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2022 Drama Desk Award Winners

2022 Drama Desk Award Winners
Outstanding Play: Prayer for the French Republic, by Joshua Harmon, Manhattan Theatre Club
Outstanding Musical: Kimberly Akimbo, Atlantic Theater Company
Outstanding Revival of a Play: How I Learned to Drive, Manhattan Theatre Club
Outstanding Revival of a Musical: Company
Outstanding Actor in a Play: Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Lackawanna Blues, Manhattan Theatre Club
Outstanding Actress in a Play: Phylicia Rashad, Skeleton Crew, Manhattan Theatre Club
Outstanding Actor in a Musical: Jaquel Spivey, A Strange Loop
Outstanding Actress in a Musical: Joaquina Kalukango, Paradise Square
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play: Ron Cephas Jones, Clyde’s, Second Stage Theater
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play: Francis Benhamou, Prayer for the French Republic, Manhattan Theatre Club
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical: Matt Doyle, Company
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical: Patti LuPone, Company
Outstanding Director of a Play: Rebecca Frecknall, Sanctuary City, New York Theatre Workshop
Outstanding Director of a Musical: Marianne Elliott, Company
Outstanding Choreography: Bill T. Jones, Garrett Coleman, and Jason Oremus (Irish + Hammerstep), Gelan Lambert and Chloe Davis (associates), Paradise Square
Outstanding Music: Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss, Six
Outstanding Lyrics: Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss, Six
Outstanding Book of a Musical: Bruce Sussman, Harmony, National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene
Outstanding Orchestrations: Jason Michael Webb and David Holcenberg, MJ
Outstanding Music in a Play: Bill Sims Jr., Lackawanna Blues, Manhattan Theatre Club
Outstanding Scenic Design for a Play: Takeshi Kata, Clyde’s, Second Stage Theater
Outstanding Scenic Design for a Musical: Beowulf Boritt, Flying Over Sunset, Lincoln Center Theater
Outstanding Costume Design for a Play: Jennifer Moeller, Clyde’s, Second Stage Theater
Outstanding Costume Design for a Musical: Gabriella Slade, Six
Outstanding Lighting Design for a Play (tie): Christopher Akerlind, Clyde’s, Second Stage Theater
Amith Chandrashaker, Prayer for the French Republic, Manhattan Theatre Club
Outstanding Lighting Design for a Musical (tie) Natasha Katz, MJ
Bradley King, Flying Over Sunset, Lincoln Center Theater
Outstanding Projection Design: 59 Productions, Flying Over Sunset, Lincoln Center Theater
Outstanding Sound Design for a Play: Ben and Max Ringham, Cyrano de Bergerac, The Jamie Lloyd Company at Academy of Music
Outstanding Sound Design for a Musical: Gareth Owen, MJ
Outstanding Wig and Hair: David Brian Brown, Mrs. Doubtfire
Outstanding Solo Performance: Kristina Wong, Kristina Wong, Sweatshop Overlord, New York Theatre Workshop
Unique Theatrical Experience: Seven Deadly Sins, Tectonic Theater Project & Madison Wells Live
Outstanding Adaptation: Merry Wives, by Jocelyn Bioh, The Public Theater (Free Shakespeare in the Park)
Outstanding Puppet Design: James Ortiz, The Skin of Our Teeth, Lincoln Center Theater
Harold S. Prince Lifetime Achievement Award
In four decades as playwright, novelist, actor, and director, Alice Childress (1912-1994) challenged racism with engrossing stories and memorable characters. When a New York producer demanded revisions to soften the impact of Trouble in Mind, after an initial run Off Broadway and prior to its Broadway debut, Childress withdrew the script. Sixty-five years later, the Drama Desk celebrates the long-delayed Broadway premiere of this timeless masterpiece and salutes Childress as a towering figure in contemporary theater history.
Ensemble Award
In Six, Adrianna Hicks, Andrea Macasaet, Brittney Mack, Abby Mueller, Samantha Pauly, and Anna Uzele bring to musical life the women who married England’s King Henry VIII. The fanciful result is a buoyant dramatization of their individually purposeful and collectively empowering journeys.
The Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Award
This season, as a woman hiding her brother from the Taliban in Sylvia Khoury’s Selling Kabul and an English instructor straddling two very different cultures in Sanaz Toossi’s English, Marjan Neshat embodied disparate characters so fully that it was hard to recognize the single actor in the two roles. Whether in drama or comedy, Neshat mines the playwright’s text for a vast panoply of emotions that yield vivid, intricate portrayals of the parts she undertakes.
Additional Special Awards
Dede Ayite seems to have costumed half the actors of this theater season with her designs 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. Whether dressing working-class Marylanders of the 1960s, amateur criminals of the 1970s, or West African immigrants in today’s Harlem, Ayite has a knack for conveying characters’ means, values, and aspirations before the actors utter a word.
Adam Rigg enhanced storytelling through wildly varying scenic designs this season including: a house in wood, shadow, and reflective glass that draws the audience into the Flint, Michigan water crisis in Cullud Wattah; a community cul-de-sac where trauma and history are celebrated in On Sugarland; and the falling walls, flower-covered hillsides, and functional seaside fun ride of The Skin of Our Teeth.
With the category-defying Oratorio for Living Things, Heather Christian aims to encompass all human existence in a single inventive and startlingly beautiful work. In times of pandemic, war, and social upheaval, Christian’s work (directed by Lee Sunday Evans and brought to life by a superb cast and creative team) is an awe-inspiring reminder that, even in the darkest times, there will always be artistic peaks to scale.

This year’s Drama Desk Awards will take place at Sardi’s Restaurant (234 W 44thStreet) on June 14th from 3:00 – 6:00pm. The full list of winners is available at the website, and below.

In keeping with the Drama Desk’s mission, the nominators considered shows that opened on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and Off-Off Broadway between July 2, 2021 and May 1, 2022 for this year’s Awards. Only live performances were eligible – if performances were also available for streaming, 21 or more unique live performances were required.
The Drama Desk Awards are produced by Tony Award winner Scott Mauro/Scott Mauro Entertainment and the show is being written by six-time Emmy Award winner Bruce Vilanch.
Limited tickets to the ceremony are available at: and to purchase an ad in the virtual program, please email Dustin Fitzharris at


Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email:

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