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Baayork Lee to Receive Special Tony Award

Variety logo Variety 4/25/2017 Gordon Cox
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Baayork Lee, the actor-director-choreographer who originated the role of Connie in “A Chorus Line,” will receive the 2017 Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award, which honors a member of the theater industry who has made significant contributions to charitable causes.

Lee, who’s directed and choreographed productions of “A Chorus Line” all over the world, will receive the award for her work with the National Asian Artists Project and in international music-theater education around the world.

Lee is the founder of the National Asian Artists Projects, which showcases Asian-American theater artists and organizes educational initiatives and community outreach, producing stagings of classic musicals such as “Oklahoma!,” “Carousel” and “Hello, Dolly!” with all-Asian casts. Lee has also created music theater schools in Seoul and Tokyo, as well as the Theater Club at the Yung Wing Elementary School in Manhattan’s Chinatown.

Lee’s theater work also includes directing and choreographing national and international productions of “The King and I,” “Bombay Dreams” and “Jesus Christ Superstar,” among many other titles. She’s staged recent productions of “Chorus Line” in Austria, Chile and at the Hollywood Bowl in L.A.

Lee’s Tony is part of a lineup of 2017 special Tonys that also includes Tony Honors for two veteran Broadway general managers, Nina Lannan and Alan Wasser. The 71st Annual Tony Awards are set for June 11 in a ceremony to be hosted by Kevin Spacey.

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