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Megan Hilty & Justin Long to Name Drama League Nominees, Apr. 24!

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The Drama League has announced Drama League nominee Megan Hilty (9 To 5, "Smash") and Justin Long (Seminar) will co-host the announcement of the The 2012 Drama League Nominees for Distinguished Production of a Play, Distinguished Production of a Musical, Distinguished Revival of a Play, Distinguished Revival of a Musical, and the much coveted Distinguished Performance Award on Tuesday, April 24, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. at Sardi's. As in years past, the nominations ceremony will be broadcast worldwide via live stream right here on BroadwayWorld! 

The nominations announcement begins the month of celebrations leading up to the 78th Annual Drama League Awards, which will be held at the Marriott Marquis Times Square (1535 Broadway) on Friday, May 18, 2012 at noon. Tickets for The Drama League Awards, which includes pre-event cocktails and the star-studded afternoon luncheon ceremony hosted by Stockard Channing (Other Desert Cities) and John Larroquette (Gore Vidal's The Best Man), are available by calling (212) 244-9494 or by visiting www.dramaleague.org.

Megan Hilty currently stars in NBC's musical drama "Smash" as the seasoned triple-threat Ivy Lynn. She was recently signed to Sony Music in a partnership between Sony Masterworks and Columbia Records with her new album scheduled to be released later this year. Megan will be seen as Lorelei Lee, in the upcoming Encores! production of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Other Broadway credits include Glinda in Wicked, and Doralee Rhodes in 9 to 5: The Musical, for which she received a nomination for Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, and The Drama League Award. Regionally she starred in Two by Two, as part of the Reprise series in Los Angeles, opposite Jason Alexander, Steve Weber and Faith Prince and has performed with the Cincinnati Symphony and at Feinstein's in New York City. Hilty's voice has been featured on Disney's The Secret Life of Magic Gourd, Phineas & Ferb, Glenn Martin, DDS, American Dad, Tinker Bell and the Pixie Hollow Games, Robot & Monster, as well as the singing as Snow White in the film Shrek the Third. Her voice will also be heard as Rosetta in soon to be released Disney's Tinker Bell: Secret of the Wings and is currently in production on Summertime Entertainment's animated film Dorothy of Oz with Kelsey Grammer, Hugh Dancy and Lea Michele. Other film credits include The Bitter Feast and the short film The Happiest Man Alive, opposite Justin Chambers. Television credits include guest-starring roles in "Melissa & Joey," "Bones," "The Closer," "Desperate Housewives," "CSI," "Shark," "Ugly Betty," "Eli Stone" and "The Suite Life of Zach & Cody."

Justin Long, currently appearing on Broadway in Theresa Rebeck's hit new play Seminar, recently produced, co-wrote and co-starred in A Case of You opposite Evan Rachel Wood. Other film credits include Going the Distance, The Conspirator, After.Life, Youth in Revolt, Drag Me to Hell, He's Just Not That Into You, Zack and Miri Make a Porno, Strange Wilderness, Walk Hard, Live Free or Die Hard, Idiocracy, Accepted, The Break Up, The Sasquatch Gang, Herbie: Fully Loaded (that's right, Broadway!), Waiting..., Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, Jeepers Creepers and Galaxy Quest. Voice work includes: Planet 51, Alpha and Omega, "King of the Hill," Alvin in three Alvin and the Chipmunk movies, and FX's new "Unsupervised." TV: reoccurring roles on FOX's "New Girl" and NBC's "Ed." On stage he appeared at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Samuel J and K, Lewis Black's One Slight Hitch and Lanford Wilson's The Hot l Baltimore with Sam Rockwell. He's also worked with MCC, NY Stage and Film, Hartford Stage Co, Westport Theatre Artists Workshop and The Roundabout in various staged readings, most recently in Neil LaBute's Filthy Talk for Troubled Times (MCC).

Earlier this year, The Drama League announced the 2012 recipients for Distinguished Contributions and Achievements in the Theatre, as follows: eight-time Academy Award-winner, theatre and movie composer Alan Menken (Newsies, Leap of Faith, Sister Act) will receive the Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theatre Award in recognition of his contribution to the musical theatre; stage, television and movie star Rosie O'Donnell (Fiddler on the Roof, Suessical, Grease) will receive the Unique Contribution to the Theatre Award for her continuing efforts in promoting live theatre; and Drama League Directors Project alum Diane Paulus, the Artistic Director of The American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge, Mass., the director of the Broadway production of The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess and a Tony nominee for Hair, will receive The Founders Award for Excellence in Directing (formerly named the Julia Hansen Award).

First awarded in 1922, The Drama League Awards are the oldest theatrical honors in North America. The winners, to be announced in a star-studded ceremony on May 18th, are chosen by the members of The Drama League, which include theatergoers, industry professionals, and noted artists. This year, nearly 200 Broadway and Off-Broadway productions were eligible for awards consideration.

The Drama League Awards Eligibility Committee recently determined that productions transferring from Off-Broadway to Broadway, or vice versa, in successive years are now eligible for consideration in both seasons.

The Drama League Awards honor distinguished productions, performances, and exemplary career achievements in musical theatre and directing. The first Drama League Award was presented to Katharine Cornell in 1935. Since then, the Distinguished Performance Award has been accorded to a roster of theatre legends such as Liam Neeson, Hugh Jackman, Patti LuPone, Glenn Close, Liev Schreiber, Sir John Gielgud, Harvey Fierstein, Cherry Jones, Alec Guinness, James Earl Jones, Julie Harris, Helen Hayes, Jeremy Irons, Mary-Louise Parker, Sir Ian McKellen, Bernadette Peters, and Christopher Plummer.

Photo Credit: Walter McBride/WM Photos

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