throughout the year. As one of Central Jersey’s fastest-growing cultural hubs, bolstered by artistic excellence and an eye toward educating and developing tomorrow's talent, the Axelrod continually works to create original programming for a variety of diverse communities. The Axelrod PAC is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization that relies on community support for its continued success.