Fourteenth “Artsies” to be held at the November Theatre on Oct. 2nd will introduce non-gendered awards categories.
This year marks the 14th year that the Richmond Theatre Critics Circle has sponsored the Richmond Theatre Critics Circle (RTCC) Awards, or “Artsies,” the community’s recognition of excellence in Richmond-area theater. The theme of this year’s event– “We’re Still Here”– speaks to the tenacity of the arts and arts organizations throughout the global COVID-19 pandemic. It echoes the hope that many artists feel and project into the world that we will emerge stronger, closer, and more focused. The theme also serves to highlight the remarkable strength and resilience of our theater community.
This year’s celebration will be held in person at the November Theatre at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, October 2nd. More detail will follow on COVID-19 safety protocols.
In an effort to be more inclusive in the celebration of theatre art, the RTCC is abandoning gendered categories, as outdated “actor” and “actress” designations do not serve the diverse spectrum of identities embraced by Richmond area theatre artists. This move will be accompanied by an enlarging of the number of nominees in previously gender-binary categories from five to six (and possibly as many as eight, as appropriate) in the new, non-gendered categories and the selection of two award recipients in each of those categories. In line with the Grammys, the MTV Movie &TV Awards, and the Television Critics Association’s TCA Awards, this change seeks to ensure the opportunity for representation and recognition among individuals of all gender identities.
“Best Actress in a Leading Role in a Play” and “Best Actor in a Leading Role in a Play” will be replaced with the gender-neutral category “Best Lead Performance in a Play”; “Best Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical” and “Best Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical” will be replaced with the gender-neutral category “Best Lead Performance in a Musical”; “Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Play” and “Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Play” will be replaced with the gender-neutral category “Best Supporting Performance in a Play”; and “Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical” and “Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical” will be replaced with the gender-neutral category “Best Supporting Performance in a Musical.”
All proceeds from Artsies ticket sales support the Theatre Artist Fund of Greater Richmond.
The members of the RTCC include Claire Boswell (Spotlight RVA), Rich Griset (Style Weekly), and Julinda Lewis (RVArt Review). The members of the Theatre Alliance Panel (TAP) include Amy Berlin, Lily Mercer, Thomas Nowlin, and Amy Wight. RTCC members and TAP members must have seen at least two-thirds of the locally-produced shows during the season in order to vote in the award nomination process.
Formal attire is encouraged for the awards ceremony, which is open to the public. Tickets for the event are $20 for orchestra seating and $25 for balcony seating and will go on sale September 1 through Virginia Rep at va-rep.org or (804) 282-2620. Additional event details will be released later this summer.