Obie Award

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Obie Awards
Awarded for Excellence in Off-Broadway theatre
Sponsored by The Village Voice
Location New York City, New York
Country United States
Presented by American Theatre Wing and The Village Voice
First awarded 1956 (1956)
Website obieawards.com

The Obie Awards or Off-Broadway Theater Awards are annual awards originally given by The Village Voice newspaper to theatre artists and groups in New York City. In September 2014, the awards were jointly presented and administered with the American Theatre Wing. As the Tony Awards cover Broadway productions, the Obie Awards cover Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway productions.

Background[edit]

Julie Bovasso, Shelley Winters and Jason Robards at the 1956 Obie Awards

The Obie Awards were initiated by Edwin (Ed) Fancher, publisher of The Village Voice, who handled the financing and business side of the project. They were first given in 1956 under the direction of theater critic Jerry Tallmer. Initially, only Off-Broadway productions were eligible; in 1964, Off-Off-Broadway productions were made eligible. The first Obie Awards ceremony was held at Helen Gee's cafe.[1]

With the exception of the Lifetime Achievement and Best New American Play awards, there are no fixed categories at the Obie Awards, and the winning actors and actresses are all in a single category titled "Performance." There are no announced nominations.[2][3] Awards in the past have included performance, direction, best production, design, special citations, and sustained achievement. Not every category is awarded every year. The Village Voice also awards annual Obie grants to selected companies; in 2011, these grants were $2,000 each to Metropolitan Playhouse and Wakka Wakka Productions.[4] There is also a Ross Wetzsteon Grant, named after its former theater editor, in the amount of $2,000 (in 2009; in 2011 the grant was $1,000), for a theatre that nurtures innovative new plays.[5]

The first awards in 1955-1956 for plays and musicals were given to Absalom (Lionel Abel) as Best New Play, Uncle Vanya, Best All-Around Production and The Threepenny Opera as Best Musical.[6]

Other awards for Off-Broadway theatre are the Lucille Lortel Awards, the Drama Desk Awards, the Drama League Award, and the Outer Critics Circle Awards.

As of September 2014, the Obie Awards are jointly presented by the American Theatre Wing and the Village Voice, with the Wing having "overall responsibility for running" the Awards.[7]

Award categories[edit]

  • Obie Award for Distinguished Performance by an Actress
  • Obie Award for Distinguished Performance by an Actor
  • Obie Award for Distinguished Performance by an Ensemble
  • Sustained Achievement Award
  • Best New American Theatre Work Award
  • Playwriting Award
  • Design Award
  • Special Citations
  • Obie Grants
  • The Ross Wetzsteon Award

Ceremony history[edit]

Obie Award ceremonies have been held at Webster Hall in Manhattan's East Village since the 2010-2011 season.

