Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 12 / 22 March 2018

Rock of Ages cast to help AIDS rider raise cash

The cast of the touring show Rock of Ages, in San Francisco for a five-week run, will pitch in Monday night to help raise money for a participant in this year’s AIDS ride.

Daniel Conti, 28, a transplant to the city from New York, is calling on some friends in the hit musical to help him reach his fundraising goal as a rider in the 10th AIDS LifeCycle, which benefits the San Francisco AIDS Foundation and the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center.

Conti (pictured at left) is promising “a good, old-fashioned, piano bar sing-a-long” and expects upwards of 20 cast members to join him from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday night (March 28) at Martuni’s, 4 Valencia Street at the corner of Market Street.

The event is free to attend but Conti is asking people to either donate that night or sign up as one of his sponsors. There will also be a raffle drawing for a number of prizes, from tickets to the musical and backstage passes to services from Castro businesses.

“I lived in New York for 10 years and I have a couple friends in the touring company. I knew they would be here for five weeks and I know the owner of Martuni’s, so I asked them if they would help me out,” said Conti, who works for a travel company and moved to town a year and half ago.

This is the first time Conti has rode in an AIDS ride. While HIV negative himself, Conti said he has many friends who are HIV positive and has lost “quite a few” friends from New York to AIDS. He signed up for the fundraising event in order to assist the AIDS foundation with its work.

“With all the funding cuts by the government and everything else that has been happening, I know they need as much support and funding they can get to create a positive impact for the community here,” said Conti. “I also thought it would not only be a great way to meet new people and make great friends but something of a challenge for me.”

The 545-mile ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles takes place June 5-11.

— Matthew S. Bajko, March 24, 2011 @ 1:08 pm PST
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