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25 April 2014

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Grammy Award-winning violinist Joshua Bell and Glee star Darren Criss join multi-award-winning Broadway artist Lea Salonga, Hollywood actor Lou Diamond Phillips, tenor Rodell Rosel, ballet dancer Christine Rocas, singer Apl.de.ap and a host of other celebrities who will come together in June for a benefit concert for victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.

The Philippine Embassy said the concert, dubbed “After the Storm,” will be staged at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. on Sunday, 15 June 2014. The concert is being held in cooperation with the US-Philippines Society and the Philippine Humanitarian Coalition; directed by Broadway legend Baayork Lee; and produced by Emmy-nominated producer, Robert Pullen.

In a statement, the Embassy announced the participation of Bell, a renowned violinist and conductor who is often referred to as the "Poet of the Violin," in the concert that aims to pay tribute to the people of the Philippines.

A Grammy Awardee known for his musical work in movie soundtracks, Bell has performed with many of the world's major orchestras and conductors around the world and currently serves on the artist committee of the Kennedy Center Honors and the Board of Directors of the New York Philharmonic.

The Embassy also announced the participation of Criss, a Filipino-American actor, singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and composer, who is best known for his portrayal of Blaine Anderson in the popular television series Glee. Criss has also appeared on various stage productions, films, and television shows.

Also performing are the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra conducted by Luke Frazier and the Broadway Community Chorusfounded by Baayork Lee. The concert, which will also include a series of video messages of hope from celebrities and other personalities from around the world, will take place in the Kennedy Center’s Concert Hall and will benefit storm victims through partner organizations committed to the rebuilding of the devastation that has occurred in the Philippines.

“The road ahead for people in communities that were devastated by Typhoon Haiyan is not going to be easy and this concert is our way of helping them rebuild their lives,” said Ambassador Jose L. Cuisia, Jr., who conceived the project with his wife, Mrs. Maria Victoria Cuisia.

"As the world's attention is gradually drawn away from the devastation in the central Philippines, we are reminded that formidable challenges remain for millions of families displaced by the most powerful tropical storm ever to make landfall,” said Ambassador John F. Maisto, President of the US-Philippines Society.

US-Philippines Society Co-Chair Manny Pangilinan said the recovery efforts need to be sustained.  “’After the Storm’ will help our people get back on their feet through the reconstruction of their homes, schools and health centers as well as the restoration of their businesses and livelihood businesses,” he said.

Among the first to confirm their participation in the concert was the Manila-based Lea Salonga, who won the Olivier, Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics and Theatre World awards for her appearance inMiss Saigon.

Salonga is the first Asian actress to play the roles of Éponine and Fantine in Les Miserables on Broadway.  She portrayed both roles on the musical's 10th and 25th anniversary shows in London respectively. She also provided the singing voice of two official Disney princesses:  Jasmine in Aladdin (1992) and Fa Mulan in Mulan (1998) and Mulan II (2004).

Also participating in the concert is Filipino-American actor Lou Diamond Phillips who is best known for his breakout starring role in the movie La Bamba as Ritchie Valens. He earned a supporting actor Golden Globe Award nomination for his role in Stand and Deliver and a Tony Award nomination for his role in The King and I. Other notable films in which Phillips has starred include Courage Under Fire, Che, and Love Takes Wing.

Grammy Award-winning artist, Apl.de.ap of the Black Eyed Peas will also perform in the concert. The Philippine-born artist, whose real names is Allan Pineda, is known for his philanthropic and humanitarian work through his Apl.de.ap Foundation.

Also performing is Chicago-based tenor, Rodell Rosel, who has been hailed as one of the best young opera singers of his generation. Rosel performs regularly with the Lyric Opera of Chicago and has appeared in several operatic performances around the US. He recently finished a stint at the Santa Fe Opera in New Mexico and made his debut performance at the Metropolitan Opera in New York early this year.

The cast also includes Christine Rocas, principal dancer of Joffrey Ballet, who has participated and won several prestigious awards from different international ballet competitions.

Tickets, ranging from $25 to $250 are now on sale and may be purchased online at www.kennedy-center.org or visiting the Kennedy Center box office or charge by phone by calling (202) 467-4600.

The official website for this event is www.after-the-storm.org.
There are sponsorship packages available for corporations and individuals who would like to support and underwrite this performance. For information on sponsorship opportunities and other queries, please email AfterTheStorm@usphilsociety.org or call +1.202.595.2880.