Drama Desk Award Nominations 2022: 'SIX' and 'Kimberly Akimbo' Lead the Pack
By RAVEN SNOOK
Monday, May 16, 2022  •  
Mon May 16, 2022  •  
Broadway  •   0 comments Share This

Theatre's return season has been triumphant and rocky. Because of COVID-19, schedules are constantly changing, not just for individual productions but for theatre awards, too. Traditionally, the Drama Desk nominations precede the Tony nominations—but not this year. Since the Tonys only recognize Broadway shows while the Drama Desk considers productions on all New York City stages (115 qualifying shows this season!), the lists are noticeably different. This year especially, since many Broadway productions were ineligible in all (or most) Drama Desk categories because they had runs Off Broadway in previous seasons. That's why you won't see (m)any nods for A Strange Loop, Dana H., for colored girls..., Girl from the North Country, Hangmen, Is This A Room, Skeleton Crew and The Lehman Trilogy; only new elements such as new cast members or designers were considered. Off Broadway is particularly well represented throughout and the honorees are genuinely diverse. 

Broadway's SIX and Atlantic Theater Company's Kimberly Akimbo (which is heading to Broadway this fall) garnered the most nominations, but the love was spread around. Even the critically reviled cult hit Diana: The Musical earned three nods!

Below are the nominees for the 2021-2022 season. Due to the ongoing pandemic, there will be no big ceremony. Instead, winners will be announced the week of June 6 and awards will be presented during an intimate, abbreviated ceremony at Sardi's on Tuesday, June 14 from 3 to 6 p.m.

Outstanding Play
Cullud Wattah by Erika Dickerson-Despenza at The Public Theater
English by Sanaz Toossi at Atlantic Theater Company
Prayer for the French Republic by Joshua Harmon at Manhattan Theatre Club
Sanctuary City by Martyna Majok at New York Theatre Workshop
Selling Kabul by Sylvia Khoury at Playwrights Horizons
The Chinese Lady by Lloyd Suh at The Public Theater

Outstanding Musical
Harmony at National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene
Intimate Apparel at Lincoln Center Theater
Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company
SIX on Broadway
The Hang at HERE

Outstanding Revival of a Play
for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf on Broadway
How I Learned to Drive on Broadway
Lackawanna Blues on Broadway
Skeleton Crew on Broadway
Trouble in Mind on Broadway
Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 at Signature Theatre

Outstanding Revival of a Musical
Assassins at Classic Stage Company
Baby at Out of the Box Theatrics
Caroline, or Change on Broadway
Company on Broadway

Outstanding Actor in a Play
Brandon J. Dirden in Skeleton Crew on Broadway - Read our interview with Dirden
Jesse Tyler Ferguson in Take Me Out on Broadway
Jacob Ming-Trent in The Public Theater's Free Shakespeare in the Park's Merry Wives
Ruben Santiago-Hudson in Lackawanna Blues on Broadway - Read our interview with Santiago-Hudson
John Douglas Thompson in The Merchant of Venice at Theatre for a New Audience

Outstanding Actress in a Play
Tala Ashe in English at Atlantic Theater Company
Ruth Negga in Macbeth on Broadway
Andrea Patterson in Cullud Wattah at The Public Theater
Phylicia Rashad in Skeleton Crew on Broadway
Shannon Tyo in The Chinese Lady at The Public Theater
Michelle Wilson in Confederates at Signature Theatre

Outstanding Actor in a Musical
Billy Crystal in Mr. Saturday Night on Broadway
Myles Frost in MJ on Broadway
Rob McClure in Mrs. Doubtfire on Broadway
Jaquel Spivey in A Strange Loop on Broadway
Chip Zien in Harmony at the National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene

Outstanding Actress in a Musical
Kearstin Piper Brown in Intimate Apparel at Lincoln Center Theater
Victoria Clark in Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company - Read our interview with Clark
Sharon D Clarke in Caroline, or Change on Broadway
Jeanna de Waal in Diana: The Musical on Broadway
Joaquina Kalukango in Paradise Square on Broadway

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
Joshua Boone in Skeleton Crew on Broadway
Chuck Cooper in Trouble in Mind on Broadway
Daniel K. Isaac in The Chinese Lady at The Public Theater
Billy Eugene Jones in On Sugarland at New York Theatre Workshop
Ron Cephas Jones in Clyde's on Broadway