Year Host Venue Presenters
1956 Shelley Winters unknown venue
1957 Geraldine Page The Limelight
1958 Maureen Stapleton The Limelight
1959 Kim Stanley Village Gate
1960 Anne Bancroft Village Gate
1961 Julie Harris Village Gate
1962 Lotte Lenya Village Gate
1963 Uta Hagen Village Gate
1964 Colleen Dewhurst Village Gate
1965 Gloria Foster Village Gate
1966 Anne Jackson Village Gate
1967 Barbara Harris Village Gate
1968 Estelle Parsons Village Gate
1969 Julie Bovasso Village Gate
1970 Dustin Hoffman Village Gate
1971 Elaine May Village Gate
1972 Groucho Marx Village Gate
1973 Sylvia Miles unknown venue
1974 Madeleine Le Roux unknown venue
1975 Godfrey Cambridge Village Gate
1976 no formal host Lincoln Center
1977 Paul Sorvino, Gilda Radner, Marilyn Sokol The Bottom Line
1978 Dustin Hoffman The Bottom Line
1979 Ron Leibman The Bottom Line
1980 no formal host Roxy Roller-Skating Discotheque
1981 Kevin Kline, Sigourney Weaver Roxy Roller-Skating Discotheque
1982 Swoosie Kurtz, Tommy Tune Savoy
1983 Harvey Fierstein, Julie Bovasso First City Cabaret
1984 no formal host Cat Club
1985 Ellen Stewart, Harvey Fierstein Puck Building
1986 Christopher Durang, Swoozie Kurtz unknown venue
1987 Morgan Freeman, Christine Lahti unknown venue
1988 Morgan Freeman, Lee Breuer unknown venue
1989 no formal host unknown venue
1990 Julie Bovasso, Olympia Dukakis unknown venue
1991 Stockard Channing, Alan Arkin Palladium
1992 Jerry Zaks, Kate Nelligan Palladium
1993 no formal host unknown venue
1994 Mary McDonnell, James McDaniel unknown venue
1995 Hector Elizondo, Anne Meara unknown venue
1996 Nicky Silver unknown venue
1997 no formal host unknown venue Fyvush Finkel, Kathleen Chalfant, Lisa Gay Hamilton, Peter Francis James, Shirley Knight, Camryn Manheim, Mary Louise Parker, Roger Guenveur Smith, Julie Taymor, Marisa Tomei, Rip Torn, Ming Cho Lee, Karin Coonrod, and Scott Elliot[8]
1998 Eric Bogosian, Kristen Johnson[9] Webster Hall Danny Hoch, Woodie King Jr., Mac Wellman, Mary Louise Wilson, Lea DeLaria, Ellie Covan, Tsai Chin, Greg Germann, and Liz Diamond[10]
1999 Lea DeLaria, Paul Rudnick[11] Webster Hall Betty Buckley, Kathleen Chalfant, Stephen DeRosa, David Henry Hwang, Swoosie Kurtz, Elizabeth Marvel, John Cameron Mitchell, Everett Quinton, Phylicia Rashad, and Roger Rees[12]
2000 Claudia Shear, Mary Testa[13] Webster Hall Ping Chong, Felicity Huffman, William H. Macy, Cynthia Nixon, Frances Sternhagen, Mary Testa, Carmelita Tropicana, James Urbaniak[14]
2001 Brian Murray, Marian Seldes[15] Webster Hall Darius De Haas, David Gallo, Linda Lavin, Marion McClinton, Debra Monk, Mark Russell, J. Smith-Cameron, and Daphne Rubin-Vega[16]
2002 Karen Evans Kandel, Ruben Santiago-Hudson[17] Webster Hall Elizabeth Franz, Mary Louise Parker, Ellen McLaughlin, Rinde Eckert, Richard Maxwell, Suzan-Lori Parks, and George C. Wolfe[18]
2003 Bill Irwin, Charlayne Woodard[19] Webster Hall Edward Albee, Linda Emond, Juliana Francis, Martha Plimpton, Jackie Hoffman, Eddie Izzard, John Ortiz, and Liev Schreiber[20]
2004 Swoosie Kurtz, Raul Esparza[21] Webster Hall Viola Davis, Idina Menzel, Taye Diggs, and Denis O'Hare[22]
2005 Stockard Channing, Brian F. O'Byrne Webster Hall Elaine Stritch and Frances Sternhagen[23]
2006 Lili Taylor, Eric Bogosian[24] Skirball Christine Lahti, Christine Ebersole, Edward Hibbert, Douglas Carter Beane, Phylicia Rashad, and Oskar Eustis[25]
2007 Cynthia Nixon, T.R. Knight[26] Skirball Michael Cerveris, Angela Lansbury, William Ivey Long, Camryn Manheim, Stephanie March, Terrence McNally, Liev Schreiber, and Anika Noni Rose[27]
2008 Elizabeth Marvel, Bill Camp[28] Webster Hall Jonathan GroffPriscilla LopezS. Epatha MerkersonMarisa TomeiJulie White and Bradley Whitford[29]
2009 Daniel Breaker, Martha Plimpton[30] Webster Hall Anne Hathaway, Brian d’Arcy James, Gavin CreelJohn SheaKaren Olivo, Kate Mulgrew, Marc Kudisch, and Nilaja Sun[31]
2010 Anika Noni-Rose and Michael Cerveris[32] Webster Hall J. Smith-Cameron, Marin Ireland, Linda Lavin, Hamish Linklater, Michael Shannon and Jennifer Westfeldt[33]
2011 S. Epatha Merkerson and David Hyde Pierce[4] Webster Hall Nina Arianda, Alec Baldwin, Margaret Colin, Mamie Gummer, Rose Hemingway, John Larroquette, Patina Miller, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Arian Moayed, Jim Parsons, Andrew Rannells, Liev Schreiber, and Frank Wood[34]
2012 no formal host Webster Hall Eric McCormack, Grace Gummer, Hugh Dancy, Jonathan Pryce, Justin Bartha, Leslie Odom Jr., Lily Rabe, Michael McKean, Tonya Pinkins, Topher Grace, and Tracee Chimo[35]
2013 Jessica Hecht and Jeremy Shamos[36] Webster Hall Bobby Cannavale, Tracee Chimo, Cyndi Lauper, Judith Light, Krysta Rodriguez, Duncan Sheik, Meryl Streep, and Courtney B. Vance[37]
2014 Tamara Tunie and Hamish Linklater[38] Webster Hall Betsy Aidem, Harvey Fierstein, Lena Hall, LaTanya Richardson Jackson, Andy Karl, David Bar Katz, Cristin Milioti, Kelli O'Hara, Lily Rabe, and Stephen Trask[39]
2015 Lea DeLaria[40] Webster Hall Sting, Jessie Eisenberg, Stockard Channing, Billy Crudup, Tony Kushner, Lisa Kron, and William Ivey Long[41]
2016 Lea DeLaria[42] Webster Hall Savion Glover, Elizabeth MarvelColman Domingo, Danai GuriraTovah Feldshuh, Lisa Kron, Maura TierneyKate Burton, Carrie PrestonNorm Lewis, and Marlo Thomas[43]
2017 Lea DeLaria[44] Webster Hall Chris Cooper, Rose Byrne, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, Jayne Houdyshell, Lena Hall, Jefferson Mays, LaChanze, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Taylor Mac, Darius de Haas, Mike Faist, J. Smith-Cameron, David Henry Hwang, Derek McLane, William Ivey Long, Emilio Sosa, Peter Barbey[45]

