Loading...

The 28th Annual L.A. Weekly Theater Awards 

Gordon Davidson, the killer among us

Tuesday, Apr 10 2007
Comments

Who’d have guessed that in the summer of ‘43, Gordon Davidson offed an inept stage manager named Dick Watson who had come out West to make it big in small theater? Davidson confessed, and was led away in ‘cuffs by 28th Annual LA Weekly Theater Awards hosts Culture Clash, but not before presenting the night’s final award – Production of the Year. A boisterous crowd of about 700 packed Hollywood’s Avalon nightclub for the event that was part theater awards ceremony and part murder mystery/farce. Rockin’ Mexican/Irish eight-piece band, OLLIN, provided the music, while the L.A. Lindy Hoppers did the jitterbugging. Perhaps because of the pre-show drinks, it was a tough crowd, albeit diligently well heeled in ‘40s-themed attire. (Even that decade probably never saw such an opulent display of fedoras, suspenders and stoles running down Vine Street as the crowd lined up to get in.)

Introducing Queen of the Angels Michael Kearns, Luis Alfaro angrily chided the distracted crowd to “listen,” when he spoke of the ‘80s AIDS plagues. Playwright Suzan-Lori Parks, eloquently introduced by Michael Ritchie, gave a poetical acceptance speech about the relationship between theater and community for her Career Achievement Award. City Council President Eric Garcetti (“a close friend of Dick Watson”) presented two awards and served up a parody speech, as though written in 1943, about the “glorious” future (of smog and gridlock) that awaits L.A. Other suspects/presenters included artistic directors of the Geffen and Pasadena playhouses, Gil Cates and Sheldon Epps, respectively, as well as the L.A. Weekly’s food critic, Jonathan Gold, the O.C. Weekly ’s “Ask a Mexican” columnist, Gustavo Arellano, and City Garage’s artistic director Frederique Michel. The evening ran longer than in the past, clocking in at just under two and a half hours. A post-show dance party was still going past midnight. The recipients are as follows:

CAREER ACHIEVEMENT*Suzan-Lori Parks

click to flip through (3) Ric Salinas, Gordon Davidson and Richard Montaya (Photos by Timothy Norris)
  • Ric Salinas, Gordon Davidson and Richard Montaya (Photos by Timothy Norris)
   
 

Related Stories

QUEEN OF THE ANGELS*Michael Kearns

PRODUCTION DESIGN*Three by Mee, City Garage

ADAPTATION*James Goss and Arvind Ethan David, Dirk, Road Theatre Company

LIGHTING DESIGN*John Eckert, Iphigenia (A Rave Fable), Son of Semele Ensemble at the Studio Space

COSTUME DESIGN*Katie Wilson, Machiavelli, UC Irvine Field Station at the Hayworth Theater SET DESIGN*Robert Prior, Lobster Alice, Blank Theatre Company

SOUND DESIGN*Robbin Broad, Eurydice, Circle X Theatre Co. at [Inside] the Ford

CHOREOGRAPHY*Tracy Powell, Urinetown, Interact Theatre Company at the Matrix Theatre

FIGHT CHOREOGRAPHY*Ameenah Kaplan, Everyman for Himself, Silverback Productions and Oasis Theater Company at the Unknown Theater

SPECIAL RECOGNITION*Deborah Bird, puppets, Iphigenia (A Rave Fable), Son of Semele Ensemble at the Studio Space*Hallie Dufresne, masks, Iphigenia (A Rave Fable), Son of Semele Ensemble at the Studio Space*Michael Marius Pessah, Matthew McCray and Barbara Kallir, multimedia projections, Iphigenia (A Rave Fable), Son of Semele Ensemble at the Studio Space*Anaitté Vaccaro, scenography, Dirk, Road Theatre Company

ORIGINAL MUSIC*Alex Wong, Everyman for Himself, Silverback Productions and Oasis Theater Company at the Unknown Theater

Continue to more photos

Richard Montoya grills Michael Ritchie(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Michael ("Machine Gun") Ritchie, Daniel Henning and Ken Werther(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Playwright Suzan-Lori Parks, Career Achievement(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Theater Editor Steven Leigh Morris(Photo by Timothy Norris)

City Council President Eric Garcetti says he was, "A personal friend of Dick Watson"(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Richard Montoya asking a Mexican, Gustavo Arellano(Photo by Timothy Norris)

L.A. Lindy Hoppers (Photo by Timothy Norris)

OLLIN(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Bonnie Bailey Reed, Supporting Female Performance(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Dan Mailley, Leading Male Performance(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Leading female performance, Maria O'Brien makes a point(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Roger Guenveur Smith, Revival Production (Photo by Timothy Norris)

Ric Salinas, Richard Montaya and Herbert Siguenza(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Jonathan Gold might know who poisoned Dick Watson(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Michael Ritchie introducing Suzan-Lori Parks

(Photo by Timothy Norris)

Click here for the full list of Theater Awards nominees

Click here for more stories of L.A. Theater 2007

Reach the writer at smorris@laweekly.com

Related Content

Now Trending

  • Why We Love The Simpsons' Music So Much

    Twenty-five years ago, a family of strangely coiffed, yellow cartoon characters scurried home to gather in front of their TV for the first time. The Simpsons has since become an animated thread in the fabric of American pop culture — and, starting from the angelic chord and cascading harp of...