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play
Francis Benhamou in Prayer for the French Republic at Manhattan Theatre Club - Read our interview with Benhamou
Stephanie Berry in On Sugarland at New York Theatre Workshop
Sonnie Brown in what you are now at Ensemble Studio Theatre
Page Leong in Out of Time at The Public Theater
Kenita R. Miller in for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf on Broadway
Kara Young in Clyde's on Broadway - Watch our TDF Conversation with Young

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical
Justin Austin in Intimate Apparel at Lincoln Center Theater
Justin Cooley in Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company
Matt Doyle in Company on Broadway - Watch our TDF Conversation with Doyle
Jared Grimes in Funny Girl on Broadway
Tavon Olds-Sample in MJ on Broadway

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical
Judy Kuhn in Assassins at Classic Stage Company
Tamika Lawrence in Black No More at The New Group
Patti LuPone in Company on Broadway
Bonnie Milligan in Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company
Jennifer Simard in Company

Outstanding Director of a Play
Knud Adams for English at Atlantic Theater Company
Saheem Ali for The Public Theater's Free Shakespeare in the Park Merry Wives
Rebecca Frecknall for Sanctuary City at New York Theatre Workshop
Taibi Magar for Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 at Signature Theatre
Whitney White for On Sugarland at New York Theatre Workshop

Outstanding Director of a Musical
John Doyle for Assassins at Classic Stage Company
Marianne Elliott for Company on Broadway
Lucy Moss and Jamie Armitage for SIX on Broadway
Bartlett Sher for Intimate Apparel at Lincoln Center Theater
Jessica Stone for Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company

Outstanding Choreography
Ayodele Casel for the tap choreography for Funny Girl on Broadway
Carrie-Anne Ingrouille for SIX on Broadway
Bill T. Jones, Garrett Coleman, and Jason Oremus (Irish + Hammerstep), Gelan Lambert and Chloe Davis (associates) for Paradise Square on Broadway
Liam Steel for Company on Broadway
Christopher Wheeldon, Michael Balderrama (associate), Rich + Tone Taleuega (Michael Jackson movement) for MJ on Broadway

Outstanding Music
Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss for SIX on Broadway
Jason Howland for Paradise Square on Broadway
Matt Ray for The Hang at HERE
Carrie Rodriguez for ¡Americano! at New World Stages
Jeanine Tesori for Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company

Outstanding Lyrics
Amanda Green for Mr. Saturday Night on Broadway
Taylor Mac for The Hang at HERE
Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss for SIX on Broadway
David Lindsay-Abaire for Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company
Lynn Nottage for Intimate Apparel at Lincoln Center Theater
Shaina Taub for Suffs at The Public Theater

Outstanding Book of a Musical
Billy Crystal, Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel for Mr. Saturday Night on Broadway
Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss for SIX on Broadway
Lynn Nottage for Intimate Apparel at Lincoln Center Theater
Bruce Sussman for Harmony at National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene

Outstanding Orchestrations
Tom Curran for SIX on Broadway
Greg Jarrett for Assassins at Classic Stage Company
Mark Hartman and Yasuhiko Fukuoka for The Streets of New York at Irish Repertory Theatre
Jason Michael Webb and David Holcenberg for MJ on Broadway

Outstanding Music in a Play
Te'La and Kamauu for Thoughts of a Colored Man on Broadway
Bill Sims Jr. for Lackawanna Blues on Broadway
Michael Thurber and Farai Malianga (drum compositions) for The Public Theater's Free Shakespeare in the Park's Merry Wives

Outstanding Set Design of a Play
Beowulf Boritt for The Public Theater's Free Shakespeare in the Park's Merry Wives
Wilson Chin for Pass Over on Broadway
Marsha Ginsberg for English at Atlantic Theater Company
Takeshi Kata for Clyde's on Broadway
Junghyun Georgia Lee for Kristina Wong, Sweatshop Overlord at New York Theatre Workshop

Outstanding Set Design for a Musical
Emma Bailey for SIX on Broadway
Beowulf Boritt for Flying Over Sunset on Broadway
Bunny Christie for Company on Broadway
David Zinn for Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company

Outstanding Costume Design for a Play
Linda Cho for The Chinese Lady at The Public Theater
Gregory Gale for Fairycakes
Tilly Grimes for The Alchemist at Red Bull Theater
Qween Jean for On Sugarland at New York Theatre Workshop
Jennifer Moeller for Clyde's on Broadway

Outstanding Costume Design for a Musical
Machine Dazzle for The Hang at HERE
Susan Hilferty for Funny Girl on Broadway
Santo Loquasto for The Music Man on Broadway
Gabriella Slade for SIX on Broadway
Catherine Zuber for Intimate Apparel at Lincoln Center Theater

