Jake Gyllenhaal, Glenn Close and More Stars Join amfAR Special to Aid Coronavirus Relief

On Oct. 8, the actors will virtually perform scenes from the play Angels in America to raise money for amfAR's Fund to Fight COVID-19

Jake Gyllenhaal, Glenn Close, Whoopi Goldberg and more celebrities are using their acting chops to help fight the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

On Oc. 8, the actors will virtually perform scenes from the Broadway play Angels in America as part of amfAR’s (The Foundation for AIDS Research) star-studded online benefit, The Great Work Begins: Scenes from Angels in America, to raise money for their Fund to Fight COVID-19.

Angels in America, by playwright Tony Kushner, follows two couples navigating the AIDs epidemic as it ravaged the United States.

The cast also includes Laura Linney, Patti LuPone, Alan Cumming and Paul Dano, among others. All of the actors shot their scenes apart, from home, only able to hear their scene partners’ voices. The footage was then put together to make it appear as if the actors can see each other. Composer Ellis Ludwig-Leone, award-winning creative director Paul Tate dePoo III and TBD Creative Media also donated their time in creating the show.

amfAR and performance director Ellie Heyman chose Angels in America after noticing striking similarities between the coronavirus pandemic and AIDs epidemic during the 1980s and 1990s.

An estimated 7,529,400 people have been infected with the coronavirus in the United States including President Donald Trump, who returned to the White House Monday night, three days after being hospitalized for the coronavirus.

Angels is an intensely personal work that is so much more than just an AIDS play and, in this time of COVID and national unrest, its themes of racism and government failings make it as relevant and resonant today as it was when it was first performed 30 years ago,” amfAR CEO Kevin Robert Frost said in a statement.

Thursday’s free virtual event will be followed by a live conversation moderated by Paul Wontorek, Editor-in-Chief of Broadway.com, and feature Mr. Kushner, Ellie Heyman, amfAR CEO Kevin Robert Frost and several of the actors from the production: Daphne Rubin-Vega, Linda Emond, Vella Lovell and Nikki James. The group will discuss the play, activism and coronavirus research.

The Great Work Begins: Scenes from Angels in America will livestream on Broadway.com’s YouTube channel on October 8th at 8:30 p.m. ET.

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