Graciela Daniele, May Adrales, Mari Lyn Henry,  Mimi Lien, Joanne Pottlitzer, Natasha Sinha, Karen Zacarías, and Founding Members of The Kilroys to Receive 2019 Theatre Women Awards at The Sheen Center on March 25

May Adrales. Photo by Lia Chang
May Adrales. Photo by Lia Chang
May Adrales. Photo by Lia Chang

The League of Professional Theatre Women (Kelli Lynn Harrison and Catherine Porter, Co-Presidents), an organization which has been leading the gender parity conversation and championing women in the professional theatre for over 35 years, will present the 2019 Theatre Women Awards at The Sheen Center for Thought & Culture (18 Bleecker Street, New York, NY 10012) on Monday, March 25 at 7pm (doors open at 6:30pm). For more information on the 2019 Theatre Women Awards, and to purchase tickets, please visit

This year’s Theatre Women Awards will honor director/choreographer Graciela Daniele (Lifetime Achievement Award), director May Adrales (Josephine Abady Award), acting teacher and author Mari Lyn Henry (LPTW Special Award), the founding members of the feminist activist and advocacy group The Kilroys (LPTW Lucille Lortel Visionary Award), scenic designer Mimi Lien (Ruth Morley Award), translator/director/producer Joanne Pottlitzer (LPTW Special Award), producer/dramaturg Natasha Sinha (LPTW Lucille Lortel Award), and playwright Karen Zacarías (Lee Reynolds Award).

The League of Professional Theatre Women’s annual Theatre Women Awards are dedicated to promoting the visibility of the theatrical work of women artists and their contributions to the field, across all disciplines. For decades the LPTW has celebrated women who are consistently creating and working in every facet of the theatre industry. The diversity in disciplines of this year’s awardees, including choreographers, translators, casting directors, dramaturgs, educators, designers, playwrights, actors, and producers exemplifies the vast talents theatre women contribute to the art-form. Although some of these positions are not often recognized, they are critical to the success of the theatre industry, and the LPTW is proud to recognize their vital work in our community.

The theme for this year’s Theatre Women Awards is The Road to Parity. At last year’s Awards, LPTW launched its advocacy campaign #OneMoreConversation, which, in addition to taking off on social media, included direct contact with approximately 400 theatre leaders, decision-makers, and educators across the country encouraging leaders to have one more conversation — with a theatre woman — before making a hire. As 50/50 in 2020 approaches, #OneMoreConversation is only one step in the League’s Road to Parity. The breadth and scope of the 2019 TWA awardees’ experience and talent are a call to action: the goal is parity; the time is now.

Graciela Daniele (Lifetime Achievement Award) has directed on Broadway, at Lincoln Center and The Public Theater, and at regional theaters and has earned ten Tony Award nominations and six Drama Desk nominations. Her Broadway Director/Choreographic credits include Chita Rivera, The Dancer’s Life, Annie Get Your Gun, Marie Christine, Once on This Island, Chronicle of a Death Foretold and Dangerous Game. She has Musical Staged/Choreographed such shows as Ragtime (Astaire, Ovation [L.A.], NAACP, and Callaway Award), The Goodbye Girl, Zorba with Anthony Quinn, The Rink starring Liza Minnelli and Chita Rivera, and The Mystery of Edwin Drood. She choreographed the New York Shakespeare Festival production of The Pirates of Penzance on Broadway, Los Angeles and London, the motion picture of Pirates, and three Woody Allen films including Mighty Aphrodite, for which she won the 1996 Fosse Award, and Everyone Says I Love You, for which she won the 1997 Fosse Award. Ms. Daniele directed and choreographed A New Brain, which enjoyed an extended run in the summer of 1998 at Lincoln Center Theatre. She is recipient of the 1998 “Mr. Abbot” Award for Outstanding Achievement by a Director/Choreographer. Ms. Daniele directed and choreographed the Michael John LaChuisa’s Little Fish (Second Stage) and Bernarda Alba (Lincoln Center Theatre) along with the Lincoln Center Theatre production of William Finn’s Elegies, A Song Cycle. Most recently, she has choreographed The Visit on Broadway and the world premiere of Sousatzka at the Elgin Theatre in Toronto.

