Del Hamilton and Faye Allen to Receive 2013 Suzi Bass Lifetime Achievement Awards, 11/4
The Suzi Bass Awards, Inc. will be honoring Del Hamilton and Faye Allen, founders of 7 Stages Theatre, with the Lifetime Achievement Award at this year's 9th annual awards ceremony on Monday, November 4.
This is a relatively new category of recognition, given for an outstanding body of work by an Atlanta theatre artist, playwright or producer having a significant impact on the theatre community and voted by the Board of Directors. Along with the original request that Del and Faye be considered for this commendation, multiple endorsements acknowledged the long-term impact both had in developing Atlanta's vibrant and diverse theatrical community.
In 1979, Del Hamilton and Faye Allen founded 7 Stages Theatre with the mission to create an artistic haven in the community where social, political and spiritual issues relevant to daily life are shared with audiences in an integral way. Artistic staff worked for no salary to insure that actors would be paid. The original environment seated 65 people, and they received critical praise from the earliest productions. From those humble beginnings 35 years ago, they have grown and provided artistic space for numerous small theatre companies and performing artists, including hundreds of international collaborations. Their efforts have served as an artistic gateway in the community, giving expression to disparate, often un-heard voices for us to consider and sending local theatre artists out onto the global stage to share Atlanta's unique voice with the world.
Kenny Leon, recipient of the 2004 inaugural Spirit of Suzi Award, wrote, "Del Hamilton and Faye Allen have helped launch the careers of many artists from Atlanta, including my own. A mainstay in Little Five Points for 35 years, they have brought the world to Atlanta. Their productions have reminded us that the world is a better place when everyone's story is told. They represent the soul of the Atlanta arts scene and I salute their commitment to and love for the artist that has something to say to the world".
Award-winning playwright, poet and author, Robert Earl Price wrote a poem in their honor (available upon request) when he learned of their consideration for this award, acknowledging the global impact 7 Stages Theatre has had through the persistent creative work by this pair for over three decades in Atlanta. Internationally recognized Atlanta author and playwright Pearl Cleage and her husband, co-collaborator Zaron W. Burnette, Jr. together penned a letter of endorsement, singing the praises of Del and Faye's historical impact through the relentless pursuit of faithful storytelling in our community.
Additionally, this year's ceremony will again give The Gene-Gabriel Moore (GGM) Playwriting Award (named after one of the original founders of The Suzi Awards--a writer and enthusiastic supporter of local playwrights). The award is given for a new play by a local playwright who had a production during the previous season and is voted on by a special committee of playwrights, educators and theatre professionals. With 13 productions nominated, 2013 sets a record for this category which further demonstrates the expansive influence The Suzi Awards has on encouraging and developing theatrical expression in the community.
Plays and playwrights nominated for the 2013 GGM Playwriting Award:
· Angry Fags by Topher Payne, produced by 7 Stages
· The Ghastly Dreadfuls by Jon Ludwig & Jason Hinezmeyer, produced by the Center for Puppetry Arts
· The Great McAnigan by Dave Lauby, produced by The Collective Project
· Mighty Myths and Legends adapted by Allen O'Reilly, Richard Garner, Seth Langer, produced by Georgia Shakespeare
· Moby-Dick adapted by John Gentile, produced by Saiah
· Mysterious Connections by Peter Hardy, produced by Essential Theatre
· The Strange Attractor by Jesse Cramer, produced by Act3 Productions
· Stray Dogs by Matthew Myers, produced by Essential Theatre
· Swell Party by Topher Payne, produced by Georgia Ensemble Theatre
· Tales of Edgar Allan Poe adapted by Bobby Box/ Jon Ludwig, produced by the Center for Puppetry Arts
· Two Drink Minimum by Bill Balzer, produced by Theatrical Outfit
· Unnecessary Monsters by Megan Hayes, produced by Aurora Theatre