THE 24 HOUR PLAYS ON BROADWAY to Honor Playwright Marsha Norman
Today, The 24 Hour Plays announced that Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Marsha Norman will be honored at The 17th Annual The 24 Hour Plays On Broadway, as part of the organization's partnership with The Lilly Awards. The event will take place on Monday, October 30th, at 8:00pm at the American Airlines Theatre in Times Square.
"We're thrilled to be celebrating The Lilly Awards this year. The 24 Hour Plays and The Lillys share the goals of celebrating extraordinary artists and promoting gender parity in the American theater," said Mark Armstrong, Executive Director for The 24 Hour Plays. "This year's show promises to be an exciting, timely state-of-the nation theater event and we look forward to announcing an incredible roster of new and returning artists soon."
"Marsha Norman led the charge for gender and racial parity in the American theater for decades, long before it was a commonly accepted goal," said playwright Julia Jordan, the Vice President of The Lilly Awards. "She has also taught a generation of our most exciting and successful new playwrights - all on the side of her own Pulitzer, Tony and Peabody award-winning work."
The 24 Hour Plays bring together extraordinary artists to create time-limited theater around the world. Proceeds from The 24 Hour Plays on Broadway will benefit The 24 Hour Plays programming, including The 24 Hour Plays: Nationals (a professional intensive for young artists), and The Lilly Awards Foundation's work supporting women in theater and promoting gender parity.
The rotating cast for The 24 Hour Plays On Broadway has included Leslie Bibb, Jason Biggs, Billy Crudup, Hugh Dancy, Daveed Diggs, Peter Dinklage, Rachel Dratch, Jesse Eisenberg, America Ferrera, John Krasinski, Aasif Mandvi, Javier Muñoz, Retta, Amanda Seales, Justice Smith, Amber Tamblyn, Tracie Thoms, Olivia Wilde and many more. This year's cast and creative team will be announced in the coming weeks.
"Marsha has always presented us with female characters who are angry, funny, smart as hell and completely human," said Jordan. "She has often said that her 'stuff' was trapped girls, but there were many more trapped girls than she had ever imagined."
The marathon process for The 24 Hour Musicals begins at 9 p.m. the night before the performance. Writers, composers, directors, choreographers, actors, music directors, musicians and production staff-many of whom have never worked with or met each other before-gather for an orientation where they are asked to share one costume piece, one prop, a special skill, and to reveal something that they have always wanted to do on stage, as well as some singing and dancing. At 11 p.m., the composers and writers get to work crafting 15-20 minute musicals overnight; at 9 a.m. the next morning, the actors receive their roles and the directors, choreographers and musicians arrive to begin rehearsal. Less than 12 hours later, they must be ready to perform in front of a live audience.
The marathon process for The 24 Hour Plays on Broadway begins at 10:00pm on October 29th, the night before the performance. The writers, directors, actors and production staff-many of whom have never worked with or met each other before-gather for an orientation where they are asked to share one costume piece, one prop, a special skill, and to reveal something that they have always wanted to do on stage. Using this as inspiration, the writers spend the night developing 10-minute plays, with rehearsals set to begin at 9:00am the following morning for an 8:00pm performance on October 30th.
Proceeds from The 24 Hour Plays on Broadway will benefit both The 24 Hour Company's programs, including The 24 Hour Plays: Nationals (a professional intensive for young artists) and The Lilly Awards Foundation's work supporting women in theater and promoting gender parity.
"Our Artistic Inspiration Award was designed to honor a working theater professional who has inspired young artists," said Armstrong. "Marsha Norman's fingerprints are everywhere in American theater, television and film and so many artists have reached out to us about helping to celebrate her on October 30."
The 24 Hour Plays brings together extraordinary artists to create time-limited theater around the world. In addition to The 24 Hour Plays on Broadway and The 24 Hour Musicals, regular events take place in London, Los Angeles, Dublin, Germany, Minneapolis, Athens, Helsinki, Mexico City and Florence. Through collaborations with organizations including The Old Vic Theatre, Dublin Youth Theatre, Urban Arts Partnership, Cornerstone Theater Company, The Orchard Project, Bennington College, Hennepin Theatre Trust, The University of Minnesota-Duluth and The Del Sole Foundation, The 24 Hour Plays have raised millions of dollars for charities. Each summer, The 24 Hour Plays partner with the New School for Drama to bring together the best actors, directors, playwrights and producers 25 and under for an intensive professional experience. Licensed affiliates have produced their own versions of The 24 Hour Plays in regional and professional theaters, colleges, and universities just about everywhere you can find a curtain and a stage. Visit www.24hourplays.com or follow on Twitter/Instagram: @24hourplays.
The Lilly Awards were started in the Spring of 2010 as an outlet to honor the work of women in the American theater. The founders of The Lilly Awards, or "The Lillys," as we affectionately refer to them are: Julia Jordan, Marsha Norman and Theresa Rebeck. The awards are named for Lillian Hellman, a pioneering American playwright who famously said "You need to write like the devil and act like one when necessary." In partnership with the Dramatists Guild, we have gathered our resources and conducted a national survey simply called The Count that accurately showcases which theaters are producing the work of women, and which are not. With our annual fundraiser and prestigious awards ceremony, The Lilly Awards Foundation is dedicated to carrying on Lillian Hellman's spirit and are proud to continue to honor the work of women in the American theater. Go to www.thelillyawards.org or follow on Twitter: @thelillyawards.
Marsha Norman is the winner of the 1983 Pulitzer Prize, Blackburn Prize, Hull-Warriner and Drama Desk Awards for her play 'Night, Mother. In l992 she won a Tony Award and a Drama Desk Award for her book for the Broadway musical, The Secret Garden. She also wrote the book for the musical, The Color Purple; she received a Tony nomination for the original production and a Tony Award for the 2016 Revival. Her most recent work is the adaptation of The Trumpet Of The Swan: A Novel Symphony For Actors and Orchestra, with music conducted and written by Jason Robert Brown. Her other plays include The Master Butcher's Singing Club, which premiered at the Guthrie Theatre; Getting Out, for which she won the John Gassner Medallion and the American Theater Critics Association Citation; Third And Oak: The Laundromat; The Pool Hall; The Holdup; Traveler In The Dark; Sarah And Abraham; Loving Daniel Boone; Trudy Blue and Last Dance. She won a Peabody Award for her writing on the HBO television series, In Treatment, starring Gabriel Byrne and Dianne Wiest. Her other television and film credits include 'Night, Mother, starring Sissy Spacek and Anne Bancroft; The Laundromat, starring Carol Burnett and Amy Madigan; The Pool Hall, starring James Earl Jones; Face Of A Stranger starring Gena Rowlands and Tyne Daley; Cooler Climate, starring Sally Field and Judy Davis.
She has Grammy and Emmy nominations, as well as grants and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. She has won the Margo Jones Award, the Sidney Kingsley Award and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Guild Hall Academy of Arts and Letters. Ms. Norman is Co-Chair, with Christopher Durang, of the Playwriting Department of The Juilliard School. She is a former Vice-President of the Dramatists Guild of America. Most recently, she received the William Inge Distinguished Lifetime Achievement in Theatre Award, and the Career Achievement Award from the Dramatists Guild of America. In 2016, Marsha Norman was inducted into The Theatre Hall of Fame.