Prior to Thursday night’s performance of Anais Mitchell’s Hadestown, Tony and Emmy Award winner André De Shields was being honored at the annual Harlem Week kick-off reception at Gracie Mansion in New York.
This year’s Harlem Week theme is “Our Local History Creates A Global Impact.” Harlem Week is celebrating its 45th anniversary year from July 28 – August 31, 2019 and is joining forces with the City of Memphis for its bicentennial anniversary celebrating “A New Century of Soul.” Click here for more information on Harlem Week.
Fox 5 News reporter Antwan Lewis welcomed Mr. De Shields to the stage praising his incredible cultural contributions and ongoing commitment to service in the LGBTQ community.
Mr. De Shields received the inaugural Harlem Week Pride 50 Award and a Certificate of Recognition from the New York City Mayor’s Office which cited, “On the occasion of the Harlem Week reception at Gracie Mansion, for your contributions to the cultural landscape of the five boroughs, as a multi-talented and award-winning performer, you have enriched our vibrant theater community and uplifted and inspired diverse New Yorkers. You have also empowered the next generation of artists through your work as an educator. I am pleased to join with The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce in applauding your achievements and wishing you continued success together, we are forging a brighter, more inclusive future for all.” -Bill de Blasio, Mayor
In a career spanning fifty years, André De Shields has distinguished himself as an unparalleled actor, director and educator. Mr. De Shields is the triple crown winner of the 2019 Awards Season, having won the prestigious Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk and Tony Awards in the category of Best Actor in a Featured Role for his performance as Hermes, Messenger To the Gods in Hadestown, which won as Best Musical. His other numerous accolades include the 2019 Actors’ Equity Foundation’s Richard Seff Award, honoring best performances by a veteran male and female actor, the 2018 Off Broadway Alliance Legend Award, the 2009 National Black Theatre Festival’s Living Legend Award, the 2007 Village Voice OBIE Award for Sustained Excellence of Performance, and eight AUDELCO Awards for Outstanding Performance, Direction and Choreography. He continues to be consistently acclaimed for his show stopping performances in four legendary Broadway musicals: The Full Monty (Tony Nomination), Play On! (Tony Nomination), Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Emmy Award) and The Wiz (Title Role). Mr. De Shields is proud a member of AEA, SAG-AFTRA and SDC. www.andredeshields.com
About HARLEM WEEK
HARLEM WEEK is an annual celebration of the best of Harlem which works to promote its rich African-American, African, Caribbean, Hispanic and European history, as well as arts, culture, religion, business, entertainment and sports. HARLEM WEEK began in 1974 as HARLEM DAY, a one day event of encouragement and fellowship in Harlem for New Yorkers. Given the huge success of the celebration, additional days were added to showcase the community’s rich economic, political and cultural history. HARLEM WEEK now offers over 110 events throughout the summer to over 2 million attendees, including participants and visitors from around the world.
Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations. Lia is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. Lia has appeared in the filmsWolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.