Norm Lewis, Frances Ruffelle, Christopher Sieber, and More Pay Tribute to Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt December 4 | Playbill

Benefits and Galas Norm Lewis, Frances Ruffelle, Christopher Sieber, and More Pay Tribute to Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt December 4 Schmidt and Jones are being honored with the 2017 Oscar Hammerstein Award in an evening directed by Richard Jay-Alexander.
Norm Lewis Joseph Marzullo/WENN

The York Theatre Company, which is dedicated to the development of new musicals and the preservation of musical gems from the past, honors famed musical theatre writing team Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones (The Fantasticks; I Do, I Do!; 110 in the Shade; Celebration) December 4 with the 2017 Oscar Hammerstein Award for Lifetime Achievement in Musical Theatre.

Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt

Tom Jones and the late Harvey Schmidt

The tribute is part of the 26th Oscar Hammerstein Award Gala, which is held at The Asia Society (725 Park Avenue). Richard Jay-Alexander (Les Misérables) directs the concert and award ceremony, which begin at 8 PM; a VIP reception begins at 6 PM. The music director is Andrew Gerle.

Those scheduled to honor the songwriters include Gretchen Cryer and Nancy Ford (I’m Getting My Act Together and Taking It on the Road), Robert Cuccioli (York’s Rothschild and Sons), Rita Gardner (The Fantasticks), Adam Kantor (Fiddler on the Roof), Norm Lewis (Porgy and Bess), Michele McConnell (The Phantom of the Opera), Tracy Lynn Olivera (Ragtime), Frances Ruffelle (Les Misérables), Christopher Sieber (Matilda), Lesley Ann Warren (110 in the Shade), Susan Watson (Bye Bye Birdie), Betsy Wolfe (Waitress), Samantha Bruce (The Fantasticks), Ava Della Pietra (School of Rock), Julian Fleisher (February House), Randy Harrison (Cabaret), Samantha Massell (Fiddler on the Roof), Randy Rainbow, Lee Roy Reams (42nd Street), Ben Rimalower (Bad with Money), the string quartet Well-Strung, and Freddie Gershon.

The Oscar Hammerstein Award, created in 1988 by Janet Hayes Walker, founding artistic director of The York Theatre Company, recognizes significant lifetime achievement in musical theatre. Past recipients include Stephen Sondheim, Betty Comden & Adolph Green, Harold Prince, Cy Coleman, Charles Strouse, Arthur Laurents, Jerry Herman, Stephen Schwartz, Peter Stone, David Merrick, John Kander & Fred Ebb, Terrence McNally, Cameron Mackintosh, Carol Channing, Tony Walton, Joseph Stein, George S. Irving, Jerry Bock & Sheldon Harnick, Thomas Meehan, Barbara Cook, Paul Gemignani, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, Angela Lansbury, and Joel Grey.

“Honoring Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt with this year’s Oscar Hammerstein Award just feels incredibly right,” said James Morgan, The York Theatre’s producing artistic director, in an earlier statement. “They are longtime friends of the York’s and our numerous artistic collaborations go back more than 35 years. We produced the premieres of Colette Collage, Roadside and the long-run The Show Goes On, in which they starred—and all of which were recorded. Revivals include full productions of 110 in the Shade and Philemon, as well as Muftis of Celebration, Mirette, Colette Collage, Roadside and The Show Goes On. They are truly woven into the fabric of the American Musical Theater, and The York Theatre, as well.”

For additional information, pricing and reservations, contact Director of Development Ellen Weiss at (212) 935-5824, ext. 214 or [email protected].

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