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March 19, 2018

69th New Dramatists Luncheon to Honor Denzel Washington


New Dramatists, Tony Honor recipient and the nation’s premier playwright development laboratory, will

honor Tony and Academy Award-winner Denzel Washington at its 69th Annual Spring Luncheon tribute.

Washington, currently starring on Broadway in The Iceman Cometh, directed by George C. Wolfe, will receive

New Dramatists’ 2018 Distinguished Achievement Award on Tuesday, May 15 at the New York Marriott


“Mr. Washington has earned his career status through hard-work and excellence,” says Emily Morse, Artistic

Director of New Dramatists. “He’s a professional actor who continues to pursue artistic and career challenges,

like undertaking the plays of August Wilson, an alumnus of New Dramatists, and Eugene O’Neill, for example,

and it’s his fearless risk-taking that connects him to what the playwrights working at New Dramatists and the

collaborators who support their processes seek every day. He is a respected, consummate artist, and for this

reason we wish to honor him at this year’s luncheon.”

Denzel Washington is the most lauded stage and screen actor of his generation. His unforgettable

performances have garnered him two Academy Awards, a Tony Award, three Golden Globe Awards, and

countless other awards. He received his first Academy Award for the historical war drama Glory (1989) and his

second for the crime drama Training Day (2001). In addition, he has been nominated for Academy Awards for

his performances in Cry Freedom (1987), Malcolm X (1992), The Hurricane (1999), Flight (2012), and August

Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Fences (2016), in which he reprised his Tony Award-winning role opposite

Viola Davis. The film was nominated for four Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Performance

by an Actor in a Leading Role for Mr. Washington. Most recently he was nominated for an Academy Award for

Roman J. Israel, Esq. (2017). Other notable credits include A Soldier’s Story (1984), Much Ado About Nothing

(1993), Crimson Tide (1995), Devil in a Blue Dress (1995), Remember the Titans (2000), Inside Man (2006),

The Great Debaters (2007), and American Gangster (2007). Mr. Washington’s professional acting career

began in New York, where he performed in theatre productions such as Ceremonies in Dark Old Men and

Othello. He rose to fame when he landed the role of Dr. Phillip Chandler in the long-running hit NBC television

series “St. Elsewhere.” His other credits include the television movies “The George McKenna Story,” “License

to Kill,” and “Wilma.” In 2016, Mr. Washington was selected as the recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime

Achievement Award at the 73rd Golden Globe Awards.

Each year, New Dramatists salutes individuals who have made an outstanding artistic contribution to the

theatre community. Past luncheon honorees include Daryl Roth and Paula Vogel, Audra McDonald, Brian

Stokes Mitchell, Susan Stroman, Seth Gelblum, Bernadette Peters, Roger Berlind, Julie Taymor, Horton

Foote, Edward Albee, Harvey Fierstein, Chita Rivera, Meryl Streep, Angela Lansbury, Julie Andrews, Glenn

Close, Stephen Sondheim, Arthur Miller, Neil Simon, Jerry Herman, Terrence McNally, Barbara Cook, John

Kander & Fred Ebb, August Wilson, and Gwen Verdon.

The luncheon will take place at the New York Marriott Marquis (1535 Broadway, between 45th and 46th

Streets) on Tuesday, May 15 beginning with a champagne reception at 11:15AM and ending promptly at

2:30PM. Tickets are $350 (a portion of which is tax-deductible). For tickets, visit

or call New Dramatists’ director of development, Tiffany Baran, (212) 757-6960 ext. 5472.