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Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center to Honor George C. White at Monte Cristo Award Gala

A gala evening in celebration of White’s legacy will be held at the Gotham Hall in New York City on Monday, April 11, 2022.

Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center to Honor George C. White at Monte Cristo Award Gala

The Eugene O'Neill Theater Center has announced that it will present the 21st Monte Cristo Award to its Founder George C. White. George's career includes not only his 37 years as President of the O'Neill and Chairman of its Board of Trustees, but also numerous activities and accomplishments in theater throughout the world. His contributions to the creation of theater have influenced some of the greatest artists of our time including August Wilson, Wendy Wasserstein, Meryl Streep, Robert Redford, John Guare, Basil Kreimendahl, Jim & Jane Henson, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and many others. A gala evening in celebration of White's legacy will be held at the Gotham Hall in New York City on Monday, April 11, 2022.

The black-tie optional evening will feature special performances, and theatre luminaries paying tribute to White. O'Neill alumnus and former Monte Cristo Award recipient, Michael Douglas will present White with his honor. The evening's Honorary Committee will include: Congressman Joe Courtney, Michael Douglas & Catherine Zeta-Jones, David Henry Hwang, Michael R. Jackson, Judith Light, John Logan, Senator Chris Murphy, Robert O'Hara, Maryann Plunkett & Jay O. Sanders, John Patrick Shanley, Jeanine Tesori, Preston Whiteway, Constanza Romero Wilson, and George C. Wolfe.

The O'Neill annually bestows its Monte Cristo Award on a prominent artist whose work has had an extraordinary impact on American theater, in memory of its namesake. The gala event supports the Center's commitment to developing new work and new artists for the stage.

"We are so glad to be able to give this year's award to our founder, Mr. George White," said O'Neill Executive Director, Tiffani Gavin. "As the man who started it all, he was unquestionably the honoree to celebrate at our first in-person Monte Cristo Award gala in two years."

"George's vision, tenacity, and willingness to take great risks for the sake of art and artists is no less than extraordinary, and it means a great deal to all of us to pay tribute to his outstanding legacy with the Monte Cristo Award," said Tom Viertel, O'Neill Board Chairman.

Tickets for the Monte Cristo Award Gala are available at Single tickets start at $1,250, tables start at $15,000. Multiple levels available. For sponsorship opportunities or additional information about the event, call 860-443-5378 ext. 288, or email

George C. White was raised in Waterford, Connecticut, and graduated with a BA from Yale University and an MFA from the Yale School of Drama. In addition to his responsibilities at the O'Neill, George served as Co-Chairman of the Theater Management Program at the Yale School of Drama, and regularly directed plays in such venues as the Actors Theater, the Guthrie Theater, the Hartman Theater, the Annenberg Center, and the Hedgerow Theater. He was the Founding Chairman of The Sundance Institute, served as a member of the Tony Awards Nominating Committee, and served on the following boards: National Arts Council, Metropolitan Opera Guild, Arts and Business Council, New Dramatists, Center for Inter-American Relations, International Theater Institute, Connecticut Commission on the Arts, and American Soviet Theater Initiative, Camargo Foundation, and Save Venice.

George's contributions to theater extend beyond the borders of the United States. Beginning in 1972, he has spearheaded cultural exchange efforts in such countries as Australia, People's Republic of China, Russia, and Brazil. In 1984 he directed a production of Eugene O'Neill's Anna Christie in Beijing, and in 1987 he directed Meredith Wilson's The Music Man in that same city. He continues to lecture throughout the world on behalf of the U.S. Information Agency. His international accomplishments have been recognized by being awarded the Royal Swedish Order of the Polar Star from King Carl Gustaf, and the French Republic's Chevalier des Artes et des Lettres. Of particular note are the numerous theatrical exchanges that George initiated in Russia, since the Cold War days of the early 1980s. He was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2013.

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