The Actors’ Equity Foundation, created in 1962 to aid and assist the members of the acting profession and to promote the theatre arts, has announced its 2023 award recipients.
Darius de Haas has been named the recipient of the St. Clair Bayfield Award—honoring an outstanding performance in a supporting role in a Shakespearean play in the New York area—for his work as Duke Senior in the Shakespeare in the Park production of As You Like It. This award was established in 1973 and is chosen by a panel of critics and members of the theatre community.
The Joe A. Callaway Award, established in 1989 to honor actors for the best performance in a classical play (from before the 20th century) in the New York metropolitan area, will be presented to Michael Patrick Thornton for his work as Doctor Rank in the current Broadway revival of A Doll’s House. The recipient is chosen by a panel of critics.
Established in 1945, the Clarence Derwent Award is given to two actors for the most promising performance in a supporting role, as selected by a panel of critics. This year's winners are Alex Newell (Lulu in Shucked) and Bonnie Milligan (Debra in Kimberly Akimbo). Derwent’s will stipulated a Trust Fund for the Actors’ Equity Foundation to fund the awards.
The Richard Seff Award—given annually to a male and female character actor (50 or older who has been a member of Actors’ Equity for a minimum of 25 years) for the best performance in a featured or unfeatured supporting role in a Broadway or Off-Broadway production—will be presented to Linda Lavin for playing Callen in You Will Get Sick and Francis Guinan for playing Fred in Downstate. (Recipients of this award may not be stars as determined by Equity, and an actor may only be the recipient of this award one time.)
The Actors’ Equity Foundation recognizes that the era of gendered awards is coming to a close. The board of the Foundation is currently working on developing a new model for these awards for the future.
The Foundation will present these awards, as well as the previously announced Paul Robeson Award recipients, at a June 26 ceremony at the New York offices of Actors’ Equity Association.