Jenn Colella, lead in the hit Broadway musical Come from Away, is slated to perform a selection of songs at the Reach for a Star Luncheon — an annual spring fundraiser that benefits extracurricular and after-school activities for children with severe physical disabilities from the Henry Viscardi School at The Viscardi Center — at the Crest Hollow Country Club on Tuesday, April 9. Tony Award-nominated Colella has appeared in several big-name productions over the years, including High Fidelity, Urban Cowboy, Chaplin, and If/Then.
Based in Albertson, New York, the Henry Viscardi School provides an alternative education option for children and young adults who often require special transportation and life-sustaining medical care throughout the day. The school provides a fully-enriched academic program, a variety of therapies, assistive technology, and medical supports for students who would otherwise need to receive instruction in their homes or at a hospital.
For many students at the Henry Viscardi School, opportunities for socializing outside of the classroom are limited. The Reach for a Star Luncheon raises vital funds for clubs, adapted sports, and recreational overnights that afford young students the means to safely spend time with friends outside of school, explore interests, and learn new skills. The event itself also gives student attendees the rare opportunity to share the stage with a professional entertainer and experience the excitement of live Broadway music.
This year’s luncheon offers an elaborate cocktail hour, sit-down lunch, raffle prizes, silent auction, and an eye-opening program. Past guests have included Kara Lindsay, Cynthia Weil in Beautiful: The Carole King Musical; Jennifer DiNoia, Elphaba in WICKED; Chilina Kennedy, star of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical; Hoda Kotb, co-anchor of NBC’s TODAY, and the cast of Kinky Boots.
Founded by Dr. Henry Viscardi, Jr., who served as disability advisor to eight U.S. Presidents and became one of the world’s leading advocates, The Viscardi Center educates, employs and empowers children and adults with disabilities. It provides Kindergarten through High School education, school-to-work youth transition services, vocational training, career counseling and placement, assistive technology, adapted driver education and workforce diversification assistance to children, adolescents and adults with disabilities, and businesses.
About the Henry Viscardi School
The Henry Viscardi School at The Viscardi Center is a New York State supported school that offers children with severe physical disabilities, who often require life-sustaining medical treatment throughout the day, a traditional educational setting option that provides rigorous academics and opportunities for personal growth and leadership development. Its specialized, accessible educational setting provides a fully enriched academic program, a variety of therapies, assistive technology, and medical supports to students who may otherwise need to receive instruction in their homes or at a hospital.