Home  |   FAQ  | Related Links |  Press Room & News  |  contact us
Jeff Recommended Shows
Now Playing
no longer playing
Nominees & Recipients
Equity
Non-Equity
Jeff Awards History, Eligibility and Judging Mechanics
Jeff Committee Members
Search Archives of Past Awards
JEFF AWARD FOR PRODUCTION - PLAY & ENSEMBLE - AT THE TABLE JEFF AWARD FOR PRODUCTION - MUSICAL - HIGH FIDELITY SPECIAL AWARD RECIPIENT DAVID CERDA CHRISTOPHER PAZDERNIK - DIRECTOR - MUSICAL - HIGH FIDELITY SPENSER DAVIS - DIRECTOR - PLAY - AT THE TABLE COLETTE TODD - ACTRESS IN A PRINCIPAL ROLE - MUSICAL AND ACTRESS IN A REVUE AMY JOHNSON - ACTRESS IN A PRINCIPAL ROLE - PLAY - FALLING and INTERROBANG THEATRE PROJECT ECHAKA AGBA - ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE - PLAY VERONICA GARZA - ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE - MUSICAL KEVIN D. GAWLEY - LIGHTING DESIGN - A WRINKLE IN TIME STEPHEN PTACEK - SOUND DESIGN - HOW WE GOT ON ANTHONY CHURCHILL - PROJECTION DESIGN - THE BODY OF AN AMERICAN EMCEES ALEXIS J. ROSTON AND LILLIAN CASTILLO

SAVE THE DATE

Jeff Equity Awards: Monday, November 6 at Drury Lane Oakbrook.  Watch for the announcement of nominees soon.

____________________________________________________________________

JEFF AWARDS RESEARCH

PROJECT ENTERS PHASE 2

Online Opinion Survey Being Sent to all Chicago Area Theatres August 16

The Jeff Awards is entering Phase 2 of its research project to gather opinions from Managing Directors and Artistic Directors of Chicago area theatres with an online, quantitative survey being sent Wednesday, August 16.

Independently conducting the research is a Taproot+ team of pro-bono professionals.  The deadline to complete the survey is September 1.  See the press release for more details.

____________________________________________________________________________

TAPROOT+ APPROVES RESEARCH PROJECT FOR JEFF AWARDS

The Joseph Jefferson Awards has been approved for pro bono work from Taproot+ to conduct opinion research with Chicago area theatres this summer. Results will be shared with the Jeff Awards in the aggregate to insure confidentiality of individuals and theatre companies interviewed.

Taproot+ volunteers will conduct the multi-phase research project. Taproot+ is a free program for any registered nonprofit in the United States, which focuses on short-term projects. It is a program of the Taproot Foundation, which connects nonprofits and social change organizations with skilled volunteers who share their expertise pro bono. Through its programs, business professionals deliver marketing, strategy, HR and IT solutions that organizations need to achieve their missions.

Read the press release.

______________________________________________________________

2016-2017 JEFF NON-EQUITY AWARDS 

CELEBRATE OUTSTANDING SEASON

TOP PRODUCTION HONORS GO TO AT THE TABLE AND HIGH FIDELITY.

The 44th Annual Non-Equity Jeff Awards was held at the Athenaeum Theatre on Monday, June 5.  See the complete list of recipients.

"At the Table", produced by the Broken Nose Theatre, received Jeff AWards for Production-Play, Ensemble, Director-Play (Spenser Davis) and Actress in a Supporting Role-Play (Echaka Agba). These awards were quite an achievemnet for Broken Nose, especially since this was its first year of Jeff eligibility.  Top honors in the musical category went to Refuge THeatre Project for its production of "High Fidelity", bsaed on the movie starring John Cusack about a record store owner and his loves and friends.  "High Fidelity" received awards for Production-Musical, Director-Musical (Christopher Pazdernik) and Scenic Design (Michelle Manni). Like Broken Nose, this was also Refuge Theatre Project's first year of Jeff eligibility.

ACTING AWARDS

The Solo Performance Award went to Philip Dawkins for his work in "The Happiest Place on Earth", produced by the Greenhouse Theater Center and Sideshow Theatre Company. Awards for Principal Performance in a Play went to Amy Johnson for her portrayal of a mother of an autistic child in "Falling" at Interrobang Theatre Project, George Seegebrecht as the Lindbergh baby kidnapper in "Hauptmann" at City Lit Theatre Company, and to Gage Wallace as a sinfully elegant schemer in "Taste", produced by Red Theater Chicago. Awards for Principal Performance in a Musical were bestowed on Henry McGinnis for his portrayal of Bat Boy in "Bat Boy: The Musical" with Griffin Theatre Company and to Colette Todd for her portrayal of a wife and mother coping with mental illness in "Next to Normal" at BoHo Theatre. Colette also received the award for Actor or Actress in a Revue as Angela in "Honky Tonk Angels" at Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre.

