"Off-Broadway's vibrant contributions to the cultural and economic fiber of New York City are on display from Broadway to the Bowery, from the Upper West Side to the Lower East Side, in theatres, concert halls, places of worship and even a hotel," said Peter Breger, chairman of the Off Broadway Alliance, in a statement. "What an auspicious time to honor the best of Off-Broadway past and present and to celebrate the 2012 theatre season."
Legends of Off Broadway honorees include Gerard Alessandrini, Catherine Russell, Mary Louise Wilson, Kathleen Chalfant (Andromache Chalfant accepted the award on behalf of her mother, Kathleen). Howard Kissel and Theodore Mann were posthumously inducted into the Off Broadway Hall of Fame. Adam Feldman, president of the New York Drama Critics' Circle, honored Kissel, and Paul Libin honored his co-founder and former partner at the Circle in the Square, Mann.
The Off Broadway Alliance also presented the first annual Friend of Off Broadway Award to Roni and Sol Cohen of Genie Printing. The award "honor[s] the people or organizations that have consistently provided extraordinary generosity, support and expertise to the Off-Broadway community." Roni accepted the award on behalf of herself and her late husband.
The Off Broadway Alliance is a non-profit corporation organized by theatre professionals dedicated to "supporting, promoting and encouraging the production of Off-Broadway theater and to making live theater increasingly accessible to new and diverse audiences."
Last year's Off Broadway Alliance winners for Best New Play (Freud's Last Session) and Best New Musical (NEWSical the Musical) continue to play Off-Broadway.