Amazing Journey
Broadway Barks!
Saturday, July 24th 5 to 7pm
Broadway's Schubert Alley

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Michael and his beloved dog Gibson joined fellow Theater performer/animal lovers
 in Broadway Barks! a benefit supporting five major shelters 
(ASPCA, Bide-A-Wee, CACC, The Humane Society Of New York, 
and The North Shore Animal League).

The event organized by Bernadette Peters, presented cats and dogs
 from the shelters for adoption.

Michael spoke on behalf of the ASPCA just after 5, 
before having to dash down the Jane Street for his 7 pm performance. 

photo at left by Aubrey Reuben

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FIDO/NYC,  In association with A.S.P.C.A. Bide-A-Wee Center for Animal Care and Control The Humane Society of New York, North Shore Animal League
Present Broadway Barks

A collection of the coolest k-9’s and most fabulous felines up for adoption on Broadway
Sponsored By Broadway Cares
Hosted by Bernadette Peters

photo at right by Bruce Glickas

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Michael Cerveris

Charlotte d’Amboise

Marlene Danielle

Edie Falco

Joel Gray

Buck Henry

Ruthie Henshall

Wayne Knight

Andrea McArdle

Elizabeth Parkinson

Cathy Rigby

George Segal

Scott Wise

Tom Wopat

With Many Members of the Broadway Community and Many rescued Dogs

Produced by
Richard Hester, Stacey Shub, Maria Di Dia, Carol A. Ingram, Scott T. Stevens for Broadway Cares
With Additional support from Pet

Broadway Barks, Shubert Alley 4:35 pm

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Michael and Gibson arrived early. After speaking with fans and the show coordinators, Michael waits on the steps leading the podium.

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Taking a canteen filled with water from his knapsack, Michael offers Gibson a drink on the scorching hot day.

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Gibson politely declines, so Michael rubs the water over her head to cool her off.

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5:25 pm
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Other dogs are afraid of the steps but Gibson makes her way up them like a pro. When Michael takes the microphone, she promptly sits down with her back to the audience....

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Audience laughs

She's going to ignore you all now.
Don't take it personally.


Hi, I'm here to tell you about the ASPCA. The American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was founded right here in NY, way back in 1866, which makes it the first humane society in the Western Hemisphere. Their goal is to promote humane principles, prevent cruelty and alleviate pain and suffering through Nationwide programs. Among the many remarkable services the ASPCA provides are the ANTIMED free pet information line which handles requests for behavior and veterinary information. Their National Shelter Outreach program which advises many local shelters. Their humane education program which distributes classroom materials nationwide to teach children to treat animals with respect and compassion. They also operate a National poison control center telephone hotline handles 50,000 cases a year. They actively work to pass new laws guaranteeing the well being of all animals. And here in the city -in addition to operating an animal hospital and investigating cruelty complaints, the ASPCA shelter which is located at 424 East 92nd Street finds homes for approximately 2000 dogs and cats each year. 

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In August of 1994, Gibson was one of those dogs. I came to the ASPCA looking for a humane mousetrap to deal with some uninvited houseguests in my apartment and while I was there I figured I would just take a look at the dogs. I'd been thinking about adopting a pet for a while but just wasn't really sure I was up to the challenge yet.

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I was so impressed with the thoroughness of the interview that I had to go through before I was even allowed to see the dogs. It was clear that the ASPCA is determined to make sure that their animals are taken care of by people who are responsible and people that are going to care for them as well as the people at the APSCA do.

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In spite of the fact that I'm an actor,  they thought that I was responsible enough anyway. And I was lucky enough to walk out of the ASPCA with not only a humane mousetrap but my life companion,  Gibson.

She was exactly the dog I'd been looking for for ages without even knowing it. And I'm always going to appreciate and thank the ASPCA for bringing us together.

barks20.jpg (55461 bytes)I briefly want to address one other issue of animal care. Last month, I got up in the morning, well my idea of morning,  which is kinda early afternoon for most people. I turned on the television and was appalled to see a news report about a bull that had been brought to an illegal rodeo and had escaped and been chased by the NYPD out into the street and was fired on by cruisers and left bleeding on the street. A couple months later, there was an incident of a family dog that was loose in a park and was shot to death because the officers didn't feel they could catch the animal. The are certainly a lot of police officers and animal control people who are there to do the work and handle animal safely.

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As a civilization, we have to make sure that these people get the calls and get to do their work. The ASPCA, the CACC- organizations like that - are there to take care of these animals and they deserve our help.

A friend of mine wrote the Mayor's office; "It was the kind of callousness - in those two incidents - that exacerbates larger social problems. Why should we worry about violence in movies and video games desensitizing our children or whether Annie brings her gun on Rosie when New York's finest are gunning down animals in the street?"


In two other incidents in Anaheim and Fort Worth, the incidents were handled in a much more humane fashion. Certainly New York can do the same kind of thing.

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The root of  being humane is being human. The evolutionary advantages that we as people possess bring with them an obligation and responsibility to care for the creatures that we share the planet with. We don't own them any more than we own each other.

Native Americans remind us that we have to tread gently on the earth. And that means being mindful of all the lives around us and rigorously confronting the incidents of abuse and neglect.

That's what the ASPCA does and has done for 133 years. I urge you to bring home a dog today or a cat and if not to at least actively support the organizations that are here today.

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Thank you.


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And now, it is my pleasure and privilege to introduce my friend, my former cousin and a real dog among dogs...

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from You're a Good Man Charlie Brown - Tony Award winner- Roger Bart!

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