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Original “Rent” cast member to headline AHS fundraiser

Submitted by on 1, April 10, 2009 – 3:00 pmNo Comment

Gilles Chiasson, who performed in the original production of the hit Broadway musical “Rent,” is coming to sing and speak at a fundraiser for the Alameda High School Gay/Straight Alliance.

He’ll sing and speak about gay rights issues and the impact of “Rent”  on gay rights awareness as part of “Breaking the Silence through Song and Dialogue,” which is at 5 p.m. Saturday, April 18 at the Little Theater, 2200 Central Avenue. He’ll be joined by the cast of a recent production of the musical at Encinal High School, who will be reuniting to sing “Seasons of Love” onstage.

The suggested donation is $10, $5 for students.

The event is being co-produced and sponsored by Andrew Raskopf and David Gunderman of Kane and Associates Realtors. Gunderman and Chiasson co-founded the Adirondack Theater Festival, which is currently in its 15th season in Lake George, N.Y. (Gunderman says they are best friends who met in college, moved to New York and did theater at the same time.) Gunderman and Chiasson will appear onstage together in a discussion and Q & A about gay rights and local activism.

The event follows a “National Day of Silence” on April 17, which brings attention to anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment in schools.

Chiasson appeared on Broadway in the original casts of “Rent” (Obie Award), “The Scarlet Pimpernel,” “La Boheme” and “The Civil War” (Outer Critics Circle Award nomination).

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