The evening also featured the presentation of The York Theatre Company Founder’s Award to York Chairman of the Board W. David McCoy to "honor his significant long-term contributions to the theatre and his lifelong commitment to sustaining the arts."
Tony nominee Norm Lewis hosted the gala's entertainment, which was directed by Scott H. Mauro with music direction by Andrew Gerle. Performers include Vanessa Williams, Zachary Levi, Sierra Boggess, Liz Callaway, Beth Fowler, Tony winner Debbie Gravitte and composer-lyricist Stephen Schwartz with a special appearance by Alice Hammerstein Mathias.
The evening began with a reception at 6:30 PM, followed by dinner at 7:30 PM and the ceremony and entertainment at 8:30 PM.
The Oscar Hammerstein Award, named in honor of the prolific lyricist, "recognizes significant lifetime achievement in musical theatre." The award is presented at an annual gala, which benefits The York Theatre Company, and is presented with the endorsement of the Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization and the Hammerstein Family. Past recipients include Stephen Sondheim, Betty Comden & Adolph Green, Harold Prince, Cy Coleman, Charles Strouse, Arthur Laurents, Jerry Herman, Stephen Schwartz, Peter Stone, David Merrick, John Kander & Fred Ebb, Terrence McNally, Cameron Mackintosh, Carol Channing, Tony Walton, Joseph Stein, George S. Irving, Jerry Bock & Sheldon Harnick, Thomas Meehan, Barbara Cook and Paul Gemignani.
Benefit Committee co-chairs are Nina Korelitz Matza and Jim Kierstead.*
The York Theatre Company is under the direction of producing artistic director James Morgan and executive director Andrew Levine.