Baayork Lee is this year’s recipient of the Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award, The Hollywood Reporter has learned exclusively.
The seasoned director and choreographer, who also originated the role of Connie in A Chorus Line, will be honored for her commitment to future generations of artists through her work as the founder of the National Asian Artists Project, which showcases the work of Asian-American theater artists through performance, educational programming and community outreach, and has produced musical theater staples like Oklahoma!, Carousel, Hello Dolly!, Oliver! and Honor with all Asian-American casts. She’ll also be lauded for creating theater education programs around the world.
“Baayork works tirelessly to break down cultural walls that often build up around what theater goers consider ‘traditional’ musicals, and her dedication to fostering the next generation of performers and theater professionals to do the same is exemplary. We are thrilled to honor her this year,” said Charlotte St. Martin, president of The Broadway League, and Heather Hitchens, president of the American Theatre Wing.
The Isabelle Stevenson Award is presented annually to a member of the theatere community who has made a substantial contribution of volunteered time and effort on behalf of one or more humanitarian, social service or charitable organizations. Previous recipients include Brian Stokes Mitchell, Rosie O’Donnell, Larry Kramer and Stephen Schwartz.
The Tony Awards are presented by the Broadway League and the American Theatre Wing. The ceremony will air live June 11 (8-11 p.m. ET/delayed PT) on CBS, broadcasting from Radio City Music Hall in New York City. Kevin Spacey is hosting.
The awards eligibility cutoff date for all Broadway productions opening in the 2016-2017 season is April 27. Jane Krakowski and Christopher Jackson will announce the nominees May 2.