Jeff Awards Research Project Enters Phase 2

Jeff Awards Research Project Enters Phase 2

The Jeff Awards is entering Phase 2 of its research project to gather opinions from Managing Directors and Artistic Directors of Chicago area theatres with an online, quantitative survey being sent Wednesday. Independently conducting the research is a Taproot+ team of pro bono professionals.

Deadline to complete the online survey is September 1. Results will be shared with the Jeff Awards in the aggregate to insure confidentiality. No names of individuals and theatre companies will be included.

The project's first phase was phone calls by Taproot+ volunteers conducted in June and July with a cross-section of Chicago-area theatres. Responses from these conversations identified issues to cover in the online survey going to all Equity and Non-Equity theatre companies listed with the Jeff Awards.

Analysis from both phases will be submitted to the Jeff Awards by Xiaoyue (Sherry) Pang, who is Project Lead for Taproot+. Theatres not receiving an email with a link to the online survey can contact her before September 1 at

Taproot+ is a free program for any registered nonprofit in the United States, which focuses on short-term projects. It is a program of the Taproot Foundation, which connects non-profits and social change organizations with skilled volunteers who share their expertise pro bono.

The Jeff Awards has been honoring outstanding theatre artists annually since it was established in 1968. With up to 55 members representing a wide variety of backgrounds in theatre (including producers, directors, actors, playwrights, designers, professors of theatre, entertainment lawyers and agents, and theatre lovers), the Jeff Awards are committed to celebrating the vitality of Chicago area theatre by recognizing excellence through its recommendations, awards, and honors. Opening night judges include not only the members but also the team of Artistic & Technical theatre volunteers (the "A/T Team") which include Artistic Directors, producers, directors from the major Chicago theatres, actors, designers, etc. The Jeff Awards fosters the artistic growth of area theatres and theatre artists and promotes educational opportunities, audience appreciation, and civic pride in the achievements of the theatre community. Each year, the Jeff Awards adjudicate over 250 theatrical productions and host two awards ceremonies. Originally chartered to recognize only Equity productions, the Jeff Awards established the Non-Equity Wing in 1973 to celebrate outstanding achievement in non-union theatre. The next Equity Awards ceremony, honoring productions presented under union contracts, will be held on Monday, November 6, 2017, at Drury Lane Oakbrook in Oakbrook Terrace.

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