Forbes was recognized for her performance in the Theatre for a New Audience production of Shakespeare's Othello. Thompson was cited for his performances in both Othello and in the title role of The Emperor Jones presented by The Irish Repertory Theatre. Forbes received a Theatre World Award for her performance in School for Scandal; other Broadway credits include Inherit the Wind, Macbeth and Sight Unseen.
Thompson also received Obie and Lucille Lortel Awards and a Drama League nomination for his appearance in TFANA's Othello. His Broadway credits include Le Bret in Cyrano de Bergerac with Kevin Kline and Jennifer Garner and Julius Caesar with Denzel Washington.
The awards will be presented to the two actors during Equity's Eastern Regional Membership Meeting at the Manhattan Equity offices.
The award — which includes an engraved plaque and a $1,000 check — honors "the best performances in a professional production of a classic play (one written prior to 1920) in the New York metropolitan area," according to press notes. The award was established by Callaway to "encourage participation in the classics and non-profit theatre."
This year's panel of judges included Joe Dzienianowicz, Daily News; Adam Feldman, Time Out NY; Susan Haskins, Theater Week; Harry Haun, Playbill; Michael Kuchwara, Associated Press; and David Rosenberg, Back Stage.