Benefit Gala 2014

A Musical Celebration of Broadway Honoring

Neil Patrick Harris

Directed by Tony Award winner Michael Mayer and Johanna McKeon

Monday, February 3, 2014 · Pierre Hotel · 2 East 61st Street · New York City


On Monday, February 3, 2014, The Drama League’s A Musical Celebration of Broadway will honor Emmy Award winner Neil Patrick Harris. The 30th annual black-tie benefit gala, which features dozens of stars from Hollywood and Broadway in a one-night-only evening of musical selections drawn from Mr. Harris' career in theater, film and television, supports The Drama League’s educational initiatives for promising young artists. Drama League Board members Amy Eller and Ellen Fox serve as the event's co-chairs.

The evening’s entertainment will be co-directed by Tony® Award winner and Drama League Alumnus Michael Mayer with Johanna McKeon, who also serve as Director and Associate Director of the upcoming Broadway revival of Hedwig and the Angry Inch featuring Mr. Harris. A Musical Celebration of Broadway will be co-produced by Roger T. Danforth and Trevor Tamashiro.

Award-winning actress Whoopi Goldberg will host the evening. She will be joined by a cast of stage and screen luminraries including Audra McDonald, James Barbour, Katie Finneran, Kate Jennings Grant, Tim Gunn, Cady Huffman, Eddie Korbich, Marc Kudisch, Aaron Lazar, Norm Lewis, Krysta Rodriguez, Chryssie Whitehead, Lisa O'Hare, Kal Penn, Anthony Rapp, Karen Ziemba, Malcolm Gets, Lawrence Clayton, Bryce Pinkham and Lauren Worsham. More cast will be announced as the event draws closer. 

"We are overjoyed to add Neil Patrick Harris to the legendary roster of artists who have been honored at the Musical Celebration of Broadway during the last thirty years," said Drama League Executive Director Gabriel Shanks. "After distinguishing himself in film, television, theater, web series, music, and as a staunch advocate for youth and arts education like that provided by The Drama League, Neil’s return to Broadway this season is cause for celebration."

The Drama League’s Musical Celebration of Broadway will bring together 500 of New York’s most influential arts advocates, celebrities, and industry luminaries for an unforgettable black-tie evening of cocktails, dinner, and a one-night-only, star-studded musical revue. Held at The Pierre and covered in international media such as 60 Minutes, Entertainment Tonight, and The New York Times, the Musical Celebration of Broadway is one of the finest theatrical evenings of the year. Past honorees include Liza Minnelli, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Audra McDonald, Patti LuPone, Hal Prince, Kristin Chenoweth, Chita Rivera, and Angela Lansbury.


Questions? Call (212) 244-9494 ext.101 or e-mail events@dramaleague.org.







The Drama League’s annual Musical Celebration of Broadway Benefit Gala is one of the most exciting events of the New York theatrical season. For one night only, dozens of performers from Hollywood and Broadway gather to pay tribute to one of their own, a star whose career has indelibly shaped the American theatre.  The fully-produced musical evening, complete with an orchestra and a cast of over fifty, is unlike any experience you’ve ever seen.

Exclusive and elegant, the annual black-tie soiree — featuring a cocktail reception, a silent auction, a specially-crafted three-course meal, and the evening of performances  — with performers in recent years including Harry Connick, Jr., Bernadette Peters, Nick Jonas, Alan Cumming, Edie Falco, Joel Grey, Taye Diggs, Antonio Banderas, David Hyde Pierce, Cheyenne Jackson, Jane Krakowski, Phylicia Rashad, Bernadette Peters, Chita Rivera, and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

The Musical Celebration of Broadway raises much-needed funds for the vital education programs of The Drama League Directors Project. Each year, an enthusiastic audience of 500 theatre lovers – comprised of recognizable names from the professional theatre community and society pages, as well as Drama League members and supporters – come out to support the Drama League Directors Project.

For the 2014 event, Drama League Board members Susan Lang and Caroline Stuart will serve as auction co-chairs, while JoAnn Weisel will serve as journal chair.  


Equally successful on stage and screen, Neil Patrick Harris currently stars as Barney Stinson in the hit CBS television series, “How I Met Your Mother,” a role which has garnered him multiple Emmy and Golden Globe Award nominations. Harris is a four-time Emmy Award winner for his guest-starring role on "Glee" as well as host/producer of the 63rd, 65th and 66th Annual Tony Awards. He also served as host and producer of the 61st and 65th Primetime Emmy Awards, as well as the 67th Annual Tony Awards.

From his film debut opposite Whoopi Goldberg in Clara's Heart and his seminal role as the beloved titular character in "Doogie Howser, M.D.," to his roles in the Harold & Kumar and The Smurfs franchise films, Harris has enjoyed a successful career spanning more than 25 years in the industry. He recently wrapped production on the upcoming feature film, A Million Ways to Die in the West, with Seth Macfarlane, Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, and Amanda Seyfried and he is also currently in production on David Fincher’s Gone Girl, a thriller based on the novel of the same name by Gillian Flynn.

In addition to his numerous film and television credits, Harris has also enjoyed success in the theater. He most recently tackled the leading role of Bobby in the New York Philharmonic’s concert version of Stephen Sondheim’s Company. Harris has starred in three Broadway productions, including the dual role of The Balladeer/Lee Harvey Oswald in the Tony Award-winning production of Assassins. Harris made his Broadway debut as Anne Heche’s unexpected suitor in Proof, and he later starred as the exuberant emcee in Cabaret at Studio 54. Among Harris’ other theatrical credits include Amadeus (LA Philharmonic), All My Sons (Geffen Theater), tick, tick…BOOM! (Menier Chocolate Factory), The Paris Letter (Kirk Douglas Theater), Sweeney Todd (San Francisco Symphony Orchestra), Romeo and Juliet (Old Globe Theater), and Rent (Los Angeles touring production).

Harris made his musical directorial debut with a production of Rent at the Hollywood Bowl, and he most recently mixed his love of magic and theater in directing Nothing to Hide at the Geffen Theater. After its unprecedented success in Los Angeles, Nothing to Hide began previews at the Signature Theatre Company’s The Pershing Square Signature Center in New York City this month under Neil’s direction. He also served as director of I Am Grock (El Portal Theater) and The Expert at the Card Table (Ediburgh Fringe Festival and Broad Stage Theater).