Eli Wallach and Anne Jackson, theatrical presences for fifty years, will be honored with the T. Schreiber Studio's "Life in the Theatre" Award Jan. 24 at a gala benefit. Broadway diva Betty Buckley will host the dinner and ceremony at the Player's Club.
Wallach and Jackson , married for nearly as long as they have been performing, met in rehearsal for the 1946 Off-Broadway production of Tennessee Williams' This Property is Condemned, Wallach's stage debut. Since then, they have appeared in eight Broadway shows together (Major Barbara, Luv, Rhinoceros, Waltz of the Toreadors, The Typist and the Tiger, Twice Around the Park, Cafe Crown and The Flowering Peach), three Off-Broadway plays, three films and innumerable regional, touring and TV shows. Apart, Jackson was nominated for three Tony Awards (Summer and Smoke, Oh, Men, Oh, Women and Middle of the Night), winning an Obie Award for The Typist and the Tiger. Meanwhile, Wallach won a Tony for Williams' The Rose Tattoo and appeared on Broadway in Mr. Roberts, Every Good Boy Deserves Favour, Antony and Cleopatra, Teahouse of the August Moon and The Price. The 1991 recipients of the Helen Hayes Award, the two are currently starring in Anne Meara's Down the Garden Path at New Jersey's George Street Playhouse.
Expected to attend the Player's Club evening are Jason Robards, Tony Randall, 1999 Tony winners Elizabeth Franz and Brian Dennehy, director Arthur Storch, playwright Murray Shisgal, librettist Joseph Stein, producer Roger Berlind and Oscar nominee, Edward Norton, who chairs this year's Honorary Committee. Like Wallach and Jackson, several of theatre's married power couples are also on the invite list, including playwright Anne Meara and her husband, actor Jerry Stiller, Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee and Milo O'Shea and Kitty Sullivan.
In 1999, the T. Schreiber Studio, a training ground for actors, honored Buckley with the lifetime achievement award. Norton served as the Master of Ceremonies.