The Lortel nods honor the season’s achievements Off Broadway, where both productions originated.
Stephen Sondheim received a lifetime achievement award. B.D. Wong, the ceremony’s impromptu host, explained that the legendary composer-lyricist was being honored not for his many Broadway scores but rather his dedication to Young Playwrights, which he founded 23 years ago.
Sondheim tunes offered
That qualification did not stop Marin Mazzie and Jason Danieley from offering several Sondheim songs.
Danieley introduced the medley by joking that they considered singing Andrew Lloyd Webber instead to show Sondheim “what your songs would have sounded like had you been dropped on your head at birth.”
Wong, who replaced the indisposed Caroline Rhea, winged the evening with great aplomb. He even came up with a new moniker for the Lucille Lortel Award, calling it the “LuLo.” The nickname seemed to catch on as the evening wore on.
Next year, the LuLos might borrow even more from Broadway and install one of those Tony clocks that limit acceptance speeches to 45 seconds. Winners invariably thanked their collaborators, agents, spouses and God — in that order.
Play: “Take Me Out” by Richard Greenberg; the Public Theater
Musical: “Avenue Q” by Robert Lopez, Jeff Marx and Jeff Whitty; Vineyard Theater and the New Group
Revival: “Fifth of July” by Lanford Wilson; Signature Theater Co.
Director: Joe Mantello, “Take Me Out”
Choreographer: Devanand Janki, “Zanna, Don’t!”
Lead actor: Daniel Sunjata, “Take Me Out”
Lead actress: Tovah Feldshuh, “Golda’s Balcony”
Featured actor: Denis O’Hare, “Take Me Out”
Featured actress: Jan Maxwell, “My Old Lady”
Scenic design: Alexander Dodge, “Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme”
Costume design: Michael Bottari and Ronald Case, “Shanghai Moon”
Lighting design: Donald Holder, “Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme”
Sound design: Brett Jarvis, “Avenue Q”
Unique theatrical achievement: “The Exonerated”
Edith Oliver award: Marian Seldes
Outstanding body of work: Vineyard Theater.