AMPLIFY 2023 digital program
Welcome to amplify 2023
Brought to you by Chad Austin, Gala Creative Director & Robbie Cowan, Musical Director
with support from Foresight Events, Green Room 42
and the AMPLIFY 2023 Honorary Gala Committee & Organizing Committee
Juancho Herrera, Guitar
Samuel Torres, Percussion
Miles Grose, Special Guest Host
Emily Joy Weiner, Co-Founder & Artistic Director of Houses on the Moon
Susan Goodwillie, Managing Director of Houses on the Moon
Special performance of “A Change is Gonna Come” by Curtis Wiley
HONORING Dr. Kate Cerulli
With introductory remarks by Ahmad Bakrin and Veronica Leva
And special performance of “You Never Walk Alone” by Rema Webb
HONORING LEYTON AWARD RECIPIENT, Alex Sanchez & Homies Unidos
With introductory remarks by Zuleyma Guevara
Call to Action
Susan Goodwillie, Managing Director of Houses on the Moon
HONORING Rashad V. Chambers
With introductory remarks by LaChanze
And special performances by Carolina Rial, Alyssa Wray, and Teal Wicks
Dr. Kate Cerulli
Dr. Kate Cerulli is a passionate advocate for human rights and marginalized individuals. With extensive experience spanning over four decades, she has worked as a counselor, attorney, and researcher, specializing in supporting victims of violence. Dr. Cerulli holds multiple degrees, including a Juris Doctor from the University of Buffalo and a Master’s and PhD from SUNY Albany. She has published over 120 peer-reviewed articles in addition to book chapters, law review articles, and published abstracts. She also hosts the Promoting Resiliency podcast. As a faculty member at the University of Rochester Medical Center, Dr. Cerulli teaches violence prevention courses, leads diverse research projects, and mentors students and junior faculty. Her collaboration with Houses on the Moon Theater Company has resulted in a unique partnership to develop a theatrical production and educator toolkit addressing child abuse and neglect, empowering youth to identify and respond to abuse while fostering resiliency. The impactful work of Houses on the Moon has profoundly influenced her scientific endeavors, contributing to the improvement of social determinants of health for the community at large.
Rashad V. Chambers
RASHAD V. CHAMBERS is a Tony Award-winning producer, talent manager, and lawyer. He is the Founder and President of Esquire Entertainment. Rashad’s Broadway producing credits include American Son, Ain’t Too Proud, Betrayal, The Inheritance, Caroline or Change, The Music Man, Topdog/Underdog, and Fat Ham. Other notable credits include Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical (Off Broadway), and It Happened in Key West (London). Rashad attended Morehouse College, where he graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration. He also earned his JD and MBA degrees from The Ohio State University. Rashad is a founding member of The Industry Standard Group as well as a board member of On Broadway Performing Arts Training Program and Houses on the Moon Theater Company.
Leyton Award winner
ALEX SANCHEZ & homies unidos
ALEX SANCHEZ is an internationally recognized peacemaker and co-founder of Homies Unidos in Los Angeles, where he has developed and implemented innovative violence prevention and intervention programs since 1998. He has also led the organization as Executive Director since 2006. An outspoken community leader, Alex’s commitment to disenfranchised youth and their families in the Latino and largely Central American communities of the Pico Union, Westlake, and Koreatown areas of Los Angeles is rooted in his own personal journey as a gang-involved youth and target of the INS, LAPD, and Salvadoran national police and death squads.
HOMES UNIDOS’ mission is to end violence and promote peace in Central American communities through violence prevention and intervention, the promotion of human rights in immigrant communities, and the empowerment of youth and families to achieve their full potential in a just, safe, and healthy society both in Los Angeles and El Salvador.
Special Guests & performers
Miles Grose is an experienced writer/actor/producer/director who is the co-host of the Team CoCo-produced podcast, “May I Elaborate: Sound Wisdom With JB Smoove.” He is the author of the children’s book “The Tyrell Show” (Scholastic Publishing) and recently directed a celebrity-driven interview series for the MSG Network called “One Course.” Miles has worked as a Teaching Artist for over 25 years, and has a long standing relationship with Houses On The Moon and deep love for the work that they do.
Broadway: Celie in The Color Purple (Tony Award) Ti Moune in Once On This Island (Tony Award nomination) Trouble In Mind (Tony Award nomination), Summer: The Donna Summer Musical (Tony Award nomination), A Christmas Carol, If/Then, The Wiz, Company, Ragtime, and Dreamgirls. Off Broadway: The Secret Life of Bees, The Bubbly Black Girl Sheds Her Chameleon Skin, The Vagina Monologues, and Cabin in the Sky at New York City Center Encores! TV: “Handel’s Messiah Rocks: A Joyful Noise” (Emmy Award), “East New York,” “The Blacklist,” HBO’s “The Night Of,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “The Good Fight,” “Sex And The City.” Film: The Help, Melinda, and Disney’s Hercules, among other titles. As Director: Alice Childress’ Wine in the Wilderness at Classic Stage Company in 2024. As Producer: Here Lies Love by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim, 20th Anniversary of Suzan-Lori Parks’ acclaimed Pulitzer-Prize-Winning play, Topdog/Underdog; Jeanine Tesori & David Lindsay-Abaire’s new musical, Kimberly Akimbo, both co-produced with David Stone. President of Black Theatre United, a community dedicated to awareness, accountability, and advocacy. Proud mother to Celia Rose and Zaya LaChanze. She resides in Westchester, New York with her three cats and gardening hats.
