Inaugural Chita Rivera Awards, Honoring Dance on Stage and Screen, Presented Sept. 11

Awards   Inaugural Chita Rivera Awards, Honoring Dance on Stage and Screen, Presented Sept. 11
Choreographers and dancers from Bandstand, Come From Away, The Great Comet, Hello, Dolly!, and more, are among the nominees.
HR - Chita Rivera.jpg
Chita Rivera Laura Marie Duncan

The inaugural Chita Rivera Awards for Dance and Choreography, recognizing the work of choreographers and dancers on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and on film, are held September 11 at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre.

Formerly presented as the Fred and Adele Astaire Awards, the honors were rebranded earlier this year to honor the two-time Tony Award-winning Broadway dance legend who created roles in West Side Story, Bye Bye Birdie, Chicago, The Rink, Kiss of the Spider Woman, and most recently, The Visit.


American Dance Machine for the 21st Century (founder and producing artistic director Nikki Feirt Atkins) now administers the awards in association with Patricia Watt (executive producer of the Astaire Awards). The ceremony is traditionally held in May, but was postponed to allow for the re-launch.

Tony Award winner Bebe Neuwirth (Chicago, Frasier) serves as host for the 7:30 PM ceremony that will include performances from A Bronx Tale, Come From Away, and the Off-Broadway revival of Sweet Charity, which are among this year's nominees.

Tune in to Playbill’s Facebook page beginning at 6:30 PM for our live-stream from the red carpet with Chita Rivera, Tommy Tune, Donna McKechnie, Priscilla Lopez, and more.

View highlights from Rivera's career:

The evening will also include performances by New York City Ballet, presenting “America” from West Side Story in Rivera’s honor, as well as AMD21 nd Tony Yazbeck performing “We’ll Take a Glass Together” from Grand Hotel in honor of 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Tommy Tune.

Randy Skinner (42nd Street, Dames At Sea, White Christmas) directs and choreographs the ceremony.

In addition to Tune, the inaugural awards will also honor director Diane Paulus with the Outstanding Contribution to Musical Theater Award, and Antonio Vendome with the Outstanding Contribution to the Arts and Humanities Award.

Dance in Theatre nominees follow:

Outstanding Choreography in a Broadway Show
Andy Blankenbuehler, Bandstand
Josh Bergasse, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Warren Carlyle, Hello, Dolly!
Peter Darling and Ellen Kane, Groundhog Day
Kelly Devine, Come from Away
Denis Jones, Holiday Inn
Sergio Trujillo, A Bronx Tale

Outstanding Ensemble in a Broadway Show
A Bronx Tale
Come from Away
Hello, Dolly!
Holiday Inn
Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812

Outstanding Male Dancer in a Broadway Show
Corbin Bleu, Holiday Inn
John Bolton, Anastasia
Max Clayton, Bandstand
Tyler Hanes, Cats
Ryan Kasprzak, Bandstand
Ricky Ubeda, Cats

Outstanding Female Dancer in a Broadway Show
Andrea Dotto, Bandstand
Lora Lee Gayer, Holiday Inn
Eloise Kropp, Cats
Georgina Pazcoguin, Cats
Emma Pfaeffle, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Megan Sikora, Holiday Inn
Christine Cornish Smith, Cats
Jaime Verazin, Bandstand

Outstanding Choreography in an Off-Broadway Show
Joshua Bergasse, Sweet Charity
David Dorfman, Indecent
Merete Muenter, The Golden Bride
David Neumann, The Total Bent
Misha Shields, Baghdaddy

Outstanding Female Dancer in an Off-Broadway Show
Yesenia Ayala, Sweet Charity
Asmeret Ghebremichael, Sweet Charity
Nikka Graff Lanzarone, Sweet Charity
Emily Padgett, Sweet Charity
Lyrica Woodruff, Finian's Rainbow

Outstanding Male Dancing in an Off-Broadway Show
Ato Blankson-Wood, The Total Bent
Brandon Espinoza, Baghdaddy
Curtis Wiley, The Total Bent
Cody Williams, Sweet Charity
Blake Zolfo, Kid Victory

Choreography in Film nominees follow:

Theatrical Release Nominees
Beauty and the Beast, Anthony Van Laast, Choreographer
La La Land, Mandy Moore, Choreographer
London Road, Javier de Frutos, Choreographer
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping, Danielle Flora and Tian Wang, Co-Choreographers

Documentary Nominees
Alive and Kicking – (Magnolia Pictures, Distributor) Director: Susan Glatzer
Dancer – (WestEnd Films) Director: Steven Cantor
Mr. Gaga – (Abramorama Films) Director: Tomer Heymann
Restless Creature – (Abramorama Films) Directors: Linda Saffire, Adam Schlesinger

For tickets, beginning at $100, visit


(Updated September 11, 2017)

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