New Relief Fund Formed to Support and Sustain the Community of Artists Working Off- and Off-Off-Broadway
The 2020 Obie Awards Ceremony is Being Reconceived as a Virtual Event and Will be Available for Online Viewing at a Date T.B.A.
The American Theatre Wing announced that the 65th Annual Obie Awards, originally scheduled to be held at Terminal 5 on Monday, May 18, will be postponed and reconceived as a virtual event, with awards being handed out for shows that opened between May 1, 2019 and March 12, 2020. Additional details on the 2020 Obie Awards ceremony, New York’s preeminent celebration of Off- and Off-Off Broadway theatre, including its new date and time, will be announced in the coming weeks.
In addition to the usual celebration of the remarkable work that’s happened this season, this year’s Obie Awards will also shine a light on the loss of the productions that were in rehearsal and performance at the time the theatres closed.
Ms. Hitchens commented, “There has likely never been a more important time to celebrate the work of Off- and Off-Off-Broadway artists. While we won’t be able to hold the kind of ceremony we normally do, we knew we needed to find a way to preserve the Obie tradition and honor the work of this remarkable season. We will, as usual, provide the laughs and the awards, but this year the beer is strictly BYOB.”
THEATRE ARTISTS RELIEF FUND
The shuttering of more than 90 Off- and Off-Off-Broadway productions has left an untenable number of theatre workers suddenly without work. The Wing, with the council and guidance of the Obie Awards’ Judges Panel (co-chaired by Obie-winning scenic designer Rachel Hauck and choreographer Sam Pinkleton), has created a $250,000 Theatre Artists Relief Fund in order to get money directly into the hands of artists. This fund, which is generously supported by the Edwin Barbey Charitable Trust and the theatrical production company No Guarantees, will grant each of these artists $500 to help sustain them during this period of mandatory shutdowns.
To aid in distributing these funds, the Wing has created an online resource database which is striving to assemble a comprehensive list of each theatre, production, freelance artist, technician, and theatre worker affected by the shutdown. Artists who were working on these productions may each receive $500 in aid by simply registering via a form on our website. While the Wing has worked to assemble the information for all productions Off- and Off-Off-Broadway that were affected by the shutdown, artists who have been unintentionally excluded are also encouraged to apply. There is a limited pool of funds, which will be paid by check, on a first come, first serve basis.
For a complete list of eligible theatre artists from these productions please visit http://www.obieawards.com/resources.
Due to an overwhelming response, in less than 24 hours we have received over 500+ requests exhausting our initial $250,000 relief fund. If you would like to add your name to the resource database for Off- and Off- Off- Broadway shows and freelance artists affected please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for understanding.