Tony Award Winner David Henry Hwang is the 2022 Lucille Lortel Playwrights’ Sidewalk Inductee; Deirdre O’Connell will Receive the Lifetime Achievement Award

The Lucille Lortel Awards, the preeminent honor presented exclusively to recognize Outstanding Achievement Off-Broadway, have confirmed their return to a LIVE in-person celebration on Sunday, May 1, 2022, at 7:00PM at NYU Skirball. All New York University guidelines regarding COVID-19 at the time of the event will be enforced. Tony Award winning playwright David Henry Hwang will be inducted onto the famed Playwrights’ Sidewalk in front of the Lucille Lortel Theatre and Deirdre O’Connell will be presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award. The Lucille Lortel Awards are produced by the Off-Broadway League and Lucille Lortel Theatre, with additional support provided by TDF.

David Henry Hwang. Photo by Lia Chang

Playwrights’ Sidewalk Inductee, David Henry Hwang is a 2020 Lucille Lortel Award nominee for Outstanding Musical for his show, Soft Power, which premiered at The Public Theater. He won the 1988 Tony Award for Best Play for M. Butterfly, most recently revived on Broadway in 2017, and is a three-time finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Hwang sits on the board of the American Theatre Wing, where he has served as Chair, and on the Council of the Dramatists Guild.

Other Playwrights’ Sidewalk Inductees include Anna Deavere Smith (2020), María Irene Fornés 2019, Michael Friedman (2018), Lynn Nottage (2017), Suzan-Lori Parks (2016), Jeanine Tesori (2015), Richard Nelson (2014), Neil LaBute (2013), Richard foreman (2012), Christopher Durang (2007), John Patrick Shanley (2006), Tony Kushner (2004).

Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, Deirdre O’Connell received the 2020 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Solo Show for her performance in Dana H. at the Vineyard Theatre, then reprised the role on Broadway in fall 2021. Additional recent theatre credits include Fulfillment Center and By the Water at New York City Center, as well as In the Wake at The Public Theater. She also has an OBIE for Sustained Excellence in Performance and a Lilly Award for Distinguished Service to Playwrights.

Tickets can be purchased beginning April 7 online at tickets.nyu.edu or by visiting the box office in person, Wednesday – Friday from 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm. NYU Skirball is located at 566 LaGuardia Place at Washington Square, New York, New York 10012.

The Off-Broadway League’s Lortel Awards Producing & Administration Committee (Jeremy Adams, Tisa Chang, Carol Fishman, George Forbes, Danielle Karliner Naish, Ralph Peña, Catherine Russell, Lindsey Sag, and Casey York) and the Lucille Lortel Theatre (George Forbes, Jeffrey Shubart, Nancy Hurvitz, Alana Canty-Samuel, Maura Le Viness, and Karla Liriano) produce the Lortel Awards Ceremony. Acclaimed writer/director Michael Heitzman returns to direct the Lortel Awards for the twelfth consecutive year. Representatives of the Off-Broadway League, Actors’ Equity Association, Stage Directors & Choreographers Society, United Scenic Artists, the Lucille Lortel Theatre, in addition to theatre journalists, academics and other Off-Broadway professionals, serve on the Voting Committee.

For updates and news visit www.LortelAwards.org.

David Henry Hwang’s work includes the plays M. Butterfly, Chinglish, Yellow Face, Golden Child, The Dance and the Railroad, and FOB, as well as the Broadway musicals Aida, Flower Drum Song (2002 revival) and Disney’s Tarzan. His Off-Broadway shows have premiered at The Public Theater and Signature Theatre, where he was a Residency One playwright. Called America’s most-produced living opera librettist by Opera News, he has written thirteen libretti, including five with composer Philip Glass. His screenplays include M. Butterfly and he is currently penning the live-action feature musical remake of Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame as well as creating two television series, Billion Dollar Whale for Westward/SKG and another for Netflix. He is also writing the screenplay for a a biopic of Anna May Wong, adapted from Graham Russell Gao Hodges’ 2012 biography, Anna May Wong: From Laundryman’s Daughter to Hollywood Legend. The project is being developed by Gemma Chan and producer Nina Yang Bongiovi and Working Title Films.

Hwang co-wrote the Gold Record “Solo” with the late pop music icon Prince and was a Writer/Consulting Producer for the Golden Globe-winning television series The Affair from 2015-2019. He is a Tony Award-winner and three-time nominee, a Grammy Award winner and two-time nominee, a three-time OBIE Award winner, and a three-time Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Drama. Hwang sits on the board of the American Theatre Wing, where he has served as Chair, and on the Council of the Dramatists Guild. His most recent musical, Soft Power, written with composer Jeanine Tesori, premiered in New York at The Public Theater, where it received five Lucille Lortel nominations, four Outer Critics Honors, a Grammy nomination for Best Musical Theatre Album, and was a Finalist for the 2020 Pulitzer Prize.

