Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Broadway veteran and star of ABC’s hit sitcom Modern Family, will host the 80th annual Drama League Awards on May 16 at the Marriott Marquis Times Square. The nominees for the awards, which include Distinguished Performance, Play, Musical, Revival of a Play and Revival of a Musical, will be announced on April 23.
Recipients of the Special Drama League Awards have already been announced. They are Tony winner and singing legend Barbara Cook for distinguished achievement in musical theater; Key Brand Entertainment/Broadway Across America for bringing New York productions to theaters across the country; and Tony-winner John Tiffany (Once, The Glass Menegarie) for excellence in directing.
Ferguson got his start on the New York stage, appearing on Broadway in the 1998 revival of On the Town and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. His Off-Broadway credits include The Comedy of Errors, The Merchant of Venice, The Winter’s Tale, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park, Little Fish at Second Stage, and Where Do We Live at the Vineyard Theater. He has been nominated four times for an Emmy for his performance as Mitchell Pritchett on Modern Family.
The country’s oldest theatrical accolade, the Drama League Award was first presented in 1922 and formalized in 1935. The distinguished performance award first went to the theater icon Katharine Cornell and has since been presented to such stars as Nathan Lane, Christopher Plummer, Liam Neeson, Audra McDonald, Hugh Jackman, Patti LuPone and Bernadette Peters.