May Adrales (Josephine Abady Award) is a director, artistic leader and teacher and has directed over 25 world premieres. She recently was awarded the prestigious Theater Communications Group Alan Schneider award for freelance directors. She is a Drama League Directing Fellow, Women’s Project Lab Director, Soho Rep Writers/Directors Lab and New York Theater Workshop directing fellow, and a recipient of the TCG New Generations Grant, Denham Fellowship and Paul Green Directing Award. She proudly serves as an Associate Artistic Director at Milwaukee Rep. She is a former Director of On Site Programs at the Lark Play Development Center and Artistic Associate at The Public Theater. May has directed and taught at Juilliard, Harvard/ART, ACT, Fordham, NYU and Bard College. She has served on faculty at the Yale School of Drama and Brown/Trinity MFA program. MFA, Yale School of Drama. World premieres include Qui Nguyen’s Lortel Award and Obie Award winning, Vietgone and Poor Yella Rednecks (Manhattan Theatre Club, South Coast Rep, Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Seattle Rep); Lauren Gunderson’s Natural Shocks (WP Theater); Kemp Powers’s Little Black Shadows (South Coast); Idris Goodwin’s The Way The Mountain Moved (OSF); Chisa Hutchinson’s Somebody’s Daughter (Second Stage Theater) and The Wedding Gift (Contemporary American Theater Festival); JC Lee’s Luce (Lincoln Center); Katori Hall’s Whaddabloodclot!!! (Williamstown Theater Festival); A. Rey Pamatmat’s Edith Can Shoot Things and Hit Them (Actors Theatre of Louisville) and after all the terrible things I do (Milwaukee Rep); Thomas Bradshaw’s Mary (The Goodman Theatre) and The Bereaved (Partial Comfort Productions); Zakiyyah Alexander and Imani Uzuri’s girl shakes loose her skin (Penumbra); In This House (Two River Theater Company); Richard Dresser’s Trouble Cometh (SF Playhouse); and Tommy Smith’s The Wife (Access Theater). She directed David Henry Hwang’s The Dance and the Railroad at Signature Theater; Kimber Lee’s Tokyo Fish Story (Old Globe); Stefanie Zadravec’s The Electric Baby (Two River); Katori Hall’s The Mountaintop (Milwaukee Rep); Chinglish (Portland Center Stage, Syracuse Stage); Everything You Touch, (CATF); In the Next Room, or Vibrator Play and Disgraced (Syracuse Stage); and Breath and Imagination (Cleveland Playhouse). Upcoming Projects: Lloyd Suh’s The Chinese Lady at Milwaukee Rep and Hudson Valley Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing.

The Josephine Abady Award is given in memory of Josephine R. Abady, a stage and artistic director, and leader of the nonprofit theatre movement in the United States. The award is given annually to a woman theatre artist who has created work of cultural diversity.

Mari Lynn Henry (LPTW Special Award) has guided thousands of actors to successful careers in film, TV and theatre for over 45 years. Upon leaving her position as Director of Casting, East Coast for ABC/NY, which she held for over thirteen years, she launched an image and career coaching business. Her book, How to Be a Working Actor, (co-written by Lynne Rogers) is currently in its 5th Edition and continues to be the “Bible of the Biz.” Her workshops on on-camera audition techniques, sight reading, script analysis and impression management have been well-received in cities and universities throughout the U.S. as well as Toronto, London, Oxford and Sydney. As a guest faculty member at the Circle in the Square Theatre School, she advises the second-year students about career preparation and monologue auditions. She is the Dean of Students for the Tom Todoroff Conservatory in New York City, where she teaches the business of acting. For several years she also has been the industry showcase consultant for the New World School of the Arts in Miami. She has been a board member and V.P. of Programs for the League of Professional Theatre Women and is head of their heritage program. In 2013 she founded the Society for the Preservation of Theatrical History which produces a program about famous actresses of the past entitled Stage-Struck Sampler. She earned her BA in Speech and Drama at San Jose State University and a master’s degree in theatre from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

Mari Lynn Henry is receiving a LPTW Special Award for her service to the industry as a casting director, acting coach and teacher, and the author of one of most widely used manuals on the business of acting, as well as her service to the League in establishing theatre history and heritage as an important parity advocacy tool for the League.