Deirdre O’Connell

Deirdre O’Connell’s recent favorite theatre credits include: Dana H by Lucas Hnath at the Lyceum, Vineyard, Goodman, and Kirk Douglas Theatres (Lortel, New York Drama Critics Special Citation, OBIE, Outer Critics Circle, Los Angeles Critics Circle, and Ovation Awards); Before The Meeting by Adam Bock at Williamstown Theater Festival; Fulfillment Center by Abe Koogler (Drama Desk and Drama League Award nominations) and By the Water by Sharyn Rothstein (Lortel nomination) at Manhattan Theatre Club; Terminus by Gabriel Jason Dean, Cavedweller by Kate Moira Ryan and Love and Anger by George F. Walker at New York Theatre Workshop; The Way West by Mona Mansour and Thinner Than Water by Melissa Ross at LAByrinth Theater Company; Judy by Max Posner at Page 73; Magic/Bird by Eric Simonson at the Longacre Theatre; Little Children Dream of God by Jeff Augustin at Roundabout; Thunderbodies by Kate Tarker at Soho Rep; Scarcity by Lucy Thurber and Rag and Bone by Noah Haidle at Rattlestick; The Vandal by Hamish Linklater at Flea; Circle Mirror Transformation by Annie Baker (OBIE and Drama Desk Awards); Manic Flight Reaction by Sarah Schumann, Moe’s Lucky Seven by Marlene Meyer and Spatter Pattern by Neal Bell at Playwrights Horizons; In the Wake by Lisa Kron (Lortel nomination, Los Angeles Ovation Award, Richard Seff Actors’ Equity Award); The Poor Itch by John Belluso, In The Blood by Suzan-Lori Parks at The Public Theater; End Days by Deborah Zoe Laufer at Ensemble Studio Theatre; Lovely Day by Leslie Ayvazian at The Play Company; Antigone by Mac Wellman at Big Dance Theatre; Looking for the Pony by Andrea Lepcio at Vital Theatre; Pyretown by John Belluso at Keen Company; and Mud by María Irene Fornés at Signature Theatre. Recent films include Diane, Lez Bomb, I Am a Seagull, The Boy Downstairs, Gabriel, Synecdoche, New York, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. TV includes roles on the upcoming “Outer Range” and “Big Door Prize,” as well as “One Dollar,” “The Path,” “The Affair,” and “Nurse Jackie.” She has an OBIE for Sustained Excellence in Performance and a Lilly Award for Distinguished Service to Playwrights.

The Lucille Lortel Awards for Outstanding Achievement Off-Broadway were created in 1985 by the Off-Broadway League. The Lortel Awards recognize excellence in Off-Broadway by honoring the invaluable contribution of artists to the theatre community. Representatives of the Off-Broadway League, Actors’ Equity Association, Stage Directors & Choreographers Society, United Scenic Artists, the Lucille Lortel Theatre, in addition to theatre journalists, academics and other Off-Broadway professionals, serve on the Voting Committee. Awards may be given in the following categories: Play, Musical, Solo Show, Revival, Alternative Theatrical Experience, Director, Choreographer, Lead Performer in a Play and Musical, Featured Performer in a Play and Musical, Ensemble, Scenic, Costume, Lighting, Sound, and Projection Design. The following honorary awards may also be given: Lifetime Achievement Award, Body of Work (awarded to an institution), Edith Oliver Service to Off-Broadway Award and induction onto the Playwrights’ Sidewalk in front of the historic Lucille Lortel Theatre in New York City. For more information, please see www.LortelAwards.org.

Lia Chang

Lia Chang loves to tell stories – as an actor, a multi-media content producer, a performing arts photographer and an award-winning filmmaker. A co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, Lia makes films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, and The Last Dragon. She Executive Produced and stars in the indie films Hide and Seek (AA Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Best Actress Nomination), Rom-Com Gone Wrong, and When the World Was Young (2021 DisOrient Film Audience Choice Award for Best Short Narrative). Lia made her stage debut as Liat in a national tour of South Pacific with Barbara Eden and Robert Goulet, was featured as Joy in Signature Theatre’s revival of Sam Shepard’s Chicago and has worked extensively Off-Broadway. Photo archives: Lia Chang Theater Portfolio collection,1989-2011, housed in the AAPI collection in the Library of Congress’ Asian Reading Room; Lia Chang Photography Collection in The Billy Rose Theatre Division of the New York Public Library. Awards: 2000 OCA Chinese American Journalist Award, the 2001 AAJA National Award for New Media. Lia is an AAJA Executive Leadership Graduate (2000), a Western Knight Fellow at USC’s Annenberg College of Communications for Specialized Journalism on Entertainment Journalism in the Digital Age (2000), a National Press Photographers Association Visual Edge/Visual Journalism Fellow at the Poynter Institute for New Media (2001), a Scripps Howard New Media Fellow at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism (2002), and a National Tropical Garden Environmental Journalism Fellow (2003). www.liachang.com, www.liachangphotography.com

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