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Remy Awards honor outstanding work in South Florida theatre community

Posted By Josie Gulliksen
October 13, 2021 at 2:02 PM

Andie Arthur, president of the South Florida Theatre League, presenters of the 27th Remy Awards.

It has been 27 years since the South Florida Theatre League was founded and how long they’ve been handing out Remy Awards. They were recently given out during a virtual ceremony hosted by Daryl Patrice, SFTL board member. 

The Remy Awards are an annual tradition of the South Florida Theatre League honoring those who work behind the scenes — the administrators, the technicians, the volunteers, the board members, and others — to make theatre happen.

Andie Arthur, president of the League said, “there are plenty of awards honoring what we can see in a show — such as awards for performances, direction, and design — but there weren’t awards honoring the people working behind the scenes in administration and production whose long term support helps the community grow.”

The award’s name “Remy” carries some significance as well, named after and established in honor of Rem Cabrera, the former Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs’ Senior Cultural Administrator and Chief of Cultural Development. 

“They were named in his honor as he was instrumental in founding the League. Rem has since moved to Michigan, where he’s still supporting the arts,” said Arthur. “The awards were established to honor people’s long term contributions to the health and growth of the theater community.”

Click here to view the virtual presentation of the 27th Remy Awards on the League’s Facebook page.

The eight 2021 recipients were:

  • Beth Boone, founder of the Miami Light Project who received The Pioneer Award for “over the years, taking the lead and contributing substantially to the health, growth and development of the South Florida theatre community.”
  • Christina Alexander and Katie Christie founders of Alexander Christie, recipients of The Service Award for establishing the AntiRacism Theatre Strategies Cohort which in turn made the theatre community and in turn the League become more equitable. 
  • Laura Bruney, president & CEO of the Arts & Business Council of Miami, recipient of The Jay Harris Arts Leadership Award for her more than 30 years of dedicated service to helping arts organizations with their marketing efforts, creating a board member matching service and aid to arts organizations during the pandemic.
  • David Scharlin of Miami New Drama, recognized as Outstanding Board Member as chairman of the theatre group and nominated by Jessica Kaschube for “his spirit and commitment to the artistic vision and mission of our organization.”
  • District 5 Miami-Dade County Commissioner Eileen Higgins, recipient of the Civic Arts Leadership Award for her advocacy in allocating $10 million dollars from the CARES act to Miami-Dade based arts organizations and artists when the pandemic hit
  • Tim Bennett, a technical director and set designer in the theatre community for more than two decades, recipient of Outstanding Behind the Scenes Contribution
  • Jeannette Martos, recipient of the Outstanding Contribution to Children’s Theatre at Main Street Players. Martos was nominated by MSP board member Dennis Lyzniak, whose nomination form stated, “she has done a remarkable job teaching our children the various elements of theatre helping them build self-confidence to step on stage and perform in front of their families.”
  • Dana L. Frederbaugh, president of Actors Community Theatre of Davie, was honored with Outstanding Contribution to Community Theatre for her longtime service and efforts to reopen the theatre and community center.

A call for nominations went out to the entire membership of the South Florida Theatre League. Nominations are collected by the deadline, a committee of the League’s board members reviews the nominations and makes the final decision on recipients/winners in August.

“It’s a group of really hardworking, outstanding people whose impact is deeply felt in our community who have all been doing the hard behind the scenes work to strengthen our community,” said Arthur.

Several of the recipients shared their sentiments of gratitude at the honor including Beth Boone who said, “I feel very lucky to be a part of the Miami arts community. I especially love supporting the development of new work by Miami-based artists. I have discovered that it is my calling and I consider it a dream job. Having my work recognized by my peers is icing on the cake!”

Laura Bruney, President and CEO of Arts & Business Council of Miami

For Laura Bruney, whose heartfelt and tireless dedication to the arts community spans three decades, the award is a tremendous honor.

“I thank the South Florida Theater League for honoring me and the Arts & Business Council. The past 18 months have been unprecedented and difficult, but the resilience of our cultural community has left me inspired and hopeful,” Bruney said. “I look forward to working with all my colleagues as we celebrate the arts comeback.”

Miami-Dade County Commissioner Eileen Higgins was honored to receive the award for Civic Arts Leadership say, “[it] is a reminder to South Florida’s theatre community that they can always count on me to continue to be champions of the arts.”

She went on to express her love of the arts in our community saying, “the breadth and depth of the cultural and arts institutions that exist here in our County are a big part of why people love to live here! They aren’t just additions to our community or our economy, they are fundamental to it.” said Commissioner Higgins. “As one of the largest industries in our County, and most importantly employing over 40,000 of our residents, I want to make sure the arts survive and thrive here, not only in challenging times — like the pandemic — but into the future as well.”

 Learn more about the South Florida Theatre League and their upcoming events and activities by visiting their website.

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