TDF, Ajax in Iraq, Advance Man, LoveSick, Conni's Avant Garde and More Win 2012 Innovative Theatre Awards

By Michael Gioia
24 Sep 2012

Melanie Jones in Endure: A Run Woman Show
Melanie Jones in Endure: A Run Woman Show
Photo by Endure

The eighth annual Innovative Theatre Awards, which celebrate the best of Off Off-Broadway, were held Sept. 24 at The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College. Comedian Harrison Greenbaum hosted the 2012 ceremony.

The awards show was directed by Tim Butterfield, artistic director of the Straphanger Collective, and written by playwright Christopher Weikle. 

Special awards recipients at the 2012 ceremony were 5 Lesbian Brothers (Artistic Achievement Award), The Theatre Development Fund (Ellen Stewart Award), Astoria Performing Arts Center (Caffé Cino Fellowship Award), Katie Kavett (Outstanding Stage Manager) and Donnetta Lavinia Grays (2012 Doric Wilson Independent Playwright Award). 

The 2012 nominees included 137 individual artists, 52 different productions and 57 Off Off-Broadway theatre companies. Top honors went to Flux Theatre Ensemble's Ajax in Iraq (Outstanding Production of a Remounted Play), Gideon Productions' Advance Man (Outstanding Premiere Production of a Play), Project Y Theatre Company's LoveSick (or Things That Don't Happen) (Outstanding Production of a Musical) and Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant Returns in: The Mothership Landing (Outstanding Performance Art Piece). 



Presenters at the ceremony included Don Amendolia, Arthur Aviles, Boom Boom and Ceil, Jill BC Du Boff, Laura Braza, Joe Calarco, Tovah Feldshuh, Elena Holy, Rick Lyon, Peter Michael Marino, Timothy Mason, Julie Menin, Chris Muller, Diane Paulus, Dick Scanlan, Jessica Shay, Roma Torre, Camelita Tropicana and Jean-Claude van Itallie.

Here's a list of the 2012 Innovative Theatre Awards winners (winners names are in bold preceded by an asterisk):

Outstanding Ensemble

Daniel Burnam, Brendan Donaldson, Cara Francis, Connor Kalista, Jacquelyn Landgraf, Erica Livingston, Lauren Sharpe, The Complete and Condensed Stage Directions of Eugene O'Neill: Vol. 1, Early/Lost Plays
, New York Neo-Futurists



*Justin Badger, David M. Barber, Melody Bates, Stephanie Dodd, Jeffrey Fracé, Connie Hall, Kelly Hayes, Jerusha Klemperer, Peter Lettre, Rachel Murdy, Melody Bates, Peter Richards, Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant Returns in: The Mothership Landing
, Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant in association with the Irondale Center



Melody Bates, Ian Holcomb, Bryan Kaplan, Brian Miskell, Eightythree Down, Hard Sparks in association with Horse Trade Theatre Group



Loren Amos, Duane Boutte, Alexis Francisco, Anthony Gaskins, Michael Alexis Palmer, David Roberts, Robert G. Siverls, Zook, For Black Boys Who Have Considered Homicide When the Streets Were Too Much, Modern-Day Griot Theatre Company

Adriana Chavez, David DeSantis, Lauren Elder, Regina Gibson, Mel House, Jennifer Luong, Eeva Semerdjiev, William Silva, Brett Teresa, Homunculus: Reloaded
, Homunculus Mask Theater



Penelope Armstead-Williams, Rocky Bostick, Ching-I Chang, Maura Donohue, Denise Greber, Alice Pasturel, Federico Restrepo, Gilbert Reyes, Kiku Sakai, Kayla Schetter, Urban Odyssey
, LaMaMa Experimental Theater Club in association with LOCO7

Outstanding Solo Performance

Bree Benton, Poor Baby Bree in I Am Going to Run Away, LaMaMa Experimental Theater Club
Greg Oliver Bodine, Poe, Times Two, WorkShop Theater Company
Zac Jaffee, Heroes and Other Strangers, the cell theatre
*Melanie Jones, Endure: A Run Woman Show, Collision Productions
Juan Francisco Villa, Empanada For A Dream, Ballybeg & terraNOVA Collective
Raïna von Waldenburg, Oysters Orgasms Obituaries, LaMaMa Experimental Theater Club in association with Center for Embodied Performance


Outstanding Actor in a Featured Role

Karl Gregory, Frogs, Fault Line Theatre
Ian Holcomb, Eightythree Down, Hard Sparks in association with Horse Trade Theatre Group
Jason Howard, Advance Man, Gideon Productions
Bryan Kaplan, Eightythree Down, Hard Sparks in association with Horse Trade Theatre Group
Curry Whitmire, Christopher Marlowe's Chloroform Dreams, Lunar Energy
*Stephen Alan Wilson, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, T. Schreiber Studio

