The cast of Signature Theatre’s ‘Octet.’ (Photo: Joan Marcus)
The 35th Annual Lucille Lortel Awards for Outstanding Achievement Off-Broadway were presented last night in 19 categories, and two honorary awards were bestowed. Award recipients were announced during a special livestream broadcast hosted by Mario Cantone as a benefit for The Actors Fund, with the Lortel Foundation pledging $50,000 to their Emergency Grant Program, and an additional $50,000 to TDF. Donations can still be made at www.actorsfund.org/lortel. The Lucille Lortel Awards are produced by the Off-Broadway League and the Lucille Lortel Theatre Foundation, with additional support provided by TDF.
Top recipients, earning three awards each, were Dave Malloy’s Octet produced by Signature Theatre for Outstanding Musical; and Heroes of the Fourth Turning, produced by Playwrights Horizons, for Outstanding Play. There were also two ties this year – in the categories of Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical and Outstanding Costume Design.
Special honorees this year included Playwrights Horizons’ Tim Sanford, who received the Lifetime Achievement Award; and Anna Deavere Smith, inducted onto the famed Playwrights’ Sidewalk in front of the historic Lucille Lortel Theatre.
Featured presenters included: Jelani Alladin, Rachel Dratch, Jordan Fisher, Jackie Hoffman, Andy Karl, Nathan Lane, Tatiana Maslany, Debra Messing, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Nyambi Nyambi, Kelli O’Hara, Orfeh, Steven Pasquale, Lauren Patten, Alison Pill, Jeremy Pope, Condola Rashad, Krysta Rodriguez, Phillipa Soo, Sonya Tayeh, Marisa Tomei, Michael Urie, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
The Lortel Awards hosted a “Virtual Red Carpet” where anyone watching the show at home could submit their own “red carpet” photo of them “attending” the event. Photos were posted on social media using #LortelAwards.
As the event was pre-recorded, award recipients were encouraged to film and post their acceptance speeches on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram also at #LortelAwards. The show will be re-edited to include recipients’ acceptance speeches and will be available in its entirety on the Lortel Awards YouTube channel.
Heroes of the Fourth Turning
for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Outstanding Solo Show
Danya Taymor, Heroes of the Fourth Turning Annie Tippe, Octet
Travis Wall, The Wrong Man
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Play
Edmund Donovan, Greater Clements
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play
Emily Davis, Is This A Room
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
Francis Jue, Cambodian Rock Band
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Michele Pawk, Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical
Larry Owens, A Strange Loop
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical
Grace McLean, In The Green
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Christian Borle, Little Shop of Horrors
John-Andrew Morrison, A Strange Loop
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Kuhoo Verma, Octet
Outstanding Scenic Design
You-Shin Chen and Laura Jellinek, Mrs. Murray’s Menagerie
Outstanding Costume Design
Toni-Leslie James, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf
Rachel Townsend and Jessica Jahn, The Confession of Lily Dare
Outstanding Lighting Design
Isabella Byrd, Heroes of the Fourth Turning Alan C. Edwards, Fires in the Mirror
Outstanding Sound Design
Mikhail Fiksel, Dana H.
Outstanding Projection Design
Ruey Horng Sun, The Headlands
HONORARY AWARDS Lifetime Achievement Award
Playwrights’ Sidewalk Inductee
Anna Deavere Smith