Mario Bonds, a participant of the second season of The Glee Project, is performing a benefit concert at Imagination Stage in support of Imagination Stage's Access and Inclusion programs for students with disabilities. Bonds will be joined on stage by Imagination Stage's high school musical theatre students for select songs.
Love, Friendship, and Possibility: A Benefit Concert by Mario Bonds takes place in Imagination Stage's Annette M. and Theodore N. Lerner Family Theatre today, February 15, 2013 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $40 for orchestra seating and $25 for balcony seating, and may be purchased online at www.imaginationstage.org, at the Imagination Stage box office, or via phone at 301-280-1660.
Imagination Stage is pleased to welcome Bonds back after he received the Imagination Award at the 2012 Annual Gala and Silent Auction. The award recognizes an accomplished arts or humanities professional whose leadership, passion, discipline, and commitment to the larger community exemplify the ideals which Imagination Stage strives to impart to children.
"His story speaks to our mission of including children of all abilities," said Bonnie Fogel, Founder and Executive Director of Imagination Stage. "He is an inspiration."
A native of Lanham, Maryland, Mario Arnauz Bonds is a singer/songwriter who recently got his big break when he auditioned for Oxygen's The Glee Project. Bonds has had more than his fair share of curve balls, including abandonment, abuse, homelessness, and going totally blind at the age of nine due to a degenerative eye disease. Despite these obstacles, Bonds never lost his drive to perform and has become as accomplished singer, actor, dancer, and musician. He believes music has healing powers, and his love for the performing arts sustained him through the tough times. His work has shown Hollywood, and the nation, that a performer who is blind can rise to meet any challenge.
Bonds will perform songs including "Firework" by Katy Perry, "Because You Loved Me" by Celine Dion, and "Man in the Mirror" by Michael Jackson.
Imagination Stage's Access and Inclusion program seeks to create an inclusive and welcoming environment to students of all abilities by offering classes and programs designed specifically for the needs of students with cognitive, language, gross motor, or developmental disabilities. Imagination Stage recently expanded the program to include sensory-friendly performances.