(l to r) Recipients of the 2nd Annual Samuel French Awards: Ken Ludwig, Nathan Tysen, Dominique Morisseau, and Chris Miller. (Photo: Ahron R. Foster via The Broadway Blog.)
The second annual Samuel French Awards honored Ken Ludwig (Lend me a Tenor, Crazy for You), Dominique Morisseau (Pipeline, Detroit 67), and the songwriting team of Chris Miller & Nathan Tysen (Tuck Everlasting, Burnt Part Boys) at a private event at the Time Hotel.
Samuel French President Nathan Collins, and Executive Director Bruce Lazarus, as well as Broadway favorites Blair Underwood, Tim Federle, Brandon J. Dirden, Julie Halston, Andrew Keenan-Bolger, Kurt Deutschand Lileana Blain-Cruz, were on hand to celebrate the honorees.
Emily Mann, Artistic Director of McCarter Theatre Center, presented Ludwig the Award for Sustained Excellence in American Theatre, which is bestowed upon a Samuel French playwright, composer, or lyricist whose body of work has been successfully produced across the nation, at both amateur and professional levels.
Kamilah Forbes, Executive Producer of the Apollo Theater, presented Morisseau the Award for Impact & Activism in the Theatre Community, given to an individual or creative team who has significantly impacted the theatre community over the past year through their activism.
Composer, producer, and activist, Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home) , presented Miller & Tysen the Next Step Award, which supports a playwright, composer, or lyricist working toward the next step of their career. Honorees have demonstrated a strong energy and talent in their career thus far.
Monetary prizes were awarded to Miller & Tysen, and donations made on behalf of Ken Ludwig and Dominique Morisseau to McCarter Theatre Center and Detroit Public Theater, respectively. The evening included a short performance of Miller & Tysen’s work by Robert Lenzi (Tuck Everlasting) and Krystina Alabado (American Psycho, Lazarus).