Nathan Lane to receive Signature Theatre’s 2024 Stephen Sondheim Award

The three-time Tony Award-winning actor will be honored at a gala on April 29.

On April 29, 2024, Virginia’s Tony Award-winning Signature Theatre will honor star of stage and screen Nathan Lane with the company’s thirteenth Stephen Sondheim Award. The Stephen Sondheim Award will be presented at a black-tie Gala Benefit at the Embassy of Italy and will benefit Signature Theatre’s artistic, education, and community programs. This year’s Gala Benefit will be chaired by H. Mac and Michele-Anne Riley. More information can be found online at

Nathan Lane. Photo by Luke Fontana.

“Nathan Lane is an icon of the stage and screen, and we are thrilled to celebrate his incredible contributions to the American musical theater at Signature’s Stephen Sondheim Award Gala in April,” said Artistic Director Matthew Gardiner. “Mr. Lane won the 1996 Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical with his critically acclaimed performance as Pseudolus in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. His collaborative relationship with Stephen Sondheim continued over the years, most notably as a writing partner on the Broadway production of The Frogs. Mr. Lane now joins a distinguished group of honorees who have received this award over the past decade. We look forward to celebrating his historic career this spring with a festive and joyous evening at the Italian Embassy.”

“A beloved fixture of the American musical, Nathan Lane is an ideal recipient of the 2024 Stephen Sondheim Award,” said Managing Director Maggie Boland. “Our annual Sondheim Award Gala brings the community together to raise necessary funds to support Signature’s mission while celebrating extraordinary artists who have had a tremendous impact on the musical theater canon. We are immensely grateful to the many generous individuals and companies who participate in this event, especially this year’s chairs H. Mac and Michele-Anne Riley, and we look forward to another wonderfully successful evening this spring.”

“This annual event has become legendary in American regional theater, and we could not be more excited about Signature’s 2024 Sondheim Award Gala honoring the extraordinary Nathan Lane,” said Gala Chairs, H. Mac & Michele-Anne Riley. “We are thrilled and honored to support Signature’s amazing storytelling and impactful arts education programming, and we hope you will join us for a truly memorable evening at the Italian Embassy on April 29.”

Signature’s Sondheim Award Gala honors individuals who have made important contributions to the American Musical Theater. This spring, Signature is thrilled to celebrate Tony and Emmy Award-winner and film favorite Nathan Lane. A frequent collaborator with Stephen Sondheim, Lane won his first Tony Award for his performance in the 1996 revival of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. After winning a second Tony Award in 2001 for The Producers, Lane revised the book and starred in the 2004 Broadway debut of Sondheim’s The Frogs. In addition to his award-winning performances onstage, Nathan Lane is best known for his onscreen work in The Birdcage, his Emmy Award-winning performance in Hulu’s Only Murders in the Building, and his voice work as Timon in Disney’s beloved film The Lion King.

Table sponsorship for the 2024 Sondheim Award Gala ranges from $12,000 to $100,000 and includes rewarding, year-long visibility and entertainment benefits. Individual tickets are $1,200. For information or reservations, please contact the Development Office at 571 527 1828 or [email protected].


Nathan Lane was most recently seen in A24’s Dicks: The Musical, alongside Megan Mullally, Bowen Yang and Megan Thee Stallion and in Ari Aster’s Beau is Afraid, alongside Joaquin Phoenix and Amy Ryan, as well as the second season of Hulu’s Only Murders in the Building as Teddy Dimas, alongside Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez. This role earned him a Primetime Emmy Award in the category of “Guest Actor in A Comedy Series.” He recently received a second Emmy nomination for this role. On stage, he recently starred in a new play called Pictures from Home, written by Sharr White, about the artistic and emotional relationship between a photographer and his aging parents, alongside Danny Burstein and Zoë Wanamaker. Broadway credits include: It’s Only A PlayThe Nance, The Iceman ComethPresent Laughter, Merlin, Wind In The Willows, Some Americans Abroad, On Borrowed Time, Guys and Dolls, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Love! Valour! Compassion!, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum, The Man Who Came To Dinner, The Producers, The Frogs, The Odd Couple, Butley, November, Waiting For Godot, The Addams Family, and Angels in America. Other TV roles include The Gilded AgeAmerican Crime Story: The People Vs. O.J. Simpson, and recurring roles on Modern Family and The Good Wife. He has received one Primetime Emmy Award, eight Primetime Emmy nominations, two Daytime Emmy Awards and a People’s Choice Award. He has appeared in many films including Ironweed, The Birdcage, Frankie and Johnny, The Lion King, Mousehunt, Stuart Little, Nicholas Nickleby, and The Producers. In 2006, he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and in 2008, he was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame.


In 2009, Signature Theatre inaugurated the Stephen Sondheim Award in recognition of the importance of Mr. Sondheim’s work to Signature and to theatre in general. Previous award recipients have included Angela Lansbury (2010),Bernadette Peters (2011), Patti LuPone (2012), Harold “Hal” Prince (2013), Jonathan Tunick (2014), James Lapine (2015), John Weidman (2016), Sir Cameron Mackintosh (2017), John Kander (2018), Audra McDonald (2019), Carol Burnett (2022), and Chita Rivera (2023).

The award, established in 2009, is given to an individual for his or her career contributions to the American Musical Theater along with interpreting, supporting, or collaborating on works by Sondheim. Signature has produced 34 total Stephen Sondheim productions, more than any other theatre in the United States.


Signature Theatre is a Tony Award-winning regional theater that broadens and brightens the region’s cultural landscape with its bold productions of challenging new and established works and engaging education and outreach programs. Founded in 1989 by Eric Schaeffer and Donna Migliaccio, and currently under the leadership of Managing Director Maggie Boland and Artistic Director Matthew Gardiner, musical theater is Signature’s “signature,” and the Theatre is renowned for its definitive Sondheim productions, inventive adaptations of overlooked or forgotten works, and investment in fresh new projects. Signature combines Broadway-caliber productions with intimate playing spaces and aims to be a leading force in U.S. musical theater.

Since its inception, the Theatre has produced 60 world premiere works—including 19 new musical commissions. Signature opens its doors to more than 100,000 people annually from the Washington, DC region and beyond and reaches more than 10,000 students every year through its innovative education programs, including the award-winning initiative Signature in the Schools. Signature has won 140 Helen Hayes Awards for excellence in the Washington, DC region’s professional theater and has been honored with 482 nominations.


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