Pierce, Seldes, Ayckbourn to be honored
Thesps David Hyde Pierce and Marian Seldes and playwright Alan Ayckbourn are among the legiters who will be given special Tony Awards during the annual June ceremony.Hyde Pierce will pick up the Isabelle Stevenson award, given to a member of the theater community for contributions to humanitarian or charitable causes not necessarily related to the legit world. Hyde Pierce, appearing next season in the Broadway revival of play “La Bete,” gets the kudo for his work in fighting Alzheimer’s disease, including his longtime involvement in the Alzheimer’s Assn. Ayckbourn and Seldes will each take home a lifetime achievement award. Prolific Brit scribe Ayckbourn has written about 75 plays, several of which have played Broadway, including the recent revival of three-play trilogy “The Norman Conquests.” Gotham legit fixture Seldes, who won an acting Tony in 1967 for her role in the original production of Edward Albee’s “A Delicate Balance,” was last on the Main Stem in “Deuce” opposite Angela Lansbury in 2007. Meanwhile, the Tony Honors for Excellence, given to people or orgs not eligible in standard Tony categories, will be given to three awardees: veteran fight director and stage combat specialist B.H. Barry, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS exec director Tom Viola, and the Alliance of Resident Theaters New York, a nonprofit offering services and management support to its 300 member theaters, many of them Off Broadway or Off Off Broadway. Awards will be handed out, along with the usual lineup of Tony trophies, during the 2010 kudocast, set for June 13.