We are beyond excited to announce that Zachary Levi (“Chuck”) and Megan Hilty (“Smash”) will host the upcoming 82nd Annual Drama League Awards on Friday, May 20, 2016 at the Marriott Marquis Times Square in the Broadway Ballroom (1535 Broadway) beginning at 11:30 a.m. Both Levi and Hilty are celebrated this season for their acclaimed performances in the Roundabout Theatre Company productions of She Loves Me and Noises Off respectively.
One of the high points of the season, the Annual Drama League Awards Ceremony and Luncheon includes a star-studded afternoon with nominees, cocktail reception, luncheon, and awards presentations. Tickets are available now!
The 2016 Drama League Award Nominees for Outstanding Play, Outstanding Revival of a Play, Outstanding Musical, Outstanding Revival of a Musical, and the much-coveted Distinguished Performance Award will be announced on Wednesday, April 20, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. at Sardi’s, and will be streamed live via BroadwayWorld.com. The Nominee Announcement will be hosted by National Life Group, the Centennial Season Sponsor of The Drama League and supporter of the arts. Since 1848, National Life has lived its corporate values of “do good, be good, and make good” by offering financial solutions to those it serves.
The 2016 Special Award Recipients, previously announced, are as follows: Deaf West Theatre (David J. Kurs, Artistic Director), represented on Broadway this season with the lauded revival of Spring Awakening, will receive the Unique Contribution to the Theater Award; Tony®, Grammy®, and Pulitzer Prize winner Sheldon Harnick, currently represented on Broadway with hit revivals of Fiddler on the Roof and Roundabout’s revival of She Loves Me, will receive the Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theater Award; and Olivier® Award winner Ivo van Hove, director of this season’s productions of Antigone at BAM, Lazarus at NYTW, and the acclaimed Broadway revivals of A View From the Bridge and The Crucible, will receive The Founders Award for Excellence in Directing.
National Life Group is the proud Centennial Season Sponsor of The Drama League. MAC Cosmetics is the Official Makeup Partner of The Drama League. The 2016 Drama League Awards Chairpersons are Bonnie Comley and Jano Herbosch.
First awarded in 1922 and formalized in 1935, The Drama League Awards are the oldest theatrical honors in America. The Drama League Awards recognize distinguished productions, performances, and exemplary career achievements. The first Drama League Award was presented to Katharine Cornell in 1935; since then, the Distinguished Performance Award has been accorded to a roster of theatre legends such as Chita Rivera, Neil Patrick Harris, Nathan Lane, Audra McDonald, Liam Neeson, Hugh Jackman, Patti LuPone, Glenn Close, Liev Schreiber, Sir John Gielgud, Harvey Fierstein, Cherry Jones, Alec Guinness, James Earl Jones, Helen Hayes, Jeremy Irons, Mary-Louise Parker, Sir Ian McKellen, Bernadette Peters, and Christopher Plummer.
National Life Group®, the Centennial Season Sponsor of The Drama League, doesn’t make widgets or cars or computers. We make promises. Our goal, since the chartering of National Life Insurance Company in 1848, has been to work together to create a better financial future for each and every customer through innovative financial solutions and then to deliver on those commitments 10, 20, or 50 years down the road. This commitment is evident in our values which are Do good. Be good. Make good. National Life Group is a trade name of National Life Insurance Company, Montpelier, VT, Life Insurance Company of the Southwest (LSW), Addison, TX and their affiliates. Each company of National Life Group is solely responsible for its own financial condition and contractual obligations. LSW is not an authorized insurer in New York and does not conduct insurance business in New York.
Megan Hilty is most recognizable for her portrayal of seasoned triple-threat Ivy Lynn in NBC’s musical drama “Smash.” She followed up the series with a starring role on the comedy “Sean Saves the World.” In March 2013, Hilty released her debut solo album, “It Happens All The Time,” which included fresh interpretations of compositions by contemporary songwriters and producers. This spring, Hilty received critical acclaim for her role of Brooke Ashton in the Roundabout Theater Company’s revival of Noises Off. She also recurred on Bravo’s dramedy “Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce.” In May, she will release a new live album comprising of songs from her recent tour. She will also take up residency at New York’s Café Carlyle, where she previously performed last spring.
