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Awards Season

‘Oslo,’ ‘Band’s Visit’ Top 2017 Lucille Lortel Awards

‘Oslo,’ ‘Band’s Visit’ Top 2017 Lucille Lortel Awards
Photo Source: “The Band’s Visit”: Ahron R. Foster

Off-Broadway’s best gathered May 7 to celebrate their community’s achievements at the 2017 Lucille Lortel Awards, hosted by Taran Killam at NYU’s Skirball Center. Leading the winners were David Yazbek and Itamar Moses’ Atlantic Theater Company musical “The Band’s Visit” and J. T. Rogers’ new play “Oslo.” The latter is up for seven Tony Awards next month in recognition for its current Broadway run at Lincoln Center; could its four big Lortel wins signal more statues for the Oslo Accords drama?

“I know that for everyone in this room, to have a home is what art requires,” said Rogers in his acceptance speech at the end of the evening. “Lincoln Center Theater has been that home for me.”

“The Band’s Visit,” which has not yet announced a Broadway run, also won for leading actress Katrina Lenk. The actor bested Sutton Foster for “Sweet Charity” and Siobhan McCarthy for “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street,” a production that took home the statue for outstanding revival.

READ: How to Get Cast in an Off-Broadway Show

Ben Platt and Rachel Bay Jones, Tony-nominated for their performances in “Dear Evan Hansen,” both took home Lortel statues, as did Tony nominees Jennifer Ehle and Michael Aronov for “Oslo.” Winning leading actor in a play was Joe Morton for portraying comedian Dick Gregory in “Turn Me Loose.” Also earning acting honors were Randy Graff for “The Babylon Line” and Joel Perez for “Sweet Charity.”

Presented by the Off-Broadway League, Lucille Lortel Foundation, and Theatre Development Fund, and benefiting the Actors Fund, the 32nd annual awards ceremony included such presenters as Judith Light, Andy Karl, Jayne Houdyshell, Keegan-Michael Key, Phillipa Soo, and George Takei. Terrence McNally presented the Edith Oliver Service to Off-Broadway Award to managing director wiz Harold Wolpert.

Two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage (“Ruined” and “Sweat,” now running on Broadway and up for three Tonys) was inducted into the famed Playwrights’ Sidewalk in front of the Lucille Lortel Theatre. Introduced by Condola Rashad, one of the writer’s many collaborators, Nottage thanked the Lortel Awards “for allowing me to become part of the fabric of this community and having a star on the sidewalk which I walked past so many times looking at those—is it brass?—looking at the brass stars and sort of hoping that one day I might be invited into that community.”

Accepting the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award was legendary costume designer William Ivey Long, presented to him by Laura Osnes and Aaron Tveit. “I made my first costume for my dog when I was four years old—it was an Elizabethan ruff,” he said in his speech. “If you look at the word lifetime, it’s a life. And nobody lives a life alone. We live the life with each other. And if I could turn up the lights in this auditorium you would see each other and you would see everyone who makes up our family.”

For a list of winners, see below. For more, visit lortelaward.com.

Outstanding Play
“Indecent”
***“Oslo”
“Underground Railroad Game”
“Vietgone”
“The Wolves”

Outstanding Musical
***“The Band's Visit”
“Dear Evan Hansen”
“Hadestown”
“Ride the Cyclone”
“The Total Bent”

Outstanding Revival
“The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire World AKA the Negro Book of the Dead”
“Othello”
“Signature Plays: Edward Albee’s ‘The Sandbox,’ María Irene Fornés’ ‘Drowning,’ and Adrienne Kennedy’s ‘Funnyhouse of a Negro’ ”
***“Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”
“Sweet Charity”

Outstanding Solo Show
“Chris Gethard: Career Suicide”
“Latin History for Morons”
***“Notes From The Field”
“The Outer Space”
“Sell/Buy/Date”