Outstanding Actress in a Featured Role

*Celeste Arias, Demon Dreams (Oni No Yume), Magic Futurebox
Lauren Blumenfeld, Exit Carolyn, Sans A Productions
Teresa Kelsey, The House of Mirth, Metropolitan Playhouse
Marie Marshall, The House of Mirth, Metropolitan Playhouse
Ryan Templeton, A Hard Wall at High Speed, Astoria Performing Arts Center
Halley Wegryn Gross, Sex Good; Money Bad, Broken Watch Theatre Company

Outstanding Actor in a Lead Role

Adam Barrie, Dust, Tenement Street Workshop in association with Incubator Arts Project
Hunter Canning, Dust, Tenement Street Workshop in association with Incubator Arts Project
Karl Gregory, From White Plains, Fault Line Theatre
*Greg Horton, A Man of No Importance, The Gallery Players
Brian Miskell, Eightythree Down, Hard Sparks in association with Horse Trade Theatre Group
Charlie Owens, A Man of No Importance, The Gallery Players
Aidan Redmond, The Real Thing, Boomerang Theatre Company

Outstanding Actress in a Lead Role

Melody Bates, Eightythree Down, Hard Sparks in association with Horse Trade Theatre Group
*Renee Claire Bergeron, A Man of No Importance, The Gallery Players
Casandera M.J. Lollar, The Runner Stumbles, Retro Productions
Charlotte Pines, Callous Cad, Tom X. Chao in association with Kim Katzberg
Laura Ramadei, Exit Carolyn, Sans A Productions
Christina Shipp, Ajax in Iraq, Flux Theatre Ensemble

Outstanding Choreography/Movement

Jessica Isa Burns, For Black Boys Who Have Considered Homicide When the Streets Were Too Much, Modern-Day Griot Theatre Company
Lee Sunday Evans, The Deepest Play Ever: The Catharsis of Pathos, CollaborationTown
Christine O'Grady, A Man of No Importance, The Gallery Players
*Joe Osheroff & Evan Zes, Homunculus: Reloaded, Homunculus Mask Theater
Lauren Sharpe, The Complete and Condensed Stage Directions of Eugene O'Neill: Vol. 1, Early/Lost Plays, New York Neo-Futurists
Turner Smith, Romeo and Juliet, Northwest Passage

Outstanding Director

Kevin Laibson, Demon Dreams (Oni No Yume), Magic Futurebox
Christopher Loar, The Complete and Condensed Stage Directions of Eugene O'Neill: Vol. 1, Early/Lost Plays, New York Neo-Futurists
*Joe Osheroff, Homunculus: Reloaded, Homunculus Mask Theater
Alex Roe, The House of Mirth, Metropolitan Playhouse
Aaron Rossini, Frogs, Fault Line Theatre
August Schulenburg, Ajax in Iraq, Flux Theatre Ensemble

Outstanding Lighting Design

Nick Francone, Miranda, MirandaCo
Richard Kent Green, Poe, Times Two, WorkShop Theater Company
Ben Hagen & Joe Skowronski, LoveSick (or Things That Don't Happen), Project Y Theatre Company
*David A. Sexton, The Spring Fling: My Best/Worst Date Ever, F*It Club
Cat Tate Starmer, A Hard Wall at High Speed, Astoria Performing Arts Center
Jeanette Oi-Suk Yew, Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant Returns in: The Mothership Landing, Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant in association with the Irondale Center

Outstanding Costume Design

*Sidney Fortner, The House of Mirth, Metropolitan Playhouse
Denise Greber, Urban Odyssey, LaMaMa Experimental Theater Club in association with LOCO7
Kim Katzberg, Penetrating the Space, Kim Katzberg
Jessica Sofia Mitrani, Hypnotik: The Seer Will Doctor You Now, The New Stage Theatre Company
Ayanna Siverls-Streater, For Black Boys Who Have Considered Homicide When the Streets Were Too Much, Modern-Day Griot Theatre Company
David L. Zwiers, The Asphalt Christmas, Gracye Productions

Outstanding Set Design

Stephen K. Dobay, A Hard Wall at High Speed, Astoria Performing Arts Center
*Kevin Judge, LoveSick (or Things That Don't Happen), Project Y Theatre Company
Sarah E. Martin & Sara Nelson, The Spring Fling: My Best/Worst Date Ever, F*It Club
Steve O'Shea, Up To You, TADA! Youth Theater
Sean Ryan, Clowns Full-Tilt: A Musing on Aesthetics, Clowns Ex Machina/La MaMa
Andy Yanni, Felix and the Diligence, or a Play About Fishermen in the 1940's, Pipeline Theatre Company

