The 2003 Tony Honors will be held at the Lyceum Theatre and will honor the recipients of the Tony Honors for Excellence in Theatre, which were announced this past spring. Those honorees include the principal ensemble of La Boheme; hair and wig designer Paul Huntley; Johnson-Liff Casting Associates; and America's leading touring company, The Acting Company. The afternoon will also include a tribute to the Lyceum Theatre's 100th anniversary; the Lyceum is the current home of the new one-man play I Am My Own Wife. Jackman will present the Tony Honors to the ten actors from Baz Luhrmann's La Boheme; members of the Hairspray cast will present Huntley with his award; casting director Bernard Telsey will present to Johnson-Liff; and veteran actress Marian Seldes will be on hand to present The Acting Company with its honor.
The League of American Theatres and Producers and the American Theatre Wing are the presenters of the annual Antoinette Perry "Tony" Awards®. The first recipient of the Tony Honors for Excellence — established in 1989 — was Alfred Drake.
In a statement, League President Jed Bernstein said, "This new fall event was created to give the recipients of Tony Honors a greater moment of recognition than can be done from the stage of Radio City where there are nearly two dozen Tonys to award. Another reason for the new event is to give additional year-round visibility to the Tonys." The Wing's interim director, Howard Sherman, added, "As they have evolved, the Tony Honors have become a tribute created for theatre people and institutions who are not otherwise eligible for Tony Awards. The honorees' achievements are significant and they deserve their own event."