The Non-Equity Jeff Awards came and went and as expected it was a night to remember. The cast performed “The Black One” in the New Work category. Between Passing Strange and Violet, Bailiwick Chicago was nominated in over 10 categories. In addition to newly appointed Artistic Director Lili-Anne Brown, I’m expecting big things from the company in the future.
When I looked out at the audience from on stage, at all the people I have worked with over the past 4 years, I had that “so THIS is what I’m doing with my life“. At least I’m not the only one. Congrats to everyone for surviving another year in the life of the theatre.
Last night Whitney hosted the 43rd Annual Joseph Jefferson Awards at the beautiful Drury Lane Oakbrook Terrace courtesy of Michael Webber.
The creme of the Chicago land theater scene were all in attendance and It really felt like a community affair. So many professionals in one place celebrating their love of the theater and dedication to the future of the industry in Chicago.
Whitney hosted with fellow NU Alum Erik Kaiko (The King and I), and Aja Goes (Putting it Together). Michael Webber directed a very tightly run show featuring performances by the casts of Spamalot and Grease. But the showstopper of the night was given by Bethany Thomas from Porgy and Bess. Her earthshaking performance was grounded, technically impeccable and deeply moving.
Chicago Shakespeare and The Goodman went away with the most wins (Chi. Shakes with 4 and Goodman with 7) for The Madness of King George III directed by Penny Metropulos and Candide directed by Mary Zimmerman. Hedy Weiss, renown Chicago critic for the Chicago Sun Times, gave one of the most memorable speeches of the evening for her Special Award for Contribution to Theater. For a full rundown of winners and nominees click here.
This was Whitney’s first Jeff’s! Special thanks to Michael Webber and the wonderful tech team behind the show.