The 12th annual "Will Award," given by Washington D.C.'s Shakespeare Theatre to artists who make "a significant contribution to classical theatre in America," will be given to Dame Maggie Smith at a black-tie gala April 10.
Smith was last seen on the Broadway stage in Peter Shaffer's Lettice and Lovage, a performance for which she won a Tony. Recent credits in the West End, in her native England, include Edward Albee's Three Tall Women and A Delicate Balance.
Smith began her career in 1952. She joined the National Theatre in London in 1963, playing Desdemona to Laurence Olivier's Othello, as well as appearing in The Master Builder and Hedda Gabler.
Her films include "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie," "A Room with a View," "Sister Act" and "California Suite."
Previous recipients of the William Shakespeare Award For Classical Theatre include Hal Holbrook (1998), Patrick Stewart (1997), Sam Waterston, Lynn Redgrave, Christopher Walken, Morgan Freeman, Mel Gibson, Christopher Plummer, Kevin Kline and Joseph Papp. For tickets, call (202) 547-3230, x.2312.
--By Robert Simonson