Notable winners[edit]

Year Recipient
2017 Lynn Nottage (Playwriting Award - Sweat); J.T. Rogers (Playwriting Award - Oslo); Matthew Broderick (Performance Award); Michael Urie (Performance Award)
2016 Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul (Musical Theatre Award - Dear Evan Hansen); Ben Platt (Performance Award); Lupita Nyong'o (Performance Award)
2015 Lin-Manuel Miranda, Alex Lacamoire, Thomas Kail, Andy Blankenbuehler (Best New American Theatre Work - Hamilton)
2014 Sydney Lucas (Performance Award - Fun Home); Sonya Tayeh (Choreography Award)
2013 Dave Malloy and Rachel Chavkin (Special Citations - Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812); Annie Baker (Playwriting Award - The Flick)
2012 Steven Hoggett, Martin Lowe, John Tiffany (Special Citations - Once); Mimi Lien (Set Design Award)
2011 Laurie Metcalf (Performance Award - The Other Place); Leigh Silverman (Directing Award - In the Wake, Go Back to Where You Are)
2010 Sam Gold (Directing Award - Circle Mirror Transformation, The Alien); Reed Birney (Performance Award - Circle Mirror Transformation)

Grants[edit]

Obie Grants are awarded each year to select theatre companies. Previous recipients include:

