This past Friday, Ray Romano (Everybody Loves Raymond, Men of a Certain Age) brought his Vegas Style Comedy Act to the stage at the recently renovated SVA Theater in Chelsea to raise funds for A Ray of Hope, a newly founded organization dedicated to the early detection, treatment and cure of ovarian cancer.
Attendees included prominent doctors and physicians in the New York Area and close friends and family. Catching up on Hampton happenings with Stewart Rahr “Stewie Rah-Rah,” and wife Carol, both good friends of Haute Living Magazine. “We are here to support Ray,” the couple said smiling before entering the theater.
The playbill, headlined by Ray Romano, included a line-up of talented performers and what a sensational stage presence they brought for the night. Co-producers Valerie Smaldone and Linda John opened the evening thanking all for attending.
In a formal smoking jacket, Broadway performer Craig Schulman took the stage with escalating octaves of well known hits from Phantom of the Opera and Les Miserables, both of which Schulman has held leading roles. After a tough bone-chilling act to follow, Tony nominated entertainer singer Orfeh was up to the challenge. Orfeh brought a bit of uplifting pop to well known tunes Beyonce’s Irreplaceable and a wave of unison crowd clapping to Joplin’s Piece of My Heart.
After an an exciting live auction by Emcee and co-producer Valerie Smaldone for trips to Naples and Vegas, Jon Manfrellotti held the tears of the crowd’s laughter in the palm of his hand. His impersonation of an Italian mafioso arriving in a Cadillac to Bin Laden’s cave and jokes about Mobile homes were nothing less than hysterical comedy. Ray Romano closed the performance with an unrivaled full Vegas Style Comedy act.
One hundred percent of the evening’s proceeds were donated to the non-profit Sass Foundation for Medical Research with monies funnelled to Mt. Sinai Hospital and NYU Langone Medical Center, to help fund research projects for ovarian cancer. Each year, approximately 22,000 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer in the United States and about 15,000 American women die from the disease.
*lead photo from left to right: Guest, Linda John, Craig Schulman , Valerie Smaldone, Ray Romano, Orfeh*