The Kilroys (LPTW Lucille Lortel Visionary Award) are a gang of Los Angeles and New York City-based playwrights, directors, and producers who are done talking about gender parity and are taking action. For the past five years The Kilroys have been advocating for equal representation on American stages, and have released an annual list of under-produced plays by woman, trans, and non-binary writers. They mobilize others in their field and leverage their own power to support other marginalized theater artists. The current class of The Kilroys are Jaclyn Backhaus, Hilary Bettis, Jennifer Chambers, Claudia de Vasco, Emma Goidel, Christina Ham, Jessica Hanna, Monet Hurst-Mendoza, Obehi Janice, Hansol Jung, Chelsea Marcantel, Caroline V. McGraw, Bianca Sams, and Gina Young. The founding members are Zakiyyah Alexander, Bekah Brunstetter, Sheila Callaghan, Carla Ching, Annah Feinberg, Sarah Gubbins, Laura Jacqmin, Joy Meads, Kelly Miller, Meg Miroshnik, Daria Polatin, Tanya Saracho, and Marisa Wegrzyn.

The LPTW Lucille Lortel Visionary Award and accompanying grant is awarded from time to time to aspiring theatre women working outside the parameters of production, embody the spirit of Lucille Lortel and the League, and who show great creative promise deserving recognition and encouragement. This is only the 4th time it has been awarded.

Mimi Lien (Ruth Morley Award) is a designer of sets/environments for theater, dance, and opera. Arriving at set design from a background in architecture, her work often focuses on the interaction between audience/environment and object/performer. In 2017, Mimi won the Tony Award for her design of Natasha, Pierre and The Great Comet of 1812. In 2015, she was named a MacArthur Fellow, and is the first set designer ever to achieve this distinction. Mimi is a company member of Pig Iron Theatre Company, and co-founder of JACK, a performance/art space in Brooklyn. Selected work includes Model Home (a performance installation commissioned by WoW Festival, La Jolla Playhouse), Natasha, Pierre, & The Great Comet of 1812 (Broadway), An Octoroon (Soho Rep/TFANA), John (Signature Theatre), Appropriate (Mark Taper Forum), Preludes & The Oldest Boy (Lincoln Center), Black Mountain Songs (BAM Next Wave). Internationally, Mimi’s designs for dance have been presented in the Netherlands and Russia, and her work has been exhibited in the Prague Quadrennial. Her sculpture work was featured in the exhibition, LANDSCAPES OF QUARANTINE, at the Storefront for Art and Architecture. She is also a recipient of the Cullman Award for Extraordinary Creativity at Lincoln Center Theater, a Bessie Award, Drama Desk Award, Lucille Lortel Award, American Theatre Wing Hewes Design Award, LA Drama Critics Circle Award, and an OBIE Award for sustained excellence.

The Ruth Morley Design Award was initiated in 1998 in honor of costume designer Ruth Morley, one of the profession’s leading designers for theatre and film who also served on the LPTW Board of Directors. It is given annually to an outstanding female theatre designer in the field of costumes, scenery, lighting, or special effects.