Outstanding Director
Will Davis, “Men On Boats”
Anne Kauffman, “A Life”
Lila Neugebauer, “The Wolves”
***Bartlett Sher, “Oslo”
Rebecca Taichman, “Indecent”

Outstanding Choreographer
Joshua Bergasse, “Sweet Charity”
***David Dorfman, “Indecent”
Georgina Lamb, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”
David Neumann, “Hadestown”
David Neumann, “The Total Bent”

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Play
Reed Birney, “Man From Nebraska”
Michael Emerson, “Wakey, Wakey”
Lucas Hedges, “YEN”
***Joe Morton, “Turn Me Loose”
David Hyde Pierce, “A Life”

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play
Johanna Day, “Sweat”
***Jennifer Ehle, “Oslo”
Jennifer Kidwell, “Underground Railroad Game”
Kecia Lewis, “Marie and Rosetta”
Maryann Plunkett, “Women of a Certain Age”

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
***Michael Aronov, “Oslo”
Charlie Cox, “Incognito”
Matthew Maher, “Othello”
Justice Smith, “YEN”
Paco Tolson, “Vietgone”

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Jocelyn Bioh, “Everybody”
Hannah Cabell, “The Moors”
***Randy Graff, “The Babylon Line”
Ari Graynor, “YEN”
Nana Mensah, “Man From Nebraska”

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical
Ato Blankson-Wood, “The Total Bent”
Shuler Hensley, “Sweet Charity”
Patrick Page, “Hadestown”
***Ben Platt, “Dear Evan Hansen”
Jeremy Secomb, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical
Sutton Foster, “Sweet Charity”
Amber Gray, “Hadestown”
Jo Lampert, “Joan of Arc: Into the Fire”
***Katrina Lenk, “The Band’s Visit”
Siobhan McCarthy, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Nathan Lee Graham, “The View UpStairs”
Gus Halper, “Ride the Cyclone”
***Joel Perez, “Sweet Charity”
Ari’el Stachel, “The Band’s Visit”
Chris Sullivan, “Hadestown”

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Asmeret Ghebremichael, “Sweet Charity”
***Rachel Bay Jones, “Dear Evan Hansen”
Betsy Morgan, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”
Emily Rohm, “Ride the Cyclone”
Karen Ziemba, “Kid Victory”

Outstanding Scenic Design
Scott Davis, “Ride the Cyclone”
Rachel Hauck, “Hadestown”
***Laura Jellinek, “A Life”
Mimi Lien, “Signature Plays: Edward Albee’s ‘The Sandbox,’ María Irene Fornés’ ‘Drowning,’ and Adrienne Kennedy’s ‘Funnyhouse of a Negro’ ”
Jason Sherwood, “The View UpStairs”

Outstanding Costume Design
Montana Blanco, “The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire World AKA the
Negro Book of the Dead”
Tilly Grimes, “Underground Railroad Game”
***Susan Hilferty, “Love, Love, Love”
Sarah Laux, “The Band’s Visit”
Emily Rebholz, “Indecent”

Outstanding Lighting Design
***Mark Barton, “Signature Plays: Edward Albee’s ‘The Sandbox,’ María Irene Fornés’ ‘Drowning,’ and Adrienne Kennedy’s ‘Funnyhouse of a Negro’ ”
Jane Cox, “Othello”
Greg Hofmann, “Ride the Cyclone”
Amy Mae, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”
Ben Stanton, “YEN”

Outstanding Sound Design
***Mikhail Fiksel, “A Life”
Robert Kaplowitz, “Hadestown”
Stowe Nelson, “Small Mouth Sounds”
Nevin Steinberg, “Wakey, Wakey”
Matt Stine, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”

Outstanding Projection Design
Elaine McCarthy, “Notes From The Field”
Duncan McLean, “Privacy”
***Jared Mezzochi, “Vietgone”
Peter Nigrini, “Dear Evan Hansen”
Peter Nigrini, “Wakey, Wakey”

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