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Edward Kennedy Ellington was born in Washington, D.C., in 1899.  His career hit
stride in New York during the late 1920s and early 1930s, though Ellington continued
writing songs through the 1960s. While Ellington wrote music during a much different
racial era in America, Sophisticated Ladies still expresses ideas of tolerance and
diversity. Mr. Ellington won over a dozen Grammy Awards.

In December of 1936, Mr. Ellington received the keys to the city of Los Angeles
and in 1966, he was presented with the President’s Gold Medal on behalf of Lyndon
Johnson. In 1969, Richard Nixon presented Mr. Ellington with the Presidential Medal
of Freedom. The Smithsonian Institution produced a traveling exhibition, BEYOND
CATEGORY: THE MUSICAL GENIUS OF DUKE ELLINGTON, exploring the life and work
of this innovative composer, bandleader and pianist.


Originally seen on Broadway in 1981 starring Gregory Hines, SOPHISTICATED
LADIES won two Tony Awards® and was nominated for six others. Phyllis Hyman won
the 1981 Theater World Award as best actress for her role in the show (details below).

SOPHISTICATED LADIES is presented by Artbeat, a not-for-profit company, and
produced by Irving Street Rep. For more information, contact David Shaw:
425.444.5052 artbeatshows@juno.com  
JPEG photos available and other pertinent information at: www.artbeatshows.org and
from the Duke Ellington web page at www.dukeellington.com/home.php.


1981 Tony Award® Best Musical  Produced by Roger S. Berlind, Manheim Fox, Sondra
Gilman, Burton L. Litwin, Louise Westergaard; Produced in association with Belwin
Mills Publishing Corporation, Norzar Production, Inc [nominee]   
1981 Tony Award® Best Actor in a Musical  Gregory Hines [nominee]
1981 Tony Award® Best Featured Actress in a Musical Phyllis Hyman [nominee]    
1981 Tony Award® Best Lighting Design  Jennifer Tipton [nominee]   
1981 Tony Award® Best Choreography  Henry LeTang [nominee]  Donald McKayle
[nominee]  Michael Smuin [nominee]   
1981 Tony Award® Best Direction of a Musical  Michael Smuin [nominee]         
1981 Tony Award®  Best Featured Actor in a Musical Hinton Battle [winner]
1981 Tony Award® Best Costume Design  Willa Kim [winner]
1981 Theater World Award   Also Starring: Phyllis Hyman [winner]


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