Joanne Pottlitzer (LPTW Special Award) is a writer, theater director, and translator who has produced many Latin American plays in New York and is the winner of two Obie Awards, two Senior Fulbright Awards, two NEA translation grants, and multiple producing and writing awards. She has directed plays in New York, Los Angeles, Tucson, and Santiago de Chile. Her English translations of Latin American plays and screenplays have been produced, published, and distributed in New York and throughout the U.S. Among them are José Triana’s Common Words; Mario Vargas Llosa’s La Chunga, The Young Lady from Tacna, Kathie and the Hippopotamus; Daedalus in the Belly of the Beast by Marco Antonio de la Parra; Nelson 2 Rodrigues by Antunes Filho; Striptease and Saying Yes by Griselda Gámbaro; The Toothbrush by Jorge Díaz; and Mythweavers by Arturo Uslar Pietri. She also translated the dubbed version of Alejandro Jodorowsky’s film The Holy Mountain.

Joanne Pottlitzer is receiving a LPTW Special Award for her service to the industry as a translator, producer and archivist of Latin American theatre, and her service to the League in establishing the International Committee.

Natasha Sinha (LPTW Lucille Lortel Award) is a producer and dramaturg, focusing on new plays and new musical work. As Director of Artistic Programs at Signature Theatre, she spearheads new artistic programs for Signature, and she is artistic line producer for select plays and musicals. From 2012-2018, Natasha was Associate Director of LCT3/Lincoln Center Theater which exclusively produces premieres (including Disgraced by Ayad Akhtar, Rude Mechs’ Stop Hitting Yourself, Dave Malloy’s Preludes, War by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Bull in a China Shop by Bryna Turner, Ghost Light by Third Rail Projects, Martyna Majok’s Queens, and Antoinette Nwandu’s Pass Over). She kicked off the LCT3 Spotlight Series with SHABASH!, hosted by Danny Pudi and Parvesh Cheena. Natasha was previously the Associate Producer at Barrington Stage Company. In addition to producing and developing new plays, Natasha has worked on new musicals, including projects by Michael R. Jackson, Sukari Jones & Troy Anthony, Grace McLean, Shakina Nayfack, Sam Salmond, and Kit Yan & Melissa Li. Natasha is a co-founder of Beehive Dramaturgy Studio, which works with individual generative artists as well as organizations such as Page 73, Musical Theatre Factory, Astoria Performing Arts Center, and SDC. Natasha is on the Advisory Boards of SPACE on Ryder Farm and Musical Theatre Factory (where she co-moderates MTF’s POC Roundtable, exclusively for musical artists of color, and advises on various programs). She has also served as a judge on many award committees, taught classes, written articles, and created events to center a range of exciting new voices from historically underrepresented communities.

The LPTW Lucille Lortel Award and accompanying grant was founded in 2000 with a bequest from the estate of Lucille Lortel to annually honor “an aspiring woman in any discipline of theatre who is showing great creative promise and deserves recognition and encouragement.”

Karen Zacarías (Lee Reynolds Award) was recently hailed as one of the most produced playwrights in the US. Her award-winning plays include Destiny of Desire, Native Gardens, The Book Club Play, Legacy of Light, Mariela in the Desert, The Sins of Sor Juana, the adaptations of Just Like Us, Into the Beautiful North, Ella Enchanted, and How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent. She is the author of ten renowned TYA musicals and the librettist of several Ballets. She is one of the inaugural resident playwrights at Arena Stage, a core founder of the Latinx Theatre Commons, and a founder of Young Playwrights’ Theater. Born in Mexico, Karen resides in Washington DC with her husband and three children.

The Lee Reynolds Award, in memory of producer and League member Lee Reynolds, is given annually to a woman or women active in any aspect of theatre whose work through the medium of theatre has helped to illuminate the possibilities for social, cultural or political change.

The League of Professional Theatre Women (a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization) has been championing women and leading the gender parity conversation in the professional theatre for over 35 years. Since its founding, the LPTW’s membership has grown to 500+ theatre artists and practitioners of all backgrounds, across multiple disciplines, working in the commercial and non-profit sectors. To increase visibility of and opportunities for women in the field, the LPTW spearheads public programming, advocacy initiatives, events, media, and publications that raise awareness of the importance of nurturing women’s voices, celebrate industry luminaries, preserve the legacy of historic visionaries, and shine a spotlight on the imperative of striving for gender parity and fostering a diversity of expression, both in the theatre world and the world at large. To find out more about how you can support its endeavors, please visit


The League Of Professional Theatre Women Presents Baayork Lee in Conversation with Robert Viagas on February 12

Baayork Lee. Photo by Lia Chang

On Monday, February 12 at 6:00 pm, the League of Professional Theatre Women (LPTW), dedicated to championing women in theatre since its inception and an authority at the forefront of the conversation about gender parity in American theatre for 35 years, is presenting Broadway Performer, Director, and Choreographer, Baayork Lee.

