The Theatre Development Fund (TDF) has announced its nominees for the 20th Annual TDF Astaire Awards. The May 18 benefit luncheon gala will be directed and choreographed by Scott Wise and hosted by Tony Award winning dancer Karen Ziemba (Contact). The award presenters will include Natalia Makarova and Donna McKechnie.
Production notes indicate that the popular revival production of 42nd Street leads the pack with a total of four nominations. The Full Monty and The Producers each earned two nominations while Roundabout’s revival of Follies earned one. Another highlight scheduled for this year’s Astaire Awards will be TDF’s presentation of the "Lifetime Achievement" award to choreographer Donald Saddler. Saddler appears in Roundabout’s Follies and has earned two Tony Awards for his choreography of Wonderful Town and No, No, Nanette. Saddler was recently inducted to the Theatre Hall of Fame.
The TDF award program celebrates the “best dance on Broadway." Award categories include Best Choreographer, Best Female Dancer and Best Male Dancer.
The 20th Annual TDF Astaire nominees are:
Jerry Mitchell (The Full Monty)
Randy Skinner (42nd Street)
Susan Stroman (The Producers) Best Female Dancer
Carol Bentley (Follies)
Cady Huffman (The Producers)
Kate Levering (42nd Street)
TDF says that nominees “were selected from this season's Broadway shows that include dance": A Class Act, Bells Are Ringing, Blast!, Follies, 42nd Street, Seussical, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, The Full Monty, The Producers and The Rocky Horror Show.
The awards committee for the Astaire Awards includes Douglas Watt, The New Yorker, chairman; Clive Barnes, New York Post; Howard Kissel, New York Daily News; Michael Kuchwara, Associated Press; Donald McDonagh, managing editor of Ballet Review; Richard Philp, Dance Magazine; Charles L. Reinhart, director of the American Dance Festival and Linda Winer, Newsday.
Tickets for the benefit luncheon and ceremony are $500 and $250. There are also $25 mezzanine tickets available for the ceremony only. The 20th Annual TDF Astaire Awards will take place at 12 noon at the Hudson Theatre, located at 145 W. 44th St. For ticket info, call (212) 221-0885, ext 252. For additional information about TDF and its programs visit www.tdf.org.