After Midnight Sweeps Top Honors at Astaire Awards
By Adam Hetrick
The new Broadway musical revue After Midnight, a swirling medley of music and dance inspired by Duke Ellington's years at the Cotton Club, swept all four categories at the 2014 Fred and Adele Astaire Awards, which were presented June 2 at the Skirball Center.
Warren Carlyle, the Tony Award-nominated director-choreographer of After Midnight, won the Astaire Award for Outstanding Choreographer for a Broadway show, while After Midnight cast members Dormeshia Sumbry Edwards and Karine Plantadit tied for Outstanding Female Dancer in a Broadway Show, and Jared Grimes won for Outstanding Male Dancer in a Broadway Show. After Midnight was the most-nominated production of the Astaire Awards season.
The Astaire Awards honor excellence in dance and choreography on Broadway and in film. The 2014 Astaire Awards also honored five-time Tony Award nominee and two-time Emmy Award-winning veteran choreographer Pat Birch with its Douglas Watt Lifetime Achievement Award and legendary dancer and dance instructor Luigi with the Outstanding Achievement in the Preservation of Musical Theatre Award.
Presenters for the evening included Tony Award winners Hal Prince (Show Boat, The Phantom of the Opera) and Bebe Neuwirth (Chicago, Sweet Charity), Emmy Award winner Valerie Harper ("Rhoda," Looped), Joe Morton (Raisin, "Scandal"), Maksim Chmerkovskiy (Forever Tango, Burn the Floor), Sandy Duncan (Chicago, Peter Pan), Tony winner Karen Ziemba (Bullets Over Broadway), Sergio Trujillo (Jersey Boys) and Tony winner Donna McKechnie (A Chorus Line).
The 2014 Astaire Award nominees (winners in bold preceded by an asterisk) follow:
Outstanding Male Dancer in a Broadway Show:
Outstanding Female Dancer in a Broadway Show:
Outstanding Choreographer for a Broadway Show:
Each year The Astaire Awards gives a special Adele Astaire Scholarship to a young, up-and-coming dancer, and the awards are presented each year by Patricia Watt (the daughter of Douglas Watt).
The Skirball Center for the Performing Arts at New York University is located at 566 LaGuardia Place. For more information and tickets, visit TheAstaireAwards.org.
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