Year Recipient
1985 Intar
1985 The Production Company
1985 The Richard Allen Center
1985 Spiderwoman Theatre
1985 The Split Britches Company
1986 P.S. 122
1986 Billie Holiday Theatre
1986 Mabou Mines
1987 The Irish Arts Center
1987 Brooklyn Arts and Cultural Association (BACA)
1987 The New Theatre of Brooklyn
1988 CSC Repertory
1988 Theatre for a New Audience
1989 Cucaracha Warehouse Theater
1989 The Living Theater
1990 Dixon Place
1990 Pregones
1990 WOW Cafe
1990 BACA New Works Project
1990 52nd Street Project
1991 En Garde Arts
1991 Hearts and Voices
1991 Mettawee River Theater Company
1992 Downtown Art Company
1992 Franklin Furnace
1992 Soho Repertory Company
1993 Nuyorican Poets Cafe
1993 Pearl Theater
1994 Changing Scenes
1994 HERE Arts Center
1995 Archives at LaMama
1995 Blueprint Series at Ontologic-Hysteric Theatre
1995 Nada
1996 New George's
1996 The TEBA Group
1997 St.Paul's Community Baptist Church Drama Ministry
1997 Great Small Works
1998 Housing Works Theater Project
1998 Caught in the Act annual one-act festival presented (Threshold Theater Co.)
1999 The Point, CDC
1999 National Asian American Theater
2000 Five Myles
2000 Circus Amok
2000 Big Dance Theater
2001 Soho Rep
2001 Clubbed Thumb
2001 Classical Theater of Harlem
2001 Mint Theater
2002 Ma-Yi Theater Company
2002 Salt Theater Company
2003 Collapsable Hole
2003 Galapagos
2003 The Immigrant Theatre Project
2004 The Civilians
2004 Musicals Tonight
2004 THAW (Theaters Against War)
2005 13P
2005 Epic Theatre Company
2005 Little Theater at Tonic
2005 Gina Gionfriddo Distinguished Emerging Playwright
2005 Margo Skinner Memorial Acting Scholarship
2007 Peculiar Works Project
2007 The Play Company
2007 Synapse Productions
2007 Transport Group
2007 Young Jean Lee
2008 Keen Company
2008 Theater of a Two-Headed Calf
2009 The Chocolate Factory
2009 The Classical Theatre of Harlem
2009 Lark Play Development Center
2010 Harlem School of the Arts
2010 Ontological Incubator
2010 Vampire Cowboys
2011 Metropolitan Playhouse
2011 Wakka Wakka
2012 The Bushwick Starr
2012 The Debate Society
2013 Fulcrum Theater
2013 Half Straddle
2014 48 Hours in Harlem
2014 600 Highwaymen
2015 Horse Trade Theater Group / The Fire This Time Festival
2015 JACK (Arts Center)
2016 Bedlam Theatre
2016 Noor Theatre
2016 Prospect Theater Company
2017 Irish Repertory Theatre
2017 Pearl Theatre Company
2017 The Playwrights Realm

Ross Wetzsteon Award is a $2,000 grant awarded to a theatre that nurture innovative new plays. Previous recipients include:

Year Recipient
1998 The Vineyard Theater
1999 Ellie Covan
1999 Dixon Place
2000 The Foundry
2001 Theatre For A New Audience
2002 PS 122
2003 Soho Think Tank's Ice Factory series at the Ohio Theatre
2004 St. Ann's Warehouse
2005 New Dramatists
2006 Soho Repertory Theater
2007 Rattlestick Theatre
2008 Cherry Lane Theatre Mentor Project
2009 HERE Arts Center
2011 Belarus Free Theatre
2014 Abrons Arts Center
2015 Ars Nova
2016 NAATCO / National Asian American Theatre Company
2017 Theatre For a New Audience

References[edit]

