Earlier this week, Bob Saget turned to comedy to shed light on a very heavy subject, presenting and curating the Scleroderma Research Foundation's (SRF’s) signature annual fundraising event, Cool Comedy – Hot Cuisine, and raising $1.1M for SRF.
Audiences from around the world participated in a re-imagined virtual gathering of comedy greats and music legends as it broadcast on YouTube, expanding awareness about the complex autoimmune disease. The event is now streaming for two weeks only, here.
Bob Saget, an SRF Board Member who lost his sister to scleroderma, hosted the evening alongside fellow board member and Top Chef Master, Susan Feniger. The star-studded event features appearances by Jason Alexander, Jack Black, Bill Burr, Jim Gaffigan, Jeff Garlin, Nikki Glaser, Regina Hall, Ken Jeong, Queen Latifah, George Lopez, Howie Mandel, Ray Romano, Jeff Ross, Sarah Silverman, and John Stamos, with special music performances by Kelly Clarkson, John Mayer, and Pat Monahan. With many personal stories of how scleroderma has impacted their lives, each guest helped to amplify the vital work of SRF and its commitment to finding a cure.
After selling out venues in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Las Vegas since its inception in 1986, for the first time, Cool Comedy – Hot Cuisine welcomed audiences to experience a heartfelt night of laughs and inspiration from the comfort of their own homes. Viewers from around the world joined in on the virtual gathering of comedy greats and music legends, all of whom are generously donating their time and talents to support SRF’s innovative research and help raise funds and awareness for this rare and often deadly autoimmune disease.
The need for visibility and research funding remains crucial for patients and their families. As Bob Saget explains, his commitment is very personal; "I fortuitously became involved with the Scleroderma Research Foundation in 1992. Sharon Monsky, the Founder and first CEO just cold called and asked me to be part of an event called “Cool Comedy Hot Cuisine” and said that Robin Williams had done the very first one. I couldn’t say “no” to this wonderful woman, who soon became my dear friend. Two years later my sister, Gay, was diagnosed with this disease— and by the third time I hosted the event in 1994, she had lost her life to scleroderma. It’s my life’s mission to support those affected and do what I can to help find a cure for this horrible disease. I’m so proud to be on the board of this amazing organization."
Complementing the virtual experience was an online silent auction featuring one-of-a-kind packages such as the chance to join Bob Saget and Joel McHale for tequila shots in a Zoom room, a virtual cocktails & conversation with Susan Feniger and Superstore star Ben Feldman, and a private, personalized workout with legendary distance swimmer, Diana Nyad.
The 2020 Cool Comedy – Hot Cuisine was presented by Actelion, a Janssen Pharmaceutical Company of Johnson & Johnson. All funds raised benefit the Scleroderma Research Foundation, and advance online registration to watch this unforgettable evening is required.