With Emmy Award nominee Tituss Burgess (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt) as host, New York Theatre Workshop will honor President of the NYTW Board of Trustees Kelly Fowler Hunter and Tony winner Doug Wright at the Off-Broadway theatre's 2023 Gala. The evening has announced a line-up of Broadway and Off-Broadway favorites appearing and performing at the May 1 event. The evening is set to begin at 6 PM at Capitale.
The gala will honor Kelly Fowler Hunter, who has served as President of New York Theatre Workshop’s Board of Trustees since 2016. She previously chaired NYTW’s Strategic Planning Task Force, and stewarded NYTW through the pandemic shutdown. Following the returement of the theatre's previous artistic director James C. Nicola, she also shepherded the theatre while the search for a new leader was underway. It will also honor Doug Wright penned the current Broadway play Good Night, Oscar, as well as Quills, War Paint, Drama Desk-nominated Hands on a Hardbody, Tony-nominated Grey Gardens, Tony- and Pulitzer-winning I Am My Own Wife (Tony, Pulitzer Prize), and The Little Mermaid.
Kevin Cahoon (Monarch) will direct the evening which will feature a script penned by Emma Tattenbaum-Fine (Trash Mermaid). Will van Dyke (Little Shop of Horrors) will serve as musical director. The live auction will be conducted by Charles Antin.
Performing and appearing at the gala will be two-time Tony winner Christine Ebersole (Grey Gardens), two-time Tony nominee Brandon Victor Dixon (Shuffle Along), Tony nominee Sean Hayes (Good Night, Oscar), Tony nominee Rachel Dratch (POTUS), Tony nominee Trey Anastasio (Hands on a Hardbody), Lea DeLaria (Orange is the New Black), Tamika Lawrence (Black No More), Nicole AriParker (Empire), two-time Tony nominee Heidi Schreck (What the Constitution Means to Me), Tony nominee Scott Frankel (Grey Gardens), Sherz Aletaha (Merrily We Roll Along), Corey Mach (Merrily We Roll Along), Brian Sears (Merrily We Roll Along), and Jeff Romley.
The creative team will include production designer Frank J. Oliva (This Beautiful Future), lighting designer Stacey Derosier (The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe), and sound designer Megumi Katyama (Regretfully, So the Birds Are). Also serving on the production are line producer Rachel Frost, stage manager Terri Kohler (What the Constitution Means to Me), and assistant stage manager Katherine Shea (Travesties). Video is by ZANNI Productions.
The NYTW Annual Gala raises nearly 10% of the Off-Broadway company’s annual budget. Chairing the event are André Hunter, Frank Marshall & Kathleen Kennedy, Thomas Schumacher, Melanie and Joseph Shugart, and Barbara Whitman, Beth Williams, and Mindy Rich.