Carolina Rial is a 19-year-old music artist based out of NYC. Carolina gained national attention in 2021 as a contestant on Season 20 of NBC’s The Voice. Her blind audition of Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me” was viewed by over 1.7 million people on YouTube, and 17 million across all other social media platforms. Social media has been a valuable way for her to share her music and connect with supporters since she was 13 years old, gaining significant attention from stars like Jennifer Hudson, Khloé Kardashian, Shoshana Bean, John Legend, Snoop Dogg, and Brandy. Carolina is also a first-generation American with a father from Spain and a mother from Bolivia. With constant motivation to make her family and culture proud, the 19 year-old has performed at such popular venues as Madison Square Garden, Carnegie Hall, MetLife Stadium, Radio City Music Hall, Prudential Center, Citi Field, and the Barclays Center, was featured at New York Fashion Week and on Times Square Billboards, and has made television appearances on PBS, CBS, Fox Sports, ESPN, Univision, and NBC New York. She is also active in the musical theater world, and has performed in several Off Broadway cabaret shows throughout New York.
Rema feels blessed to be a part of Esquire Entertainment. Most recently, she appeared in Fat Ham on Broadway. Other Broadway Credits: The Music Man, Escape to Margaritaville, The Color Purple, Violet, The Lion King, The Book of Mormon, & Ragtime. Off-Broadway & Regional credits: Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill, Speak on It: The Fannie Lou Hamer Story, Unmasked, The Cradle Will Rock, The Colored Museum, A New Brain, Being Alive. Film/TV: Sudden Death, First Born, Beloved, Murphy Brown reboot, Central Park, Marvelous Mrs Maisel. Rema’s life work is Teaching and Mentoring young people. She is the Founder/Executive of On Broadway Performing Arts Training Program, which provides acting, singing, and dance classes to youth aged 6 to 16. www.onbroadway-patp.com @remawebb
Curtis came to know Rashad Chambers during Rashad’s first NYC producing venture, The Wild Party at Columbia Stages, dir. by Saheem Ali. Since then, the two have been close friends and creative partners. Under Rashad’s management Curtis made his Broadway debut in the Original Broadway Company of Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of The Temptations. Other big musical credits: The Lion King; Jersey Boys; American Prophet (Arena Stage) and Diner: The Musical. Select NYC credits: The Total Bent (Public Theater); Rothschild & Sons (York Theatre Co.); Straight Faced Lies (Fringe NYC); Pageant: The Musical (Off B’way Revival); The Great Society (York Shakespeare Co.) and King Lear (Exit, Pursued by a Bear). Curtis is an alum of the Sundance Theatre Institute, Wig Out (Tarell Alvin McCraney). Stay in touch on IG: @Curtis_Wiley
Teal Wicks is a California girl at heart, and a true Broadway leading lady. On Broadway, Teal originated the roles of Lady in The Cher Show, Mary Barrie in Finding Neverland and Emma Carew in the revival of Jekyll & Hyde. She made her Broadway debut as Elphaba in Wicked after playing the role to critical acclaim in the Los Angeles and San Francisco companies. Teal has created lead roles in various productions Off-Broadway and across the US including The Ballad of Little Jo (Two River Theatre), The Blue Flower (Second Stage/A.R.T.), Piece Of My Heart: the Bert Berns Story (Signature Theatre), Life of the Party (Theatreworks, w/ Andrew Lippa), and Fahrenheit 451 (59E59). Teal has been seen on TV in “NCIS: New Orleans,” “Evil,” “Elementary,” “The Good Wife,” “Chicago Justice.” Teal has brought her unique powerhouse performance to
stages worldwide from intimate NYC cabarets to international orchestras and can be heard on various cast recordings. @tealwicks
Alyssa Wray is a singer, actor, artist, and extremely clumsy romcom enthusiast from small town Kentucky, currently residing in NYC. She best known for being a contestant on season 19 of American Idol, making it to the Top 9 and departing from the show on Disney Night. Regional: Rent (Maureen) at the Palace Theatre, Murder Ballad (Narrator) at Prima Theatre, Songs for a New World (Woman 1) at the Gateway Playhouse, British Invasion (Vocalist) at The Palace Theatres. Other favorite performing credits include her New York City debut solo show at Feinstein’s 54 below “Alyssa Wray: Songs that Speak to Me,” Deloris in Sister Act and Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors. Extremely grateful for my agents at DGRW, Dave & Sarah, Link program ’21 and my Link fam, and my entire family and community back home as always. Spread the light. @itsalyssawray
Tonight’s celebration would not be possible without the support from our incredible sponsors!
John Gore Organization
Michael and Julia Fiore
The Shubert Organization
Trinity Church Wall Street
University of Rochester’s TRANSFORM Research Center
Vanguard Theater Company
And our generous donors!
Kevin Myers and James Hart
S. Asher Gelman & Stefano Milici
Sarju and Shreya Shah