Cries From The Heart: A Star-Studded Benefit For Human Rights Watch

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By Max Follmer, TakePart.com

Any of our Los Angeles-area readers who are looking for an powerful and inspiring way to get involved with one of the world’s premier human rights organizations should mark their calendars for May 9.

That’s the night a star-studded cast of actors and musicians — including Annette Bening, Vincent Kartheiser, Amanda Peet, Julian Sands, Greg Germann, A Fine Frenzy, Mia Doi Todd, and Terra Naomi — will take to the renowned Broad Stage in Santa Monica for Cries From The Heart: Ordinary Heroes, a benefit performance for Human Rights Watch.

The 90-minute production will feature moving and searing readings from some of the world’s human rights crisis zones, including Egypt, Palestine, the Horn of Africa, and Saudi Arabia — all of them woven together by the desire to honor those ordinary heroes who have stood up to make a difference.

“I’m hoping that the audience will be inspired,” said Richard J. Lewis, the evening’s director. “It’s just a way to connect them to the fact that ordinary people can make these extraordinary moves in their lives and make a difference.”

Tickets for the benefit are available online, and start at $100. A cocktail reception will precede the 7:30pm performance at the Broad, and the cast will join the audience for a dessert and coffee reception.

Human Rights Watch is one of the world’s leading independent advocacy organizations, dedicated to shining a light on those people, groups, and regimes who violate the fundamental human rights of our fellow citizens. The organization’s work standing up for victims and holding abusers to account frequently pits it against some of the world’s most vile and menacing governments.

Vincent Kartheiser, otherwise known as Pete Campbell on AMC’s acclaimed drama Mad Men, told TakePart.com he hoped the evening would inspire people to realize their own potential to bring change to their community, echoing the evening’s theme celebrating Ordinary Heroes.

“I think an ordinary hero is someone who does what they can in their own environment, in their own world, and solves the problems that are on their street,” Kartheiser said.

Click here to buy tickets for Cries From The Heart: Ordinary Heroes.

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