Founded in 1982 by the late Fred Astaire and Douglas Watt, the Astaire Awards is the only awards show to honor excellence in dance and choreography on Broadway and in film. Members of the After Midnight team took home all three competitive awards presented last evening.
Jared Grimes bested two of his own castmates, Julius Chisholm and Desmond Richardson, to win in the category of Outstanding Male Dancer, while Dormeshia Sumbry Edwards and Karine Plantadit tied for Outstanding Female Dancer. Director/choreographer Warren Carlyle joined the winning performers with his Astaire Award for Outstanding Choreography.
Presenters included Tony Award winners Hal Prince, Bebe Neuwirth, Bullets Over Broadway's Susan Stroman and Karen Ziemba, Emmy Award winner Valerie Harper, Scandal's Joe Morton, Dancing With the Stars' Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Boardwalk Empire's Stephen DeRosa, Sandy Duncan, and Don Correia.
In addition to the competitive-award presentations, the evening featured two special honorees. Legendary dancer and dance instructor Luigi was presented with a special award, along with five-time Tony nominee and Emmy-winning veteran choreographer Pat Birch, who earned the Douglas Watts Lifetime Achievement Award.