Baayork Lee. Photo by Lia Chang
Baayork Lee. Photo by Lia Chang

A recipient of the 2017 Isabelle Stevenson TONY Award, Lee was honored for her commitment to future generations of artists through her work with National Asian Artists Project and theatre education programs around the world.

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 11: Jonathan Groff and Brian d'Arcy James present Baayork Lee with the Isabelle Stevenson Award award onstage during the 2017 Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 11: Jonathan Groff and Brian d’Arcy James present Baayork Lee with the Isabelle Stevenson Award award onstage during the 2017 Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)

Multimedia: Baayork Lee Accepts The Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award At The 71st Annual Tony Awards

Lee, who originated the role of Connie in A Chorus Line, will be discussing her extensive life and work in the theatre with theatre writer Robert Viagas, her collaborator and biographer on their book, “On the Line: the Creation of A Chorus Line”.The event will take place in the Bruno Walter Auditorium of the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts on 65th Street & Amsterdam Avenue. Admission is free, seats are available on a first-come-first-seated basis. Doors open at 5:30PM, and it is recommended that members of the public arrive at the Bruno Walter Auditorium by 5PM to secure a seat.

“I first met Baayork in 1975 when the Library videotaped Michael Bennett’s original A CHORUS LINE at The Public Theatre,” says producer Betty Corwin. “Baayork had become Michael’s closest collaborator and since he died in 1987 she has directed or choreographed 35 International productions of the musical. In addition, Baayork is acknowledged and appreciated for committing herself to the National Asian Artists Project and theatre eduction programs around the world. I am so proud to know her.”

The League has major support from the Edith Meiser Foundation covering interviews with such notables as Billie Allen, Mercedes Ruehl, Tyne Daly, Patti LuPone, Christine Ebersole, Kia Corthron, Donna Murphy, Frances McDormand, Laura Linney and many others. The ongoing Oral History Project chronicles and documents the contributions of significant theatre women in all fields. The interviews are videotaped and preserved for posterity in the Theatre on Film and Tape Archive at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center.

This program is made possible, in part, with public funds from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council, and with funds from the NYS Council on the Arts, a state agency, with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo


Baayork Lee has performed in a dozen Broadway shows and created the role of Connie in A Chorus Line. As Michael Bennett’s assistant choreographer on A Chorus Line, she has directed and choreographed many national and international companies in Klagenfurt, Austria, Santiago, Chile, Hollywood Bowl and Pace University. Her directing and choreography credits also include: The King and I and Bombay Dreams (National tours), R&H’s Cinderella (NYC Opera), Barnum (Australia), Carmen Jones (Kennedy Center), Porgy and Bess and Jesus Christ Superstar (European tours), Gypsy and A New Brain. She has also choreographed shows including; Miss Saigon (KC Starlight), Mack and Mabel (Shaw Festival), Animal Crackers, South Pacific (Helen Hayes nominations,) Coconuts, Camelot, and Damn Yankees all at Arena Stage in Washington, DC.

Through her nonprofit organization, National Asian Artists Project, Baayork’s vision includes educating, cultivating, and stimulating audiences and artists of Asian descent through the many programs the company offers. The organization has produced classical musical theatre shows such as Oklahoma!, Carousel, Hello Dolly!, and OLIVER! with all Asian-American casts. NAAP has made audiences more aware that talent goes beyond ethnicity.

