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Film has the Oscars, TV has the Emmy’s, Broadway has the Tony’s, and the Jeff Awards evolved as a response to Chicago actors who were looking for a way to honor our local theatre talent- well deserved as Chicago has such a vibrant & enriching theatre community! This year the Jeff Awards (ceremony directed by Michael Weber) will be held October 25th at the Drury Lane in Oak Brook, followed by a reception featuring musicals and video segments from nominated plays. For tickets & more info visit!

The Jeff Awards have been celebrating and honoring excellence in Chicago theatre since its inception in 1968.  The 50 members on the committee represent a wide variety of background in theatre and promote artistic growth, educational opportunities, audience appreciation, and pride in the achievements of the theatre community… all united by an interest in properly evaluating and acknowledging theatre in Chicago!  They evaluate over 250 locally produced shows & nominate shows based on the following categories: Production, Director, Actor and Actress in a Principal Role, Actor and Actress in a Supporting Role, in the two categories of Plays and Musicals.  Awards are also given for Production, Direction, Actor and Actress in a Revue, and Cameo Performance, as well as Ensemble, Choreography, Scenic Design, Lighting Design, Costume Design, Original Music, Musical Direction, Sound Design, New Work and Adaptation.  Awards are determined by a secret ballot audited by an accounting firm & the best part of the awards is that the committee does not use the words “best” or “winner,” instead it supports outstanding achievements & the evolvement of the theatre community.

I am very proud to say that Lookingglass theatre, where I serve on the board of directors, received 7 of the following nominations for their groundbreaking & breathtaking work:


David Schwimmer and Andy Bellin – “Trust” – Lookingglass Theatre Company


Allison Torem – “Trust” – Lookingglass Theatre Company


Ray Nardelli – “Hephaestus: A Greek Mythology Circus Tale” – Lookingglass Theatre Company and Silverguy Entertainment


Brian Sidney Bembridge – “Hephaestus: A Greek Mythology Circus Tale” – Lookingglass Theatre Company and Silverguy Entertainment


Ray Nardelli, Andre Pluess, Kevin O’Donnell and Josh Horvath – “Hephaestus: A Greek Mythology Circus Tale” – Lookingglass Theatre Company and Silverguy Entertainment


Bridges Media – Multimedia Design – “Trust” – Lookingglass Theatre Company Sylvia Hernandez-DiStasi – Circus Choreography and Movement Direction – “Icarus” – Lookingglass Theatre Company

And special shout out to my fav actor Joey Slotnick who is up for an award for “Actor in a Principal Role- Musical” from Goodman Theatre’s production of “Animal Crackers.”

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