Drama League Awards: John Larroquette and Stockard Channing to host

John Larroquette (The Best Man) and Stockard Channing (Other Desert Cities) will co-host the 78th Annual Drama League Awards Ceremony and Luncheon at 12pm (noon) on 18 May 2012at the Grand Ballroom of the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square.

Drama League Executive Director Gabriel Shanks said, "We are thrilled to have Stockard and John hosting the best party on Broadway. With two of New York's brightest stars at the helm, the afternoon will be a joyful and unforgettable celebration of this season's excellence."

The nominations will be announced on 24 Apr 2012 at Sardi's Restaurant.

The Drama League recently announced the 2012 recipients for Distinguished Contributions and Achievements in the Theatre, as follows:

  • Eight-time Academy Award-winner, theatre and movie composer Alan Menken (Newsies, Leap of Faith, Sister Act) will receive the Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theatre Award in recognition of his contribution to the musical theatre
  • Stage, television and movie star Rosie O'Donnell (Fiddler on the Roof, Suessical, Grease) will receive the Unique Contribution to the Theatre Award for her continuing efforts in promoting live theatre.
  • Drama League Directors Project alum Diane Paulus, the Artistic Director of the American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge, Mass., the director of the Broadway production of The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess and a Tony nominee for Hair, will receive The Founders Award for Excellence in Directing (formerly named the Julia Hansen Award).

The Drama League Awards pays tribute to the season's best performers by including the nominees of The Distinguished Performance Award on a dais. The 78th Annual Drama League Awards dais will feature more than 50 stars from the 2011-12 Broadway and Off-Broadway season.

In addition to The Distinguished Performance Award, The Drama League's 3,000 members vote on four other annual competitive awards: Distinguished Production of a Play, Distinguished Production of a Musical, Distinguished Revival of a Play and Distinguished Revival of a Musical.

Last season, Drama League Awards were presented to:
Mary Rylance (Distinguished Performance)
War Horse (Distinguished Production of a Play)
The Book of Mormon (Distinguished Production of a Musical)
The Normal Heart (Distinguished Revival of a Play)
Anything Goes (Distinguished Revival of a Musical).

The first Drama League Award was presented to actress Katharine Cornell in 1935, making it the oldest national theatre honor, predating the Tony Awards by twelve years, as well as the first audience-selected award for distinguished performance in a theatrical production.

Throughout the past 75 years, the Distinguished Performance Award has been accorded to a roster of theatre legends such as Liam Neeson, Hugh Jackman, Patti LuPone, Glenn Close, Liev Schreiber, Sir John Gielgud, Harvey Fierstein, Cherry Jones, Alec Guinness, James Earl Jones, Julie Harris, Helen Hayes, Jeremy Irons, Mary-Louise Parker, Sir Ian McKellen, Bernadette Peters, and Christopher Plummer.

The Drama League was founded in 1916 as an association of theatre professionals and patrons dedicated to encouraging the finest in professional theatre and has since then developed into the theatre's premiere service organization.

John LarroquetteStockard Channing

Originally published on

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