Online Project Preserves Legacy of Broadway Theatres; Chita Rivera, Charles Strouse Are Spotlight Award Honorees

By Adam Hetrick
September 9, 2012

The New York City Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment has announced the launch of a new interactive website which celebrates and documents the vibrancy of the Broadway theatre district.



Titled SpotlightonBroadway.com, the multimedia project launches Sept. 9 and includes an ever-growing series of profiles and documentaries that capture the storied history of Broadway theatres and the landmark productions that played their stages. Broadway houses currently represented on the site include the Booth, the Al Hirshfeld, the Richard Rogers, the August Wilson and the Majestic theatres. The goal is to profile all 40 of Broadway's theatres.

The profiles are studded with commentary from Broadway actors, restoration architects, union members, producers and other industry members. Plans are also being developed for a permanent installation in Times Square. The endeavor is a partnership between the Broadway League and the Mayor's Office of Media & Entertainment.

The website's launch coincides with the announcement of the first-annual Spotlight Awards, recognizing the work of industry professionals whose talent has shaped Broadway history. Each individual is honored for work in one of the following categories: Industry Support, Actors, Behind-the-Scenes Talent and Producers.

The honorees, officially announced Sept. 9 during the annual Broadway On Broadway concert in Times Square, are actress-dancer Chita Rivera; composer Charles Strouse; actress Arlene Dahl; actor-director-choreographer Tommy Tune; Nick Wyman, president of Actors' Equity Association; Matthew D. Loeb, the president of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees; James M. Nederlander, chairman of the Nederlander Organization; and veteran general manager Nina Lannan.

"The Spotlight Awards are a tribute to all those who work onstage and off, and the interactive media component is a treat for all who love the magic that happens inside a Broadway theatre!," Broadway League executive director Charlotte St. Martin said in a statement. "This worthwhile and impressive project, spearheaded by the Mayor's Office of Media & Entertainment, is a way to preserve the history of Broadway in a modern way that will surely engage all audiences."

Broadway contributes $11 billion to the New York City economy, supporting 86,000 jobs in the industry.

Read about the 2012 Broadway On Broadway lineup on Playbill.com.