T. J. Gerckens, an Ohio-based LD who works frequently in Chicago theatre, and who was little-known in New York a year ago, took this season's Drama Desk Award for outstanding lighting design (of Metamorporphoses). The Drama Desk Awards were handed out last night in a ceremony at La Guardia High School. Otherwise, those thoroughly modern Drama Desk voters gave their hearts, and their awards, to Thorouglhy Modern Millie, honoring the new musical five times over at last night ceremony. Millie won for outstanding musical, actress in a musical (Sutton Foster), featured actress in a musical (Harriet Harris), director (Michael Mayer) and orchestrations (Doug Besterman and Ralph Burns).
The design winners were an eclectic bunch. Aside from Gerckens, Tim Hatley won for set design of a play (Private Lives) with Douglas W. Schmidt winning for set design of a musical (Into the Woods). Dan Moses Schreier also won for the sound design of Into the Woods. Isaac Mizrahi was remembered for costume design of the Roundabout Theatre revival of The Women.
The outstanding play winner was a tie between Metamorphoses and Edward Albee's The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? (The winners were announced by Goat co-stars Mercedes Ruehl and Bill Pullman, who expressed visible shock at the outcome). But then, it was an evening of anomalies, thanks to the lack of a dominating show among the nominees (unlike last year, when The Producers won in virtually every possible category). For example, Millie won as outstanding musical, even though the award for book of a musical went to Elaine Stritch: At Liberty and the music and lyric awards went to Jason Robert Brown for The Last Five Years.
There were other multiple winners. In addition to the play and lighting citations, Metamorphoses won for director Mary Zimmerman and outstanding music in a play (Willy Schwarz). Private Lives was also won for outstanding revival and actress in a play (Lindsay Duncan). Fortune’s Fool won in the actor and featured actor in a play categories, for Alan Bates and Frank Langella respectively. And Oklahoma! earned awards for choregrapher Susan Stroman and featured actor in a musical Shuler Hensley.
A complete list of winner follows:
Outstanding Musical: Thoroughly Modern Millie
Outstanding Play: The Goat or Who Is Sylvia? and Metamorphoses
Outstanding Revival of a Musical: Into the Woods
Outstanding Revival of a Play: Private Lives
Outstanding Actor in a Musical: John Lithgow, Sweet Smell of Success
Outstanding Actress in a Musical: Sutton Foster, Thoroughly Modern Millie
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical: Shuler Hensley, Oklahoma!
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical: Harriet Harris, Thoroughly Modern Millie
Outstanding Actor in a Play: Alan Bates, Fortune's Fool
Outstanding Actress in a Play: Lindsay Duncan, Private Lives
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play: Frank Langella, Fortune's Fool
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play: Katie Finneran, Noises Off
Outstanding Solo Performance: Elaine Stritch, Elaine Stritch at Liberty
Outstanding Direction of a Musical: Michael Mayer, Thoroughly Modern Millie
Outstanding Direction of a Play: Mary Zimmerman, Metamorphoses
Outstanding Choreography: Susan Stroman, Oklahoma!
Outstanding Book of a Musical: John Lahr/Elaine Stritch, Elaine Stritch at Liberty
Outstanding Music: Jason Robert Brown, The Last 5 Years
Outstanding Lyrics: Jason Robert Brown, The Last 5 Years
Outstanding Music in a Play: Willy Schwarz, Metamorphoses
Outstanding Orchestrations: Douglas Besterman/Ralph Burns, Thoroughly Modern Millie
Outstanding Set Design of a Musical: Douglas W. Schmidt, Into the Woods
Outstanding Set Design of a Play: Tim Hatley, Private Lives
Outstanding Costume Design: Isaac Mizrahi, The Women
Outstanding Lighting Design: TJ Gerckens, Metamorphoses
Outstanding Sound Design: Dan Moses Schreier, Into the Woods