Wednesday, June 29, 2022



June 25, 2022- Joe Cappello, Executive Director of the ‘Are You Dense?’ Foundation 'brought down the house' at the famous Palace Theater in Waterbury, CT once again.  The 2022 Music Fest is about the gift of music, laughter, togetherness and supportive awareness about the awareness of cancer-related breast density health issues.

This longstanding entertainment tradition spans over a decade of connective magic to an ever growing national community of supporters of the "Are You Dense?" mission. This year's headliner was the Funk super-group “The Hollywood All Stars” led by former Epic/CBS Recording Artist and Grammy nominated songwriter & producer Steve Gaspár  - bringing back the "No Compromises" Funkin' big sound of Live Horns & Hammond Organ.

7:15pm.  The long awaited MusicFest kicks off its spirited night of laughs, music and the tradition of gaining community awareness about the breast density crisis.  The driving message of awareness was architected by the matriarch of the foundation, Nancy Cappello, who passed away from treatment complications due to a missed diagnosis due to breast density. 

Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, this annual fundraising celebration has been a constant ‘must-see’ for music and comedy fans far and near, attracting droves of loyal fans and new followers to the nationally recognized flagship theater. This year's exemplary response in ticket sales were a reflection of the lifting health mandates, where families and friends are ready to enjoy a night on Main Street once again. Cappello and his board found 2022 to be the right year to finally "get back to the Palace... and get back to business".

Mr. Cappello took the pandemic-related hiatus from the Palace theater as a means of reorganizing and eventual empowerment.  "It gave us a chance to look at all sides of our mission and to touch on areas that better supported our objectives... this also meant bringing in new resources and friends that could add new dimension to our goals!" - said Mr. Cappello. An expanded list of prominent sponsors were also excited to get back to public support, including PHILIPS, FUJI FILM, DELPHINUS MEDICAL TECHNOLOGIES and the HAROLD LEEVER REGIONAL CANCER CENTER.

As a fundraising event for advocacy, research and education, “Are You Dense?” collected over $18K from ticket sales, raffles and sponsorships- a significant boost from prior years.   This year’s special event also joined with many new allies, advocacy groups and community leaders to further elevate the outreach efforts of the Are You Dense? message.  One of the top award recipients celebrated in this special night was Sandy Cassanelli, recipient of the ESTHER AWARD, for making a significant and enduring impact on others.  In 2015, Ms. Cassanelli was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic Breast Cancer. She launched the Breast Friends Fund (BFF) to fundraise and donate 100% of the money raised to Metastatic Breast Cancer Research. 

Kevin Kniery, CEO of The Harold Leever Cancer Center in Waterbury, Ct. received an award for the organization.” The Cancer Center has consistently supported Are You Dense, Inc from the very beginning in many ways and owe them a debt of gratitude”, said Cappello.

Dr. Robert L. Bard, Cancer Diagnostic Imaging specialist of NYC received this year's "CHAMPION OF EXPOSING THE SECRET" award for his clinical and research work in doppler ultrasound technology to offer a supplemental solution to dense breast scanning over mammography.  After Dr. Bard's reception speech, the night continued its tradition of celebrating family support with a special surprise appearance; Mrs. Loreto Bard.  As a personal inspiration behind Dr. Bard's work, Mrs. Bard shares her loving words of support to all advocates and researchers about the fight against cancer as a breast cancer survivor herself. (play video)

The final honor was presented to Dr. Robert Bard for his work with Are You Dense? on a joint partnership launching the first pilot study of dense breast screening in underserved communities.  “Nearly half of all women age 40 and older who get mammograms are found to have dense breasts. Breast density is often inherited, but other factors can influence it. Factors associated with lower breast density include increasing age, having children, and using tamoxifen. Women with dense breasts have a higher risk of breast cancer than women with fatty breasts, and the risk increases with increasing breast density. This increased risk is separate from the effect of dense breasts on the ability to read a mammogram”, states Dr. Bard.

Are You Dense, inc.  is a non-profit 501(c3) foundation dedicated to educating the public on the impact of dense breast tissue on missed, delayed, and later stage breast cancer, in hopes to increase survival of the disease. 

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Media contact: Graciella Davi: 631-920-5757

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