On Monday, July 25, 2022 Tony nominee Amanda Green (Mr. Saturday Night), president of the Dramatists Guild, served as host of the annual Dramatists Guild of America Awards ceremony at Joe’s Pub in New York. Ms. Green kicked off the evening by performing “1810” from her Broadway-aimed musical Female Troubles, accompanied by Chris Fenwick.
The musical features lyrics by Ms. Green, music by Emmy nominee Curtis Moore (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), and a book by Jennifer Crittenden (Seinfeld) and Gabrielle Allan (Veep).The comedic work is set in 19th-century England, centering on Elinor Benton and her lady’s maid who find themselves unwed and pregnant.
Stephen Adly Guirgis was set to present to Martyna Majok with the 2022 Hull-Warriner Award for her play Sanctuary City. He could not attend, but sent his speech to be read aloud, and also posted it his Facebook page. See below:
The Hull-Warriner Award is the only award given by dramatists to dramatists; it is presented annually by the Dramatists Guild Council to an author or team of authors in recognition of their play dealing with controversial subjects involving the fields of political, religious, or social mores of the times.
The finalists for this year’s Hull-Warriner Award are Where We Stand by Donnetta Lavinia Grays; All the Natalie Portmans by C.A. Johnson; Selling Kabul by Sylvia Khoury; Suicide Forest by Haruna Lee and Endlings by Celine Song.
The Horton Foote Award, sponsored by the Richenthal Foundation, is presented to a dramatist whose work seeks to plumb the ineffable nature of being human. The recipient of this year’s award was Sanaz Toossi (English), presented by Carla Ching (video introduction) and Kia Corthron (in-person).
Jeanine Tesori received the 2022 Frederick Loewe Award for her work on Kimberly Akimbo, given by the Frederick Loewe Foundation and presented annually by the Dramatists Guild Council to a composer recognizes achievement in a theatrical score presented in New York during the previous theatrical season.
Based on Lindsay-Abaire’s play of the same name, the musical features music by Tesori and a book by Lindsay-Abaire. The musical will transfer with its cast intact from its 2021 world-premiere production at Off-Broadway’s Atlantic Theater Company, including Tony winner Victoria Clark in the title role. Kimberly Akimbo will play the Booth Theatre on Broadway with previews beginning October 12 and an opening night set for November 10.
Kimberly Akimbo cast member Alex Vinh performed “Good Kid” for Ms. Tesori.
Darius de Haas, fresh from his rehearsal of The Public Theater’s Free Shakespeare in the Park production of Public Works’ As You Like It, performed “Still I Will Love”. Adapted by Public Theater Artist-in-Residence Shaina Taub and Director of Public Works Laurie Woolery, with music and lyrics by Shaina Taub, original choreography by Tony Award winner Sonya Tayeh, choreography restaging and additional choreography by Billy Griffin, As You Like It will have performances at The Delacorte from August 10 – September 11.
Rona Siddiqui via video, presented the 2022 Flora Roberts Award, administered by the Dramatists Guild Foundation, to Kirsten Childs. The Flora Roberts Award is presented to a dramatist in recognition of distinguished work in the theater and to encourage the continuation of that work.
The 2021 Dramatists Guild Awards recipients include the following: Sharai Bohannon received the DLDF Defender Award; William S. Yellow Robe, Jr. received the Flora Roberts Award; and Mariam Bazeed and Rhiana Yazzie received the Lanford Wilson Prize. The Horton Foote Award was shared by Carla Ching, Kia Corthron, Aleshea Harris, Donja R. Love and Mfoniso Udofia. The Dramatists Guild also gave out a Lifetime Achievement Award to Adrienne Kennedy.
The DLDF Defender Award is presented by the Dramatists Legal Defense Fund’s board to recognize an individual or group’s efforts in support of free expression in the dramatic arts. The recipient of this year’s award is Alice Childress.
The Lanford Wilson Award was established by the estate of Lanford Wilson and is presented by the Dramatists Guild Council to a dramatist based primarily on their work as an early career playwright. The 2022 award was presented to Nancy Garcia Loza and Ren Dara Santiago.
This year, the Dramatists Guild also awarded two Lifetime Achievement Awards, to Pearl Cleage, who accepted via video,and Tina Howe. The Lifetime Achievement Award is presented by the Dramatists Guild Council in recognition of distinguished lifetime achievement in theatrical writing. Previous recipients include Adrienne Kennedy, A.R. Gurney, John Guare, Micki Grant, Paula Vogel, Terrence McNally, Sheldon Harnick & Jerry Bock, Lanford Wilson, Joseph Stein, Horton Foote, August Wilson, Stephen Sondheim, John Kander & Fred Ebb, Neil Simon, Betty Comden & Adolph Green, Edward Albee, and Arthur Miller. Career Achievement Awards have also been presented to Marsha Norman and Stephen Schwartz. Composer/lyricist Adam Gwon closed out the evening with a performance of “Why I Love Football” from his musical, Scotland, PA.
Since its inception in 1919, The Dramatists Guild of America has been the professional association for playwrights, librettists, lyricists and composers writing for the American stage. With over 8,000 members around the world, The Guild is guided by a governing council of writers who each give their time, interest and support to advance the rights of dramatists everywhere, including the right for dramatists to own and control their own copyrighted work. The Guild’s advocacy, programs, events, publications and other services provide dramatists with the resources, the community and the support they require to protect their property, their livelihoods, and their unique voices in the American theatre.
LIA CHANG is a Chinese-American actor, a multi-media content producer, an award-winning filmmaker, and a photo activist and documentarian, who lifts up and amplifies BIPOC communities and artists and the institutions that support them. Lia moved to New York from her home in San Francisco when she was 17 years of age and made her stage debut as Liat in a national tour of South Pacific with Barbara Eden and Robert Goulet. She spent many years working extensively Off-Broadway, including Signature Theatre’s revival of Sam Shepard’s Chicago. Her film work includes Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, and The Last Dragon. The decades of being viewed by others through the narrow lens of “Asian actor” in the industry brought Lia to a turning point, and she picked up her camera, determined to create awareness by documenting the work and the lives of her BIPOC colleagues, resulting in the creation of thousands of photographs and pieces of video. Her photo archives are housed in the AAPI collection in the Library of Congress’ Asian Reading Room under “Lia Chang Theater Portfolio collection,1989-2011” and in the “Lia Chang Photography Collection” in The Billy Rose Theatre Division of the New York Public Library. Lia’s awards include the 2000 OCA Chinese American Journalist Award, the 2001 AAJA National Award for New Media and the 2022 Prospect Muse Award. She is also an AAJA Executive Leadership Graduate, a Western Knight Fellow at USC’s Annenberg College of Communications for Specialized Journalism on Entertainment Journalism in the Digital Age, a National Press Photographers Association Visual Edge/Visual Journalism Fellow at the Poynter Institute for New Media, and a Scripps Howard New Media Fellow at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. More recently, Lia co-founded Bev’s Girl Films, which makes films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. She executive produced and starred in the indie films Hide and Seek (AA Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Best Actress Nomination), Rom-Com Gone Wrong, and When the World Was Young (2021 DisOrient Film Audience Choice Award for Best Short Narrative). A retrospective of Lia’s photographs will be on view at the Museum of the City of New York later this year, documenting her BIPOC colleagues and contemporaries in the performing arts. www.liachang.com, www.liachangphotography.com