Wicked, Assassins, Henry IV, Wife Win Drama Desk Awards

By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
and Robert Simonson
16 May 2004

Harvey Fierstein, host of this year's Drama Desk Awards
Harvey Fierstein, host of this year's Drama Desk Awards

The Drama Desk Awards for the 2003-04 season were presented May 16 at the LaGuardia Concert Hall at Lincoln Center. The big winners were the musicals Wicked and Assassins, taking, respectively, six and four awards.

Hairspray star Harvey Fierstein was the host of the event for the Drama Desk, an organization of theatre critics, editors and reporters.

Stephen Schwartz and Winnie Holzman’s Wicked, which explores the back story of the “Wizard of Oz” witches, was named Outstanding Musical of the season and also picked up prizes for Director (Mantello), Book (Holzman), Lyrics (Schwartz), Costume (Susan Hilferty) and Set Design (Eugene Lee). The other big winner was the revival of Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman’s Assassins, which nabbed four awards, including those for Outstanding Revival of a Musical, Orchestrations (Michael Starobin), Lighting (Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer) and Sound (Dan Moses Schreier). (A clerical error led to the announcement at last night's ceremony that Joe Mantello won the Outstanding Director of a Musical award for Assassins; he, in fact, won for his direction of Wicked.)

Best Play honors went to the Pulitzer Prize-winning Doug Wright opus, I Am My Own Wife. The star of that one-person drama, Jefferson Mays, was awarded the Outstanding Solo Performance prize. The Lincoln Center Theater production of Henry IV was named Best Revival of a Play, and its star, Kevin Kline, was voted Outstanding Actor in a Play. Jack O'Brien, who directed the Shakespeare work, received Outstanding Director of a Play honors.

The complete list of winners follows:



Winners indicated by boldface and asterisk.

Outstanding Musical
Caroline, or Change
Johnny Guitar
The Musical of Musicals: The Musical
*Wicked

Outstanding Revival of a Musical
* Assassins
Big River
Fiddler on the Roof
Finian's Rainbow
First Lady Suite
Wonderful Town

Outstanding Revival of a Play
The Colleen Bawn
The Daughter-in-Law
*Henry IV (LCT)
A Midsummer Night's Dream (Watermill Theatre production from Propeller/BAM)
The Normal Heart
A Raisin in the Sun

Outstanding Play
The Beard of Avon
The Distance From Here
Humble Boy
*I Am My Own Wife
Moby Dick (Works Productions)
The Tricky Part

Outstanding Actor in a Musical
Hunter Foster, Little Shop of Horrors
Tyrone Giordano, Big River
*Hugh Jackman, The Boy From Oz
Michael McElroy, Big River
Alfred Molina, Fiddler on the Roof
Euan Morton, Taboo

Outstanding Actor in a Play
John Michael Higgins, Big Bill
*Kevin Kline, Henry IV
Frank Langella, Match
Brian F. O'Byrne, Frozen
Christopher Plummer, King Lear
Paul Sparks, Blackbird

Outstanding Actress in a Musical
Kristin Chenoweth, Wicked
Judy McLane, Johnny Guitar
Idina Menzel, Wicked
*Donna Murphy, Wonderful Town
Elaine Paige, Sweeney Todd
Tonya Pinkins, Caroline, or Change

Outstanding Actress in a Play
Eileen Atkins, The Retreat from Moscow
Shannon Cochran, Bug
*tie Viola Davis, Intimate Apparel
Lizan Mitchell, Trojan Women
*tie Phylicia Rashad, A Raisin in the Sun
J. Smith-Cameron, Sarah, Sarah

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Lovette George, The Musical of Musicals: The Musical
*Isabel Keating, The Boy From Oz
Alix Korey, Listen to My Heart
Anika Noni Rose, Caroline, or Change
Jennifer Simard, The Thing About Men
Mary Testa, First Lady Suite

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Jayne Houdyshell, Well
Mikel Sarah Lambert, The Daughter-in-Law
Margo Martindale, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Jan Maxwell, Sixteen Wounded
*Audra McDonald, A Raisin in the Sun
Mary Louise Wilson, The Beard of Avon

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Joel Blum, Golf: The Musical
Jeffrey Carlson, Taboo
*Raul Esparza, Taboo
Mitchel David Federan, The Boy From Oz
Marc Kudisch, Assassins
Raymond Jaramillo McLeod, Wonderful Town

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
*Ned Beatty, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Michael Berry, Moby Dick (Works Productions)
Andre De Shields, Prymate
Aidan Gillen, The Caretaker
John Lithgow, Mrs. Farnsworth
Corey Stoll, Intimate Apparel

Outstanding Ensemble Performance
*The cast of The Distance From Here

Unique Theatrical Experience
Ramayana 2K3
Todd Robbins' Carnival Knowledge
*Toxic Audio in Loud Mouth

