Sunday, July 1, 2012

The 3rd Annual David Desk Awards


For the past three years, I've listed my personal choices for the best theatrical work of the season. As a member of the Drama Desk, New York Drama Critics Circle, Outer Critics Circle and the American Theatre Critics Association, I do get to vote on all those awards as well as the Tonys. For eight years, I was a member of the Drama Desk nominating committee. But now I like to include what I would like to have seen nominated in various categories. So here they are the David Desk Awards for 2011-12. It's not meant as a criticism of the other awards, just my personal taste. I know it's a month after the Tonys, but so what? These are just for fun and reflect what I have seen during the season and it includes Broadway, Off and Off-Off on an equal footing. I have limited the number to six per category, but did not put in that many just to fill up a category if I did not feel there were six truly worthy candidates.

Play:
"The Big Meal" (Dan LeFranc)
“Blood and Gifts” (J.T. Rogers)
“By the Way, Meet Vera Stark” (Lynn Nottage)
“The Columnist” (David Auburn)
“The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide…” (Tony Kushner)
“Sons of the Prophet” (Stephen Karam)

Musical:
“Lysistrata Jones”
"Newsies"
“Once”

Play Revival:
"Beyond the Horizon"
"Death of a Salesman"
“How I Learned to Drive”
“Wit”

Musical Revival:
“Follies”
“Porgy and Bess”

Actor (Play):
Simon Russell Beale, “Bluebird”
James Corden, “One Man, Two Guvnors”
Michael Cristofer, “The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide…”
Philip Seymour Hoffman, "Death of a Salesman"
Derek Jacobi, “King Lear” (BAM)
John Lithgow, “The Columnist”

Actress (Play):
Tracie Bennett, “End of the Rainbow”
Kathleen Chalfant, "Painting Churches"
Tyne Daly, “Master Class”
Sanaa Lathan, “By the Way, Meet Vera Stark”
Linda Lavin, “The Lyons”
Ellen McLaughlin, “Septimus & Clarissa”

Actor (Musical):
Danny Burstein, "Follies"
Jeremy Jordan, "Newsies"
Norm Lewis, “Porgy and Bess”
Varla Jean Merman (Jeffrey Roberson), “Lucky Guy”
Steve Kazee, “Once”

Actress (Musical):
Jan Maxwell, “Follies”
Audra McDonald, “Porgy and Bess”
Cristin Milioti, “Once”
Molly Ranson, "Carrie"
Elena Roger, "Evita"
Mary Testa, “Queen of the Mist”

Featured Actor (Play):
Oliver Chris, “One Man, Two Guvnors”
Peter Francis James, “The Lady from Dubuque”
James Earl Jones, "The Best Man"
Jefferson Mays, “Blood and Gifts”
Bernard White, “Blood and Gifts”

Featured Actress (Play):
Kimberly H├ębert Gregory, “By the Way, Meet Vera Stark”
Adrienne C. Moore, “Milk Like Sugar”
Tonya Pinkins, “All’s Well That Ends Well,” “Hurt Village” and “Milk Like Sugar”
Wrenn Schmidt, "Beyond the Horizon"
Jeanine Serralles, “Maple and Vine”
Danielle Skraastad, “The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide…”

Featured Actor (Musical):
Phillip Boykin, “Porgy and Bess”
Michael Cerveris, "Evita"
David Alan Grier, “Porgy and Bess”
Patrick Page, “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark”
Andrew Samonsky, “Queen of the Mist”

Featured Actress (Musical):
Lindsay Nicole Chambers, “Lysistrata Jones”
Judy Kaye, “Nice Work If You Can Get It”
Da’Vine Joy Randolph, “Ghost”
Melissa Van Der Schyff, “Bonnie & Clyde”
Lilias White, "The Best Is Yet to Come"

Director (Play):
Jo Bonney, “By the Way, Meet Vera Stark”
Sam Gold, "The Big Meal"
Michael Grief, “The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide…”
Nicholas Hytner, “One Man, Two Guvnors”
Mike Nichols, "Death of a Salesman"
Bartlett Sher, “Blood and Gifts”

Director (Musical):
Jack Cummings III, “Queen of the Mist”
Diane Paulus, “Porgy and Bess”
Eric Schaeffer, “Follies”
John Tiffany, “Once”

Choreography:
Christopher Gattelli, "Newsies"
Dan Knechtges, “Lysistrata Jones”

Set Design:
David Gallo, “Hurt Village”
David Korins, “Chinglish”
Christopher Oram, "Evita"
Neil Patel, “By the Way, Meet Vera Stark”
Mark Wendland, “The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide…”

Costume Design:
Gregg Barnes, “Follies”
ESosa, “By the Way, Meet Vera Stark”
William Ivey Long, “Lucky Guy,” “The School for Lies”
David C. Woolard and Thomas Charles LeGalley, “Lysistrata Jones”

Lighting Design:
Neil Austin, "Evita"
Michael Gilliam, “Bonnie & Clyde”
Natasha Katz, “Once”
Brian Nason, "Beyond the Horizon"
Keith Parham, “Septimus & Clarissa”

Sound Design:
Clive Goodwin, “Once”
Matt Tierney, Ben Williams, “The Sun Also Rises (The Select)”

Unique Theatrical Experience:
"You Better Sit Down: Tales From My Parents' Divorce"

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