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The Bel Air Drama Company has raised more than $5,000 for Todd Gagliano, a founding member who suffered severe head trauma in a Chicago hit and run accident. People who want to help still can.

The BADC earmarked 10 percent of proceeds from its 50th production to build a fund for Gagliano, who is expected to be out of work indefinitely.

The BADC, an independent drama company associated with Bel Air High School, performed “Phantom of the Opera” April 14, 15 and 16 to sold out and standing room only crowds in the high school auditorium.

“We sold over 2,500 tickets and did about $25,000 in ticket revenue, plus about another $10,000 from concessions and program sales and such,” Chuck Bowden, executive director of the BADC and a teacher at Bel Air High, said. “Between royalties, production and operational costs, the show cost about $20,000 to produce.”

To ensure the fundraiser for Gagliano was a success, Bowden solicited Phantom memorabilia from the Broadway cast and members of the troupe put donation boxes in the theater lobby.

“The Broadway company was so touched by what was going on here that they sent us a signed poster that we raffled off for more than $500. The three principal players in the show sent us personalized signed photos to send to Todd and the cast sent us a signed opening night card,” Bowden said. “How cool is it that they were thinking of us on our opening night!”

Conor Perkins, a senior, was elected company director last year by the almost 100 members of the BADC. Phantom was his final production, and he had the starring role.

He didn’t know Gagliano, but remembers him from a reunion in 2009, just before the old Bel Air High building was demolished.

“It’s the first time we used a production as a fundraiser,” Conor said. As company director, Conor was tasked to steer the BADC “in the right direction and work closely with adult advisors and the executive director to make sure everything is done right.”

Gagliano’s work to found the BADC had a dramatic impact on Conor, so the thespian said it was appropriate the BADC try to impact Gagliano’s life in some way. Conor has been with the troupe for six years and will major in theater at a college in New York following his graduation next month.

“I’ve been accepted at Wagner College on Staten Island, and I’m on the New York University wait list,” he said.

Bowden said a video was created during the Phantom run to accumulate messages from his friends and supporters. That video will be sent to Gagliano May 13, so there’s still time to help the former Bel Air resident.

Checks should be made payable to the BADC Parent’s Association with Todd Gagliano’s name in the memo and delivered to the school at 100 Heighe St., Bel Air, MD 21014 by May 12.

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