New-York Historical Society to Celebrate its 15th Annual American Musicals Project Benefit with An Evening of Music from Broadway’s Golden Era

image003The New-York Historical Society will honor supporters of musical theater education Myrna and Freddie Gershon and Manhattan P94M principal Ronnie Shuster during the fifteenth annual American Musicals Project Benefit, on Monday, May 20, 2013 from 6-8 p.m. Guests will be treated to an evening of music from Broadway’s golden era featuring the songs of Lorenz Hart and Rodgers & Hammerstein. Ticket proceeds benefit the American Musicals Project, a creative educational curriculum.

“We are proud to celebrate fifteen years of the American Musicals Project at the New-York Historical Society, which uses our extraordinary collections of art and historical artifacts combined with the creative power of masterworks of musical theater to tell the story of New York and our nation’s history,” said Sharon Dunn, Vice President for Education at the New-York Historical Society. “Musical theater is a powerful educational motivator and a wonderful vehicle for learning in many areas, especially American History. We are thrilled to honor Principal Ronnie Shuster for her vision and leadership in providing all the arts for all her students, and delighted to recognize the great generosity of spirit underlying Myrna and Freddie Gershon’s support of musical theater education in Ronnie’s school and so many others. These three individuals recognize the importance of this artistic form and understand how it can benefit children of all backgrounds and abilities.”

Honoree Myrna Masour Gershon rose from secretary/receptionist at Columbia Pictures – SCREEN Gems Television to become the first female Senior Vice President of a major motion picture television company. Myrna retired to join Freddie in philanthropic ventures introducing arts programs in underserved communities. Freddie Gershon conceived Broadway KIDS/Broadway JR. in 1994 through Music Theatre International to introduce this American art form to elementary and middle schools. Since 1994, four million children across the country have participated in all aspects of preparing and performing a show. In 2012, Freddie was the recipient of the Tony Honors for his work in changing the musical theater landscape. Ronnie Shuster is principal of P94M, a K-8 District 75 public school. Ronnie’s entire career has been spent in special education. Under her leadership, every pupil at P94M is involved in both visual and performing arts. In 2011, Ronnie received the Mayor’s Award for Arts and Culture for her achievements in providing students on the special education spectrum with quality arts education.

The event will take place at the New-York Historical Society at 170 Central Park West (between West 76th and 77th Streets). Tickets are available for $125 by calling (212) 485-9236 or e-mailing

About the American Musicals Project

The American Musicals Project is a dynamic education program that combines the emotional energy of American musical theater masterworks with thought-provoking primary sources from the New-York Historical Society’s collections to foster the creative teaching of American history. The American Musicals Project includes ten exciting curriculum units for teachers to use in Social Studies and English/Language Arts classrooms, spanning the Declaration of Independence (1776) to Post-World War II New York (West Side Story). In addition to year-round training workshops for teachers of all grades, the New-York Historical Society also offers classes for homeschooled students based on American Musicals Project curriculum.

About the New-York Historical Society

The New-York Historical Society, one of America’s pre-eminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting history and art exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history.