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Monday, June 15, 2009

New York Innovative Theatre Awards to honor Stage Managers

The Fab Marquee News Desk.

The New York Innovative Theatre Foundation, the organization dedicated to celebrating Off-Off-Broadway, is celebrating their fifth year with a groundbreaking announcement: the creation of a new Innovative Theatre Award to honor outstanding Stage Management.

The IT Awards will be the premiere ceremony to showcase the people who are the “glue that holds the whole show together from before first rehearsal until after strike. Our work as designers, performers, and directors is NOTHING without stage managers to understand, interpret, support and execute it in a real-world context.”

A combination of committee and production recommendation will determine the recipient. The nominee must have Stage Managed an Off-Off-Broadway production registered with the IT Awards from January 1, 2009 - May 31, 2009. Similar to the Honorary Awards, an application must be completed for the Stage Manager plus two letters of recommendation must be submitted from people who worked on the production. These applications will be reviewed by a committee comprised of people from the community both stage managers and non-stage mangers including Roberto Cambiero, Stephanie Cox-Williams, Tzipora Kaplan, Rachel McCutchen, Doug Strassler, Morgan Lindsey Tachco, and Jaimie Van Dyke. A recipient will be selected using feedback from IT Awards judges who evaluated how the technical elements of the production flowed during the performance. Applications are due July 6, 2009.

Stephanie Cox-Williams, a Stage Manager who is heading up the Outstanding Stage Manager committee remarks, “Think back through all the staged shows you have seen. Do you know who the Stage Manager was on any of those shows? Probably not. However, the ease at which the show was performed is largely due to a Stage Manager, who may have done everything from coordinating and running scene changes, to making sure actors hit their marks, to making sure the lights and sound are done at the right time and the right level and in Off-Off Broadway, possibly helping with painting, doing laundry, the list goes on. There are awards for directors, lighting designers, sound designers, set designers, best actor, etc, but without a Stage Manager to put all of the pieces in motion, on time and correctly, those elements would not be recognized for a particular production. The IT Awards are taking a big step forward and recognizing the unsung hero of the stage."

The New York Innovative Theatre Foundation is a not-for-profit organization recognizing the great work of New York City's Off-Off-Broadway, honoring its artistic heritage, and providing a meeting ground for this extensive and richly varied community. The organization advocates for Off-Off-Broadway and recognizes the unique and essential role it plays in contributing to American and global culture. They believe that publicly recognizing excellence in Off-Off-Broadway will expand audience awareness and foster greater appreciation of the New York theatre experience.

To learn more about the New York Innovative Theatre Awards, click here.

1 comment:

Dianna said...

I wish they would have had this when I stage managed Macbeth! I think I deserved one for that. LOL...

Seriously (well, I was serious), I think it's wonderful and better late than never. Shows could not go on without the stage manager.