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    Posted May 19, 2009

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Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Awards

AEA Co-Sponsors Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Awards, Honoring Outstanding Performances by Bay Area AEA Members

By Phoebe Moyer, BAAC and David Lotz, National Communications Director

Mary Lou Westerfiled, Bethany Umbach, with Phoebe Moyer – Best supporting performance Female, THE FOREIGNER, San Jose Repertory Theatre
Photos courtesy of Charles Jarrett

As part of Equity's centennial branding/marketing campaign, Actors' Equity Co-sponsored this year's San Francisco Bay Area Critics Circle Awards, which took place at the Geary Theater on Monday, May 4, 2009. The Education and Outreach Sub-Committee of the Bay Area Advisory Committee (BAAC) facilitated a dialogue between AEA National Communications Director David Lotz and the 23 members of the Circle to bring this to a successful fruition.

"Actors' Equity and the Critics Circle both share a common goal to support professional Equity theatres in the Bay Area, in order to improve the livelihood of the artists who work in those theatres. AEA is pleased to honor the artistic achievements of this incredibly talented community," said Lotz.

Dan Hiatt (Principal Performance Male) UNCLE VANYA, California Shakespeare Theatre
Photos courtesy of Charles Jarrett

Over 80 nominated artists attended the event, joined by over a dozen BAAC members, Western Regional Director Mary Lou Westerfield, and AEA Business Rep Bethany Umbach.

This year's awards fell into categories of theatres with 99 seats and under, 100 to 300 seats and more than 300 seats as well as subdivisions for drama and musicals. The Circle handed out 75 awards for individual productions as well as three special awards: Outgoing Cal Performances Director Robert Cole was given the Paine Knickerbocker Award for continuing contribution to Bay Area theatre; Actor Dan Hiatt was given the Barbara Bladen Porter Award for mid-career members of the local theatre community; Both Cal Shakes managing director Debbie Chin and publicist Charles Zukow were given the Gene Price Award named in honor of former critic and arts editor of the SF Bay Times.

Warren David Keith (Best supporting performance – Male) THE DEVIL’S DESCIPLE – Aurora Theatre
Photos courtesy of Charles Jarrett

Bravo to all of the AEA winners, including: Nilaja Sun, Dan Hiatt, Phoebe Moyer, Pamela Reed, Andy Murray, Beth Glover, Shane Partlow, Mark Nadler, Allison Blackwell, Paul Myrvold, Velina Broan, Susi Damilano, Julian Lopez-Morillas, Warren David Keith, Mark Farrell, Lauren English (EMC), Karen Grassele, Louis Parnell, Liam Vincent, and Lynda DiVito.

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