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Drama Desk Award Nominations Announced

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The nominations for the 48th Annual Drama Desk Awards were announced this morning at the New York Friars Club by Martin Richards, the Academy Award winning producer of the megahit movie version of the Broadway musical Chicago, and Judy Kaye, one of the stars of Broadway's Mamma Mia!.

Founded in 1949, the Drama Desk is the only theater organization that honors outstanding achievement in all areas of New York theater -- Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway, and not-for-profit productions included. The smash-hit Broadway musical Hairspray tied the all-time Drama Desk record with 14 nominations announced today, followed by the very short-lived Broadway musical Amour with nine. Other high scorers: La Bohème, A Man of No Importance, Take Me Out, Movin' Out, Avenue Q, Long Day's Journey Into Night, and Nine.

Members of the nominating committee this year include: Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter (committee chairman); Robert Dominguez, Daily News; David Finkle, TheaterMania.com; Susan Haskins, Theater Talk; Edward Karam, Manchester Guardian; David Sheward, Back Stage; and Barbara Siegel, TheaterMania.com and Siegel Entertainment Syndicate. A complete list of the nominees follows:

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Outstanding Play:
Buicks (Julian Sheppard)
Our Lady of 121st Street (Stephen Adly Guirgis)
Peter and Vandy (Jay DiPietro)
Take Me Out (Richard Greenberg)
Talking Heads (Alan Bennett)
Yellowman (Dael Orlandersmith)

Outstanding Musical:
Amour
Avenue Q
Hairspray
A Man of No Importance
Movin' Out
Zanna, Don't!

Outstanding Revival of a Play:
A Day in the Death of Joe Egg
Dinner at Eight
Long Day's Journey Into Night
Medea
Twelfth Night (Donmar Warehouse/BAM)
Uncle Vanya (Donmar Warehouse/BAM)

Outstanding Revival of a Musical:
Gypsy
La Bohème
Man of La Mancha
Nine

Outstanding Actor in a Play:
Simon Russell Beale (Uncle Vanya)
Norbert Leo Butz (Buicks)
Jim Dale (Comedians)
Brian Dennehy (Long Day's Journey Into Night)
Eddie Izzard (A Day in the Death of Joe Egg)
Daniel Sunjata (Take Me Out)

Outstanding Actress in a Play:
Jayne Atkinson (Enchanted April)
Marylouise Burke (Kimberly Akimbo)
Clare Higgins (Vincent in Brixton)
Dael Orlandersmith (Yellowman)
Vanessa Redgrave (Long Day's Journey Into Night)
Fiona Shaw (Medea)

Outstanding Actor in a Musical:
Antonio Banderas (Nine)
Harvey Fierstein (Hairspray)
Malcolm Gets (Amour)
Brian Stokes Mitchell (Man of La Mancha)
Jason Petty (Hank Williams: Lost Highway)
John Selya (Movin' Out)

Outstanding Actress in a Musical:
Stephanie D'Abruzzo (Avenue Q)
Ann Duquesnay (Cookin' at the Cookery)
Wei Huang (La Bohème)
Elizabeth Parkinson (Movin' Out)
Bernadette Peters (Gypsy)
Marissa Jaret Winokur (Hairspray)

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play:
Simon Russell Beale (Twelfth Night)
Walter Bobbie (Polish Joke)
Philip Seymour Hoffman (Long Day's Journey Into Night)
T.R. Knight (Scattergood)
Denis O'Hare (Take Me Out)
Frederick Weller (Take Me Out)

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play:
Christine Ebersole (Talking Heads)
Jan Maxwell (My Old Lady)
Helen McCrory (Uncle Vanya)
Nancy Opel (Polish Joke)
Lynn Redgrave (Talking Heads)
Jeanine Serralles (Hold Please)

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical:
John Dossett (Gypsy)
Christopher Fitzgerald (Amour)
Charles Keating (A Man of No Importance)
Dick Latessa (Hairspray)
Steven Pasquale (A Man of No Importance)
Corey Reynolds (Hairspray)

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical:
Kerry Butler (Hairspray)
Jane Krakowski (Nine)
Mary Stuart Masterson (Nine)
Sally Mayes (Urban Cowboy)
Chita Rivera (Nine)
Debra Walton (Cookin' at the Cookery)

Outstanding Director of a Play:
Robert Falls (Long Day's Journey Into Night)
Philip Seymour Hoffman (Our Lady of 121st Street)
Joe Mantello (Take Me Out)
Sam Mendes (Twelfth Night)
Sam Mendes (Uncle Vanya)
Deborah Warner (Medea)

