Tony Finstrom, Iris Acker and Ron Levitt co-founded the Silver Palm Awards in 2008 as a way to celebrate excellence in South Florida theater. Fashioned after New York’s Off-Broadway Obie Awards, the Silver Palms do not designate nominees, and they place no limit on the number of citations that might be given in any “category.” In truth, there are no official categories.
Silver Palm judges submit 10 recommendations to the Silver Palm Executive Committee, citing the artists they feel should be recognized as having made an “Outstanding Contribution to the South Florida Theater Season.” All submissions are tallied and scored. The theater artists with the highest scores are awarded the honor. After his passing, Finstrom designated Andy Rogow and Michael McKeever as the co-chairs of the Awards, requesting that they continue his legacy of supporting the community and honoring its artists. Sandi Stock oversees the awards as Managing Director.
This year the awards were expanded to include and honor more unique and non-traditional contributions to our community, according to the Silver Palm Awards organization. Judges from across Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Broward Counties helped choose the honorees. Judges - consisting of professionals working in all aspects of the theater industry, as well as devoted, knowledgeable patrons - attended a cumulative 478 performances this season. Votes are weighted by how many shows each judge saw, and honorees confirmed by a select committee.
The Silver Palm Awards will be returning to The Addison of Boca Raton on Monday, October 16, 2023 at 6:30 p.m., when the recipients of this year's awards will be honored. The Silver Palms Awards were established in 2008, conceived to celebrate the work of theater artists who live in South Florida.
THE SILVER PALM AWARDS 2022-2023 HONOREES
- Angie Radosh, Outstanding Performance, One More Yesterday, Ronnie Larsen Presents/Plays of Wilton.
- Autumn Kioti, Outstanding Performance, Rotterdam, Island City Stage.
- Bari Newport & Karina Batchelor, Commitment to Dramaturgical Excellence, Gablestage.
- Bill Hayes, Outstanding Director, August, Osage County, Palm Beach Dramaworks.
- Create Dangerously, Outstanding Cultural Contribution, Miami New Drama.
- David Hart, Outstanding Sound Design, Pageant, Rotterdam, Tracy Jones, Thrill Me, Island City Stage.
- Elizabeth Price, Outstanding Performance, What the Constitution Means to Me, City Theatre.
- Frank J. Oliva, Outstanding Set Design, Little Mermaid, Area Stage; Native Gardens, Gablestage.
- Jerel Brown, Outstanding Performance, Mlima's Tale, Zoetic Stage.
- Jordon Armstrong, Outstanding Special Effect, Grand Horizons, Boca Stage.
- Karen Stephens, Outstanding Performance, Time Alone, Boca Stage.
- LakehouseRanchDotPNG, Outstanding New / Emerging Theatre Company.
- Little Mermaid, Outstanding Immersive Theatre Experience, Area Stage.
- Matt Stabile, Outstanding Director, Red Riding Hood, Dorothy's Dictionary, Last Night in Inwood, Theatre Lab.
- Melquisedel Dominguez Cadena, Outstanding Set Design, Red Speedo, Ronnie Larsen Presents/Plays of Wilton.
- Michael McKeever, Outstanding New Work, American Rhapsody, Zoetic Stage.
- Nate Promkul, Outstanding Performance, Next to Normal, Zoetic Stage; Newsies on-stage understudy, Slow Burn Theatre Company.
- Next to Normal, Outstanding Production, Zoetic Stage.
- Palm Beach Dramaworks, Excellence in Ensemble Casting, 12 Angry Men, August, Osage County.
- Paul Curtis & Hola Hi, Outstanding Original Music Contribution to SFL Theatre Community.
- Refuge, Outstanding Production, Theatre Lab.
- Rick Pena, Outstanding Costume Design, Newsies, Slow Burn Theatre Company.
- Roderick Randle, Outstanding Breakout Performance, Topdog/Underdog, Main Street Players.
- Ronnie Larsen, Outstanding Multi-disciplinary Work, Producer, Director, Playwright, and Actor.
- Stuart Meltzer, Outstanding Director, Next to Normal, American Rhapsody, Zoetic Stage; The Actors, Red Speedo, Ronnie Larsen Presents/Plays of Wilton.
The Silver Palm 2022-2023 Judging Panel:
*designates select committee member
- Barbara Bradshaw, actor.
- Mary Damiano, arts journalist.
- *Christine Dolen, theatre critic.
- Niki Fridh, actor.
- Bianca Garcia, actor.
- Patti Gardner, actor.
- Carey Brianna Hart, actor/director.
- *Luis Roberto Hererra, playwright/actor/theatre critic.
- Bill Hirschman, theatre critic.
- Lee Rubin, sponsor.
- *Karen Stephens, actor.
- Michelle F. Solomon, arts journalist, editor miamiartzine.com and ArtburstMiami.com
- *John Thomason, theatre critic.
- Gaby Tortoledo, actor.
- James White III, actor.
- Kent Chambers-Wilson, actor/director.
- *Sandi Stock, Silver Palm Awards Managing Director.
This year's honorees, along with all those who participate in creating theater in South Florida, will be feted at a gala dinner that includes a complimentary specialty cocktail hour, full dinner, the presentation of the awards and dancing. Tickets for the event are $50 (a $125 value) or $500 for a table of ten. The Addison of Boca Raton is located at 2 E. Camino Real in Boca Raton. The Silver Palm Awards Gala is sponsored by the Tony Finstrom Fund at Our Fund and Mark Traverso and Conor Walton.
Tickets can be reserved at www.silverpalmawards.com/