Equity Membership Candidates are not yet full union members, but are working toward the qualifications for membership. The prize consists of a $1,000 check and a certificate. It will be "presented to one male and one female EMC based on a videotape audition, written recommendations, and a completed application. A panel including actor/members of the Actors' Equity Foundation and members of the Casting Society of America will choose the recipients of the award and will announce the winners each April. The judging panel strictly adheres to the principles of non-traditional casting and actively encourages actors of all cultural backgrounds to apply." The award was created by the family of noted casting director, Roger Sturtevant, who died on June 29, 2003. Tax deductible donations to the award in honor of his legacy may be made by sending a check made out to the "Actors' Equity Foundation" to: The Roger Sturtevant Musical Theatre Award, c/o Actors' Equity Foundation 165 W. 46th Street, New York, NY 10036.
The Sturtevant Musical Theatre Award is the latest in a growing raft of awards handed out by Equity. Margo Martindale of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Tom Aldredge of Twentieth Century were recently named the first recipients of the newly created Richard Seff Award. The award "honors a female and male character actor, 50 years of age or older, for the best performance in a supporting role in a Broadway or Off-Broadway production," said Equity in a statement. As such, it is a complement to the 59-year-old Clarence Derwent Awards, which annually honor "the most promising female and male performers on the New York metropolitan scene."