Two-time Tony winner and artist advocate Bebe Neuwirth will be honored by the National Dance Institute, Playbill has learned exclusively.
Founded in 1976 by dancer and choreographer Jacques d’Amboise, the National Dance Institute is a non-profit arts organization that brings dance to children of all abilities across New York City’s public schools, as well as 13 associate programs across the U.S. and an international exchange program in Shanghai.
Neuwirth, as well as long-time NDI supporter and Chairman of GFP Real Estate Jeffrey R. Gural, will be honored at NDI’s annual gala April 30. The sit-down dinner will feature entertainment by guest performers and the children of NDI, hosted by emcee Terrence Mann (who appeared alongside Neuwirth in Broadway's The Addams Family). A three-time Tony nominee for Les Misérables, Beauty and the Beast, and Pippin, Mann has been a long-time supporter of NDI. (His wife, Tony-nominated actor and dancer Charlotte d’Amboise is the daughter of Jacques.) This year’s gala theme is Dance Me a River.
Neuwirth made her Broadway debut as the replacement for Sheila in the original 1975 production of A Chorus Line. She performed in the ensembles of Dancin’ and Little Me before making a spalsh as Nickie in Bob Fosse’s Sweet Charity (winning her first Tony Award). She went on to star as Lola in the revival of Damn Yankees and won a second Tony for Velma Kelly in the revival of Chicago, now in its 21st year. She recently appeared in New York City Center's original Encores! revue Hey Look Me Over.
In addition to her many stage credits, Neuwirth stood out as the no-nonsense Lilith on the long-running Cheers and recently ended her run as a series regular on CBS’ Madame Secretary. She continues to appear on Blue Bloods.
More than her performing talents, Neuwirth has been a crucial voice in the dance world. A trustee of The Actors Fund, Neuwirth founded The Dancer’s Resource, a branch of the non-profit which assists eligible performers dealing with injuries, those in need of financial assistance, etc. The program also includes the program Career Transitions for Dancers.