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Former Muny performer to stage fundraiser for NYC dancers

Former Muny performer to stage fundraiser for NYC dancers

Melissa Gerstein

Melissa Gerstein is co-founder of iHeartDance NYC. Photo by Daphne Youree

iHeartDance NYC, a new initiative co-founded by producer, dance activist and former Muny performer Melissa Gerstein, is staging a fundraiser on April 18 to benefit the New York dance community.

The event will be presented on the rooftop of New York's Empire Hotel. In a statement, Gerstein, who hails from St. Louis, said that she has been "unbelievably inspired" by the perseverance of dancers during the pandemic.

Kimberly Giannelli, arts publicist and co-founder of iHeartDance NYC, said that "many professional companies and performing arts institutions have had a hard time navigating the financial impacts of the city's restrictions."

Dancers from ballet to Broadway are scheduled to appear. Performances are at 11 a.m. and 1, 3 and 5 p.m. The running time of each performance is 60 minutes.

All proceeds from the iHeartDance NYC event will go to a fund providing financial assistance for professional dancers in New York. In-person tickets range from $100 to $1000. The Empire Hotel is located at 44 West 63rd Street. A $50 livestream will also be available for purchase.

Tickets are available at

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