Robert Viagas transformed theatre journalism as the architect and founding editor (1994) of the first and still biggest theatre site on the web, He enjoyed the rare honor of serving on the nominating committee for the Tonys (2012-2014). He hosted the Tony Awards webcasts from 2002 to 2008, and was editor of the special Tony Awards Playbill from 2002 to 2010. The New York Times’ CyberTimes described him as “encyclopedic” in his knowledge of Broadway.

Among his other books, he was chosen by the creators of the original The Fantasticks to tell their story in The Amazing Story of “The Fantasticks” (Citadel). On the Line was translated into Japanese and published in Japan and his 2012 book Scales to Scalpels (with Lisa Wong) was translated into Chinese and published in China.

When it comes to the challenging but fruitful area of collaboration he literally wrote the book on it-The Alchemy of Theatre (Applause Books), in which he worked with the likes of Edward Albee, Wendy Wasserstein, Hal Prince, Chita Rivera and others to codify how one collaborates in the world of theatre. His 2009 book I’m the Greatest Star!

Linda Cho, Liesl Tommy, Carol Hall, Lilieana Blain-Cruz, Jess Chayes and Emily Simoness to Receive 2017 LPTW Awards on March 31

2382d985c-9958-9a5e-3d82c5d3a4604ba6The League of Professional Theatre Women (LPTW), a not-for-profit organization committed to promoting visibility and increasing opportunities for women in the professional theatre will recognize the talents of six outstanding women: Carol Hall, Linda Cho, Lilieana Blain-Cruz, Liesl Tommy, Jess Chayes and Emily Simoness on Friday, March 31, 2017.

The awards will be presented at the League’s 2017 Awards Celebration, hosted by Tamara Tunie, held at 6:30 pm on Friday, March 31 at The Times Center (242 West 41st Street), with the Big Mingle happening directly after at Sardi’s (234 West 44th Street, 2nd floor). Tickets to attend the Awards Ceremony & Big Mingle reception are $85-$300. All tickets are available online at

Carol Hall, composer/lyricist/playwright, creator of the Broadway musical The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas which won two Drama Desk Awards and a Grammy nomination for its cast album, will be presented with The Lifetime Achievement Award by Julie Gilbert (novelist, biographer, playwright and teacher. National Book Critic’s Circle Award Nomination for Ferber: A Biography of Edna Ferber and Her Circle (Doubleday) and a Pulitzer Prize nomination for Opposite Attraction: The Lives of Erich Maria Remarque and Paulette Goddard (Pantheon)).

Costume Designer Linda Cho, 2014 Tony Award winner for A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder. (Photo courtesy of A.C.T.)
Costume Designer Linda Cho, 2014 Tony Award winner for A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder. (Photo courtesy of A.C.T.)

The Ruth Morley Design Award was initiated in 1998 in honor of costume designer Ruth Morley, one of the profession’s leading designers for theatre and film who also served on the LPTW Board of Directors. It is given annually to an outstanding female theatre designer in the field of costumes, scenery, lighting, or special effects. This year the award will be presented by Darko Tresnjak (2014 Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle awards for his direction of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder) to costume designer Linda Cho his current collaborator on Anastasia and who won a Tony Award for Tresnjak’s production of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder.

The Josephine Abady Award is given in memory of Josephine R. Abady, a stage and artistic director, and leader of the nonprofit theatre movement in the United States. The award is given annually to a woman theatre artist who has created work of cultural diversity. This year’s recipient is the director Lileana Blain-Cruz (Suzan Lori-Parks’ The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire World, Signature Theater).

The Lee Reynolds Award, in memory of producer and League member Lee Reynolds, is given annually to a woman or women active in any aspect of theatre whose work through the medium of theatre has helped to illuminate the possibilities for social, cultural or political change. Liesl Tommy, Tony-Nominated director of the Broadway and Public Theater Productions of Danai Gurira’s Eclipsed starring Academy Award winner Lupita Nyong’o, receives this year’s award.

In April 1999, the LPTW received a bequest from the Lucille Lortel estate to establish a fund which would be given annually to “an aspiring woman in any discipline of theatre who is showing great creative promise and deserves recognition and encouragement.” This year’s award will be given to Jess Chayes, Co-Artistic Director of The Assembly.

