But the economic darkness brought on by the coronavirus pandemic has had a few bright spots: A few highly regarded sites have received financial increases to help them survive, thanks to online fundraising campaigns and even a telethon.
Married couple Tom and Michael D’Angora, who live in Hell’s Kitchen, first launched a GoFundMe campaign on behalf of the West Bank Cafe / Laurie Beechman Theater.
It raised over $ 340,000 after a streaming telethon that included performances by many Broadway actors and singers who frequent the West Bank Cafe.
This is an emergency for small businesses and Coogan recognizes it. The Pay It Forward campaign they launched helps small businesses and nonprofits stay open.
“I had some of my most delightful, carefree, important moments here,” famed veteran actor Andre De Shields, who was performing at “Hadestown” before the virus hit, said on the telethon. , before giving way. owner Steve Olsen a check. “We don’t want this beautiful piece of heaven on earth to ever disappear.”
“We were weeks away from really running out of money and going bankrupt,” Olsen said ahead of the campaign.
But now, he’s optimistic that the place he opened in 1978 can stay open until dining and shows return to town.
The D’Angoras have since launched another campaign for the Birdland Jazz Club, raising over $ 180,000. Owner Gianni Valenti predicted he would be able to stay open until the pandemic is over.
It is “very heartwarming to see the response we got,” said Valenti.
“I read the folks list and love that they care about Birdland, the music and what it means to New York that we all carry on and I hope we get back to normal. he said.