The American Theatre Wing held the awards ceremony for its 2018 Jonathan Larson Grant recipients on Monday, March 19, at the Jerome Greene Space. This year's recipients included Jay Adana (music and lyrics), Andrew R. Butler and Andrew Farmer (music, lyrics, and book), Emily Kaczmarek and Zoe Sarnak (music, lyrics, and book), and Mark Sonnenblick (music and lyrics).
Four unrestricted grants of $10,000 each, as well as additional support in the form of residencies, concerts, and recording grants, totaling over $48,000, were presented. The event featured special performances of the recipients' work.
This year's recipients were selected by an panel consisting of two-time Tony-winning actor Patti LuPone, HERE Arts Center artistic director Kristin Marting, and two-time Tony-winning producer Scott Sanders.
The Jonathan Larson Grants, given annually to honor emerging composers, lyricists, and book writers, help to continue Tony Award-winning composer Jonathan Larson's dream of infusing musical theater with a contemporary, joyful, urban vitality. Dedicated to celebrating excellence and supporting theater, the American Theatre Wing awards the Larson Grants to artists to recognize and showcase their work with no strings attached. The American Theatre Wing is dedicated to also offering Jonathan Larson Grant artists industry resources to advance their work.
All four 2018 Jonathan Larson Grants recipients will also receive a $2,000 Saw Island Foundation Recording Grant. The Saw Island Foundation seeks to empower innovative and high-impact institutions to improve existing programs; it has created this enhancement to provide artists with additional support to help arrange for the production of new demo recordings to more fully represent the musical theater writer's vision.
The American Theatre Wing, in partnership with Adelphi University Performing Arts Center, is awarding Adana, Kaczmarek, and Sarnak, an evening of performance featuring their work as part of their Larson Legacy Concert Series, which celebrates the next generation of creative artists at the college home of Jonathan Larson, class of '82, to carry on his legacy. Additionally, Butler and Farmer will receive a fully produced reading of their show via the American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University.