With Pennsylvania Avenue as their stage and lit-up “TREASON” signs as props, Rosie O’Donnell and more than 55 Broadway stars from Hamilton, Wicked and Les Miserables led anti-Trump protestors in song in front of the White House on Monday night — firing up the crowd as the demonstrations reached their 22nd day.
The renowned musicians and singers arrived to Washington, D.C., from New York at around 7:30 p.m., wearing matching shirts that read: “Now showing TRUTH.”
O’Donnell kicked off the evening with a fiery speech.
“Let your voice be heard. Let the president know in no uncertain terms that we are alive, awake and we are woke. We are not going away,” she told protestors.
The Broadway crew, acoustic instruments in tow, carefully chose their presidential serenades — belting out “America the Beautiful,” The Wiz’s “Everybody Rejoice,” The Sound of Music‘s “Climb Every Mountain,” Lis Miserables‘ “Do You Hear The People Sing?” and ending with HAIR’s “Let the Sunshine In.”
When O’Donnell and her crew were not leading protestors in musical numbers, they listened to activists who took to the podium and joined in on chants like “Kids Need Parents,” referring to the migrant child crisis resulting from Trump’s immigration policy.
Less than an hour after arriving, the Broadway artists packed up to drive five hours back to New York City.
The star-studded visit to Pennsylvania Avenue, a spot south of Lafayette Park dubbed the “Kremlin Annex” by protestors, was organized by SiriusXM’s Seth Rudestky and his husband James Wesley, the Associated Press reported. The singers made their way to the White House together on a bus, warming up their vocals with The Sound of Music‘s “Climb Every Mountain,” a video tweeted by O’Donnell shows.
The White House did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Monday night’s performance is one of many organized by White House protestors over the last three weeks.
Now on its 22nd day, the ongoing protest began with a single tweet as Trump was flying back to Washington, D.C., from his talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin — a trip that had even normally pro-Trump allies crying foul.
Former top Hillary Clinton aide Philippe Reines tweeted: “If someone flew home from Helsinki they’d get back to DC around 9 p.m.. You know what I’d hate if I just got back & needed sleep? A bunch of people outside my home with bullhorns & air horns. I’ve never started a protest. How does one do that @MoveOn?”
That evening, hundreds of protestors gathered to “welcome” Trump home with pots, pans, air horns and whistles. In the weeks since that first tweet, the protest has developed into a musical movement seeking to oust Trump from the White House.
“Helsinki was the catalyst for launching this, but it’s always been about Donald Trump overall being unfit to be president,” Aravosis said.
“What’s exciting is that this started with sort of a tweet but has turned into what will hopefully be known as an area where people come to protest — whether it’s after dinner or whether they’re in town,” Parkhomenko said.
Together, the group has crowdsourced more than $130K through a KremlinAnnex.org, a site tweeted out by protest organizer and political advisor to Hillary Clinton, Adam Parkhomenko, co-organizer John Aravosis told PEOPLE on Monday.
All funds have gone toward the nightly protests in front of the White House — namely hiring a Russian translator (so that “Trump and the White House understand what protestors are saying”), commissioning Trump balloons reminiscent of the “Trump Baby” blimp at the protests in England, and purchasing a new, powerful sound system, Parkhomenko told PEOPLE last Monday.
Parkhomenko and Aravosis are gearing up for another big night on Tuesday to celebrate the birthday of Robert Mueller, who is overseeing the Justice Department’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. The co-organizers are promising a game of “pin the indictment on the traitor” and a large cake from Costco.
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Keep up with the events on Pennsylvania Avenue week-by-week below:
WEEK ONE HIGHLIGHTS: Mariachi Band, Opera Singers, Michael Avenatti, Alyssa Milano and a Trump sighting
Protestors in front of the White House went to new levels to keep the jet-lagged president from sleeping after he touched down from Helsinki, trotting out an 18-person Mariachi band and opera singers belting out “America the Beautiful.”
Stormy Daniels’ attorney, Michael Avenatti, and actress and activist Alyssa Milano joined the crowd during the first week of nightly activism.
“I hope it brings renewed focus and significant attention on the need for the American people to know why President Trump is abandoning the nation in favor of Vladimir Putin,” Avenatti told PEOPLE last Tuesday.
The week ended with protestors getting their first face-to-face interaction with the president, shouting “LOCK HIM UP!” as Trump and wife Melania arrived at the White House on Sunday, July 22nd.
WEEK TWO HIGHLIGHTS: A New Sound System, a Russian Translator, and Shark Night
The second week of nightly protests kicked off with a new sound system funded by protestors nationwide, which amplified protest musicians performing throughout the week. Protestors traveled from Tennessee and Missouri to join the extra-loud crowd outside of the White House, Parkhomenko told PEOPLE, adding that another supporter from out of state sent pizza to Pennsylvania Avenue.
On Tuesday night, a Russian translator from New York City arrived to the White House, and was joined by a sign reading “TREASON” in Russian.
“We translate things into Russian at the Kremlin Annex so Trump understands what protestors are saying,” Parkhomenko quipped in a tweet.
On a rainy Wednesday night, ten protestors showed up dressed in full-body shark costumes, holding signs that read: “THIS ALL SEEMS FISHY” and “We don’t bite but MUELLER does.”
WEEK THREE HIGHLIGHTS: A T-Rex, Electric Guitars and a Rainbow
Protestors showed up, rain or shine, as they passed the two-week mark outside of the White House. Some creative activists recalled Trump’s less-than-thrilled reaction to a trick-or-treater dressed like a T-Rex on Halloween and showed up on Pennsylvania Avenue in costume.
One protester held a sign that read, “I came here for the T-REX but I’m staying for the IMPEACHMENT!”
A rainbow also surprised protestors as they danced and rallied through week three.
Musicians playing violins and electric guitars also joined “Kremlin Annex” protestors during their third week.
The White House has faced criticism following Trump’s disastrous summit with Putin in Helsinki.
In a press conference there on July 16, Trump said he took Putin‘s word over findings by U.S. intelligence agencies that Russia had interfered with the 2016 American presidential election.
Trump has since backtracked on the widely derided comments. During a subsequent meeting with members of Congress, Trump said he supported U.S. intelligence agencies and claimed he had misspoken when he said he didn’t see any reason why Russia would have meddled the U.S. election. He has nevertheless continued to defend his performance at the summit. And late last month, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders announced Trump’s plans to invite Putin to Washington in the fall.