Best Director: Joseph Adler, Intimate Apparel
What can be said about Joe Adler that hasn't already been said? His fearless penchant for pushing the envelope and his outspoken
passion for theater and South Florida talent has made him the director actors most want to work with. His choice of plays is sometimes
educational, always entertaining and provocative. This past season alone Adler directed the thriller Misery, the tense
two-hander Address Unknown and the wonderful character study Brooklyn Boy. But the crowning achievement was March's
Intimate Apparel, an achingly beautiful play about a seamstress in turn-of-the-century New York. Adler's knack for casting
just the right actor for the role again prevailed, and his guidance led them in a nearly perfect production. In addition to his directing
duties, Adler is now in his eighth season as artistic director at the GableStage, and his vision and talent have made the Coral Gables
venue the go-to place for compelling theater.
Best Actor: Avi Hoffman, Address Unknown
Avi Hoffman is the uber-Jew of South Florida theater. From his formation of the National Center for Jewish Cultural Arts to his one-man
show Too Jewish to his portrayals of Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof, Hoffman is a musical dynamo intent on keeping Jewish
theatrical traditions alive. In January Hoffman took a step away from his usual musical roles to play a Jewish art dealer living in San
Francisco in the 1930s, just when the Nazis are coming to power and sowing the seeds for World War II and the Holocaust in Europe in the
GableStage's tense little potboiler, Address Unknown, and he played the hell out of it. Although Hoffman and his co-star Ken
Clement never said a word to each other - the entire play is done in letters from Hoffman's character to his best friend and business partner,
who has returned to Germany and becomes enraptured by the Nazis - they managed to create intimacy and tension. But it is Hoffman's performance
as a man slowly losing his morals - and his mind - to revenge that still stands out. His maniacal laugh was truly a spine-tingling moment and
was still ringing in audience's ears long after the show was over.
Best Actress: Kameshia M. Duncan, Intimate Apparel and Bourbon at the Border
Kameshia M. Duncan is on a roll. Miami audiences first saw her last summer in City Theatre's Summer Shorts; she followed that up with
a role as a no-nonsense nurse in Creative Arts Enterprise's Hannah Free. Her double whammy came within just a few months of each other,
first as a wife who carries the scars of her harrowing fight for civil rights in Bourbon at the Border at M Ensemble, and then as
Esther, a turn of the century seamstress who gambles everything on a chance at love in Intimate Apparel at GableStage. In both
performances, Duncan's voice and eyes not only portray her character's anguish, but make the audience feel it deeply, so much so that when she
comes out for her curtain call, still trembling from her character's emotional roller coaster, you just want to hug her and tell her everything
will be OK. She's the real thing, through and through.
Best Supporting Actress: Beth McIntosh, Brooklyn Boy
Beth McIntosh could not have been onstage more than 15 minutes in Brooklyn Boy at GableStage, but boy, did she make an impression. With
her naturally brown hair dyed sun-kissed blond for her role of an aspiring writer/literary groupie, she could have easily slipped into a
stereotypical California ditz. But she infused her role with endearing vulnerability - just the right amount to balance out the rough edges, but
not so much as to become sappy and overly sentimental. In a production with several standout performances, McIntosh stood head and shoulders
above the rest. As co-founder of the Promethean Theatre, let's hope McIntosh finds time away from her behind-the-scenes role to grace the stage
in more productions.
2005 Miami Sun Post - "Best of the Beaches"
Best Director (Drama): JOSEPH ADLER, BUG
Bug had a lot of things - paranoid delusions, schizophrenia, sex, nudity, physical abuse,
drinking, fighting, self-mutilation, drugs, vulgarity and other shocking moments - but most of all,
it epitomized the edgy, controversial fare Adler takes pride in presenting. His work here was
masterful, his actors were fantastic and the show ended with a (literal) bang we'll never
Best Actor (Drama): GORDON McCONNELL, FROZEN
Ordinarily, the separation between the stage and one's comfortable seat is enough to not feel
threatened by onstage antics. But McConnell's Ralph - a pedophile and murderer who is upset to be in
prison only because it prevents him from doing more of the same - has so much anger and hate in
his eyes that even his more tranquil moments made us squirm. When he was mad, and in his thick
Scottish accent shouting vulgarities no civilized person would ever wish to hear, we hated Ralph even more.
Best Actress (Drama): LISA MORGAN, RETREAT FROM MOSCOW
Morgan's turn as Alice, the perpetually bored and annoying housewife whose husband decides to leave
her after 33 years of marriage, was uncanny in its conveyance of a lovable woman who uses a
delightfully bitter sense of humor to overcome her pathos. When she told her new dog Eddie (whom
she named after her departed husband) to "play dead," the laughter was equivalent to the sorrow we felt for her.
Miami Sun Post - Best of the Arts - 2004
Best Theater Company - GableStage
From a brilliant staging of Edward Albee's latest masterwork, The Goat or Who is Sylvia?, through the
subversive, madcap raunchiness of Joe Orton's What the Butler Saw and Ten Unknowns'
provocative ruminations on contemporary life and art; from a majestic and deeply moving production of Athol Fugard's
Master Harold... and the Boys to QED's fascinating riffs on the mysteries of physics and
the human heart - GableStage once again lit up our theatrical season with pertinent classics and the cream of the
crop of the most stimulating of recent Big Apple fare.
Best Play - The Goat or Who is Sylvia?