Outstanding Lighting Design for a Play
Christopher Akerlind for Clyde's on Broadway
Reza Behjat for English at Atlantic Theater Company
Isabella Byrd for Sanctuary City at New York Theatre Workshop
Amith Chandrashaker for Prayer for the French Republic at Manhattan Theatre Club
Jeanette Oi-Suk Yew for Cullud Wattah at The Public Theater

Outstanding Lighting Design for a Musical
Natasha Katz for Diana: The Musical on Broadway
Natasha Katz for MJ on Broadway
Bradley King for Flying Over Sunset on Broadway
Jennifer Tipton for Intimate Apparel at Lincoln Center Theater

Outstanding Projection Design
59 Productions for Flying Over Sunset on Broadway
David Bengali for Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 at Signature Theatre
Stephania Bulbarella and Alex Basco Koch for Space Dogs at MCC Theater
Shawn Duan for The Chinese Lady at The Public Theater
Sven Ortel for Thoughts of a Colored Man on Broadway

Outstanding Sound Design in a Play
Tyler Kieffer for Seven Deadly Sins at Tectonic Theater Project
Hidenori Nakajo and Ryan Rumery for Autumn Royal at Irish Repertory Theatre
Ben and Max Ringham for Cyrano de Bergerac at BAM
Mikaal Sulaiman for Sanctuary City at New York Theatre Workshop
Lee Kinney for Selling Kabul at Playwrights Horizons

Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical
Ian Dickinson for Autograph for Company on Broadway
Paul Gatehouse for SIX on Broadway
Kai Harada for Kimberly Akimbo at Atlantic Theater Company
Gareth Owen for MJ on Broadway

Outstanding Wig and Hair
Matthew B. Armentrout for Paradise Square on Broadway
David Brian Brown for Mrs. Doubtfire on Broadway
Paul Huntley for Diana: The Musical on Broadway
Charles G. LaPointe for MJ on Broadway

Outstanding Solo Performance
Alex Edelman for Just for Us at Cherry Lane Theatre
Arturo Luís Soria for Ni Mi Madre at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater
Kristina Wong for Kristina Wong, Sweatshop Overlord at New York Theatre Workshop

Unique Theatrical Experience
Seven Deadly Sins at Tectonic Theater Project

Outstanding Adaptation
Merry Wives by Jocelyn Bioh at The Public Theater's Free Shakespeare in the Park
The Alchemist by Jeffrey Hatcher at Red Bull Theater

Outstanding Puppet Design
Amanda Villalobos for Wolf Play at Soho Rep
James Ortiz for The Skin of Our Teeth at Lincoln Center Theater
Rockefeller Productions for Winnie the Pooh at Theatre Row

Ensemble Award
The cast of SIX: Adrianna Hicks, Andrea Macasaet, Brittney Mack, Abby Mueller, Samantha Pauly and Anna Uzele - Read our interview with Macasaet

The Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Award
Marjan Neshat for her performances in Sylvia Khoury's Selling Kabul and Sanaz Toossi's English

Additional Special Awards
Dede Ayite for her costumes for Merry Wives, Seven Deadly Sins, The Last of the Love Letters, Chicken and Biscuits, Slave Play, Nollywood Dreams, American Buffalo and How I learned to Drive

Adam Rigg for their scenic designs for Cullud Wattah, On Sugarland and The Skin of Our Teeth

Heather Christian's genre-defying Oratorio for Living Things

Totals for Shows with More Than One Nomination:
SIX - 10
Kimberly Akimbo - 9
Company - 8
Intimate Apparel - 8
MJ - 7
Clyde's - 5
English - 5
Merry Wives - 5
The Chinese Lady - 5
Assassins - 4
On Sugarland - 4
Paradise Square - 4
Sanctuary City - 4
Skeleton Crew - 4
The Hang - 4
Cullud Wattah - 3
Diana: The Musical - 3
Flying Over Sunset - 3
Funny Girl - 3
Harmony - 3
Lackawanna Blues - 3
Mr. Saturday Night - 3
Prayer For the French Republic - 3
Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 - 3
Caroline, or Change - 2
for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf - 2
Kristina Wong, Sweatshop Overlord - 2
Mrs. Doubtfire - 2
Selling Kabul - 2
Seven Deadly Sins - 2
The Alchemist - 2
Thoughts of a Colored Man - 2
Trouble in Mind - 2

Top image: The cast of SIX, who received the 2022 Ensemble Drama Desk Award. Photo by Tricia Baron.




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