Real Stories, Real Lives: Julie Basem | Actors Fund

Real Stories, Real Lives: Julie Basem

June 24, 2014 | Client Stories

In 1882, The Actors Fund began its long and important tradition of providing vital services to entertainment and performing arts professionals who were facing times of need, crisis or transition. But the real story of The Actors Fund is best told by people in our creative community who know first-hand how The Fund helps artists to thrive. Meet Julie.

Julie’s been an acting jack-of-all-trades for a while—some favorite gigs include performing a stunt on Boardwalk Empire and playing Lucy in Jekyll and Hyde. She first learned about The Fund when her friend Diane Laurenson, a Fosse veteran, invited her to participate in a dance performance at The Lillian Booth Actors Home.

A long-time responsible motorcyclist, she was heading home from work last year when a cab ran a red light. “I had a brain bleed, contusions to my chest and shoulder, glass embedded in my neck, my neck was also cut open, my knee was completely destroyed, my foot was completely turned around, my ankle was broken, ligaments detached, my wrist was completely destroyed. … I could have died. I feel really lucky that I was so close to one of the best hospitals in Manhattan: I was brought to New York Presbyterian, and they were amazing.”

Diane visited her in the hospital and reminded her The Fund was there for her: “They helped me get my rent covered for those months where I really had nothing.”

She’s on the mend and back at work—the place where she was working before the accident is working around her injuries. “PT is going to be part of my daily life probably for the rest of my life. It’s OK, I’m lucky to be alive, and I’m totally happy to be here, and if that’s the price I have to pay, it’s not a big one.” Julie is glad The Fund is there to help everyone in entertainment: “It’s just so nice that they exist and that there’s a little less fear. I don’t know what I would have done. I would have probably lost my apartment.”

Explore to learn more about our free and confidential programs and services for everyone in performing arts and entertainment, including PNWHI. Help The Actors Fund be there for those in need our the creative community by making a donation today

Photo: Joann Coates.