Friday, July 29, 2016

the ariZoni Theatre awards of Excellence announce some big changes to the Ceremony and Nominees for this year

from our friends at the ariZoni Theatre awards of Excellence 

A Letter to the Phoenix Theatre Community                                                       
In preparation for the reading of the nominees for the 2016 ariZoni Theatre awards of Excellence, which will take place this coming Monday, August 1st at 7pm at the Phoenix Center for the Arts, and the Awards Celebration on September 19th, the ariZoni Board of Directors would like to review the new developments, improvements, and changes that we are implementing in advance of these two events. 

These changes are based on the feedback we received from the Celebration Survey, which received a large number of responses, and discussions with the contracted theatres. 

We’d like to take a minute to highlight what’ll be different about this year’s Celebration and why you should be there!

1.     No Hosts! This year, we’re breaking with tradition and we won’t have a host, or co-hosts. We’ll still have an announcer to keep the show moving, but no more comedic bits to slow the Celebration down.

2.     With only three Contracted Zoni participating Theatres, it has been decided by those theatres that they would no longer be included in the Awards portion of the Zoni Celebration. With only three theatres left in this category, and nearly forty in the non-contracted segment, it was evident that the time was right for refocusing and rethinking on how best to serve everyone, the theatres, their artists, and the attendees of the yearly ceremony.  While we are working to include contracted representation at the ceremony, the Reading of the Nominees and the Awards Celebration will now be focused solely on the Non-Contracted and Youth Zoni participating Theatres.

3.   Without host bits, and with the focus on the Non-Contracted and Youth Theatre Awards, we now have room for more musical numbers. By far, those seem to be everyone’s favorite part of the show. So we’re increasing our number of performing groups!

4.     Speed and pacing of the ceremony – we know in the past there has always been time wasted when we wait for a winner to take the stage, only to find that they aren’t in attendance.  So we’re implementing a “nominee check in table” to hopefully speed up that lapsed time. 

5.     A mix of presenters.  Typically presenters have been chosen based on the previous years’ nominees and winners and this year we’ve asked the theatres for their suggestions.  We hope to use presenters that represent every theatre in the valley and a great mix of folks from board members to technicians to designers to performers.

6.     The ariZoni stage management award.  This award is a long time coming and saying that we’re proud to see it come to life this year is an understatement.

7.     And last but certainly not least: a technician appreciation piece.  We have a whole team of Board Members devoted to showcasing the amazing technical talent we have at our theatres.  We hope to have artwork and so much more readily on display to highlight the creative talents of the theatre technicians in the Valley.

We’re very proud to be part of the Zoni Theatre Board and hope you agree about the improvements we’re making to the show and our organization. So please come, enjoy and celebrate local theatre with us!


Chris Hamby, Rebecca Weinstein and the ariZoni Theatre awards of Excellence Board of Directors

CLICK HERE for more information on the ariZoni Awards for Theatre Excellence


  1. All of these changes sound fantastic! Looking forward to it!!