Newcomer ‘Matilda’ and revival ‘Pippin’ clean up at the 58th Annual Drama Desk Awards

John Lloyd Young and Linda Lavin announce the nominees for the 2013 Drama Desk Awards.

John Lloyd Young and Linda Lavin announce the nominees for the 2013 Drama Desk Awards.

Tonight marked the 58th Annual Drama Desk Awards, which honor shows on Broadway, Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway.  The ceremony was held at Town Hall in New York City, and brought together actors from a variety of shows.  Matilda rounded up the most awards of the night with five, and Pippin came in a close second with four.

The ceremony opened with a performance by cast of the short-lived musical, Hands on a Hardbody.  The cast sang “Joy of the Lord”, to much excitement from the audience. After the cast took their bows, out came the cast of Old Jews Telling Jokes, who more or less hosted the event.  Throughout the show, they would come on stage to “update” the audience on how their search for a host was going; at one point, they tried to pay nominee Tom Hanks to host, and he came up on stage, but left shortly thereafter.

In one shocking moment of the night, there was an unprecedented three-way tie in the category of Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical; the winners were Scott Leher and Drew Levy for Chaplin: The Musical, Steve Canyon Kennedy for Hands on a Hardbody and Tony Meola for The Mystery of Edwin Drood.

The performances throughout the night were stellar glimpses of nominated shows, whether they were energetic or deeply moving.  Katie Thompson, of Giant, sang “He Wanted a Girl,” and her powerhouse vocals had everyone’s attention, while Dogfight’s Lindsay Mendez moved the entire audience with her raw and real rendition of “Pretty Funny.”  From winner for Outstanding Music, Here Lies Love, “God Draws Straight” was performed; the lyrics for the song were taken from oral histories from participants of The People Power Revolution of 1986 in the Philippines.  The ensemble of Working: A Musical sang “The Live Long Day,” and then were presented with a special award for Outstanding Ensemble Performance.

Other special awards given at the ceremony included the Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Award, to Maruti Evans for his lighting designs; Anthony Rapp presented The New York Musical Theater Festival’s Executive Director and Producer, Robert Hurwitz, an award for “creating and nurturing musical theater.”  Samuel D. Hunter was awarded for his play, The Whale, and actress Jayne Houdyshell was awarded for her versatile performances on and 0ff-Broadway.  The puppeteers of Wakka Wakka, Gabrielle Brechner, Kirjan Eaage, and Gwendolyn Warnock, were awarded for their creations, and came on stage wearing puppet seagulls and chickens as hats.

Cicely Tyson won for Outstanding Actress in a Play for The Trip to Bountiful, and began her speech with “I don’t know if I should stay away for another thirty years, or just stay.”  Now that she has been recognized for the Drama Desk Award, is a Tony not far off in her future?  The same goes for fellow Tony-nominee Laura Osnes, who won for Outstanding Actress in a Musical for Cinderella, and Tracy Letts, nominated for Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

What do you think of the results?  Do you think anyone was snubbed?  Were there any surprises? Let me know in the comments and be sure to check out the full list of winners below!

2013 Drama Desk Award Winners:

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical: Bertie CarvelMatilda

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical: Andrea MartinPippin

Unique Theatrical Experience: Cirque Du Soleil: Totem

Outstanding Revue: Old Hats

Outstanding Solo Performance: Michael Urie, Buyer & Cellar

Outstanding Lighting Design: Justin Townsend, Here Lies Love

Outstanding Set Design: Rob HowellMatilda

Outstanding Costume Design: William Ivey LongRodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play: Richard KindThe Big Knife

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play: Judith LightThe Assembled Parties

Outstanding Projection Design: Peter Nigrini, Here Lies Love

Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical: Scott Lehrer and Drew Levy, Chaplin:The Musical;

Steve Canyon Kennedy, Hands on a Hardbody; Tony Meola, The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Outstanding Sound Design in a Play: Mel Mercier, The Testament of Mary

Outstanding Orchestrations: Danny Troob, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella

Outstanding Music in a Play: Glen Kelly, The Nance

Outstanding Choreography: Chet Walker and Gypsy Snider, Pippin

Outstanding Director of a Musical: Diane PaulusPippin

Outstanding Actor in a Play: Tracy Letts, Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Outstanding Actress in a Play: Cicely Tyson, The Trip to Bountiful

Outstanding Director of a Play: Pam MacKinnon, Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Outstanding Revival of a Play: Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Outstanding Revival of a Musical or Revue: Pippin

Outstanding Actor in a Musical: Billy PorterKinky Boots

Outstanding Actress in a Musical: Laura Osnes, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella

Outstanding Play: Christopher DurangVanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Outstanding Book of a Musical: Dennis Kelly, Matilda

Outstanding Music: David Byrne and Fatboy Slim, Here Lies Love

Outstanding Lyrics: Tim Minchin, Matilda

Outstanding Musical: Matilda

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