The late Marin Mazzie is among the recipients of honorary Special Tony Awards for 2019. The performer, who died in September last year at the age of 57, had earned three Tony nominations throughout her stage career. The Special Tony Award will recognize her legacy of leadership and advocacy as she battled ovarian cancer.
Also receiving special honors will be Jason Michael Webb, who brought gospel arrangements to this season’s play-with-music Choir Boy, as well as Sonny Tilders and Creature Technology Company, who helped bring the title character/puppet to life in King Kong.
“These artists have demonstrated outstanding passion and dedication,” said American Theatre Wing President Heather Hitchens and Broadway League President Charlotte St. Martin in a joint statement. “Sonny and Creature Technology Company’s 'Kong' embodies extraordinary design, technical complexities and sophisticated emotional capabilities. Jason’s a cappella arrangements in Choir Boy are transformative. Marin was and is a beacon of light for our community, by advocating for women’s health issues.”
Mazzie received Tony nominations for her work in Passion, Ragtime, and Kiss Me, Kate (she is commemorated in the current revival by way of Easter eggs from costume designer Jeff Mahshie). Throughout her battle with cancer, Mazzie, along with husband Jason Danieley, dedicated their time and talents to such organizations as the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation and the Cancer Support Community. The latter recently established the Marin Mazzie Award for Empowerment in her memory.
Prior to working on Choir Boy, Webb served as music director on the Broadway revival of The Color Purple; his additional credits include Broadway's Violet, Motown, and Leap of Faith. For the screen, he's worked on The Greatest Showman, Empire, and Netflix's Juanita.
Tilders serves as CEO and creative director of Creature Technology Company, an Australian-based team that's brought various towering figures to life—from dinosaurs to King Kong's title 20-foot, 2,000-pound gorilla.
Additional previously reported honorary recipients for the 73rd annual ceremony include Broadway Inspirational Voices, Peter Entin, Joseph Blakely Forbes, and FDNY Engine 54, who will each receive Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre; Judith Light, named the recipient of the Isabelle Stevenson Award; Regional Theatre Tony Award honoree TheatreWorks Silicon Valley; and Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre recipients Terrence McNally, Rosemary Harris, and Harold Wheeler.
Nominations for the competitive categories will be announced April 30 ahead of Broadway's biggest night, set for June 9 at Radio City Music Hall.