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2016 Drama Desk Awards: The Humans, Shuffle Along, She Loves Me Big Winners

DramaDeskAwardslogo2016

The Humans, Shuffle Along and She Loves Me are the big winners of the 61st Annual Drama Desk Awards, each scoring in four categories, including, respectively,  outstanding play, musical and musical revival.

Frank Langella of The Father, Jessica Lange of Long Day’s Journey into Night, Danny Burstein of Fiddler on the Roof, and Cynthia Erivo of The Color Purple won the four outstanding lead performers.

American Psycho won three awards on the night that it was closing, only six weeks after it opened.

See full list below. Winners have an asterisk and highlighted in red.

Also below, in green, are my personal votes. (I’m a voting member of the Drama Desk.) In those categories in which you only see red, it means I voted with the majority.

Outstanding Play
The Christians, Playwrights Horizons
*The Humans, Roundabout Theatre Company
John, Signature Theatre
King Charles III
The Royale, Lincoln Center Theater

Outstanding Musical
First Daughter Suite, Public Theater
Daddy Long Legs
School of Rock
*Shuffle Along
Waitress

Outstanding Revival of a Play
Cloud Nine, Atlantic Theater Company
Death of a Salesman, New Yiddish Rep
Henry IV, Donmar Warehouse at St. Ann’s Warehouse
Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Roundabout Theatre Company
*A View From the Bridge
Women Without Men, Mint Theater Company

A View from the Bridge 11

Outstanding Revival of a Musical
The Color Purple
The Golden Bride, National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene
Fiddler on the Roof
*She Loves Me, Roundabout Theatre Company
Spring Awakening

Laura Benanti

Laura Benanti

Outstanding Book of a Musical

*John Caird, Daddy Long Legs
Michael John LaChiusa, First Daughter Suite
Jessie Nelson, Waitress

Outstanding Actor in a Play
Andrew Garman, The Christians, Playwrights Horizons
Avi Hoffman, Death of a Salesman
*Frank Langella, The Father, Manhattan Theatre Club
Tim Pigott-Smith, King Charles III
Mark Strong, A View From the Bridge

Outstanding Actress in a Play
Georgia Engel, John, Signature Theatre
Mamie Gummer, Ugly Lies the Bone, Roundabout Undeground
Marin Ireland, Ironbound, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater/Women’s Project Theater
*Jessica Lange, Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Nicola Walker, A View From the Bridge

Outstanding Actor in a Musical
*Danny Burstein, Fiddler on the Roof
Robert Creighton, Cagney, York Theatre Company
Michael C. Hall, Lazarus, New York Theatre Workshop
Zachary Levi, She Loves Me
Benjamin Walker, American Psycho

Outstanding Actress in a Musical
Laura Benanti, She Loves Me
Carmen Cusack, Bright Star
*Cynthia Erivo, The Color Purple
Jessie Mueller, Waitress
Annette O’Toole, Southern Comfort, Public Theater

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
Bill Camp, The Crucible
David Furr, Noises Off, Roundabout Theatre Company
Matt McGrath, The Legend of Georgia McBride, MCC Theater
Richard Thomas, Incident at Vichy, Signature Theatre
*Michael Shannon, Long Day’s Journey Into Night

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Brooke Bloom, Cloud Nine
Megan Hilty, Noises Off
Kellie Overbey, Women Without Men
*Saycon Sengbloh, Eclipsed, Public Theater
Jeanine Serralles, Gloria, Vineyard Theatre

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Nicholas Barasch, She Loves Me
*Christopher Fitzgerald, Waitress
Baylee Littrell, Disaster!
Paul Alexander Nolan, Bright Star
A.J. Shively, Bright Star

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Danielle Brooks, The Color Purple
Alison Fraser, First Daughter Suite
Rachel Bay Jones, Dear Evan Hansen, Second Stage
*Jane Krakowski, She Loves Me
Mary Testa, First Daughter Suite

Outstanding Director of a Play
Rachel Chavkin, The Royale
Sam Gold, John
Rupert Goold, King Charles III
Joe Mantello, The Humans
Jenn Thompson, Women Without Men
*Ivo van Hove, A View From the Bridge

Outstanding Director of a Musical (tie)
Michael Arden, Spring Awakening
*John Doyle, The Color Purple
Rupert Goold, American Psycho
*Bartlett Sher, Fiddler on the Roof
Bryna Wasserman, Motl Didner, The Golden Bride

Outstanding Choreography
Joshua Bergasse, Cagney
Spencer Liff, Spring Awakening
Lynne Page, American Psycho
Randy Skinner, Dames at Sea
*Savion Glover, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Music
Sara Bareilles, Waitress
Michael John LaChiusa, First Daughter Suite
Andrew Lloyd Webber, School of Rock
The Lobbyists, SeaWife, Naked Angels
*Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, Bright Star

Outstanding Lyrics
Sara Bareilles, Waitress
*Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, Dear Evan Hansen
Glenn Slater, School of Rock
Michael John LaChiusa, First Daughter Suite

