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The Jeff Awards announces the 50th anniversary awards for non-equity theater
--From a press release
2024-03-26

This article shared 10393 times since Tue Mar 26, 2024
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A complete list of recipients can also be found online in the Non-Equity and News and Events sections at www.jeffawards.org .

(March 25, 2024 - Chicago) — Celebrating its 50th anniversary awarding recognition for Non-Equity theater, the Joseph Jefferson Awards announces the recipients for theater excellence among Non-Equity theater during the 2023 season. At this year's ceremony at Park West, 32 award recipients were honored from among 144 theater artists nominees across 24 artistic and technical categories. Awards were presented live in an evening co-hosted by Chicago entertainers Neala Barron and Ari Gato, under the direction of Adrian Abel Azevedo with music direction by Dr. Michael McBride and featured the work of many of the nominated productions and dozens of local theater artists as presenters.

Refracted Theatre Company received the most awards, with eight this season for its production of "Tambo & Bones" including honors for Production, Direction, Principal Performers, Lighting, Projection and Sound Designs as well as Original Music in a Play. For musicals, Kokandy Productions took home six awards including four for "American Psycho," which received awards for Production, Director, Principal Performer and Choreography, and two additional awards for "The SpongeBob Musical" including Supporting Performer and Artistic Specialization for Foley Design.

Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre captured three awards with its production of "Assassins" for Ensemble-Musical, Performer in a Supporting Role and Musical Direction. Tied for two awards each were Facility Theater including Ensemble-Play for "Right Now," Red Theater for Performer in a Supporting Role in "Indoor Cats," and Visión Latino Theatre Company, which took the Short Run awards (defined by 9-17 performances) in Production and Direction for "That Must Be the Entrance to Heaven."

Directing honors recognized Mikael Burke as Director — Play for "Tambo & Bones" with Refracted Theatre Company, and Derek Van Barham with Director — Musical for "American Psycho" at Kokandy Productions. Xavier M. Custodio was presented with the directing award for the Short Run Production of "That Must Be the Entrance to Heaven" performed by Visión Latino Theatre Company.

The Jeff Awards New Work category recognized three authors, including Mora V. Harris for "Indoor Cats" at Red Theater, John Hildreth for "Cat's Cradle" at Lifeline Theatre, and Shannon O'Neill for her work "The Kelly Girls" produced by The Factory Theater.

Performance awards were presented for Performer in a Principal Role — Play to both Patrick Newson Jr. and William Anthony Sebastian Rose II for "Tambo & Bones." Kyle Patrick from "American Psycho" shared Principal Performer in a Musical honors with Rory Schrobilgen from "Promises, Promises" (Blank Theatre Company). For their performances, Shawna Franks in "Right Now" (Facility Theatre) and Sarah Wisterman in "Indoor Cats" (Red Theater) received the award for Performer in a Supporting Role — Play. In the Supporting Role for a Musical, Parker Guidry was recognized for their work in "The SpongeBob Musical" along with Jon Parker Jackson from "Assassins." For the Short Run category, Jack Hradecky in "The Minutes" at Edge of the Wood Theatre and Kris Tori in the Water People Theater production of "North & Sur" were recipients of the Performer in a Principal Role award.

Among the technical awards, Kevin Hagan received the award for Scenic Design for work on "Dying For It" at The Artistic Home. Costume Design was awarded to Beth Laske-Miller & Rachel Sypniewski for "I Promised Myself to Live Faster" at Hell in a Handbag Productions. "Tambo & Bones" teams received recognition for

Eric Watkins (Lighting Design), Eme Ospina-López (Projection Design) and two awards for Ethan Korvne (Sound Design and Original Music in a Play).

Additional technical awards were presented for Choreography to Breon Arzell for "American Psycho" and Musical Direction to Heidi Joosten for "Assassins." The Artistic Specialization award was presented to Ele Matelan for Foley Design in "The SpongeBob Musical".

Recognizing unparalleled support of small Chicago theaters, arts philanthropists Michael and Mona Heath were also honored for their instrumental shaping of the cultural landscape of Chicago theater. Over the last decade, the Heaths have emerged as outstanding pillars of support for storefront Chicago theater. Their passion for the arts lives through a remarkable commitment to attending hundreds of shows annually as well as generous contributions made by the Michael and Mona Heath Fund, which has provided vital financial assistance to countless theaters and artists.

For its 50th Anniversary Non-Equity season, January 1, 2023, to December 31, 2023, Jeff Awards members attended 91 Non-Equity productions. From these, 46 productions became "Jeff Recommended" and, therefore, eligible for award nominations. There were year's Non-Equity awards spotlight 144 theater artists nominated across 24 categories of excellence in theater production among shows from 32 companies.

