Eclipsed star Lupita Nyong'o (right) presents her playwright, Danai Gurira, with the Lilly Award in Playwriting.
Eclipsed star Lupita Nyong'o (right) presents her playwright, Danai Gurira, with the Lilly Award in Playwriting.
(© David Gordon)

The seventh annual Lilly Awards were presented on May 23 at the Pershing Square Signature Center.

This year's honorees included Tony Award winner and 2016 Tony Award nominee Jessie Mueller (Waitress), Kathy Najimy, Genne Murphy, Candis Jones, Rehana Lew Mirza, and the women of Waking the Feminists, as well as Danai Gurira, Martha Plimpton, Kate Whoriskey, and Mia Katigbak.

The Lilly Awards, which honor the extraordinary contributions made to the American Theater by women, began in 2010. The founders of the Lillys are Julia Jordan, Marsha Norman, and Theresa Rebeck. The awards are named for Lillian Hellman, a pioneering American playwright who famously said, "You need to write like the devil and act like one too when necessary."