Veteran stage actress Julie Harris will be awarded a Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre at the 56th Annual Antoinette Perry "Tony" Awards on June 2.
Harris, who was last on Broadway opposite Charles Durning in a revival of D.L. Coburn's The Gin Game, is a five-time Tony Award winner for her work in the Broadway productions of I Am a Camera, The Lark, Forty Carats, The Last of Mrs. Lincoln and The Belle of Amherst. Harris is the only performer to have won five awards in an acting category. Gwen Verdon and Angela Lansbury are tied with four Tonys each.
Also the recipient of Tony nominations for her performances in The Au Pair Man, Marathon '33, Skyscraper, Lucifer's Child and The Gin Game, Harris made her stage debut in the 1945 play It's a Gift and her feature film debut in 1952's "The Member of the Wedding," earning an Oscar nomination for the role that she also created on Broadway. Television audiences know Harris from her role as Lilimae Clements on the CBS nighttime series "Knots Landing," which earned her an Emmy Award nomination. The actress nabbed the Emmy twice: in 1961 for "Victoria Regina" and in 1999 for "Not for Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Susan B. Anthony."
Harris suffered a stroke in May 2001, forcing her to withdraw from the Victory Gardens Theatre's production of Claudia Allen's Fossils. A March 18 tribute to Harris at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall marked her first public appearance since her illness.
The American Theatre Wing's 56th Annual Antoinette Perry "Tony" Awards ceremony will be broadcast live from Radio City Music Hall on Sunday, June 2. PBS stations begin the national telecast at 8 PM EST with "The First Ten Awards: Tonys 2002," produced for PBS by Thirteen/WNET New York. CBS will televise "The 2002 Tony Awards" beginning at 9 PM. —By Andrew Gans