Outstanding Orchestrations
August Eriksmoen, Bright Star
*Larry Hochman, She Loves Me, Roundabout Theatre Company
Joseph Joubert/Catherine Jayes, The Color Purple
Andrew Lloyd Webber, School of Rock
Michael Starobin/Bruce Coughlin, First Daughter Suite

Outstanding Music in a Play
Billie Joe Armstrong, These Paper Bullets!, Atlantic Theatre Company
Estelle Bajou, Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally, One Year Lease Theater Company
Shaun Davey, Pericles, Theatre for a New Audience
*Philip Glass, The Crucible
Tom Kitt, Cymbeline, New York Shakespeare Festival

Outstanding Set Design for a Play
Riccardo Hernandez, Red Speedo, New York Theatre Workshop
Mimi Lien, John
G.W. Mercier, Head of Passes, Public Theater
*Christopher Oram, Hughie
Derek McLane, Fully Committed

Outstanding Set Design for a Musical
Es Devlin, American Psycho
Emily Orling, Matt Saunders, Eric Farber, Futurity, Soho Rep/Ars Nova
*David Rockwell, She Loves Me

Outstanding Costume Design for a Play
Jessica Ford, These Paper Bullets!
Martha Hally, Women Without Men
Constance Hoffman, Pericles
William Ivey Long, Shows for Days, Lincoln Center Theater
*Anita Yavich, The Legend of Georgia McBride

Outstanding Costume Design for a Musical
Jane Greenwood, Bright Star
Katrina Lindsay, American Psycho
Jeff Mahshie, She Loves Me
Alejo Vietti, Allegiance
*Ann Roth, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Lighting Design for a Play
Neil Austin, Hughie
Mark Barton, John
Bradley King, Empanada Loca, Labyrinth Theater Company
Tyler Micoleau, Antlia Pneumatica, Playwrights Horizons
*Justin Townsend, The Humans

Outstanding Lighting Design for a Musical
Jane Cox, The Color Purple
Jake DeGroot, SeaWife
Ben Stanton, Spring Awakening
*Justin Townsend, American Psycho
Jules Fisher/Peggy Eisenhauer, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Projection Design
Nicholas Hussong, These Paper Bullets!
Darrel Maloney, Tappin’ Thru Life
Peter Nigrini, Dear Evan Hansen
*Finn Ross, American Psycho
Tal Yarden, Lazarus

Outstanding Sound Design in a Play
Fitz Patton, An Act of God
*Fitz Patton, The Humans
Miles Polaski, Fulfillment, The Flea Theatre
Bray Poor, John
Ryan Rumery, Empanada Loca

Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical
Mick Potter, School of Rock
Brian Ronan, Lazarus
Nevin Steinberg, Bright Star
*Dan Moses Schreier, American Psycho
Scott Lehrer, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Wig and Hair
David Brian Brown, She Loves Me
Jason Hayes, The Legend of Georgia McBride
Robert-Charles Vallance, Women Without Men
Charles G. LaPointe, The School for Scandal, Red Bull Theater
*Mia M. Neal, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Solo Performance
Simon Callow, Tuesdays at Tesco’s, 59E59
Kathleen Chalfant, Rose, Nora’s Playhouse
James Lecesne, The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey
Daphne Rubin-Vega, Empanada Loca
*Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Fully Committed

Unique Theatrical Experience
ADA/AVA, Manual Cinema/3LD/The Tank
Antigona – Soledad Barrio/Noche Flamenca
*That Physics Show
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show
YOUARENOWHERE – 3LD/The Tank

Special Awards

 
*The Humans – Special Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble
Cassie Beck, Reed Birney, Jayne Houdyshell, Lauren Klein, Arian Moayed, and Sarah Steele spend a very special Thanksgiving Day together in Stephen Karam’s play, reminding us that home is indeed where The Humans are.
*The Royale – Special Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble
The heavyweight cast of McKinley Belcher III, Khris Davis, Montego Glover, John Lavelle, and Clarke Peters gels as a unit in bringing Marco Ramirez’s story, inspired by Jack Johnson, to unforgettable life, offering a trenchant statement on racism in America.
*Sheldon Harnick – Special Drama Desk Award
New productions of Fiddler on the RoofRothschild and Sons, and She Loves Me this season remind us that this veteran lyricist’s takes on faith, family and community are as resonant as ever.
*Camp Broadway – Special Drama Desk Award
For more than 20 years, this indispensable organization has introduced young people to the magic of theater. Camp Broadway plays a crucial role in creating tomorrow’s audiences.
*Danai Gurira – Sam Norkin Award
Whether writing about women in wartime Liberia in Eclipsed or about an affluent immigrant family from Zimbabwe struggling with assimilation in Familiar, Danai Gurira demonstrates great insight, range, and depth, bringing a fresh new voice to American theater.
Check out the explanation of the various theater awards in my guide to 2016 New York City theater awards
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About New York Theater
Jonathan Mandell is a 3rd generation NYC journalist, who sees shows, reads plays, writes reviews and sometimes talks with people.

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