  1. ^ Aletti, Vince, "Helen Gee 1919–2004", Village Voice (New York City), 12 October 2004, accessed on 21 November 2013
  2. ^ Healy, Patrick. "'Ruined' Wins Obie Awards" The New York Times, May 18, 2009
  3. ^ Gans, Andrew. "Camp, Harris, Merkerson, Marvel and White to Present at Obies; Passing Strange to Perform", playbill.com, April 17, 2008
  4. ^ a b Gans, Andrew." 'Chad Deity', Ethan Hawke, Laurie Metcalf, Thomas Sadoski, Charlayne Woodard Win Obie Awards" playbill.com, May 16, 2011
  5. ^ Cox, Gordon.Off Broadway event Variety, May 18, 2009
  6. ^ "1955–1956 Obie Awards" infoplease.com, accessed May 21, 2013
  7. ^ Gans, Andrew. "American Theatre Wing and Village Voice Will Co-Present Annual Obie Awards" playbill.com, September 9, 2014
  8. ^ "OBIE Awards for Off-Broadway Will Be Given May 19 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-08. 
  9. ^ "Eric Bogosian & Kristen Johnson To Host Obie Awards, May 18 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  10. ^ "Richard Foreman Wins Best Play Honors at 1998 Village Voice Obie Awards | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-08. 
  11. ^ "Durang, Chalfant, House/Lights Win 1999 OBIE Awards For Excellence Off-Bway | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  12. ^ "Durang, Chalfant, House/Lights Win 1999 OBIE Awards For Excellence Off-Bway | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-08. 
  13. ^ "Claudia Shear to Host 2000 OBIE Awards, May 15 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  14. ^ "Claudia Shear to Host 2000 OBIE Awards, May 15 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  15. ^ "Seldes and Murray to Host 2001 OBIE Awards, May 21 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  16. ^ "Obie-Won". TheaterMania.com. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  17. ^ "The 2002 Obie Awards, Honoring Off-Bway, Presented May 20 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  18. ^ "The 2002 Obie Awards, Honoring Off-Bway, Presented May 20 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  19. ^ "Ed Norton, Rosemary Harris, BAM, Talking Heads Among 2003 Off-Broadway Obie Awards Winners | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  20. ^ "Ed Norton, Rosemary Harris, BAM, Talking Heads Among 2003 Off-Broadway Obie Awards Winners | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  21. ^ "2003-2004 OBIE Awards Bestowed at Webster Hall". TheaterMania.com. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  22. ^ "Kurtz and Esparza to Host 2004 Obie Awards Ceremony May 17 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  23. ^ "Jimmy Smits to Host Village Voice Obie Awards May 16 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  24. ^ "Downtown Drama: Obie Awards To Be Handed Out May 15 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  25. ^ "OBIE Awards 2005 - 2006 - six of the award presenters named". New York Theater Guide. 20171019. Retrieved 2017-11-07.  line feed character in |title= at position 24 (help); Check date values in: |date= (help)
  26. ^ "T.R. Knight and Cynthia Nixon to Host Obie Awards". TheaterMania.com. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  27. ^ Desk, BWW News. "2007 Village Voice Obie Awards Winners Announced". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  28. ^ "Foote, Hwang, Cromer, Hamilton, Mulgrew and Stew Among 2008 Obie Award Winners | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  29. ^ Desk, BWW News. "2008 Obie Awards Winners Announced". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  30. ^ "Plimpton and Breaker to Host 54th Annual Obie Awards | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  31. ^ "The 2009 Village Voice Obie Award Winners Announced". Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  32. ^ "PHOTO CALL: 2010 OBIE Awards Ceremony | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  33. ^ "Circle Mirror Transformation Among Winners at 2010 OBIE Awards". Broadway.com. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  34. ^ "2011 Obie Award Winners Announced". TheaterMania.com. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  35. ^ "The 2012 Obie Award Winners". Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  36. ^ Gans, Andrew. "'Detroit', 'Grimly Handsome', Eisa Davis, John Rando, Shuler Hensley and More Are Obie Winners" Archived June 5, 2013, at the Wayback Machine. playbill.com, May 20, 2013
  37. ^ "Announcing the Winners of the 2013 Village Voice Obie Awards". Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  38. ^ Gans, Andrew."59th Annual Obie Award Winners Announced; Sydney Lucas Is Youngest Winner in Obie History" Archived May 20, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. playbill.com, May 19, 2014
  39. ^ "59th Annual Obie Award Winners Announced; Sydney Lucas Is Youngest Winner in Obie History | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  40. ^ "Inside the 2015 Obie Awards". TheaterMania.com. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  41. ^ Cox, Gordon (2015-05-19). "'Hamilton,' Henderson and Houghton Win 2015 Obie Awards (FULL LIST)". Variety. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  42. ^ "Winners Announced for 61st Annual Obie Awards | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  43. ^ "Savion Glover, Marlo Thomas and Lisa Kron Among Presenters of Tonight's Obie Awards | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  44. ^ "Go Inside the 2017 Obie Awards | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-10-27. 
  45. ^ "Presenters and Performers Announced For Tonight's 62nd Annual Obie Awards® | Obie Awards". Obie Awards. 2017-05-22. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  46. ^ Gans, Andrew. " 'Oslo' and 'The Band's Visit' Among 2017 Obie Award Winners" Playbill, May 22, 2017

External links[edit]