Hilty starred as Lorelei Lee, the diamond-loving blonde made famous by Carol Channing, in the Encores! production of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, to which she earned rave reviews. Additionally, her voice was featured as Rosetta in Disney's Tinker Bell: Secret of the Wings. She has also recorded vocals in Disney's “The Secret Life of Magic Gourd,” “Phineas & Ferb,” “Glenn Martin DDS,” “American Dad,” “Tinker Bell and the Pixie Hollow Games,” “Robot & Monster” as well as singing as Snow White in the film Shrek the Third. Hilty can be heard in the animated film Dorothy of Oz with Kelsey Grammer, Hugh Dancy and Lea Michele. She can also be heard alongside Placido Domingo on the opera star’s duet album.
A native of Seattle, Hilty moved to New York City after graduating from the prestigious Carnegie Mellon University, and quickly made her Broadway debut as Glinda in Wicked. She went on to perform the role in both the national tour and in Los Angeles.
After receiving high praise for her portrayal of Doralee Rhodes in Broadway’s 9 to 5: The Musical, Hilty was honored with nominations for Lead Actress in a Musical at the Drama Desk Awards, Outer Critics Circle Awards, the Drama League Awards and L.A. Stage Alliance Ovation Awards. Hilty has previously performed at Carnegie Hall with the New York Pops, the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center, the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln Center, the Boston Pops, the Cincinnati Pops, the Houston Symphony, the Phoenix
Symphony among many others. She was also featured on TNT’s 2012 Christmas in Washington special and continues to perform at prestigious venues nationwide. Megan is a frequent guest on PBS’ televised Live from Capital Hill concerts. Her solo concert concerts continue to sell out and receive critical acclaim across the country.
Her television credits include guest-starring roles in “Melissa & Joey,” “Bones,” “The Closer,” “Desperate Housewives,” “CSI,” “Shark,” “Ugly Betty,” “Eli Stone” and “The Suite Life of Zach & Cody.” Among Hilty’s film credits are The Bitter Feast, the short film The Happiest Man Alive, opposite Justin Chambers and the upcoming Untitled Warren Beatty Project.
Zachary Levi’s exuberance and charm have made him a Hollywood first pick and a favorite among his devoted fans. Levi is currently starring on Broadway in Roundabout Theatre Company’s revival of She Loves Me. He previously did a theater run in his Broadway debut opposite Krysta Rodriguez in the witty musical First Date. The play received critical acclaim as did Levi for the run of the show.
Levi recently delighted fans in the NBC series “Heroes Reborn,” the revamp of the fan favorite show. “Heroes Reborn” premiered to excited audiences in the fall of 2015. This marked a return to NBC for Levi, who portrayed the beloved “Chuck” for five seasons. Additionally, Levi hosted and produced “Geeks Who Drink,” a game show based on the pub trivia contest of the same name, for SyFy Network.
On the big screen, Levi appeared most recently in the Marvel film Thor 2 as the role of Fandral the Dashing. Levi also appeared as the lead role opposite Mandy Moore in Disney's twist on its classic Rapunzel; entitled Tangled. The Oscar nominated film was a huge success at the box office and DVD release. Other notable big screen appearances include the 20th Century Fox film Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel which broke box office records in its Christmas release, the independent feature film Spiral with Amber Tamblyn, and a starring role in the franchise film Big Momma's House 2 with Martin Lawrence.
Levi grew up in Ventura County, CA. He began acting in theater at the early age of six, performing lead roles in regional productions such as Grease, The Outsiders, Oliver, Godspell, The Wizard of Oz, Big River, and Marvin's Room. It was this early training that ultimately brought him to the attention of Hollywood.
Levi devotes much time and energy doing philanthropic work as an ambassador for Operation Smile, through his company The Nerd Machine and his annual comic con event NERD HQ that has raised close to a million dollars for the charity to date. Levi currently resides in Los Angeles.