Outstanding Solo Performance
Barbara Cook, Barbara Cook's Broadway
Ben Gazzara, Nobody Don't Like Yogi
Sarah Jones, Bridge and Tunnel
*Jefferson Mays, I Am My Own Wife
Martin Moran, The Tricky Part
Will Power, Flow

Outstanding Set Design of a Musical
John Lee Beatty, Wonderful Town
Robert Brill, Assassins
*Eugene Lee, Wicked
Tom Pye, Fiddler on the Roof
Mark Thompson, Bombay Dreams

Outstanding Set Design of a Play
*John Lee Beatty, Twentieth Century
Scott Bradley, The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci
Ralph Funicello, Henry IV (LCT)
David Korins, Blackbird
Andrew Lieberman, Wintertime
Derek McLane, I Am My Own Wife

Outstanding Sound Design
Mark Bennett, Henry IV (LCT)
Scott Jennings, Ramayana 2K3
Brian Ronan, Bug
*Dan Moses Schreier, Assassins
David Van Tieghem, The Stendhal Syndrome

Outstanding Lighting Design
*Jules Fisher and Peggy Eishenhauer, Assassins
TJ Gerckens, The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci
Donald Holder, The Violet Hour
David Lander, I Am My Own Wife
Brian MacDevitt, Henry IV
Kenneth Posner, Wicked

Outstanding Costume Design
Jess Goldstein, Henry IV (LCT)
*Susan Hilferty, Wicked
Robert A. Prior and Lisa Leighton, Ramayana 2K3
Jenny Mannis, Animal Farm
Mark Thompson, Bombay Dreams
Catherine Zuber, Intimate Apparel

Outstanding Director of a Play
Hilary Adams, Moby Dick (Works Productions)
Dexter Bullard, Bug
Edward Hall, A Midsummer Night's Dream (Watermill Theatre production from Propeller/BAM)
Moises Kaufman, I Am My Own Wife
Kenny Leon, A Raisin in the Sun
*Jack O'Brien, Henry IV (LCT)

Outstanding Director of a Musical
Jeff Calhoun, Big River
Pamela Hunt, The Musical of Musicals: The Musical
Joe Mantello, Assassins
*Joe Mantello, Wicked
Kathleen Marshall, Wonderful Town
George C. Wolfe, Caroline, or Change

Outstanding Choreography
Stephen Hues, Ramayana 2K3
*Kathleen Marshall, Wonderful Town
Jerry Mitchell, Never Gonna Dance
Anthony van Laast and Farah Khan, Bombay Dreams

Outstanding Music
RaRa Avis and Andrew Yeater, et al; Ramayana 2K3
Boy George, Taboo
Eric Rockwell, The Musical of Musicals: The Musical
Stephen Schwartz, Wicked
Martin Silvestri and Joel Higgins, Johnny Guitar
*Jeanine Tesori, Caroline, or Change

Outstanding Lyrics
Joanne Bogart, The Musical of Musicals: The Musical
Boy George, Taboo
Sean Hartley, Cupid and Psyche
Joel Higgins, Johnny Guitar
*Stephen Schwartz, Wicked

Outstanding Book of a Musical
* Winnie Holzman, Wicked
Tony Kushner, Caroline, or Change

Outstanding Orchestrations
Paul Bogaev, Bombay Dreams
William David Brohn, Wicked
*Michael Starobin, Assassins
Harold Wheeler, Never Gonna Dance

 

Productions with multiple wins:

Wicked - 6
Assassins - 4
Henry IV - 4 (including a special award for the text)
I Am My Own Wife - 2
The Boy from Oz - 2
Wonderful Town - 2
A Raisin in the Sun - 2

*

The awards will be shown on NYC TV Channel 74 on Wednesday, May 19 at 9 PM ET. The awards will also be aired on Channel 36 in Los Angeles, and the program will be offered to PBS stations nationwide.

This year's nominations were announced 8:30 AM April 29 at the New York Friars Club by actors Mary-Louise Parker and Tony Roberts.

The new Stephen Schwartz musical Wicked garnered the most nominations of any show this season, earning 11 nominations, including Outstanding Musical. Other front-runners included Assassins and the Lincoln Center revival of Henry IV, with seven nominations apiece, and Caroline, or Change and Wonderful Town, each with six nominations.

Members of this year's nominating committee included Barbara Siegel (TheaterMania.com), chairperson; William Wolf (Wolfentertainmentguide.com), Drama Desk President; Andy Buck (Playbill); Arlene Epstein (Nassau Herald); David Finkle (TheaterMania.com); Edward Karam (The Guardian UK); and Richard Ridge (Broadway Beat TV).