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Hair, Wig and Make Up Designer Cookie Jordan to be Honored with The Ruth Morley Design Award, June 7

Stage Directions • Industry NewsTheatre Buzz • April 28, 2021

The League of Professional Theatre Women will be presenting its Theatre Women Awards at a virtual gala on June 7, 2021. This year’s honorees are a diverse group of seven remarkable women theater artists. The Ruth Morley Design Award given to women theater designers of all genres, is being presented to Hair, Wig, and Makeup Designer Cookie Jordan. Her Broadway credits include: Fela!, The Motherf**ker with the Hat, Lombardi, The Miracle Worker, A View from the Bridge, South Pacific. Other credits include: White Noise, Royal George, You Nero (Arena Stage); King Lear, Neighbors, The Wiz (City Center); Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat, The Wiz (Dallas Theater Center); Hurt Village, Angels in America (Signature Theater); Cunning Little Vixen, Le Grand Macabre (New York Philharmonic); Liberty Smith, 1776 (Ford’s Theater).

In addition to Jordan, actor and stage director Estelle Parsons will be honored, along with actor Stephanie Berry; Artistic Director of The Tank, Megan Finn; lyricist and librettist, Sheilah Rae; director, Taylor Reynolds; and director/devisor/dramaturg, Mei Ann Teo

This major event in the LPTW calendar will be presented online via Zoom on Monday, June 7 at 7pm. Tickets (VIP Gala: $60; Member ticket: $20 suggested donation; Non-Member ticket: $25 suggested donation) are available for advance purchase at

Estelle Parsons is receiving the League of Professional Theatre Women’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award. Parsons was last seen on Broadway in The Velocity of Autumn for which she received her fifth Tony Award nomination.  Although she has spent most of her professional life in the theatre, she is most widely known for her Academy Award-winning performance in Bonnie and Clyde, and her decade-long, recurring role of Beverly, mother of the title character in the hit sitcom Roseanne.

In the theatre, she has appeared in plays by the great writers of our time, including Edward Albee, Tennessee Williams, Dario Fo, and Horton Foote. She appeared in Roberto Athayde’s classic Miss Margarida’s Way on Broadway, all over the United States and in London, Dublin, Turkey and Australia. She starred in August, Osage County by Tracy Letts on Broadway for a year and on the road for a year. Recently she played in Good People by David Lindsay-Abair and the Gershwin musical, Nice Work if You Can Get It, with Matthew Broderick. Her most recent New York City appearance was at Playwrights Horizons in Michael Friedman’s musical Unknown Soldier which was interrupted by the pandemic. As a director, she created the New York Shakespeare Festival Players for Joseph Papp in the 1980s. She is a lifetime member of the Actors Studio and was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2004.

Actor Stephanie Berry is the recipient of the Lee Reynolds Award, an award given to a woman stage actor whose work has helped illuminate possibilities for social, cultural, or political change. Among Ms. Berry’s New York stage credits are Donja Love’s Sugar in Our Wounds and Emily Mann’s Gloria: A Life.

The Lucille Lortel Award is being bestowed on Taylor Reynolds, a New York-based director from Chicago and one of the producing artistic leaders of the OBIE-winning The Movement Theatre Company. The award is reserved for a theatre woman with creative promise deserving recognition.

Meghan Finn, Artistic Director of The Tank, has directed both nationally and internationally, and is being awarded with the Lucille Lortel Visionary Award, for a woman artist showing great creative promise. Finn’s work includes premieres by playwrights Mac Wellman, Caitlyn Saylor Stephens, Julia May Jonas, and a film by Peggy Stafford.

Sheilah Rae is receiving a LPTW Special Award for her service to the industry as a lyricist and librettist, as well as her service to the League as a former President. A former Broadway performer, she has written a number of musicals with Michele Brourman and Debra Barsha, is a five-time Heideman Award finalist, and is currently working on a musical that she’s hoping to launch as a TV series.

As a director/devisor/dramaturg, Mei Ann Teo, a queer immigrant from Singapore, creates theatre across genres, including musical theatre, intermediate participatory work, reimagining classics, and documentary theatre, and is receiving the Josephine Abady Award as a woman theatre artist who has created work of cultural diversity.

The League of Professional Theatre Women (Shellen Lubin and Mary E. Hodges, Co-Presidents) has been leading the gender parity conversation in professional theatre for over 35 years with its mission to champion, promote, and celebrate the voices, presence, and visibility of women theatre professionals and to advocate for parity and recognition for women in theatre across all disciplines. Since its founding in 1981, the League’s membership has grown to over 500 members: theatre artists and practitioners with a diversity of identities and backgrounds, working across multiple disciplines in both the commercial and non-profit sectors. To promote visibility and increase opportunities for women in our industry, LPTW spearheads: public programming; advocacy projects; and media and publications that celebrate industry luminaries, the legacy of historic visionaries, and raise awareness of and nurture the voices of women in all our varied identities (race, ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, caste, tribe, socio-economic status, thinking and communication styles). The League continues its commitment to creating a culture of EDIA: Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Access, both in the theatre world and the world at large. To find out more about how you can support its endeavors, please visit


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