The 1997 Helen Hayes Awards, honoring excellence in Washington D.C. theatre, were announced May 5 at a ceremony in the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Pat Carroll (The Show Off) and Tyne Daly (Gypsy) hosted the event, which is named after the late "First Lady of the American Theatre." Presenters included Richard Thomas, Kelly McGillis (Hedda Gabler), Hayley Mills (now on tour with The King And I), Robert Prosky, Ann Guilbert, Jonathan Hadary (Angels In America) and James MacArthur, with Robert Aubrey Davis serving as the evening's announcer.
Here is a complete list of nominees and winners; the winners are listed in boldface type:
OUTSTANDING NON-RESIDENT PRODUCTION
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, Kennedy Center
Damn Yankees, Kennedy Center
Disney's Beauty And The Beast, Kennedy Center
A Huey P. Newton Story, Woolly Mammoth
Nomathemba, Kennedy Center/Crossroads
Stomp, Warner Theatre. OUTSTANDING RESIDENT MUSICAL
PASSION, Signature Theatre.
Candide, Arena Stage
Hip 2: Birth Of The Boom, Studio
The Mikado, Interact
The Rink, Signature
Torn From The Headlines, African Continuum Company
OUTSTANDING RESIDENT PLAY
TWO TRAINS RUNNING, Studio Theatre.
Arcadia, Arena Stage
Henry VI, Shakespeare Theatre
Quills, Woolly Mammoth
Volpone, Shakespeare Theatre.
CHARLES MACARTHUR AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING NEW PLAY
JENNIFER L. NELSON, TORN FROM THE HEADLINES , African Continuum Theatre Company & Everyday Theatre.
Amstel in Tel Aviv by Allyson Currin, Source Theatre Company
The Man Who Laughs by Susan Haedicke, Monica Neagoy and Didier Rousselet, Le Neon French-American Theatre Company
The Obituary Bowl by Barbara McConagha, Woolly Mammoth
They Never Said a Word by Ron O'Leary, the Rose Organization
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTRESS, RESIDENT PLAY
NANCY ROBINETTE, Better Living, Round House ;
Jane Beard, One Shoe Off, Round House
Helen Carey, Henry VI, Shakespeare Theatre
Pamela Nyberg Blithe Spirit, Arena Stage
Phylicia Rashad, Blues For An Alabama Sky
Nancy Robinette, The Obituary Bowl, Woolly Mammoth
Michelle Shupe, Cymbeline, Washington Shakespeare Co.
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTOR, RESIDENT PLAY
FLOYD KING (Quills), Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company.
David Fendig, Travesties, Washington Shakespeare Co.,
Edward Gero, Broken Glass, Olney Center/Rep Stage
Howard Shalwitz, The Gigli Concert, Woolly Mammoth
Henry Strozier, Dance Of Death, Arena Stage
Jon Tindle, Talking Heads, Studio Theatre
Jerry Whiddon, An Almost Holy Picture, Round House
OUTSTANDING DIRECTOR, RESIDENT MUSICAL
ERIC D. SCHAEFFER, Passion, Signature Theatre.
Catherine Flye, The Mikado, Interact
Marsha A. Jackson-Randolph, Hip 2: Birth Of The Boom, Studio
Eric D. Schaeffer, The Rink, Signature
Douglas C. Wager, Candide, Arena Stage
OUTSTANDING DIRECTOR, RESIDENT PLAY
MICHAEL KAHN, Henry VI, Shakespeare Theatre
JoAnne Akalaitis, Dance Of Death, Arena Stage
Joe Banno, Cymbeline, Washington Shakespeare Co.
Thomas W. Jones II, Two Trains Running, Studio Theatre
Howard Shalwitz, Quills, Woolly Mammoth
Douglas C. Wager Arcadia, Arena Stage
OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTRESS, RESIDENT PLAY
HELEN CAREY, Volpone, Shakespeare Theatre
Mary Teresa Fortuna, Quills, Woolly Mammoth
Deidrie N. Henry, Blues For An Alabama Sky, Arena Stage
Tana Hicken, Arcadia, Arena Stage
Megan Morgan, Four Dogs And A Bone, Signature
Lisa Newman-Williams, A Cheever Evening, Source Theatre Co.
OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTOR, RESIDENT PLAY
WALLACE ACTON, Henry VI, Shakespeare Theatre
Wallace Acton, Volpone, Shakespeare Theatre
Philip Goodwin, Volpone, Shakespeare Theatre
Donald Griffin Two Trains Running, Studio
J. Fred Shiffman, The Miser, Arena Stage
Ted van Griethuysen, Vopone, Shakespeare Theatre
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTRESS, RESIDENT MUSICAL
ANNE KANENGEISER, Passion, Signature Theatre.
Rebecca Baxter, Candide, Arena Stage
Sherri L. Edelen, The Rink, Signature Theatre
Patricia Pearce Gentry, The Rink, Signature
Anita Hollander, The Fifth Season, Olney Theatre Center for the Arts
Eileen Ward, The Mikado, Interact Theatre Company
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTOR, RESIDENT MUSICAL
LEWIS CLEALE (Passion); Signature.