The LPTW Lucille Lortel Visionary Award, which also receives a grant from the aforementioned fund, is given on occasion to an aspiring woman working in any discipline of theatre outside traditional production who exemplifies creative promise and deserves recognition and encouragement. This year’s award goes to SPACE on Ryder Farm’s Emily Simoness for her record of innovative commitment to inclusion and equity in development and support of artists.

Early bird tickets to attend the Awards Ceremony & Big Mingle reception are $85 for members and $100 for non-members until March 13th. After March 13th, tickets will be $100 for members and $135 for non-members. VIP tickets are also available for $275-$300. All tickets are available online at


Lileana Blain-Cruz (Josephine Abady Award) Recent projects include Suzan Lori-Parks’ The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire World (Signature Theater), a devised production of SALOME (LMCC on Governor’s Island, JACK), Brandon Jacobs-Jenkins War (LCT3, Yale Rep), Alice Birch’s Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again (Soho Rep), Lucas Hnath’s Red Speedo (New York Theater Workshop), Much Ado About Nothing ( Oregon Shakespeare Festival); Christina Anderson’s Hollow Roots (Under the Radar Festival at The Public Theater); a new translation of The Bakkhai ( Fisher Center of Performing Arts at Bard College); A Guide to Kinship and Maybe Magic, a collaboration with Jacobs-Jenkins and choreographer Isabel Lewis (Dance New Amsterdam). MFA Yale School of Drama. Upcoming projects include Henry IV Part 1 at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, The Bluest Eye at the Guthrie, and Dominique Morrisseau’s Pipeline at Lincoln Center.

JESS CHAYES (LPTW Lucille Lortel Award) is a Brooklyn-based director and founding co-artistic director of The Assembly, with whom she has co-created and directed eight original productions, including I Will Look Forward To This Later (New Ohio Theater/IRT Theater Archive Residency) and HOME/SICK (NY Times and Backstage Critics’ Pick). Recent directing includes Half Moon Bay (Lesser America), Primal Play (New Georges), The Bachelors (Williamstown Theater Festival), The Sister (Dutch Kills), and The Netflix Plays (Ars Nova). She has developed new work with The Vineyard Theatre, The Playwrights Center and New York Theatre Workshop, among others. Jess is a NYTW Usual Suspect, a co-founder of The New Georges Jam artists’ lab, and alum of The Civilians R&D Group and the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab. Associate Director on Peter and the Starcatcher (Brooks Atkinson Theater and New World Stages) and Misery (Broadhurst Theater)

Linda Cho (Ruth Morley Design Award), among her costume design successes in theater have been the Broadway productions of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder (Tony Award); Velocity of Autumn and the upcoming new musical Anastasia. Off-Broadway: Theatre for a New Audience; Manhattan Theatre Club; Second Stage; The Public; Classic Stage Company; Atlantic Theater Company. Regional: Hartford Stage; Long Wharf; The Old Globe; Berkeley Rep; La Jolla Playhouse; Arena Stage; The Guthrie; The Goodman; Chicago Shakespeare Theater; ACT (San Francisco); Oregon Shakespeare Festival; Williamstown Theatre Festival; Goodspeed. Opera: Los Angeles Opera; Virginia Opera; Opera Theatre of St. Louis. International: The Stratford Shakespeare Festival; The Royal Shakespeare Company; Canadian Stage Company. Member of United Scenic Artists Local 829 and the proud recipient of the Irene Sharaff Young Master Award. She received her MFA from the Yale School of Drama; her undergraduate degree from McGill University, and a Certificate of Fine Arts and Fashion from the Paris American Academy.

