For the first time in history, black theater professionals will come to together for an award ceremony to celebrate black achievement in theater. The virtual ceremony will take place on June 19th and is presented by Broadway Black, an organization dedicated to highlighting black theater artists on and off the stage.
Broadway Black founder Drew Shade will executive produce the Antonyo Awards, a twist on the famous Tony Awards. The Juneteenth date celebrates the end of slavery in America, and the streamed event will feature performances, a red carpet and of course, awards. Among the many performers lined up are Audra McDonald, Titus Burgess, Alex Newell, Jelani Alladin, James Monroe Iglehart and Ephraim Sykes.
The nominations were announced by Bryan Terrell Clark and Kristolyn Lloyd on Broadway Black's YouTube and Facebook pages. Some categories coincide with those of the Tony Awards including Best Musical and Best Play for both on and off-Broadway productions. New categories include Best Quarantine Content and Best Hair & Wig Design. Fans can vote now for their favorites on the Broadway Black website until June 12th.
Four special awards will also be awarded known as "Kinfolk Awards." These include the Lorraine Hansberry Award, the Langston Hughes Award, Welcome Award and The Doors of the Theatre are Open Award, as well as a Lifetime Achievement Award that will be announced before the ceremony.
The streamed ceremony will be commence on YouTube and Facebook June 19th 7 p.m. EST, with a pre-show red carpet beginning at 6 p.m. EST.