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SUNRISE (CBSMiami) – A night of music and healing at the BB&T Center in Sunrise as television and Broadway stars come together for a benefit concert for Parkland.
“I’m so proud to be here, proud of what these kids are doing and this movement that’s happening. It’s inspiring. It’s something I’ve never felt in my life,” said actor Matthew Morrison, best known for his role on “Glee.”
“We just are so inspired by the work that’s going on down here. The students, the teachers. It’s just unbelievably moving,” said actor Erich Bergen, who plays Blake Moran on CBS’s Madam Secretary.
Broadway performer Deborah Cox says she was personally impacted by the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas that claimed the lives of 17 students in February.
The actress lives in Parkland and says she knew two of the students.
“The school is very, very active in the arts and in the Broadway community,” said Cox. “It’s just wonderful that we’re here, you know, as a voice for these kids, as well, as an extended voice.”
From Broadway With Love: A Benefit Concert For Parkland, USA also featured Golden Globe winner Rachel Bloom (“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”), Wayne Brady (“Whose Line Is It Anyway,” Chicago cast of Hamilton), Kirsten Maldonado (Pentatonix), Noah Galvin (“The Real O’Neals,” Dear Evan Hansen), Justin Guarini (“American Idol,” In Transit), Vincent Rodriquez III (“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”), Ephraim Sykes (Hamilton, “Hairspray Live”), Christy Altomare (Anastasia), Laura Bell Bundy (“Anger Management,” Legally Blonde), Telly Leung (Aladdin), Jordan Donica (My Fair Lady, Hamilton), Donna Lynne Champlin (“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”), Gabrielle Ruiz (“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”, If/Then), Etai Benson (The Band’s Visit), Carrie Manolakos (Mamma Mia), George Salazar (Godspell, The Lightning Thief), Bryan Fenkhart (Waitress National Tour, Memphis), Charity Angel Dawson (Waitress, Side Show), Jessica Vosk (Wicked National Tour), Brandon Shapiro and Jake Wildhorn.
The lead producer of the show made the Douglas students an integral part of the concert.
“There are seven student-written songs,” said Van Dean. “Most of them have been paired up with composers that we work with to help them finish the songs. Two of them are solely student-written. And then we have student performers and dance groups and speakers as well.”
Students say the show is a beacon of light following what many see as the toughest two months of their young lives.
“Something like tonight is just art. It’s passion. It’s creativity. It’s everything positive in the world just coming together on a stage,” said Stoneman Douglas student Ryan Deitsch.
“I think today is a day of light. It’s a day of hope. It’s a day of remembrance and a day of really just coping and healing through music,” said Alex Wind.
Organizers say proceeds from the event will be donated to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Vicitims’ Fund and Shine MSD to benefit arts advocacy in the Parkland community.