Two days after Tony-nominated actor Nick Cordero woke up from a medically induced coma during his battle with complications of the coronavirus, members of the Rock of Ages cast paid tribute to him in a virtual fundraiser Thursday night. Scrubs star Zach Braff, who is close friends with the former Blue Bloods actor, co-hosted the event and introduced the performance of "Don't Stop Believin.'" The actors performed with "#WakeUpNick" behind them, referencing the hashtag Cordero's wife Amanda Kloots has used on social media.
"Some of the most heartwarming support has been from Nick’s company of Rock of Ages," Braff said during the Chrysalis Night In event, reports Variety. "They come and they walk the baby, they come and drop off food, they drop off flowers, they drop off wine. It's been so hard because we’re not supposed to touch each other and all you want to do is hold your friend and give them love. But this group of people are the most amazing company, you can only hope that you have friends like the company of Rock of Ages."
The event helped raise funds for low-income individuals seeking jobs during the coronavirus pandemic. Robert De Niro, Jon Favreau, Jeff Ross, Seth MacFarlane and Anne Hathaway all joined in. Hathaway performed "Wig in a Box" from Hedwig and the Angry Itch. Linda Perry, Slash and Guns N' Roses members Gilby Clarke and Matt Sorum were part of the event's house band. Survivor's Jim Peterik performed "Eye of the Tiger" during the show.
Cordero, who played Dennis in Rock of Ages on Broadway and on tour, was hospitalized in late March with pneumonia before being diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. The 41-year-old was in a medically induced coma until he woke up Wednesday. During Cordero's battle with COVID-19, doctors were forced to amputate his right leg due to a blood clotting issue. Kloots, who has been keeping fans up to date with every single stage of Cordero's battle, shared the good news in an Instagram Story post.
"Guys, we might have to change our hashtag. Nick, dada, is awake!" Kloots wrote. "Finally confirmed after two days of, 'Is he doing this?' You get so excited, the nurses are like, 'We think this is happening.' The doctor confirmed today that, 'Yep, I think Nick is awake.' And I was like, 'Oh my God.'" Kloots said Cordero is following commands, but is still barely able to open his eyes and is "really, really weak" due to the damage caused by the disease.
On Monday, Kloots revealed Cordero was making some progress, but told fans he still has long way to go. "He is very weak so even just opening his eyes is a struggle, but it is happening," she wrote on Instagram. "He is starting to wake up!! We are by no means out of the woods yet, there are still concerns with other things, but this news today on his mental status is a win!!"