NEW WORK

Three new works (two plays and one musical) were recognized: Ike Holter's "Prowess", produced by Jackalope Theatre Company, an enthralling depiction of the tender balance between well-meaning heroism and vigilante justice during a summer in Chicago; Alex Lubischer for "Bobbie Clearly", produced by Steep Theatre Company, a dark comedy about a community trying to make sense of senseless violence in Milton, Nebraska; and to Robert Kauzlaric and George Howe for "Northanger Abbey", produced by Lifeline Theatre, a musical adaptation of the first of Jane Austen's novel and a satire of the gothic novels popular at the time of its first writing in 1798-99.

Alexis J. Roston and Lillian Castillo were emcees for this year's awards show. Brenda Didier directed the ceremony, with musical direction provided by Jimmy Morehead. John D. Glover, Non-Equity Chair of the Jeff Awards, produced the event.

See the press release and complete list of recipients.

See the full gallery of Johnny Knight's photographs from the 2017 Non-Equity Jeff Awards. 

_______________________________________________

 

  

DAVID CERDA TO RECEIVE 2017

SPECIAL NON-EQUITY JEFF AWARD

More than 200 members of the Chicago theatre community signed a recommendation that the 2017 Non-Equity Special Jeff Award be bestowed on David Cerda, the co-founder and Artistic Director of Hell in a Handbag Productions for his theatrical and charitable contributions. The Jeff Awards Committee concurred. David Cerda will receive the award at the 44th Annual Non-Equity Awards ceremony on June 5th at the Athenaeum Theatre.  See the press release for all the details.                                                                                         

 _____________________________________________________________

NOMINEES ANNOUNCED FOR THE 

44TH ANNUAL NON-EQUITY JEFF AWARDS

The Jeff Awards announced, via a special video, a total of 127 nominations in 26 categories for the 44th Annual Non-Equity Jeff Awards for productions that opened between April 1, 2016, and March 31, 2017. Hosting the video presentation were Alexis J. Roston and Lillian Castillo, who will be this year's Mistresses of Ceremonies at the Awards event on June 5 at The Athenaeum. 

Watch the VIDEO, see the press release with all the details, or see the COMPLETE LIST OF NOMINEES. 

_______________________________________________________________  

NON-EQUITY JEFF AWARDS CEREMONY

MOVES TO THE ATHENAEUM

The Joseph Jefferson Awards Committee announced that the 44th Annual Non-Equity Jeff Awards Ceremony, recognizing excellence in non-union Chicago theatre, will be held at The Athenaeum on June 5, 2017. This awards show will be honoring non-Equity productions for the season running April 1, 2016, through March 31, 2017.

The Athenaeum, located at 2936 N. Southport Avenue in Chicago, seats 984 patrons in its classic Main Stage space built in 1911.  John Glover, the Chair of the Non-Equity Wing for the Jeff Committee and producer of the awards show, shared that the past three award shows have been sold out, and it was time to explore a new venue.  John stated, “The Park West has been a terrific host to this awards show for many years, but we have outgrown the space.  It’s a great dilemma to have to face.”  See the press release for more details.

 ____________________________________________________________

2015-2016 JEFF EQUITY AWARDS 

CELEBRATE OUTSTANDING SEASON

TOP PRODUCTION HONORS GO TO THE TEMPEST, DREAMGIRLS,

WEST SIDE STORY AND UNITED FLIGHT 232

The gala 48th Annual Equity Jeff Awards was held at Drury Lane Oakbrook on Monday, October 17.  See the complete list of recipients.

The classic revenge tale The Tempest, reimagined at Chicago Shakespeare Theater as a traveling tent show of trickery and amazement, was recognized for Production-Play for a large theatre, Direction of a Play for Aaron Posner and Teller, Magic Design for “The Great Tomsoni” Johnny Thompson, and Lighting Design for Thom Weaver. 

Porchlight Music Theatre’s Dreamgirls, the story of the aspirations and success of rhythm and blues artists in the 1960s and 70s, was honored with awards for Production-Musical for a midsize theatre, Principal Actress Donica Lynn, Supporting Actor Eric Lewis and Costume Designer Bill Morey. 

Paramount Theatre’s West Side Story received awards for Production-Musical for a large theatre, newly named The Dr. Harlan Haimes Award, and for Supporting Actress Mary Antonini and Choreographer William Carlos Angulo.

The award for Production-Play of a midsize theatre went to United Flight 232, about the emergency landing of that flight, produced by The House Theatre of Chicago. Its cast was honored with the prestigious Ensemble award, sponsored by Actors’ Equity Association. 

Rachel Rockwell received the statue for Director of a Musical in a large theatre for Ride the Cyclone, the story of school choir members who compete for another chance at life after a rollercoaster crash, which will soon open off Broadway. 

ACTING AWARDS

Principal acting honors in a play went to Mary Beth Fisher for Domesticated at Steppenwolf Theatre Company and Dexter Zollicoffer in Northlight Theatre’s Charm.  Principal actor in a musical was awarded to Nathaniel Stampley for Man of La Mancha at Marriott Theatre. 

