Volume 74, Number 3 | June 8- 14, 2005

OBIE’s father sees baby turn 50

On May 15, the Village Voice hosted its 50th annual OBIE (for Off-Broadway) Awards, an awards ceremony dating back to 1956, when Jerry Tallmer, left, the Voice’s first arts editor, decided to establish a system of recognition for the vibrant Downtown theater scene. Tallmer addressed the audience at Webster Hall, as he has throughout the history of the OBIE’s, and recalled that in 1956, “Uncle Vanya” (produced and directed by David Ross, a legendary man of the theater) won best all-round production. That year’s winners also included Frances Sternhagen (“The Admirable Bashville”) and Addison Powell (“The Iceman Cometh”). Asked later what it meant to be a part of the 50th gala, Tallmer said, “It meant they were sticking television cameras in my face asking the same question over and over — what was the greatest play I had ever seen? — and my mind went concrete.” Tallmer is a regular contributor to The Villager, where his invaluable coverage of the arts and culture appears weekly.

The actor Macaulay Culkin was also in attendance to celebrate his brother Kieran’s award for his performance in “After Ashley.”

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