Edward Albee's recent, sardonic "goat fucker as hero" family drama - a sort of The Bacchae for our time --
virtually annihilates the post-modern ethos and French critical theory-derived morality simply by dramatizing what
would happen if their assumptions were to actually play out in the real world. GableStage's lucid and dramatically
satisfying production featured an impressive performance by Bob Rogerson as the adamant trans-species lover.
Best Director - Joseph Adler - The Goat or Who is Sylvia?
Joe Adler rendered every note of Edward Albee's corrosive tour de force, from coarse humor, subtle recognitions and
emotional fireworks to profound meta-ethical speculations, with assured clarity and intelligence while coaxing
exceptional performances from an excellent cast.
Best Actor - Paul Bodie - Master Harold... and the Boys
As a marginalized restaurant worker in Athol Fugard's ode to the resilience of human aspiration in the face of
oppression, Paul Bodie turned in a performance of power, subtlety and impassioned conviction that one felt
privileged to have witnessed.
Runners Up - Bob Rogerson - The Goat or Who is Sylvia? David Kwiat -
Also at GableStage, consummate veteran actors Bob Rogerson and David Kwiat turned in tour de force performances in
roles of a lifetime that might each have merited an enthusiastic "Best of" had not Brodie so forcefully
taken it to the house in Master Harold..
Best Supporting Actor - Runner Up - Heath Kelts - Ten Unknowns
Heath Kelts gave one of the finest performances of his career as a manipulative art dealer on the make in
Best Supporting Actress - Deborah Sherman - Ten Unknowns
Sherman, who's especially adept to portraying characters with an intense inner life, provided just the right brainy
appeal to the part of quixotic research biologist falling for a failed painter in a backwater Mexican town.
Best Ensemble Performance - Runner Up - The Goat or Who is Sylvia?
2003 - Miami Sun Post - "Best of the Beaches"
Best Theater Company - GableStage
From the 9/11 memorial The Guys through the mind games of The Shape of Things and the
Mae West fantasia Dirty Blonde, the theater verité Tabletop and a consummate
The Diary of Anne Frank - last summer's post-"Best of" Chinese Coffee was the best
of the bunch.
Best Play: Runner Up - Chinese Coffee
Best Director - Joseph Adler, Chinese Coffee
Adler drew terrific performances from Paul Tei and Michael Gioia in this complex rendering of a sea change in the
relationship between a struggling novelist and an unsuccessful theatrical photographer - propelled almost solely
through dialogue. Not a nuance of Ira Lewis' quasi-Chekhovian psychological insight and sly humor was missed -
and it gripped you like a good action movie.
Best Actor - Paul Tei, Chinese Coffee
Daredevil Paul Tei assayed a whole new range of subtle colors and effects in portraying angst-ridden outsider
writer Harry Levine. At the time we thought that Tei, known for his impetuous bravado, might have reined himself
in a tad more than necessary in sensitive intellectual mode, but the fact that we remember this as the finest
performance of the year, lo these many month's later, has us convinced he was right on.
Best Supporting Actor - Joe Kimble, Tabletop
Kimble was dead-on and utterly plausible as a "regular Joe" member of a film production crew who's secretly
gay and a sensitive romantic to boot.
Best Supporting Actress - Jaime Libbert, The Diary of Anne Frank
As Anne Frank's still-waters-run-deep sister, Margot, Libbert's subtle reactions radiating quiet depth served
s a cohesive reference point for a marvelously detailed and heartfelt ensemble performance.
Runner Up - Autumn Horne, The Shape of Things
Best Ensemble Runners Up - Tabletop, The Diary of Anne Frank
Best Scenic Design - Tim Connelly, Tabletop
For a play that depicts a "tabletop" production crew in the actual process of filming TV commercial
product shots, Connelly created a functioning production studio crammed with actual equipment that all worked
2002 - Miami Sun Post - "Best of the Beaches"
Best Play - The Play About the Baby
GableStages' production of this late-life neo-Absurdist masterpiece by American theatrical provocateur extraordinaire Edward Albee, wherein a mysterious older couple blows the lid off of the vacuous serenity of a guileless young couple, bristled with rapier wit and deliciously sardonic malevolence. This razor-sharp, searingly intelligent staging was both pricelessly funny and genuinely scary in its dark vision.
Best Director - Joseph Adler, The Play About the Baby
Joe Adler's trademark at the helm of GableStage has been his penchant for providing South Florida with its first exposure to some of the most intellectually stimulating and provocative of recent theatrical fare, often with a racy knock-your-socks-off staging including plenty of nudity and cussin'. Baby definitively established his ability to deliver substance and depth along with the shock value.
Best Actor - John Felix, The Play About the Baby
Besides being unconscionably funny, John Felix was a riveting presence as the sinister "Man," oozing charismatic intelligence and incisive wit. "What is real and what isn't? It's a tricky business," he mused, and we had to agree. Particularly priceless were Felix's comedic asides to the audience, as in "I love this speech!"
Best Ensemble Acting - Cast of The Dead
This musical staging of James Joyce's short story masterpiece from Dubliners featured Stephen G. Anthony, Sandra Ives, Bill Yule and a veritable Who's Who of some of our favorite local actors, each of whom created a vivid and distinct personality reacting to the action subtly and in character even when from the periphery. As a theatrical experience, this lyrical, bittersweet, vicarious Yuletide party experience really hit the spot somehow for our first post-9/11 Christmas.
Best Theater Company - Gablestage
Best Actress - Cynthia Caquelin, The Play About the Baby
2000 - Miami Sun Post - "Best of the Beaches"
BEST THEATER COMPANY - 2000