SDCF to Honor Raymond O. Caldwell With Zelda Fichandler Award | Playbill

Awards SDCF to Honor Raymond O. Caldwell With Zelda Fichandler Award

May Adrales and Tinashe Kajese-Bolden have been named as finalists for the award.

The Stage Directors and Choreographers Foundation (SDCF) has announced that the 2023 Zelda Fichandler Award will be presented to Raymond O. Caldwell, producing artistic director of Washington, D.C.'s Theater Alliance.

The Fichandler Award, named for Arena Stage Founding Artistic Director Zelda Fichandler, recognizes directors and choreographers who have demonstrated creativity and deep investment in a particular community or region. The award is presented annually, with a focus on a different region of the U.S. each year. 

Caldwell will receive an unrestricted award of $5,000 from SDCF. SDCF also named May Adrales and Tinashe Kajese-Bolden as finalists. All three will be recognized in a virtual ceremony in spring 2024, which will be open to the public. 

“Among an incredible pool of nominated directors and choreographers and their impressive, impactful careers, the committee is thrilled to shine a light on Raymond O. Caldwell as the 2023 Zelda Fichandler Award winner and May Adrales and Tinashe Kajese-Bolden as finalists,” selection committee chair Vivienne Benesch said in a statement. “While each has already accomplished great things as artists and community builders, we felt this recognition—at this moment—would serve as a propelling and meaningful endorsement of all they have yet to make happen. Zelda was one of Raymond’s first mentors when he arrived in Washington DC in 2009. She would be so proud of the transformative work he is doing both in their shared hometown and around the world. As one of his nominators wrote, ‘DC theatre is more intentional, more innovative, and more connected because of his presence and leadership.’ I can’t wait to follow and support Raymond, May and Tinashe’s brilliant work and their continued contributions to our field at large.”

Along with Benesch, the selection committee included directors and choreographers Elena Araoz, Karma Shively-Camp, and Christopher Windom.

Founded in 1965, SDCF is a not-for-profit foundation intended to celebrate and support directors and choreographers throughout their careers.

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