36th Annual Theatre Hall of Fame

Date 2007/1/17 21:20:00 | Topic: Elsewhere...

January 29, 2007

The 36th Annual Theater Hall of Fame, which honors lifetime achievement in the theatre, will be inducting artists at a ceremony in the Gershwin Theatre. The M.C. for the night will be none other than Houston's own Tony award winner Phylicia Rashad. The evening will honor actors Patti LuPone, George Hearn and Elizabeth Wilson; playwright Brian Friel; and designers Willa Kim and Eugene Lee. Playwrights Wendy Wasserstein and August Wilson will be inducted posthumously...

Each year, The American Theatre Critics Association and the members of The Theatre Hall of Fame, vote from a national ballot with over 100 nominees. In order to be eligible for this prestigous honor, the artist must have a career spanning at least 25 years on Broadway and have more than five major credits to their name.

Patti LuPone:

Tony Award winner Patti LuPone recently concluded a critically acclaimed run in John Doyle’s smash hit Broadway production of Sweeney Todd as the pie-maker Mrs. Lovett. Patti LuPone’s recent New York stage appearances include critically acclaimed performances in the City Center Encores! production of Pal Joey, as the Old Lady in Leornard Bernstein’s Candide with the NY Philharmonic, in the smash hit Broadway revival of Michael Frayn’s Noises Off, as Mrs. Lovett in the concert version of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd, in David Mamet’s The Old Neighborhood, Terrence McNally's Tony Award-winning play Master Class and in her own concert Patti LuPone On Broadway, for which she won an Outer Critics Circle Award. Over the past six consecutive summers, she’s appeared in the Ravinia Festival’s critically acclaimed Sondheim series, starring, in addition to Sweeney Todd and Gypsy, as Desiree in A Little Night Music, Fosca in Passion, Cora Hooper in Anyone Can Whistle, and was featured in two different roles in Sunday in the Park with George.

After completing her training with the first class of the Drama Division of New York’s Juilliard School, she began her career as a founding member of John Houseman's The Acting Company playing a variety of leading roles, both on and off-Broadway and on tour throughout the United States.

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George Hearn:

Hearn, who recently appeared on Broadway in Wicked, is a two-time Tony Award-winner for Sunset Boulevard and La Cage aux Folles. He was also nominated for his work in Putting It Together, A Doll's Life and Watch on the Rhine.

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Elizabeth Wilson:

Wilson is a Tony award winner. Her Broadway credits include Waiting in the Wings; A Delicate Balance; Ah, Wilderness!; You Can't Take it With You; Morning's at Seven; The Importance of Being Earnest; Threepenny Opera; Uncle Vanya; The Secret Affairs of Mildred Wild; The Good Woman of Setzuan; Sheep on the Runway; Plaza Suite; The Little Foxes; Big Fish, Little Fish; The Tunnel of Love; The Desk Set; and Picnic.

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Brian Friel

Treating themes that enmesh both Irelands, he has become the most acclaimed contemporary Irish dramatist. Friel's family moved to Derry (1939), and he attended St. Patrick's College, Maynooth (B.A., 1949) and a teacher's training college. He taught for 10 years, published short stories, produced radio plays, and became a full-time writer in 1960. He studied (1963) with Tyrone Guthrie at his theater in Minneapolis, and while there wrote his first successful play, Philadelphia, Here I Come!, which deals with a young Irishman considering emigration to the United States. Since the 1970s Friel has written much about the political realities of the two Irelands, as in The Freedom of the City (1973) and Living Quarters (1977). In 1980 he and actor Stephen Rea formed the Field Day Theater Company, Northern Ireland, which soon (1981) produced Friel's Translations. Friel has also written of Irish family life, skillfully mingling it with surreal effects, in such plays as Aristocrats (1979) and the internationally known Dancing at Lughnasa (1990; Tony Award). Among his other plays are Lovers (1968), Volunteers (1975), Faith Healer (1979), Making History (1988), and Give Me Your Answer, Do! (1999). Friel also continues to write short stories.

Willa Kim:

Has won two Tony Awards as Best Costume Designer: in 1981 for Sophisticated Ladies;" and in 1991 for "The Will Rogers Follies." She was also nominated in the same category four other times: in 1975 for "Goodtime Charley;" in 1978 for "Dancin';" in 1986 for "Song & Dance;" and in 1989 for "Legs Diamond."

Eugene Lee:

Lee has been resident designer at Trinity Rep since 1967. He has a BFA from the Art Institute of Chicago, a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University, an MFA from Yale Drama School and an honorary Ph.D from both DePaul University and Rhode Island College. Mr. Lee has won three Tony Awards for Leonard Bernstein's Candide, Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd and Wicked. He was also nominated for a Tony for his work on Ragtime. He is the production designer for "Saturday Night Live" on NBC. Other New York theatre includes Slaveship, Alice in Wonderland, The Normal Heart, Agnes of God, Grandchild of Kings and Uncle Vanya.

Wendy Wasserstein:

Wendy Wasserstein is the author of the the plays Uncommon Women and Others, Isn’t It Romantic, The Sisters Rosensweig, An American Daughter, and The Heidi Chronicles, for which she received a Tony Award and the Pulitzer Prize, and of the books, Bachelor Girls and Shiksa Goddess. She was admired both for the warmth and the satirical cool of her writing; each of her plays and books captures an essence of the time, makes us laugh and leaves us wiser. Wendy Wasserstein was born in 1950 in Brooklyn and died at the age of 55.

Click Here for More Info on Wendy Wasserstein!

August Wilson:

Two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright August Wilson (Frederick August Kittell; born 1945) embarked upon a mission to write a cycle of ten plays addressing central issues that have impacted African Americans in each decade of the 20th century. The first five evolve from the playwright's own commentary upon illconceived, ill-advised, yet sometimes unavoidable choices made by past generations of African Americans and their too frequent negative consequences...

Click Here for More Info on Wilson!
More Info On Wilson!

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