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Shakespeare Theatre Company (STC) to Honor Charles Dance for Outstanding Contribution to Classical Theatre in America

August 8, 2016

Washington, D.C. – To acknowledge his outstanding contribution to classical theatre in America, British actor Charles Dance will accept the Shakespeare Theatre Company’s (STC) prestigious William Shakespeare Award for Classical Theatre (Will Award) at the Harman Center for the Arts Annual Gala on Sunday, September 25, 2016, at Sidney Harman Hall (610 F St NW).

Dance, who appeared as Lord Tywin Lannister in the hit HBO series Game of Thrones, has amassed an impressive 35-year career in film and stage. Charles’ most recent screen appearances are Ghostbusters, Me Before You and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. As a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company, he played roles in Hamlet, Henry IV, Richard III, Henry V, As You Like It and Coriolanus, among others.

He joins an impressive group of classical theatre actors who have previously received the award, including: Julie Taymor, Sir John Hurt, Stacey Keach, Dame Diana Rigg, Annette Bening, Sir Ian McKellen, Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons, Dame Judi Dench, Fiona Shaw, Ralph Fiennes, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Dame Maggie Smith, Sir Patrick Stewart, Sam Waterston, Christopher Walken, Morgan Freeman, Sir Kenneth Branagh, Christopher Plummer, Kevin Kline, the late Joseph Papp and Shakespeare Theatre Company Artistic Director Michael Kahn.

In appreciation of the significant impact his generosity has made on the performing arts in the nation’s capital, STC will also present the Sidney Harman Award for Philanthropy to Donald E. Graham.

More than 600 influential arts, business, political and philanthropic leaders attend this annual event, now in its ninth year.  The evening will begin at Sidney Harman Hall with a champagne and wine reception, followed by the award ceremony and a world-class performance of musical theatre, opera, comedy, tragedy, modern dance and ballet, which may feature some surprises. Guests will then enjoy a three-course dinner and dancing at the spectacular National Building Museum.

STC Artistic Director Michael Kahn said: “The Gala is one of my favorite events. It’s a perfect opportunity for people to come together to celebrate the theatre arts while enjoying a wonderful evening of entertainment. I’m delighted that Charles Dance will be there to collect his award and that Donald E. Graham is being recognized for his tremendous generosity—both awards are well deserved.”

Gala Chair Stefanie Erkiletian said: “Thanks to the generosity of guests, STC is able to deliver many artistic and community engagement programs each year to more than 20,000 children and adults. It’s a privilege to be part of a Board that helps STC make Shakespeare and classical theatre exciting and accessible to people both on and off the stage.”

Individual tickets and tables to the Harman Center for the Arts Annual Gala range from $750 to $50,000. For further information about this event, please call Amanda Herman, Special Events Manager, at 202.547.3230 ext. 2330, or


Notes to editors:

Limited space is available for press wishing to cover this event. Press should contact Amy Hughes at 202.547.3230 ext. 2344 or by emailing

The Sidney Harman Award for Philanthropy in the Arts honors those whose generosity has made a significant impact on the performing arts in our nation’s capital. This year it will be presented to Donald E. Graham, co-founder of TheDream.US, a national scholarship fund created to help immigrant youth achieve a college education.

The Harman Center for the Arts Annual Gala benefits the many artistic and community engagement programs of the Shakespeare Theatre Company. STC Education programming serves more than 20,000 children and adults each season through comprehensive school, training, community access and audience enrichment programs that make Shakespeare and classical theatre exciting and accessible, both on and off the stage. The centerpiece is the annual Free For All, which presents one of Shakespeare’s classic plays free of charge to the general public, and has reached more than 660,000 D.C. residents and visitors since its launch in 1991.

The theatre performance is directed by STC Artistic Associate, Craig Baldwin.

 Honorary Patrons:

Under the honorary patronage of His Excellency the British Ambassador and Lady Darroch

 2016 Gala Committee:

The 2016 Gala Chair: Stefanie Erkiletian, President of Erkiletian Development Company

Nick and Marla Allard

Stephen Allis
Anita Antenucci

Gloria Story Dittus

Debbie Driesman and Frank F. Islam

Carolyn and Robert Falb

Jerry and Isabel Jasinowski

Kevin and Stephani Kolevar

Abbe David Lowell and Molly A. Meegan

Lisa and Jonathan Moneymaker

Melissa Moss and Jonathan Silver

Craig Pascal and Victor Shargai

Stephen and Lisa Ryan

Pauline A. Schneider

Jonathan Sherman and Annie Carey

Martin Skea and Christopher Mondini

Karen and Joe Wawrzaszek

Michele Williams

Tom and Cathie Woteki

Suzanne and Glenn Youngkin


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