Jessica Hecht and Jeremy Shamos Host Obie Awards May 20; Meryl Streep Presents Lifetime Achievement Honor

Jessica Hecht and Jeremy Shamos — who are currently starring in the Tony-nominated The Assembled Parties, by Obie-winning playwright Richard Greenberg — co-host The 58th Annual Obie Awards May 20 at Webster Hall in the East Village. 

Oscar winner Meryl Streep will present awards to the joint 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award recipients, Lois Smith and Frances Sternhagen.

Both Sternhagen and Smith have previously received Obie Awards for individual performances. Together their joint careers represent some 120 years of creative contribution to our national culture. Each, this year, took on a major role in a brand-new play Off-Broadway, Smith in Sam Shepard’s Heartless (Pershing Square Signature Center) and Sternhagen in Liz Flahive’s The Madrid (Manhattan Theatre Club).

Presenters for the evening also include Bobby Cannavale, Tracee Chimo, Cyndi Lauper, Judith Light, Krysta Rodriguez, Duncan Sheik and Courtney B. Vance. Attendees will enjoy performances by the new Off-Broadway musical Here Lies Love and the Brazilian jazz-pop group Banda Magda.

Founded in 1955 by Voice cultural editor Jerry Tallmer, The Village Voice Obie Awards annually honor the best of Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway. Unlike most theatre awards, the Obies do not publicize nominations or employ rigid categories. In the "conviction that creativity is not competitive, the judges select outstanding artists and productions and may even invent new categories to reward artistic merit," according to press notes.

Tickets are available by visiting Webster Hall is located at 125 East 11th Street.