Brian Quijada was recognized with two awards: Solo Performance and Sound Design of his original autobiographical play Where Did We Sit on the Bus?, which expresses his curiosity about the role of Latinos in the Civil Rights era, produced by Teatro Vista in association with the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and Victory Gardens Theater. 

Shari Addison received the award for Actor or Actress in a Revue for Dynamite Divas at Black Ensemble Theater. 

The awards for supporting actors in a play went to Jacqueline Williams in The House That Will Not Stand at Victory Gardens Theater and Mike Nussbaum in The Price at TimeLine Theatre Company.

NEW WORK

Chicago continues to be a nurturing center for New Works, and top awards went to Philip Dawkins for Charm at Northlight Theatre, based on the true story of a transgender woman teaching etiquette to LGBTQ youth in Chicago, and to John Reeger, the late Julie Shannon and Michael Mahler for The Man Who Murdered Sherlock Holmes, a musical tale of the mystery that ensues when Sir Arthur Conan Doyle kills off his famous detective.  The statue for New Adaptation was awarded to Robert Falls and Seth Bockley for their interpretation of Roberto Bolaño’s epic novel, 2666, with 15 actors playing 80 roles over five hours.

The capacity audience enjoyed live performances from nominated musicals and video performances from nominated plays.  The Equity Awards ceremony was directed by Michael Weber, with music direction by Linda Madonia and stage management by Colleen Tovar.  Merril Prager served as producer for the evening. Actors Janet Ulrich Brooks and James Earl Jones II emceed the event.  Following the ceremony, guests enjoyed a lavish Drury Lane buffet and dancing.

Note: See the full gallery of Johnny Knight's photographs from The 2016 Jeff Equity Awards. 

See the press release and complete list of recipients.

________________________________________________________

MICHAEL HALBERSTAM RECEIVES

2016 SPECIAL JEFF AWARD

    The Joseph Jefferson Awards Committee paid tribute to Michael Halberstam with a Special Award at the 2016 Equity Jeff Awards Ceremony on Monday, October 17. The Artistic Director of Writers Theatre since its inception in 1992, he is being honored for his outstanding accomplishments and contributions to Chicagoland theatre. 

Writers Theater has grown from a small space in the back room of a Glencoe bookstore to its new state-of-the-art facility designed by world-renown Studio Gang Architects. Under his artistic leadership,  the theatre has attained a national reputation for excellence, garnering critical praise for consistent high quality and intimacy of its artistry, providing the finest interpretations of both classic and contemporary theatre.    Individually, Michael Halberstam has received many prestigious awards for artistic achievement, including seven Jeff nominations as an actor, director and adapter.   In addition, Writers Theatre has received more than 100 nominations and 26 awards.  

The Jeff Awards Committee congratulates Michael Halberstam on creating a dynamic world-class theatre on the brink of its 25th Anniversary Season.

See the complete press release.

 _____________________________________________

2015-2016 JEFF AWARDS EQUITY NOMINATIONS ANNOUNCED

Watch the ANNOUNCEMENT VIDEO.  

     

Multiple Jeff Award-winning actors Deanna Dunagan and Mike Nussbaum did the honor of announcing the nominees for the 2015-2016 Jeff Equity Awards.  Watch the video, see the complete list of nominees,or the press release with all the details.

During the 2015-16 season, Jeff Awards Committee judges attended opening nights of 158 Equity productions offered by 58 producing organizations, and from these openings, 112 productions were "Jeff Recommended" and eligible for award nominations. Productions must have opened between August 1, 2015 and July 31, 2016.

__________________________________________________________        

Join us on  twitter  facebook
Now Playing
Equity Wing | see complete list
Trevor The Musical
Writers Theatre

Machinal
Greenhouse Theater Center

Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical
Mercury Theater Chicago

Last Dancer Standing (More than Hip Hop)
Black Ensemble Theater

Spamilton
The Royal George Theatre Cabaret


Non-Equity Wing | see complete list
The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity
Red Theater Chicago

Shockheaded Peter
Black Button Eyes Productions

Lela & Co.
Steep Theatre Company


NEWS
Jeff Committee Hosts Panel on Casting

Kimberly Senior to Receive Special Non-Equity Jeff Award

Jeff Committee Hosts Panel on Directing Comedy

"Jeff Recommended" indicates that at least one element of a show was deemed excellent by opening night judges. The entire production is then eligible for nomination for awards at the end of the season.
 
SUPPORT THE JEFF AWARDS
The Joseph Jefferson Awards Committee celebrates the vitality of Chicago area theatre by recognizing excellence through its recommendations, awards and honors. The committee fosters the artistic growth of area theatres and theatre artists and promotes educational opportunities, audience appreciation, and civic pride in the achievements of the theatre community.

Help us in our work of fostering high-quality Chicagoland theatre by making a tax-deductible donation. The Jeff Awards is a registered 501(c)(3) organization under the Internal Revenue Code.