The Tony Awards will present honorary awards to press agent Irene Gandy, stage manager Beverly Jenkins, Fred Gallo, president of PRG Scenic Technologies and the New Federal Theatre.
The awards are given to those who have demonstrated “extraordinary achievement” in the theater, but are not eligible for other Tony Award categories. The 2020 Tony Awards are scheduled to take place Sept. 26. in a two-part broadcast across CBS platforms.
Gandy has been the only Black female press agent member of the Association of Theatrical Press Agents and Managers for more than 50 years. After beginning her career in 1968, she has worked on more than 100 Broadway shows, including “August: Osage County,” “Glengarry Glen Ross,” “Smokey Joe’s Cafe” and “The Wiz.” She has worked with producer Jeffrey Richards for more than 30 years and was a Broadway producer on “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill.”
The New Federal Theatre was founded by Woodie King, Jr. in 1970 with the mission of training women and artists of color for careers in professional theater and presenting plays by women and writers of color. The theater began in the basement of St. Augustine’s Church in New York and went on to produce works that gained broader recognition, including “Black Girl,” by J.E. Franklin, “The Taking of Miss Janie” by Ed Bullins and “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow Is Enuf” by Ntozake Shange. The theater also welcomed actors including Chadwick Boseman, Debbie Allen, Morgan Freeman, Phylicia Rashad, Denzel Washington, LaTanya Richardson Jackson, Samuel L. Jackson and Issa Rae.
Gallo co-founded Scenic Technologies in 1985, which later merged with other companies to create PRG, a major supplier of scenery and automation for Broadway and other theatrical productions. Gallo has supervised the building and engineering designs of productions including “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Miss Saigon” “The Producers,” “Wicked” and more. He has also served as technical director for Broadway productions including “Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark,” “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” and “King Kong.”
Jenkins, who is currently the production stage manager for “Hadestown” on Broadway, has been a stage manager for more than 30 years. She began her career as a production assistant on “Five Guys Named Moe” and has since managed Broadway shows including “A Bronx Tale,” “In the Heights,” “Shrek,” “The Lion King,” “Oklahoma!” and more. Jenkins is a co-founder of Broadway Beyond: Access for Stage Managers of Color.