The Committee for Recognizing Women in Theater presented the first annual "Lilly Awards" in honor of Lillian Hellman at Playwright's Horizons yesterday, May 24. This year, the Lilly Awards honored 17 women theater artists who have been produced in the past year in New York City. An after party was held and the West Bank Cafe.
The following awards were presented:
Rob Ashford presented a rep for Kristen Chenoweth with The Lilly Award for Performance in honor of Marian Seldes.
Mark Brokaw presented Melissa James Gibson with The 1st Lillian Hellman Award for Playwrighting in honor of Zona Gale.
Adam Bock presented Maria Striar with The Lilly Award for Artistic Director in honor of Margo Jones.
Michael Mayer presented Christine Jones with The Lilly Award for Set Design.
Neil Pepe presented Lucy Thurber with The 2nd Lillian Hellman Award for Playwrighting in honor of Frances Goodrich.
Tim Sanford presented Pam MacKinnon (in absentia) with The 1st Lilly Award for Direction.
Tina Howe presented Chisa Hutchinson with The 3rd Lillian Hellman Award for Playwrighting in honor of Wendy Wasserstein.
Julia Jordan presented Emily Morse with The Lilly Award for Advocacy.
Doug Wright presented Deborah Laufer with The 4th Lillian Hellman Award for Playwrighting.
Lisa Baines and Susan Birkenhead presented Jane Greenwood with The Lilly Award for Costime Design.
Julie Crosby presented Liz Duffy Adams with The 5th Lillian Hellman Award for Playwrighting in honor of Aphra Behn.
Theresa Rebeck presented Frances Aronson with The Lilly Award for Lighting Design.
David Greenspan presented Leigh Silverman with The 2nd Lilly Award for Direction in honor of Dorothy Parker.
Lynn Nottage presented Annie Baker with The 5th Lillian Hellman Award for Playwrighting in honor of Mary Chase.
Allison Pill presented Anne Kauffman with The 3rd Lilly Award for Direction in honor of Zoe Caldwell.
Gina Gionfriddo presented The Lilly Award in Playwrighting and Direction to Young Jean Lee in honor of Susan Glaspell.
John Weidman presented The 6th Lillian Hellman Award in Playwrighting to Sarah Ruhl.
Marsha Norman presented The Lilly Award for Lifetime Achievement to Mary Rodgers
Gloria Steinem presented the invocation.
The committee, consisting of Julie Crosby, John Eisner, Gary Garrison, Tina Howe, Julia Jordan, Marsha Norman, Theresa Rebeck, Susan Rose, Tim Sanford and the Dramatists Guild of America was founded out of a desire to celebrate the work of outstanding, successful and up-and-coming women playwrights, directors, designers and advocates in the theater.
Pulitzer-Award Winning Playwright Marsha Norman recalls when she interviewed Lillian Hellman late in her life, for the New York Times. "She warned me it was going to be tough to be a woman working in the theater. She said I'd need to write like the devil and also act like one when necessary. She was right on all counts. This party is just to remind everybody that there are so many great women working in the theatre now. In New York alone, 51 plays this year, on Broadway and off, were written by women. And the work is stunning. I wish Ms. Hellman could see this."