Rosemary Newcott Receives Spirit of Suzi Award
Three special awards honor local theatre professionals and volunteers at the 2010 Suzi Bass Award Ceremony
The Suzi Bass Awards are proud to announce the recipient of the "Spirit of Suzi" Award: local actress, director and educator Rosemary Newcott. The "Spirit of Suzi" Award is given to a person or organization that demonstrates the long-term and consistent contribution to Atlanta theatre that embodies the spirit of the late and much-loved actress Suzi Bass.
One of Atlanta's most beloved and consistently working theatre artists, Rosemary Newcott is the Sally G. Tomlinson Artistic Director of Theatre for Youth at the Alliance Theatre. Newcott has been performing, directing and teaching in Atlanta since the 1980s, when she began her Atlanta career as a member of the Academy Theatre. As an actress, she has performed on almost every Atlanta stage, most extensively at Horizon Theatre, as well as in film and television. Since joining the Alliance staff in 1999, she has directed most Theatre for Youth productions, including "Disney's Mulan" and "Aladdin," "Seussical the Musical," "Go, Dog. Go!" and Amy and Jimmy Carter's "The Little Baby Snoogle Fleejer." Her direction of Alliance's yearly "A Christmas Carol" has helped keep the holiday production fresh for Atlanta's audiences. Newcott's work in regional and national venues has raised Atlanta's profile with outside audiences as well, particularly her work for the Kennedy Center's World Premiere of Mo Willem's "Knufflebunny: A Cautionary Musical."
Newcott, a certified secondary education teacher, taught at the Georgia Governor's Honors Program (10 years), the Alliance Performance Program and the Horizon Teen Ensemble. Continuing her commitment to arts in education, she currently directs the acclaimed Alliance Theatre high school Collision Project, which consists of a new play "devised" by a group of high school students with the assistance of a playwright, an Alliance dramaturg and Newcott. The students create theatre for and about themselves by "colliding" with a dramatic text during a three-week summer work.
For the first time, The Suzi Bass Awards will also honor Atlanta's theatre volunteers with the Volunteer of the Year Award, presented to someone nominated by Suzi Participating Theatres and chosen by Suzi Awards Members. The 2010 season saw four nominations, each with extensive service as a board member or program and production volunteer. Theatre in the Square (Marietta) nominated Board Chair Bill Pinto, President of Hardin Construction, for his leadership of "the ship of Theatre in the Square through the storm of the Recession . . . with poise and grace under pressure." Citing the in-kind and monetary support of Hardin Construction, Pinto's large investment of personal and business time on behalf of the theatre, and enthusiastic encouragement of friends, employees and business relations to attend performances, Theatre in the Square credits Pinto's involvement for their physical expansion and financial stability during the last two years. 7 Stages nominated Christy Rupp Page, who over the last three years has "volunteered as an amazing development grants manager ... researching and writing grant applications for more hours than any human probably should." Georgia Ensemble Theatre (Roswell) lauds their 15-year volunteer Christine Billies who has served as a metaphorical woman-of-all-work in the administrative offices, at events and conferences, as a GET conservatory teacher, as a scholarship donor, and as Summer Performance Camp costumer. The fourth nominee is Sandy Meierhofer, volunteer in many capacities for the Atlanta Shakespeare Company. For 18 years, Meierhofer has assisted with "volunteer coordination, mailings, box office management, fundraising events, sewing of costumes, decorating, and coordinating auditions, all of which allowed Shakespeare Tavern "to breathe a little easier, knowing that there was someone to call on who was always willing to help."
The 2010 Gene-Gabriel Moore Playwriting Award nominees are a trio of talented adapters, writers and composers. The award, named after the primary founder of the organization, recognizes an Atlanta-based playwright whose work was given a full professional Atlanta production in the preceding season. Tom Key, Producing Artistic Director of Theatrical Outfit, co-wrote "Cotton Patch Gospel" with Russell Treyz and Harry Chapin in 1980. After a successful off-Broadway run, the musical has continued in production across the U.S. Last season in Atlanta, Theatrical Outfit and Georgia Ensemble Theatre co-produced the show with Key directing and Daniel Thomas May aptly filling Key's shoes as Matthew. Also considered for the GGM Award is prolific Atlanta playwright Janece Shaffer, whose character-and-issues comedy, "Brownie Points," was produced by Theatrical Outfit as a World Premiere. Shaffer won the GGM Award last year for her play "Managing Maxine." Atlanta newcomer Douglas Tappin, who relocated from London several years ago, is the final nominee with his World Premiere of "I Dream," for which he wrote the book, music and lyrics. "I Dream" ran to much acclaim last season during the National Black Arts Festival and was produced by Tappin's Musical-Dramatic Arts, Inc.
The winners of this year's Gene-Gabriel Moore Award, the Audience Choice for Outstanding Season, and the Volunteer of the Year will be announced at the 6th Annual Suzi Awards Ceremony on Monday, November 8, at the Conant Performing Arts Center of Oglethorpe University.
What: The 2010 Suzi Bass Awards Ceremony
When: Monday, November 8, 2010 at 7:30 p.m.
Where: The Conant Performing Arts Center, Oglethorpe
Price: $30 adv, $40 at the door
Info: Creative Black Tie, Free Parking, after-party included in ticket price
For more information or to buy tickets, please visit the Web site at www.suziawards.org.
The Suzi Bass Awards, Inc. is a Georgia corporation operating under the 501(c)3 section of the Internal Revenue Service code. Judges, board members and committees are all staffed by volunteers, and membership is open to anyone.