Outstanding Sound Design

Martha Goode, Costa Rehab, Maieutic Theatre Works (MTWorks)
Christopher Loar, The Complete and Condensed Stage Directions of Eugene O'Neill: Vol. 1, Early/Lost Plays, New York Neo-Futurists
Mark Parenti, The Spring Fling: My Best/Worst Date Ever, F*It Club
Nathan A. Roberts, A Hard Wall at High Speed, Astoria Performing Arts Center
Tim Schellenbaum, Urban Odyssey, LaMaMa Experimental Theater Club in association with LOCO7
*Matt Schloss, Miranda, MirandaCo



Outstanding Innovative Design

Gyda Arber & Aaron Baker, Phone & Text Design, Red Cloud Rising, The Fifth Wall in association with The Brick Theater
Maia Cruz Palileo, Animation and Sculpture, Penetrating the Space, Kim Katzberg
Elizabeth Barrett Groth & Amy Mathews, Puppet Design, We in Silence Hear a Whisper, Red Fern Theatre Company
*Joe Osheroff, Mask Design, Homunculus: Reloaded, Homunculus Mask Theater
Federico Restrepo & Angela Sierra, Video Editing & Design, Urban Odyssey, LaMaMa Experimental Theater Club in association with LOCO7
Suchan Vodoor, Interactive Technology Design, Endure: A Run Woman Show, Collision Productions

Outstanding Original Music

Karolyn Bethke, Kris Kukul, John Sully, Elizabeth Swados & Martin Wallace, Urban Odyssey, LaMaMa Experimental Theater Club in association with LOCO7
Sasha Bogdanowitsch, Erosion: a Fable, Loom Ensemble
Christine Owman, Endure: A Run Woman Show, Collision Productions
*Jeff Raab, 12th Night, Libra Theater Company
Kamala Sankaram, Miranda, MirandaCo
Sxip Shirey, Prometheus Within, LaMaMa Experimental Theater Club in association with Skysaver Productions

Outstanding Original Short Script

Lucy Boyle, Mort, The Spring Fling: My Best/Worst Date Ever, F*It Club
*Chisa Hutchinson, This is Not the Play, Mad Dog Theatre Company
Dean Imperial, The Needle Through the Arm Trick, Too Much Too Soon, Lesser America
Vincent Marano, Artistic License, What I Meant Was... The Odd, Short-Ish Of Vinnie Marano, teatro oscuro
Joe Osheroff & Evan Zes, Homunculus: Reloaded, Homunculus Mask Theater
Anna Ziegler, A Map of Broken Glass, The Spring Fling: My Best/Worst Date Ever, F*It Club

Outstanding Original Full-Length Script

Zac Jaffee, Heroes and Other Strangers, the cell theatre
*Melanie Jones, Endure: A Run Woman Show, Collision Productions
Mariah MacCarthy, The Foreplay Play, Caps Lock Theatre
Michael Perlman, From White Plains, Fault Line Theatre
Mac Rogers, Advance Man, Gideon Productions
Juan Francisco Villa, Empanada For A Dream, Ballybeg & terraNOVA Collective

Outstanding Performance Art Piece

The Complete and Condensed Stage Directions of Eugene O'Neill: Vol. 1, Early/Lost Plays, New York Neo-Futurists
*Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant Returns in: The Mothership Landing, Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant in association with the Irondale Center
Empanada For A Dream, Ballybeg & terraNOVA Collective
Endure: A Run Woman Show, Collision Productions
For Black Boys Who Have Considered Homicide When the Streets Were Too Much, Modern-Day Griot Theatre Company
Homunculus: Reloaded, Homunculus Mask Theater

Outstanding Production of a Musical

LoveSick (or Things That Don't Happen), Project Y Theatre Company
A Man of No Importance, The Gallery Players
*Miranda, MirandaCo
The Secret Garden, Astoria Performing Arts Center
Unville Brazil, FullStop Collective
Up To You, TADA! Youth Theater

Outstanding Premiere Production of a Play

*Advance Man, Gideon Productions
Demon Dreams (Oni No Yume), Magic Futurebox
Eightythree Down, Hard Sparks in association with Horse Trade Theatre Group
The Foreplay Play, Caps Lock Theatre
From White Plains, Fault Line Theatre
A Hard Wall at High Speed, Astoria Performing Arts Center

Outstanding Production of a Remounted Play

*Ajax in Iraq, Flux Theatre Ensemble
Frogs, Fault Line Theatre
The House of Mirth, Metropolitan Playhouse
Poe, Times Two, WorkShop Theater Company
The Real Thing, Boomerang Theatre Company
The Violet Hour, The Active Theater in association with Goode Productions

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