President Barack Obama presented the National Medal of Arts to 12 recipients in July, including Tony Kushner and Elaine May; at the same ceremony, Anna Deavere Smith was among a dozen honorees to accept the National Humanities Medal from the president.
At the 34th annual Drammy Awards in June, recognizing Oregon theatre, Oregon Children’s Theatre‘s staging of A Year with Frog and Toad won in seven categories, including best production. Each category had up to four winners, such as for actor in a leading role, which went to Danny Wolohan (The Body of an American at Portland Center Stage), Don Kenneth Mason (Blood Knot at Profile Theatre), Don Alder (A Steady Rain at Hellfire Productions) and Bruce Burkhartsmeier (A Noble Failure at Third Rail Repertory Theatre).
The Non-Equity Jeff Awards were held in June, celebrating non-union Chicago theatre. Circle Theatre and Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre each took home four awards. Best production awards went to When the Rain Stops Falling at Circle (for play), Under a Rainbow Flag from Pride Films and Plays (for musical) and Smokey Joe’s Café from Theo Ubique (for revue).
At the Connecticut Critics Circle Awards in June, the biggest winners were Hartford Stage and Yale Repertory Theatre. Hartford took home seven awards for A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder (including musical production and musical actor, for Jefferson Mays). Yale received three awards for Marie Antoinette, including play production, actress in a play (Marin Ireland) and featured actor in a play (David Greenspan).
Stephen Sondheim received the 54th Edward MacDowell Medal in August, at the MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire, for his body of work. Previous recipients include Joan Didion and Leonard Bernstein.
Playwright Stephanie Zadravec has received the 2013 Francesca Primus Prize from the American Theatre Critics Association for her play The Electric Baby. The prize, for emerging female theatre artists, comes with $10,000.
Mimi Huntington was presented with the 2013 StageSource Theater Hero Award, during the StageSource Theater Conference in Boston. Huntington, founding artistic director of Nora Theatre Company, was recognized for her service to the theatre community.
Communities In Schools of Chicago has given the Al Ward Spirit of Giving Award to Writers Theatre, for the work of its education department in providing theatre programming for Chicago public school students.
The Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis announced its 2013–14 McKnight Theater Artist fellows, who will each receive $7,000 to develop projects at the Center. The fellows are actor Sun Mee Chomet, music director Denise Prosek and actor Stephen Yoakam.
Cleveland Public Theatre in Ohio has chosen Caitlin Lewins and Melissa Therese Crum as its 2013–14 Joan Yellen Horvitz Director Fellows. They will each receive $3,000 and a yearlong residency.
South Coast Repertory Theatre in California has announced the eight playwrights in its new CrossRoads Commissioning Project. They will be in residency at the theatre to create new work based on the Orange County community. The artists are Luis Alfaro, Carla Ching, Julia Cho, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Aditi Brennan Kapil, Mona Mansour, Qui Nguyen and Tanya Saracho.
The American Alliance for Theatre and Education has announced Brian Guehring as the winner of the 2013 Lin Wright Special Recognition Citation, for his work at the Rose Theater in Omaha, Neb., in exposing young people to the art form.
Everyman Theatre in Baltimore received an Adaptive Reuse and Compatible Design Award at the 2013 Preservations Awards in June. Everyman’s new home is in a theatre built in 1911.
The 2013–14 artists in residence at the Brooklyn Arts Exchange, in the field of theatre, are Max Steele, Melanie Jones, Erin Markey, Donovan & Calderón, and Jess Barbagallo.
Elaine Stritch, Stephen Sondheim, George Takei and Charles S. Cohan were honored at the Stella by Starlight Benefit Gala in June, hosted by the Stella Adler Studio of Acting.
Wingspace Theatrical Design, based in Brooklyn, has won USITT’s national competition to design the U.S. exhibit for the 2015 Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space.