'Broadway Bares: Strip U' Bumps, Grinds & Raises $1.57 Million for Charity

Matthew Murphy
Lockhart Brownlie (center) in Broadway Bares: Strip U

Broadway turned up the heat -- and took off its clothes -- for the annual Broadway Bares charity burlesque show on Sunday night (June 18) at New York’s Hammerstein Ballroom.

More than 180 dancers and 700 volunteers took part in the collegiate-themed extravaganza, cheekily titled Broadway Bares: Strip U. The one-night only spectacular played two performances and raised $1.57 million for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS (BCEFA), according to organizers of the event. In total, the 27 editions of Broadway Bares have now brought in $17.4 million for Broadway Cares.

Nick Kenkel, who has directed the show for five consecutive years, told Billboard in 2016 that Broadway Bares is “like no other show you’ve ever ever seen.” The show was created in 1992 by two-time Tony Award winner Jerry Mitchell, who continues to serve as Broadway Bares’ executive producer.

The 2017 installment of Broadway Bares featured special appearances by Olivier Award winner Lesli Margherita, two-time Tony Award winner Allison Janney, Tony winner Judith Light, and On Your Feet’s Ana Villafañe. Among the strutting Broadway dancers who took to the stage: Lockhart Brownlie (currently in Wicked, and has previously danced in tours for Katy Perry and Taylor Swift), Josh Drake (Aladdin), Ericka Hunter (Miss Saigon) and Katie Webber (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory).

Broadway Bares is one of a number of events produced by BCEFA, which, according to the organization, has raised more than $285 million since 1988 for essential services for people with AIDS and other critical illnesses across the U.S. It is a major supporter of The Actors Fund — a human services organization that helps all professionals in performing arts and entertainment.

Watch highlights of Broadway Bares: Strip U below.