The Off Broadway Alliance (OBA) – an organization comprised of Off-Broadway producers, theaters, general managers, press agents, and marketing professionals, with annual awards honoring the best in commercial and non-profit Off-Broadway shows and achievements since 2011 – announced its nominations for the 2019-20 season (through March 11, due to the coronavirus shutdown).
Awards are presented in seven competitive categories, along with honorary recognitions in three areas. The 2020 nominations are:
Best New Musical: A Strange Loop, book, music, and lyrics by Michael R Jackson, produced by Playwrights Horizons and Page 73; Cambodian Rock Band by Lauren Yee, songs by Dengue Fever, produced by Signature Theatre Company; Emojiand, book, music, and lyrics by Keith Harrison and Laura Schein, produced by Arborhouse Productions and Visceral Entertainment; Romeo & Bernadette: A Musical Tale of Verona and Brooklyn, book and lyrics by Mark Saltzman, produced by Amas Musical Theatre and Eric Krebs; Sing Street, book by Enda Walsh, music and lyrics by John Carney and Gary Clark, produced by New York Theatre Workshop; and The Secret Life of Bees, book by Lynn Nottage, music by Duncan Sheik, lyrics by Susan Birkenhead, produced by the Atlantic Theater Company
Best New Play: Ain’t No Mo’ by Jordan E. Cooper, produced by The Public Theater; Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven, by Stephen Adly Guirgus, produced by Atlantic Theater Company; Life Sucks by Aaron Posner, produced by Wheelhouse Theater; Make Believe by Bess Wohl, produced by Second Stage Theater; and The Confession of Lily Dare by Charles Busch, produced by Jamie deRoy and Primary Stages
Best Musical Revival: Baby, book by Sybille Pearson, music by David Shire, lyrics by Richard Maltby Jr., produced by Out of the Box Theatrics; Enter Laughing, book by Joseph Stein, music and lyrics by Stan Daniels, produced by The York Theater Company; Little Shop of Horrors, book and lyrics by Howard Ashman, music by Alan Menken, produced by Robert Ahrens, Hunter Arnold, Mickey Liddell, Curt Cronin, John Joseph, and Tom Kirdahy; Rock of Ages, book by Chris D’Arienzo, Produced by S2BN Entertainment; The Unsinkable Molly Brown, music and lyrics by Meredith Willson, book and new lyrics by Dick Scanlan, based on the original book by Richard Morris, Music adaptation by Michael Rafter, produced by Transport Group
Best Play Revival: For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow Is Enuf, by Ntozake Shange, produced by The Public Theater; Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare, produced by The Public Theater; The Woman in Black, adapted by Stephen Mallatratt, from the novel by Susan Hill, presented by the McKittrick Hotel; and Timon of Athens by William Shakespeare, produced by Theatre for a New Audience and Shakespeare Theater Company
Best Unique Theatrical Experience: Dana H. by Lucas Hnath, produced by Vineyard Theatre, Goodman Theatre, and Center Theatre Group; Midsummer: A Banquet by William Shakespeare, adapted by Zach Morris and Victoria Rae Sook, produced by Food of Love Productions and Third Rail Projects; Novenas for a Lost Hospital by Cusi Cram, produced by Rattlestick Playwrights Theater; Playing Hot, created by Kevin Armento and Jaki Bradley, written by Kevin Armento and C.A. Johnson, produced by Pipeline Theater; and Katsura Sunshine’s Rakugo, created and performed by Katsura Sunshine, produced by Joe Trentacosta, Yoshitaka Tanaka, Yumi Shinozaki, and Marie Fukuda
Best Solo Performance: Kathleen Chalfant in A Woman of the World by Rebecca Gilman, produced by The Acting Company and 59E59 Theaters; Keith Hamilton Cobb in American Moor by Keith Hamilton Cobb, produced by Evangeline Morphos, Frederick M Zollo, Red Bull Theater, Elizabeth I McCann, and Tom Shea; Harvey Fierstein in Bella Bella by Harvey Fierstein, produced by Manhattan Theatre Club; Ken Jennings in Gospel of John, conceived by Ken Jennings, produced by The Sheen Center for Thought and Culture; Bill Posley in The Day I Became Black, created and written by Bill Posley, produced by Kristen Boulé; and Aedín Moloney in Yes! Reflections of Molly Bloom, adaptation by Aedín Moloney and Colum McCann, produced by Irish Repertory Theatre
Best Family Show: Dog Man: The Musical, music by Brad Alexander, books and lyrics by Kevin DelAguila, based on the series by Dav Pilkey, produced by TheatreWorks USA; Paddington Gets in a Jam, created by Jonathan Rockefeller, written by Doug Kmiotek, based on the series by Michael Bond, produced by Rockefeller Productions; She Persisted, The Musical, script and lyrics by Adam Tobin, music by Deborah Wicks La Puma, adapted from the book by Chelsea Clinton, produced by Atlantic Theater Company; Taste the Clouds, created by Hit the Lights! Theater Co., based on the book by Rita Marshall, produced by New York Children’s Theatre; and The Big One-Oh!, music by Doug Besterman, lyrics by Dean Pitchford, book by Timothy Allen McDonald, based on the Novel by Dean Pitchford, produced by Atlantic Theater Company.
And this year’s special honorees are:
Legends of Off Broadway: Gretchen Cryer; Woodie King, Jr.; Eric Krebs; and Barbara Zinn Krieger
Off Broadway Hall of Fame Inductees: Mark Blum; Wynn Handman; and Julia Miles
Friend of Off Broadway: The Drama Bookshop.
Congratulations to all of the nominees and honorees. Winners will be announced online on Tuesday, May 19, at 11:30 am, on OBA’s Facebook page.