Actors' Equity Association has presented Hadestown with the thirteenth annual ACCA Award for Outstanding Broadway Chorus. Presented by Equity’s Advisory Committee on Chorus Affairs (ACCA), the ACCA Award is the only industry accolade of its kind to honor the distinctive talents and contributions made by the original chorus members of a Broadway musical.
The nine individual recipients of the 2019 ACCA Award – all of whom were part of the Hadestown chorus on the musical’s April 17, 2019 Broadway opening night – are Malcolm Armwood, Afra Hines, Timothy Hughes, John Krause, Kimberly Marable, T. Oliver Reid, Jessie Shelton, Ahmad Simmons and Khaila Wilcoxon.
“In Hadestown, the audience looks to the chorus to guide them,” said Jennifer Cody, 2nd Vice President and ACCA Chair. “They are the constant emotion of the piece. They have the ability to, at one moment, work as a unit, and then in the next moment become five completely different individuals. We follow them from the highs of Persephone's party to the depths of...well, Hell. They are a stunning group of actors who happen to also sing and dance.”
We follow this stunning group of actors from the highs of Persephone’s party to the depths of…well, Hell. They have the ability to at one moment work as a unit, and then in the next moment become five completely different individuals as Anaïs Mitchell’s book dictates – a perfect mix of what one believes a party in Hell would be like!”
The award was presented on Tuesday, June 18, during Equity’s National Council meeting in New York. Each original chorus member received a plaque.
In reviewing the chorus of each Broadway musical that opened in the 2018-2019 theatrical season, ACCA considered the chorus requirements made by each production’s director, choreographer and musical director; the caliber of technical skill used to execute those requirements; and the unique contributions made by the entire chorus to the overall production. Members of the ACCA, all of whom have worked on a chorus contract and have seen all of the ACCA-nominated musicals during the season, cast their vote for the winning chorus.
Past recipients of the ACCA award are the original chorus members of Legally Blonde (2007), In the Heights (2008), West Side Story (2009), Fela! (2010), The Scottsboro Boys (2011), Newsies (2012), Pippin (2013), Beautiful – The Carole King Musical (2014), An American in Paris (2015), Shuffle Along, Or The Making Of The Musical Sensation Of 1921 And All That Followed (2016), Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (2017) and Once on This Island (2018).