2024 NON-EQUITY JEFF AWARD RECIPIENTS

PRODUCTION — PLAY

"Tambo & Bones" — Refracted Theatre Company

PRODUCTION — MUSICAL

"American Psycho" — Kokandy Productions

ENSEMBLE — PLAY

"Right Now" — Facility Theatre

ENSEMBLE — MUSICAL

"Assassins" — Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre

NEW WORK

Mora V. Harris — "Indoor Cats" — Red Theater

John Hildreth — "Cat's Cradle" — Lifeline Theatre

Shannon O'Neill — "The Kelly Girls" — The Factory Theater

DIRECTOR — PLAY

Mikael Burke — "Tambo & Bones" — Refracted Theatre Company

DIRECTOR — MUSICAL

Derek Van Barham — "American Psycho" — Kokandy Productions

PERFORMER IN A PRINCIPAL ROLE — PLAY

Patrick Newson Jr. (Bones) — "Tambo & Bones" — Refracted Theatre Company

William Anthony Sebastian Rose II (Tambo) — "Tambo & Bones" — Refracted Theatre Company

PERFORMER IN A PRINCIPAL ROLE — MUSICAL

Kyle Patrick (Patrick Bateman) — "American Psycho" — Kokandy Productions

Rory Schrobilgen (Chuck Baxter) — "Promises, Promises" — Blank Theatre Company

PERFORMER IN A SUPPORTING ROLE — PLAY

Shawna Franks (Juliette) — "Right Now" — Facility Theatre

Sarah Wisterman (Panda) — "Indoor Cats" — Red Theater

PERFORMER IN A SUPPORTING ROLE — MUSICAL

Parker Guidry (Sheldon J. Plankton) — "The SpongeBob Musical" — Kokandy Productions

Jon Parker Jackson (Samuel Byck) — "Assassins" — Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre

PRODUCTION — SHORT RUN

"That Must Be the Entrance to Heaven" — Visión Latino Theatre Company

ENSEMBLE — SHORT RUN

"Once on This Island" — PULSE Theatre Company

DIRECTOR — SHORT RUN

Xavier M. Custodio — "That Must Be the Entrance to Heaven" — Visión Latino Theatre Company

PERFORMER — SHORT RUN

Jack Hradecky (Mr. Peel) — "The Minutes" — Edge of the Wood Theatre

Kris Tori (Alfonsina Storni) — "North & Sur" — Water People Theater

SCENIC DESIGN

Kevin Hagan — "Dying For It" — The Artistic Home

COSTUME DESIGN

Beth Laske-Miller & Rachel Sypniewski — "I Promised Myself to Live Faster" — Hell in a Handbag Productions

SOUND DESIGN

Ethan Korvne — "Tambo & Bones" — Refracted Theatre Company

LIGHTING DESIGN

Eric Watkins — "Tambo & Bones" — Refracted Theatre Company

PROJECTION DESIGN

Eme Ospina-López — "Tambo & Bones" — Refracted Theatre Company

CHOREOGRAPHY

Breon Arzell — "American Psycho" — Kokandy Productions

MUSIC DIRECTION

Heidi Joosten — "Assassins" — Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre

ORIGINAL MUSIC IN A PLAY

Ethan Korvne — "Tambo & Bones" — Refracted Theatre Company

ARTISTIC SPECIALIZATION

Ele Matelan (Foley Design) — "The SpongeBob Musical" — Kokandy Productions

MULTIPLE NOMINATIONS

By Company

Refracted Theatre Company 8

Kokandy Productions 6

Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre 3

Facility Theatre 2

Red Theater 2

Visión Latino Theatre Company 2

By Production

"Tambo & Bones" 8

"American Psycho" 4

"Assassins" 3

"Indoor Cats" 2

"Right Now" 2

"That Must Be the Entrance to Heaven" 2

"The SpongeBob Musical" 2

By Individual

Ethan Korvne 2

ABOUT THE JEFF AWARDS

The Jeff Awards is one of the most active and engaged theater awards organizations in the country evaluating hundreds of theatrical productions annually and holding two awards ceremonies highlighting work over the past Equity and Non-Equity seasons. Through our recommendations, awards, and honors we help foster the growth of companies, encourage artists, bring new appreciation for diverse storytelling, and cultivate civic pride in the achievements of the Chicago theater community. Originally chartered in 1968 to recognize Equity productions, the Jeff Awards Non-Equity Wing was established in 1973 to celebrate outstanding achievement in non-union theatre. For more information, visit www.jeffawards.org .

ABOUT NOMINATIONS AND THE AWARDS PROGRAM

The Jeff Awards website lists all current and previous recipients, and other Jeff Awards information and news. Visit www.jeffawards.org .

Media may contact theaters and artists directly for interviews. For quotes or an interview with any Jeff Awards committee member, please call or e-mail Suzanne Ross, Communications Chair, at 312-953-6987 or suzanne@suzanne-ross.com .


This article shared 10393 times since Tue Mar 26, 2024
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