PLAYBILL VAULT'S Today In Theatre History: APRIL 6

By David Gewirtzman
and Robert Viagas and Ernio Hernandez
April 6, 2014

1947 The first Tony Awards ceremony is held at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York. Thirteen awards are presented to the likes of Helen Hayes, Ingrid Bergman, Fredric March, Jose Ferrer, Agnes de Mille, Kurt Weill and Elia Kazan. No Best Play or Best Musical category yet exists, but the Best Author award goes to a young Arthur Miller for All My Sons. No medallions yet either; men get engraved cigarette lighters, women get compacts.



1955 3 For Tonight and 11 weeks of nights more. This revue starring Harry Belafonte, Marge and Gower Champion, and Hiram Sherman plays at the Plymouth Theatre on Broadway.

1964 Canada's Stratford Shakespeare Festival Company travels to Britain in honor of the Bard's 400th anniversary. The Chichester Theatre will host productions such as Timon of Athens and Love's Labour's Lost.

1948 During this month members of ASCAP, the union protecting the rights of composers and lyricists, strike for better terms for royalties on recordings and radio works. Since radio play is vital to boost popularity of showtunes, this hurts Broadway revues and musicals.

1966 John Barton, Trevor Nunn and Clifford Williams collaborate on productions of Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2 that will open the Royal Shakespeare Company's Stratford-upon-Avon season.

1995 Opening night for Having Our Say, Emily Mann's chronicle of the real-life stories of the Delaney sisters, both of whom lived to be more than 100 years old. They tell what it was like to grow up young, gifted and black in the post-Reconstruction South, and how one of them became one of the first black female doctors in the U.S. Mary Alice and Gloria Foster star.

2000 In Chicago, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest comes back to the stage as the Steppenwolf Theatre Company revives the play by Dale Wasserman based on Ken Kesey's novel. Gary Sinise stars as McMurphy and Amy Morton as Nurse Ratched in the mental hospital drama that will play in London before reaching Broadway in spring 2001 at the Royale Theatre.

2009 Christopher Durang's absurdist political comedy, Why Torture Is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them, starring Laura Benanti, Amir Arison and Kristine Nielsen, has its world premiere at the Public Theater.

Today's Birthdays: Jed Prouty 1879. Andre Previn 1929. Billy Dee Williams 1937. Marilu Henner 1952. Paul Rudd 1969.