Paul Binotto, Candide, Arena
Steve Cramer, The Mikado, Interact
D'Monroe, Torn From the Headlines, the African Continuum Theatre Company
Thomas W. Jones II, Hip 2: Birth of the Boom, the Studio Theatre
Michael Sharp, Side by Side by Sondheim, MetroStage
OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING PERFORMER, RESIDENT MUSICAL
LAWRENCE REDMOND, The Rink, Signature Theatre.
Patdro Harris, Hip 2: Birth of the Boom, Studio
Michael Howell, Hip 2: Birth of the Boom, Studio
Kate Kiley, The Mikado, Interact
Dana Krueger, Candide, Arena
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTRESS, NON-RESIDENT PRODUCTION
2-way-tie -- MICKI GRANT, Having Our Say, Kennedy Center; & LIZAN MITCHELL, Having Our Say, Kennedy Center;
Uta Hagan, Mrs. Klein, Kennedy Center
Cee-Cee Harshaw, Nomathemba, Kennedy Center and Crossroads Theater Company
Irene Malloy, Whistle Down the Wind, National Theatre
Valerie Wright, Damn Yankees, Kennedy Center
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTOR, NON-RESIDENT PRODUCTION
ROGER GUENVEUR SMITH, A Huey P. Newton Story, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company.
Frederick C. Inkley, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Kennedy Center
Alex Jennings, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Kennedy Center
Jerry Lewis, Damn Yankees, Kennedy Center
Bruse McIntosh, Fixin' to Die: A Visit to the Mind of Lee Atwater, Church Street Theater
Ntare Mwine, Nomathemba, Kennedy Center and Crossroads Theatre Company
SUPPORTING PERFORMER, NON-RESIDENT PRODUCTION
DESMOND BARRIT, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Kennedy Center
Andrea McArdle, State Fair, Kennedy Center
Laila Robins, Mrs. Klein, Kennedy Center
Joseph Shabalala, Nomathemba, Kennedy Center and Crossroads Theatre Company
Scott Wise, State Fair, Kennedy Center.
OUTSTANDING SET DESIGN, RESIDENT PLAY OR MUSICAL
JOHN CONKLIN, Dance of Death, Arena Stage.
Daniel Conway, subUrbia, Studio
James Kronzer, Broken Glass, Olney
Lou Stancari, Passion, Signature
Michael Yeargan, Antony and Cleopatra, Shakespeare
OUTSTANDING COSTUME DESIGN, RESIDENT PLAY OR MUSICAL
MARTIN PAKLEDINAZ, Volpone, Shakespeare Theatre.
Zack Brown, Candide, Arena
Rosemary Pardee, The Mikado, Interact
Robin Stapley, Quills, Woolly Mammoth
Paul Tazewell, Blithe Spirit, Arena
Andrew V. Yelusich, All's Well That Ends Well, Shakespeare
OUTSTANDING LIGHTING DESIGN, RESIDENT PLAY OR MUSICAL
DANIEL MACLEAN WAGNER, Passion, Signature Theatre.
Ayun Fedorcha, La Chunga, GALA Hispanic Theatre
James F. Ingalls, Antony and Cleopatra, Shakespeare
Marianne Meadows, Quills, Woolly Mammoth
Jennifer Tipton, Dance of Death, Arena
Daniel MacLean Wagner, Broken Glass, Olney Theatre Center for the Arts
OUTSTANDING SOUND DESIGN, RESIDENT PLAY OR MUSICAL
BRUCE ODLAND, Dance Of Death, Arena Stage.
Scott Burgess, Quills, Woolly Mammoth
David Maddox, The Wonderful One-Hoss Shay, Theater of the First Amendment
Rob Milburn, The Miser, Arena
Dan Schrader, Cymbeline, Washington Shakespeare Company
The Awards show was produced by executive director Elizabeth Brown, directed by Jeffrey B. Davis and designed by Daniel MacLean Wagner (who won this year for lighting Passion).
AMERICAN EXPRESS TRIBUTE ("to an artist who has enriched our lives through theatre"): LYNN REDGRAVE
KPMG PEAT MARWICK LLP AWARD (for distinguished service to the Washington Professional Theatre Community): THE WASHINGTON POST newspaper, publisher Donald E. Graham.
WASHINGTON POST AWARD (for Distinguished Community Service): JOHN F. KENNEDY CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS for its "Performing Arts For Everyone" initiative.
Nominations were posted March 19, with Arena Stage garnering the most: 20. At a reception held at the Canadian Embassy, other multiply nominated venues included the Kennedy Center (18 nominations), Shakespeare Theatre (13), Signature Theatre and Woolly Mammoth (12 each). Woolly Mammoth also had the distinction of presenting the season's most-nominated (7) play, Doug Wright's Quills.
There were 120 nominations in all, in 22 categories. Executive director Elizabeth Brown told the assembled that the nominees were selected from 202 productions staged by 46 professional theatres in the Washington metropolitan area in 1996.
In other Arena nomination news, Arena Stage's artistic director Douglas C. Wager was nominated for directing both a play (Arcadia) and a musical (Candide); both works also up for "Best-Ofs" in their respective categories as well. Special awards to be presented will also include the KPMG Peat Marwick Award for Distinguished Service to the Washington Professional Theatre Community, and The Washington Post Award for Distinguished Community Service. The Helen Hayes Awards were founded in 1983 by the Washington Theatre Awards Society, governed by a 30-member board of directors.
-- By David Lefkowitz