“Producing theater is always going to be risky. At the end of the day, a business can say, ‘We didn’t make any money.’ But at the end of the day, we’re a non-profit theater. We have to speak the words regardless. We have to ask, ‘Did we perform our mission?’”
True Colors also had a good night, nabbing the two big cast awards -- best ensemble/play, for “For Colored Girls...” and best ensemble/musical, for “Black Nativity.” The latter also accounted for its two other victories, for costume design (Shilla Benning) and choreography (Patdro Harris).
Theatre in the Square took two big acting prizes -- lead actress/play (Veronica Duerr in “Tradin’ Paint”) and lead actor/play (John Ammerman in “A Man for All Seasons”). Jessica Phelps West won best director/play for “Tradin’ Paint,” and the Marietta troupe scored the big final award, best production/play, for “A Man for All Seasons.”
Atlanta Lyric Theatre received the first Audience Choice Award for Outstanding Season, one of three prizes it collected.
The Alliance Theatre, the Southeast’s largest company, was nominated for 13 awards and scored three. Susan Booth received the best director/musical award, for “Jesus Christ Superstar Gospel.” Michael Mitchell shared music direction honors with Clark for “Jesus Christ Superstar Gospel.” And Janece Shaffer won the Gene-Gabriel Moore Playwriting Award, for “Managing Maxine.”
But even though some went away empty-handed after 24 Suzis were distributed, there were no losers in the grand scheme of things. “This is all about getting people talking about theater,” host Deadra Moore said, “and getting butts in the seats.”