"La MaMa 50 Big Bash" Will Honor Shubert Organization's Philip J. Smith and Robert E. Wankel

By Adam Hetrick
25 Apr 2012

Philip J. Smith
Philip J. Smith

La MaMa will celebrate its downtown theatrical history June 24 with a special 50th anniversary celebration, honoring the Shubert Organization's Philip J. Smith and Robert E. Wankel with the Silver Bell Award.

Andre De Shields will emcee the 6 PM evening at the Skirball Center for the Performing Arts. Tony winner Michael Mayer (Spring Awakening, American Idiot) will direct.

Smith and Wankel, who are Co-Chief Executive Officers of the Shubert Organization, will be honored with the Silver Bell Award for their longstanding support of La MaMa, which was founded by the late Ellen Stewart 50 years ago.

Set to perform that evening are Tony winner Bill Irwin (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?), Adrian Bailey (The Little Mermaid), Everett Quinton (The Mystery of Irma Vep) and composer Tan Dun.



Also offered will be Tony-winning composer Elizabeth Swados' La MaMa Cantata, which debuted last fall. The work is based on the words of late La MaMa founder Stewart.

For information on attending the "La MaMa 50 Big Bash," phone (212) 254-6468. The Skirball Center is located at 566 La Guardia Place.