Seeing Stars at the Hayes Awards

By Chaffee, Kevin | The Washington Times (Washington, DC), May 7, 1997 | Go to article overview

Seeing Stars at the Hayes Awards


Chaffee, Kevin, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)


THE EVENT: The 1997 Helen Hayes Awards at the Kennedy Center.

THE PROGRAM: A six-hour-plus marathon featuring cocktails, dinner, an awards ceremony and - for the stouthearted - a cast party that continued until the wee hours.

SPECIAL STARS: Lynn Redgrave headed a hit parade of marquee names along with awards hosts Pat Carroll and Tyne Daly, resident glitterati Kelly McGillis and Robert Prosky, Ann Morgan Guilbert and Phylicia Rashad.

Actor-director Richard Thomas was pleased to discover there were interesting connections between him and two other guests. His most recent film, "The Swiss Family Robinson," is a remake of a 1962 Walt Disney production starring Hayley Mills and Helen Hayes' son, James MacArthur.

BIG (DOUBLE) DIPPERS: It was a night to remember for Helen Carey, who got the nod as best supporting actress in a resident play for her role in the Shakespeare Theatre's production of "Volpone." Earlier that day, she also got a Tony nomination for best actress in "London Assurance."

LOCAL LUMINARIES: As usual, gala chairman Victor Shargai brought in a surfeit of philanthropic and social stars to the high-end Producers Dinner, including "the two Almas," Powell and Gildenhorn; Bill and Dorothy McSweeny (who help fund every major theater in town); benefactors Frank and Dawn Saul; Canadian Ambassador Raymond Chretien; the filmmaking Pedas brothers, Ted and Jim; arts donors Gilbert and Jaylee Mead and Robert and Ada Linowes; J. Carter Brown; Jamie Auchincloss; Wilma Bernstein; and White House Social Secretary Ann Stock.

OOHS AND AAHS: Over the food at the dinner and cast party - both were a definite improvement from last year.

BOOS AND BAHS: For the awards program, which both patrons and actors found terminally long and boring. Jokes were wooden and read from cue cards, quality entertainment (except for the scene from the musical "Passion") was lacking, and the "This Is Your Life" extravaganza honoring Miss Carroll's 70th birthday fell flat. …

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