×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Tony Winner Rachel Chavkin Says Broadway Needs More Women Directors

Hadestown” director Rachel Chavkin, who won her first Tony Award on Sunday night, used her acceptance speech to make a call for greater diversity and representation on Broadway.

“I wish I wasn’t the only woman directing a musical on Broadway this season. There are so many women who are ready to go,” Chavkin said while on stage accepting her statue. “There are so many artists of color who are ready to go. And we need to see that racial diversity and gender diversity reflected in our critical establishment too.”

She continued, “This is not a pipeline issue. It is a failure of imagination by a field whose job is to imagine the way the world could be. So let’s do it.”

Backstage at Radio City Music Hall in New York, Chavkin expanded on those sentiments. “Our field is filled with progressive people, and yet our field is not exemplary of living its politics, first and foremost who is telling these stories and what stories need to be told,” she said to reporters in the press room. “There has to be a lot of attention paid to our own backyard.”

Chavkin was previously Tony-nominated for her musical “Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812.” While on stage, Chavkin praised her collaborator, singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell. The two worked for years to bring the musical, a folk-operatic retelling of the Greek myth of Orpheus, to the Great White Way.

“I watched the show again two nights ago and was undone all over again for the beauty of your vision, for the world and how we heal ourselves through song and through each other,” Chavkin said.

Bradley King, who won for lighting design of a musical for “Hadestown,” also preached for greater representation.

“A lot of people think we don’t have younger designers of color or younger women designers,” he said backstage. “That’s absolutely false. They aren’t given the opportunities for the bigger and bigger shows. They’re not in the room to make the connections.”

“Hadestown” scored a leading 14 nominations, winning eight including best musical.

More Legit

  • Audra McDonald Frankie and Johnny

    Listen: How Audra McDonald Faced Her Fear in 'Frankie and Johnny'

    When producers offered Audra McDonald a role in “Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune” opposite Michael Shannon, she immediately said yes. Then she remembered the nude scene. Listen to this week’s podcast below: “Hell, yes, there was trepidation,” the Tony-winning actress said on the new episode of Stagecraft, Variety’s theater podcast. “I was [...]

  • A Strange Loop review

    Off Broadway Review: 'A Strange Loop'

    “No one cares about a writer who is struggling to write,” sings the anxiety-ridden lead character in Michael R. Jackson’s sometimes exhilarating, sometimes exasperating new musical, “A Strange Loop,” at Playwrights Horizons. The abundantly talented Jackson takes the otherwise tired trope of the young, poor and sensitive artist trying to discover his true self and [...]

  • Richard E Grant Everybody's Talking About

    Richard E. Grant to Play Former Drag Queen in 'Everybody's Talking About Jamie'

    Oscar-nominated actor Richard E. Grant will portray a former drag queen and mentor in “Everybody’s Talking About Jamie,” the movie adaptation of the British stage musical. “Catastrophe” co-creator and star Sharon Horgan and “Happy Valley” star Sarah Lancashire have also joined the film. Max Harwood will play the titular role of Jamie, a role inspired [...]

  • The Secret Life of Bees review

    Off Broadway Review: 'The Secret Life of Bees'

    There’s a sweet sense of sisterhood that’s simply divine in “The Secret Life of Bees,” the heartwarming new musical at the Atlantic Theater Company based on Sue Monk Kidd’s bestselling 2002 coming-of-age novel, set in South Carolina in 1964 amid Civil Rights struggles. (A 2008 film adaptation starred Dakota Fanning and Queen Latifah.) The feeling [...]

  • 10 Comics to Watch

    Variety Announces 10 Comics to Watch for 2019

    Variety has chosen its 10 Comics to Watch for 2019. The honorees will be profiled in the July 18 issue of Variety and at the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal at a cocktail party on Thursday, July 25, followed by a panel and showcase on Friday, July 26. The events are sponsored by Cohen & Gardner LLP. The [...]

  • Vanessa Hudgens So You Think You

    Vanessa Hudgens, Hailey Kilgore to Star in Reading of 'The Notebook' Musical

    Vanessa Hudgens and Tony-nominee Hailey Kilgore are joining an upcoming reading of Ingrid Michaelson’s stage adaptation of “The Notebook” by Nicholas Sparks. Tony nominee Michael Greif is set to direct the reading, which will open June 23 at Vassar College’s Martel Theater as part of their Powerhouse Theater season. Kilgore will star as the younger [...]

  • Moulin Rouge director Alex Timbers

    'Beetlejuice,' 'Moulin Rouge!' Director Alex Timbers on Creating Worlds on Broadway

    In the past year, Alex Timbers has directed the Tony-nominated “Beetlejuice” and the stage adaptation of “Moulin Rouge!” (which begins previews June 28 at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre). Here, he reflects on his most recent projects and the challenges of bringing two iconic movie musicals to Broadway within a year.  Both your musicals live in [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content