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Reading's Leigh Barrett Featured in Upstage Lung Cancer Cabaret Benefit Concert

Performing arts celebrities and organizations collaborate, raising funds for innovative research, early detection and targeted treatment of lung cancer  

Reading's Leigh Barrett is joining forces with Upstage Lung Cancer (ULC), a non-profit organization comprised of lung cancer survivors; dedicated physicians, performing artists, friends and family dedicated to fighting lung cancer, to present a one-night-only benefit concert  I Could Have Danced All Night - the Songs of Alan Jay Lerner on Tuesday, November 5, 7:30 pm at The Lyric Stage, 140 Clarendon Street, Boston.  A wine and dessert reception and silent auction immediately follow the performance.  

A Boston-area performance favorite, Barrett appears widely on operatic and musical theatre stages.  She was most recently seen on The Lyric Stage as "Katisha" in The Mikado.  She has appeared across the region at The SpeakEasy Stage Company, New Repertory Theatre, Gloucester Stage Company and North Shore Music Theater.  She is the receipient of two Ellion Norton Awards and two IRNE awards.  She honors her father John by dedicating her time to this production, diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in 2010. 

Now in its fifth year, performed during Lung Cancer Awareness month of November, ULC’s original cabaret concert series features the region’s brightest theatrical stars in an unforgettable performance emceed by Emmy award-winning arts and entertainment critic Joyce Kulhawik.  All ULC performance proceeds benefit early detection, research and innovative treatments of lung cancer, most recently through a $600K collaborative grant with the LUNGevity Foundation to Mass General Hospital Cancer Center for innovative research, development of targeted therapies and aid in early detection.   I Could Have Danced All Night honors brilliant Broadway lyricist and playwright Alan Jay Lerner, who lost his life to lung cancer.  He is best known for his legendary partnership with composer Frederick (Fritz) Loewe.  The genius pair teamed up to produce iconic musicals, including My Fair Lady, Camelot, Gigi, Brigadoon, and Paint Your Wagon. Lerner also collaborated with other composers, creating some of the most glorious Broadway music in history.  His induction into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame noted, “Lerner’s lyrics were marked by warmth and civilized urbanity, coupled with the highest order of craftsmanship.”  This show highlights Lerner’s well- known hits and standards, such as “Almost Like Being in Love”,  “The Rain in Spain”,  “Gigi”, “On the Street Where You Live”, “They Call the Wind Maria”, “I Could Have Danced All Night”, “Camelot”, “If Ever I Would Leave You”, “I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face,” and “On a Clear Day,” as well as a few less-known jewels.  

Having achieved considerable fundraising success since the cabaret series was established in 2009, the annual concert draws the finest musicians and celebrities in the Boston region to perform, all whose lives have been touched by lung cancer.  In addition to Barrett, this year’s cast also  includes Brian De Lorenzo, Hildy Grossman, Paula Markowicz, and Scott Wahle.  Emmy award-winning arts and entertainment critic Joyce Kulhawik stars as celebrity emcee.  The production is directed by Lisa Rafferty, writer of the hilarious MOMologues, with music direction by Tim Evans.     Dr. Francine Jacobson presents the annual Fan Award, an award given to individuals who have demonstrated the courage to speak out, raising awareness about lung cancer, or have conducted research leading to new methods of early detection and novel treatments. 

Upstage Lung Cancer/LUNGevity Foundation grant recipient Rebecca Heist, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital, will also be acknowledged.  

Tickets are available for $40 and $100.  A 20% ticket discount is available purchases made before October 1.  Special benefactor tickets are available for $250 and $500.   To order tickets, visit www.upstagelungcancer.org or www.lyricstage.com, or call 617-585-5678.   For more information Upstage Lung Cancer, visit www.upstagelungcancer.org, email info@upstagelungcancer.org, call 617-585-5678, or follow us on Facebook.

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