Outstanding Director of a Musical:
James Lapine (Amour)
David Leveaux (Nine)
Baz Luhrmann (La Bohème)
Joe Mantello (A Man of No Importance)
Jack O'Brien (Hairspray)
Twyla Tharp (Movin' Out)

Outstanding Choreography:
Jerry Mitchell (Hairspray)
Ken Roberson (Harlem Song)
Twyla Tharp (Movin' Out)
Tommy Tune (Tommy Tune: White Tie and Tails)

Outstanding Music:
Tim Acito (Zanna, Don't!)
Stephen Flaherty (A Man of No Importance)
Michel Legrand (Amour)
Robert Lopez, Jeff Marx (Avenue Q)
Keb' Mo', Anderson Edwards, Keith Glover (Thunder Knocking on the Door)
Marc Shaiman (Hairspray)

Outstanding Lyrics:
Tim Acito, Alexander Dinelaris (Zanna, Don't!)
Lynn Ahrens (A Man of No Importance)
Craig Carnelia (Imaginary Friends)
Robert Lopez, Jeff Marx (Avenue Q)
Jeremy Sams, Didier van Cauwelaert (Amour)
Scott Wittman, Marc Shaiman (Hairspray)

Outstanding Book of a Musical:
Tim Acito, Alexander Dinelaris (Zanna, Don't!)
Terrence McNally (A Man of No Importance)
Mark O'Donnell, Thomas Meehan (Hairspray)
Jeremy Sams, Didier van Cauwelaert (Amour)
Jeff Whitty (Avenue Q)

Outstanding Orchestrations:
Luther Henderson (Little Ham)
Michel Legrand (Amour)
Harold Wheeler (Hairspray)

Outstanding Set Design of a Play:
John Lee Beatty (Dinner at Eight)
John Lee Beatty (My Old Lady)
Troy Hourie (Temporary Help)
Scott Pask (Take Me Out)
Neil Patel (Endpapers)
B.T. Whitehill (Shanghai Moon)

Outstanding Set Design of a Musical:
Riccardo Hernandez, Batwin + Robin Productions (Radiant Baby)
Catherine Martin (La Bohème)
Scott Pask (Amour)
Stephane Roy (Cirque du Soleil: Varekai)
David Rockwell (Hairspray)

Outstanding Costume Design:
Michael Bottari, Ronald Case (Shanghai Moon)
Jess Goldstein (Enchanted April)
Eiko Ishioka (Cirque du Soleil: Varekai)
William Ivey Long (Hairspray)
Catherine Martin, Angus Strathie (La Bohème)
Catherine Zuber (Dinner at Eight)

Outstanding Lighting Design:
Kevin Adams (Take Me Out)
Russell H. Champa (Yellowman)
Donald Holder (Movin' Out)
Donald Holder (Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Toward the Somme)
Nigel Levings (La Bohème)
Peter Mumford (Vincent in Brixton)

Outstanding Sound Design:
Acme Sound Partners (La Bohème)
Mark Bennett (Golda's Balcony)
Mark Bennett (Julius Caesar)
Francois Bergeron (Cirque du Soleil: Varekai)
Janet Kalas (Take Me Out)
David Meschter, Mel Mercier (Medea)

Outstanding Solo Performance:
Barbara Cook (Mostly Sondheim)
Tovah Feldshuh (Golda's Balcony)
Frank Gorshin (Say Goodnight, Gracie)
Ricky Jay (Ricky Jay: On the Stem)
Priscilla Lopez (Class Mothers '68)
Charlayne Woodard (In Real Life)

Unique Theatrical Experience:
Cirque du Soleil: Varekai
The Exonerated
The Play What I Wrote
Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam on Broadway

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The Drama Desk Award
In addition to the nominations above, it has been announced that Special Awards will be given to the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) for bringing works of distinction from around the world to New York audiences; to Charles Busch for career achievement as performer and playwright; and to Geoffrey Johnson and Vincent Liff (posthumous) of Johnson-Liff Casting for career achievement

The award winners will be announced on Sunday, May 18 at a ceremony to be held in the concert hall of the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. The ceremony will begin at 9pm and will be hosted by Chita Rivera, the legendary star of such shows as West Side Story, Bye, Bye Birdie, Chicago, and Kiss of the Spider Woman, currently co-starring in the hit Broadway revival of the Maury Yeston-Arthur Kopit musical Nine. Among the notables already scheduled to participate as presenters are Harvey Fierstein (Hairspray), Antonio Banderas (Nine), Tovah Feldshuh (Golda's Balcony), and Banderas's wife, film star Melanie Griffith, who is scheduled to take over the role of Roxie Hart in the Broadway revival of Chicago this summer.

For the first time this year, the Drama Desk Awards ceremony will be webcast live by TheaterMania.com. Tickets to the live event are available to the general public in limited amounts; click here for information.

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