The new award named in honor of the late Chicago and Cabaret lyricist Fred Ebb will be bestowed following a 5 PM cocktail reception Nov. 29 at 5:30 PM in The American Airlines Theatre Penthouse Lounge.
The Fred Ebb Award — which includes a $50,000 prize — will "recognize excellence in musical theatre songwriting by a lyricist, composer, or songwriting team that has not yet achieved significant commercial success," according to the announcement. The aim of the honor is to encourage and support new musical theatre works.
The Roundabout Theatre Company — who has enjoyed a longstanding relationship with Ebb — serves as a creative and administrative guide for the new award.
This year's panel of judges who selected the winner included Broadway director Scott Ellis (Twelve Angry Men), lyricist-composer Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler on the Roof), playwright-producer Tim Pinckney (Message to Michael), producer Arthur Whitelaw (You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown) and Foundation Trustee Mitchell S. Bernard.
Ebb penned the lyrics (with his longtime composing collaborator John Kander) for such musicals as Cabaret, Woman of the Year and Kiss of the Spider Woman (all Tony Award winners for Best Score), as well as Chicago, Zorba, The Rink, 70 Girls 70, The Act and Steel Pier. Kander and Ebb's 1965 Broadway musical debut Flora the Red Menace introduced Liza Minnelli to Broadway. Applications and guidelines for The Fred Ebb Award are available through the official website at www.FredEbbFoundation.org. Submissions were accepted from May 1 to June 30, 2005.