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61st Annual OBIE Awards: And the Winners are...

Tom Millward
Tom Millward

The 61st Annual OBIE Awards took place on 23 May 2015 at Webster Hall in the East Village, hosted once again by "Orange is the New Black" actress Lea DeLaria. Other presenters last night included Colman Domingo, Danai Gurira, Maura Tierney, Kate Burton, Savion Glover, Elizabeth Marvel, Carrie Preston, Norm Lewis, Tovah Feldshuh, Marlo Thomas, Lisa Kron, David Henry Hwang, Jordan Roth, and Natasha Katz.

At the ceremony, Lea DeLaria performed an opening number with "Orange is the New Black" cast mates Emily Althaus, Lori Tan Chinn, Joel Marsh Garland, Kimiko Glenn, Annie Golden, Vicky Jeudy, Emma Myles, Dascha Polenco, and Dale Soules, as well as Stephen Wallem. In addition, Tony nominee Leslie Odom, Jr. marked the 20th Anniversary of 'Rent' by singing "Without You" and 'Dear Evan Hansen' star Ben Platt performed "Waving Through a Window."

Here is a complete list of the winners:


  • A.R. Gurney
  • Carmen de Lavallade


  • Guards at the Taj: written by Rajiv Joseph (Atlantic Theatre Company)

THE ROSS WETZSTEON AWARD (inc. $3,000 prize)

  • NAATCO/National Asian American Theatre Company

OBIE GRANTS ($4,000 prize each)

  • Bedlam Theatre
  • Noor Theatre
  • Prospect Theatre Company


  • Lucas Hnath: The Christians (Playwrights Horizons) and Red Speedo (New York Theatre Workshop)
  • Stephen Karam: The Humans (Roundabout Theatre Company)


  • Dear Evan Hansen: Steven Levenson (Book), Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (Music & Lyrics) - (Second Stage Theatre)


  • Khris Davis: The Royale (Lincoln Center Theater)
  • Emily Donahoe: The Christians (Playwrights Horizons)
  • Georgia Engel: John (Signature Theatre Company)
  • Pascale Armand, Akosua Busia, Zainab Jah, Lupita Nyong'o & Saycon Sengbloh: Ensemble of Eclipsed (The Public Theater)
  • Jayne Houdyshell: The Humans (Roundabout Theatre Company)
  • Omar Metwally & Arian Moayed: Guards at the Taj (Atlantic Theater Company)
  • Ben Platt: Dear Evan Hansen (Second Stage Theatre)
  • Lucas Caleb Rooney: Red Speedo (New York Theatre Workshop)
  • Tamara Tunie: Familiar (Playwrights Horizons)


  • Rachel Chavkin: The Royale (Lincoln Center Theater)
  • Michael Leibenluft: I'll Never Love Again (Bushwick Starr)


  • Rachel Hauck: Sustained Excellence of Set Design
  • Jason Lyons: Sustained Excellence of Lighting Design
  • James Ortiz: Puppet Design, The Woodsman (New World Stages)
  • Bray Poor: Sustained Excellence of Sound Design
  • Kaye Voyce: Sustained Excellence of Costume Design


  • John: Annie Baker (Playwright), Sam Gold (Director), and the design team of Mark Barton (Lighting), Ásta Bennie Hostetter (Costumes), Mimi Lien (Set), Noah Mease (Props) & Bray Poor (Sound) - (Signature Theatre Company)
  • Skeleton Crew: Dominique Morisseau (Playwright) & Ruben Santiago-Hudson (Director) - (Atlantic Theater Company)

For the past 61 years the OBIE Awards have honored the best of Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway. Structured with informal categories that change annually, The OBIE Awards recognize persons and productions of excellence. Unlike most theatre awards, the OBIE Awards have no nominations.

- by Tom Millward

Originally published on

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