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2007-08 Fred & Adele Astaire Award Winners Announced

2007-08 Fred & Adele Astaire Award, the country's only honor for dance and choreography on stage and on screen, winners were announced and they are: Spencer Liff - Best Male Dancer on Broadway for his dancing in Cry Baby;  Karen Olivo - Best Female Dancer on Broadway for her dancing in In The Heights; Rob Ashford - Best Choreography on Broadway for his work in Cry Baby and Dave Scott - Best Choreography in Film for his work in the film Step up 2: The Streeets.  Based on a recommendation by this year's  Nominating Committee, nine-time Tony Award & two-time Astaire Award-winner Tommy Tune will receive the first Douglas Watt Lifetime Achievement Award presented by film, television and theater star Brooke Shields at the awards celebration slated for June 2, 2008 at the Grand Ballroom, Manhattan Center Studios, New York City. The gala  evening benefits The Auditory Oral School of New York, a non profit organization which specializes in teaching deaf and hard of hearing children to listen, talk, think and socialize.

 

Spencer Liff is the a member of the Ensemble, Assistant Choreographer and Dance Captain for Cry Baby.  His recent credits include Broadway's The Wedding Singer and Big.  His film credits include; "Across the Universe" and "Hairspray." He was seen on   national tours in The Will Rogers Follies and Oliver!  Karen Olivo has appeared in on Broadway in Rent, Brooklyn and the Off-Broadway production of Miracle Brothers. Other credits include TV's "Law & Order," "Law & Order: SVU," "Conviction" and the films "1/9," "We Own the Night" and "Fast Company." Rob Ashford is also represented on Broadway with Curtains. His recent credits include: The Wedding Singer (Tony and Drama Desk noms.), Thoroughly Modern Millie (2002 Tony Award for Best Choreography; Drama Desk and Astaire Award noms.), The Boys From Syracuse. London: Evita (Olivier Award nom.); Guys and Dolls (Olivier Award nom.); Thoroughly Modern Millie (Olivier Award nom.); A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Once in a Lifetime (National Theatre). Other credits: Candide (Theatre Chatelet, Paris); Pardon My English, Tenderloin, A Connecticut Yankee, Bloomer Girl (Encores!); Princesses (5th Ave. Theatre); Marty (Huntington); 3hree (Ahmanson, Prince Music Theater), Time and Again (MTC); Pippin (Paper Mill); Dawn Upshaw (Lincoln Center); and A Christmas Carol (McCarter). Also, "Beyond the Sea," directed by and starring Kevin Spacey. Some of David Scott's film choreography credits include: "Stomp the Yard," "Accepted," "Coach Carter," "Weiners" and "You Got Served."

 

The 2008 Nominating Committee is comprised of: Clive Barnes, Senior Theater & Dance Critic New York Post; Anna Kisselgoff, former Chief Dance Critic, New York Times; Wendy Perron, Editor in Chief, Dance Magazine; Sylviane Gold, Theater Columnist, Dance Magazine;  Damian Woetzel, Principal dancer with New York City Ballet; along with Nominating Committee Chairman Emeritus Douglas Watt, former Senior Drama Critic, New York Daily News. Honorary Chairs for the gala evening are Fred Astaire's daughter Ava Astaire McKenzie & her husband artist Richard McKenzie. The Nominating Committee reviews select shows and films to bestow awards of excellence to dancers and choreographers representing the best of Broadway and film performances and choreography.

 

The Fred & Adele Astaire Awards (formerly known as The Astaire Awards, established in 1982 by the Anglo-American Contemporary Dance Foundation) recognize outstanding achievement in dance on Broadway each season. The award was established with the cooperation of Fred Astaire to honor him and his sister, Adele, who starred with her brother in 10 Broadway musicals between 1917 and 1931. This year the Awards will be expanded to include dance and choreography for film as this was the métier that brought Fred Astaire to international fame and a permanent slot on every list of the top movie stars of the century.


Produced by Jennifer Dumas, Executive Producer for the Auditory Oral School of New York and Patricia Watt, the gala evening (6:30PM) will begin with cocktails and a seated dinner followed by performances and the Awards presentation. Sponsorship packages are available at $15,000, $10,000, $5,000 and $3,500. Tickets are $500 (for prime seating) and $350. A limited number of seats are available at $50 for balcony seating for the awards and performance and an invitation to stay for dessert and dancing.  For tickets and information, contact Jennifer Dumas, Executive Producer, at 212-655-9377 or jd@auditoryoral.org   

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