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Music Auction to Benefit Will Lautzenheiser

Sleepover Shows fundraiser for BU alum

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Will Lautzenheiser (CAS’96, COM’07), a popular former COM lecturer in screenwriting, was left without arms and legs after a deadly bacterial infection ripped through his body last year. Now living in a handicapped-accessible apartment, Lautzenheiser is burdened by extraordinary medical costs.

To benefit Lautzenheiser, CDs, posters, and signed memorabilia from musicians like the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Ben Kweller, and Blitzen Trapper will be auctioned off through December 2.

The online auction is organized by Sleepover Shows, a music video blog started in 2009 by three BU alums and friends of Lautzenheiser’s: husband and wife Rob Ribera (COM’08, GRS’13) and Kelly Ribera (COM’09) and Aviv Rubinstien (COM’08,’10).

“As soon as we heard that Will was sick we wanted to do something,” says Rob Ribera. “This is what we can do: we have the ability to generate publicity to help our friend.”

Sleepover Shows, which was named Best Music Blog in 2011 by the Boston Phoenix, features acoustic or stripped-down versions of songs performed by bands whose tours take them through Boston. Bands like the OK Go, Harry and the Potters, Grouplove, and We Are Augustines have performed for the site in locations that include empty galleries, playgrounds, and even a bathtub.

Sleepover Shows holds an annual online charity auction of items such as signed tour posters, set lists, and drumheads donated by the bands it’s filmed over the course of the year. Choosing this year’s beneficiary was easy. Longtime friend Lautzenheiser had contracted group A streptococcus, a deadly infection that shut down his lungs, heart, and kidneys, then unleashed a toxin that brought death to his limbs. Proceeds from the fundraiser will go towards his new apartment and for medical equipment.

Sleepover Shows’ auction to benefit Will Lautzenheiser will run through Sunday, December 2. Items can be found at the blog’s eBay site, or donations can be made directly to Lautzenheiser. More information can be found here.

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Amy Laskowski

Amy Laskowski can be reached at amlaskow@bu.edu.

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