PORTLAND, Ore. — Oregon Broadway star and recording artist Shoshana Bean is launching a special holiday concert online this Saturday to uplift artists and virtual audiences during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bean, like many performing artists, has felt the impact.
"Navigating and pivoting and still making things happen in a safe way," Bean said. "Within the span of about 24-48 hours, wiped out our entire calendar for the year."
Bean spent much of her childhood in Oregon, graduating from Beaverton High School. She is back home in time to watch her latest work stream internationally on Dec. 12.
Her holiday concert special is called "Sing Your Hallelujah."
It features an all-star celebrity cast, including Gavin Creel, Jared Grimes, Jeremy Jordan, Shayna Steele, Connie Talbot, Daniel J. Watts and more.
Singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles will host a post-show Q&A for audience members who buy a VIP package.
Bean recruited artists to record with her at Apollo Theater in Harlem, N.Y. without an audience in the seats.
She sold out shows at the Apollo the last two years and didn't want to miss a chance this year to share the music. She said the pandemic has highlighted why the arts are important.
"I hope that people — those of us who make art for a living and those who are patrons of the arts — are that much more grateful," Bean said. "It was our books and our movies and our live concerts ... it was artistic content that got you through this pandemic."
Bean has a history of supporting the arts, fundraising to help students at Beaverton High School.
"Arts education is wildly important to me," Bean said. "The first and easiest place to start was home."
In the meantime, as she and many other performers navigate new paths from COVID-19, Bean offered words of hope.
"I think we've all just been kind of white-knuckling it ... we all deserve a moment to exhale and reflect and grieve if we need to," Bean said. "I know we will come back, better and stronger for it."
The North American premiere is at 6:00 p.m. PST. Tickets for 'Sing Your Hallelujah' are on sale online.