Carol Hall’s (Lifetime Achievement Award) songs have been performed by such extraordinary singers as Tony Bennett, Barbara Cook, Barbra Streisand, Chita Rivera, Mabel Mercer, Marlo Thomas, RuPaul, Frederica von Stade, Kermit the Frog and Big Bird. Her Broadway musical The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas won two Drama Desk Awards, a Grammy nomination for its cast album and became a popular film starring Burt Reynoldsand Dolly Parton. Dolly’s recording of Carol’s song “Hard Candy Christmas” generated an ASCAP “Most Performed Country Song” Award. Recently, Cyndi Lauper recorded it with Alison Krauss, and this season, Reba McEntire included the song in her “My Kind of Christmas” CD. The song is listed among “The Best Christmas Songs Ever.” WHOREHOUSE continues to be one of the most endearing and popular musicals performed around the world.

Other theater scores are: Good Sports (Goodspeed Opera,) Are We There Yet? (Williamstown Theater Festival,) To Whom It May Concern (Off-Broadway) and (lyrics) Paper Moon (Paper Mill Playhouse,) and, most recently, lyrics for a musical based on Truman Capote’s classic story A Christmas Memory (book: Duane Poole, music: Larry Grossman.) A particular joy of Carol’s is writing for children. For ten years, she wrote for Sesame Street and was one of the major contributors to Marlo Thomas’ ground-breaking “Free to Be… You and Me” (Emmy Award, Gold album). Her first non-musical work, The Days are As Grass, is licensed by Samuel FrencH. Hall is a Lifetime Member of the Dramatists Guild Council and a major supporter of the Dramatists Guild Fund.

Liesl Tommy (Lee Reynolds Award) is an award-winning stage director. Her credits include the Broadway and Public Theater Productions of Danai Gurira’s Eclipsed starring Academy Award winner Lupita Nyong’o (Tony Award Nomination for Best Director), Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’s Appropriate at the Signature Theatre and Tracey Scott Wilson’s The Good Negro at The Public Theater. World premieres also include: Kid Victory, Party People, A Melancholy Play. Other credits: The Good Negro, The Urban Retreat, LES MISERABLES, Hamlet, A Raisin in the Sun, The Piano Lesson, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Ruined. She has worked at DTC, California Shakespeare Theater, Center Stage, Sundance East Africa, among others. Tommy is Associate Director at Berkeley Rep and serves as a Program Associate and Artist Trustee at Sundance Institute Theatre Program. She facilitated the inaugural Sundance East Africa Theatre Director’s Lab. Awards: Obie Award, Lucille Lortel Award, Pioneer of the Arts Award, Lillian Hellman Award, Alan SchneiderAward, Susan Stroman Award, an NEA/TCG Directors Grant and NYTW Casting/Directing Fellowship.

Emily Simoness (LPTW Lucille Lortel Visionary Award) is an entrepreneur, teacher, facilitator, motivational speaker and the founder and Executive Director of SPACE on Ryder Farm, a nonprofit artist residency program committed to supporting and developing artists and activists and their work. ?Housed on 130 acres of organic farmland in Brewster, NY, SPACE has quickly become one of the premier centers for new play development in the country. Additionally, she has developed and taught curriculum for The North Carolina School of the Arts and NYU. In ’13, she was the chief of staff for the Beijing International Screenwriting Competition. In ’15 she gave a talk at TEDx Broadway. Emily holds a BFA from UNCSA where she is the inaugural Kenan Arts Research Fellow. She’s on the Advisory Board of the Auschwitz Institute for Peace and Reconciliation and is on the Board of Directors for Ryder Farm Inc., the entity that owns Ryder Farm.

The League of Professional Theatre Women is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization. It presents numerous events each year as part of its mission to promote visibility and increase opportunities for women in the field. None of its work is possible without generous philanthropic support. The League will soon celebrate its thirty-fifth anniversary, and boasts a membership of over 500 women theatre professionals in the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors. League members are actors, administrators, agents, arrangers, casting directors, choreographers, company managers, composers, critics, designers, directors, dramaturges, dramatists, educators, general managers, historians, journalists, librettists, lyricists, press agents, playwrights, producers, stage managers, and theatre technicians. To find out more about how you can support its endeavors, visit and click on the “Support Us” tab.