It was announced today by the Theatre World Awards and The Dorothy Loudon Foundation that four-time Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein will receive the 9th Annual John Willis Award for Lifetime Achievement, and Michael Oberholtzer (Take Me Out) will receive the 13th Annual Dorothy Loudon Award for Excellence in the Theater.
The John Willis Award, named in honor of the man who created and maintained the Theatre World tradition to encourage new talent for 66 years, is given annually to an individual whose lifetime achievements and personal generosity to the theater community merit special recognition and acknowledgement.
Harvey Fierstein is the Tony Award-winning author of Torch Song Trilogy and La Cage Aux Folles. His other writings include the Tony-nominated Kinky Boots, Newsies, and Casa Valentina, A Catered Affair (nominated for twelve Drama Desk Awards), and Bella Bella. As an actor he appeared in Torch Song Trilogy and Hairspray, receiving Tony Awards for both, Fiddler on the Roof, La Cage aux Folles, Gently Down the Stream, and A Catered Affair. Among his film and television appearances are Mrs. Doubtfire, The Good Wife, and Cheers (for which he received an Emmy nomination), and he has voiced characters in Mulan, and many others.
The Dorothy Loudon Award for Excellence in the Theater honors an Outstanding Performance in a Broadway or Off-Broadway production, chosen by the Trustees of The Dorothy Loudon Foundation with recommendations from the Theatre World Awards Committee. Dorothy Loudon made her Broadway debut in Nowhere to Go But Up, for which she received a Theatre World Award. She went on to receive a Tony Award for her performance as Miss Hannigan in Annie, and to originate roles in Noises Off, Westside Waltz, and Michael Bennett’s Ballroom.
Recipient Michael Oberholtzer is currently appearing in the Broadway revival of Take Me Out in the role of Shane Mungitt. His Broadway and Off-Broadway credits include Hand to God, The Babylon Line (Lincoln Center), and The Talls (Second Stage), in addition to his film and television appearances.
Hosted by theater journalist Peter Filichia, the 76th Annual Theatre World Awards Ceremony will be produced by Theatre World Awards, Inc. and directed by Tom D’Angora and Michael D’Angora. This year’s invitation-only presentation will return live and in-person on Monday evening, June 6, 2022, beginning at 7:00, at Circle in the Square Theatre, located at 1633 Broadway.