John Hurt receives William Shakespeare Award for Classical Theatre
In honor of John Hurt’s achievements he was presented with the William Shakespeare Award for Classical Theatre this past Sunday evening, and MuggleNet was in attendance. The gala took place at the William Shakespeare Company in Washington, D.C. He was among three legendary artists of stage and screen to be presented with this prestigious award, the others being Diana Rigg (Mother Superior in The Painted Veil and Olenna Tyrell in HBO’s Game of Thrones) and Stacy Keach (Gramps in If I Stay and Henry Pope in Prison Break).
The performance started out with an introduction depicting the lives of John Hurt, Stacy Keach, and Diana Rigg to the well-known Three’s Company theme song. Judith Light, commonly known for her TV role in Who’s the Boss, was the Master of Ceremonies. Michael Kahn, Chair of the Board of STC, informed the audience that the gala had raised a record-breaking 1 million dollars in donations to benefit the Shakespeare Theatre Company’s education fund. He then preceded to present the Sidney Harman Award to the Beech Street Foundation for their philanthropy to the theater.
Michael Kahn presented the award to John Hurt after merely skimming over his many accomplishments, ranging from The Elephant Man, Alien, and of course the Harry Potter film series. We would have been there all night if he’d gone over all of them. As John Hurt walked on to the stage he took one look at the award and proclaimed, “Wow!” which caused laughter throughout the audience. He talked about how he first heard he was receiving this award and how he couldn’t wait to return to Washington, DC. He reminisced about performing Krapp’s Last Tape on the very stage he was standing on. John Hurt expressed his gratitude for the amount of donations received for the gala and symbolically shared his massive award with the audience.
The rest of the event proceeded with performances in the form of music and dance interpreting various Shakespearean plays. Stacy Keach and Diana Rigg were subsequently presented with their Will awards from the Master of Ceremonies. This event was a great way to honor these three extraordinary performers and raise money for theater education. Support your local theatre company, and keep the education of performing arts alive.