The APAP Honors

Quick Links: About | Award Descriptions | 2021 Nominees | Past Awardees | Replay the Event | Carry the Field Forward

APAPNYC 2016 Award Winner Babba Chuck by Adam Kissick/APAP


About The APAP Honors

The APAP Honors celebrates and recognizes trailblazers and visionaries of the performing arts field. For more than five decades, the coveted awards were presented annually as part of the APAP Awards Ceremony traditionally held at the annual APAP|NYC conference. The APAP Honors will feature the APAP Awards, the Annual NAPAMA Awards, and for the first time, a special presentation of the Halsey & Alice North Award for APAP Board Alumni.

This year’s event was held virtually on Thursday, May 6, 2021.

This year marks a first for the awards program as a standalone event which allows us to really focus on the laudable achievements of performing arts professionals and their indelible contributions to the field. This year’s event is remarkable because of the times. We invite you to join us in celebrating the achievements of performing arts industry professionals at a time where our championing and support are integral to our survival. In honoring our own, we remember who we are and are inspired to proclaim why our work matters!


Thank you to IMG Artists for sponsoring The APAP Honors! Interested in sponsoring an event? Learn more here.

APAP welcomes charitable contributions to our valuable programs and services that support the performing arts field. Make a donation here.

APAP 2021 Award Nominees

The following performing arts professionals and organizations were nominated by APAP members for the following awards and represent the breadth and depth of the performing arts presenting, booking and touring field at this moment.


  • Ronald K. Brown, Choreographer/Artistic Director, EVIDENCE, a Dance Company
  • Rhodnie Désir, Artistic Director/Artist/Choreographer, RD Creations
  • Christine Dixon, artist
  • Raja Feather Kelly, Founding Artistic Director, the feath3r theory
  • Zakir Hussain, tabla player, composer, percussionist, producer, actor
  • Yo-Yo Ma, cellist, musician, founder, Silk Road Ensemble
  • Christian McBride, bassist, composer, arranger
  • Charles Miller, Program Consultant, Mayo Performing Arts Center
  • Debra Nagy, Founder and Director, Les Délices
  • Moses Pendleton, choreographer, dancer and the artistic director of MOMIX
  • Toshi Reagon, musician, composer, curator and producer


  • Gail Boyd, President, Gail Boyd Artist Management
  • Matthew Covey, Executive Director, Tamizdat
  • Creating New Futures: Working Guidelines for Ethics & Equity in Presenting Dance & Performance
  • María López De León, President and CEO, National Association of LatinoArts & Cultures (NALAC)
  • Nikki Estes, Director, Presenting & Touring, South Arts
  • Florida Professional Presenters Consortium, Inc.
  • Dayna Frank, Board President/Co-Founder, NIVA; CEO, First Avenue Productions
  • Meena Malik, musician, arts consultant, and cultural organizer; Program Manager of Theater, NEFA; API Arts Network of Boston
  •, Kevin Erickson and Sarah Al Howes, Esquire
  • Rev. MOOSE, Executive Director/Co-Founder, NIVA; Managing Partner, Marauder
  • Performing Arts Managers & Agents Coalition (PAMAC), Charlotte Lee, Founder, in collaboration with David Lai and Cindy Liu
  • Jonathan Shmidt Chapman, Executive Director, TYA/USA
  • Zeyba Rahman, Senior Program Officer for the Building Bridges Program (DDFIA), Doris Duke Charitable Foundation
  • United States Artists, Deana Haggag, President & CEO
  • We See You White American Theater


  • Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, Jean-Philippe Malaty, Executive Director, and Tom Mossbrucker, Artistic Director
  • Barrington Stage Company, Julianne Boyd, Artistic Director
  • W. Lee Bell, Senior Director of Programming, Kravis Center for the Performing Arts
  • Celebrity Series of Boston, Amy Lam, Artistic Programmer
  • Charleston Gaillard Center, Therese Spaseff, Director of Entertainment and Programming
  • Zenetta S. Drew, Executive Director, Dallas Black Dance Theatre
  • Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, Kathy Ramsberger, President & CEO
  • Brooke Horejsi, Assistant Dean for Art & Creative Engagement, Executive Director of UtahPresents
  • Kodi Hutchinson, Artistic Producer, JazzYYC
  • Lied Center for the Performing Arts, Bill Stephan, Executive Director & Chief Artistic Officer
  • William Lockwood, Special Programming Director. McCarter Theatre Center, Princeton University
  • Charles Miller, Program Consultant, Mayo Performing Arts Center
  • Kristina Newman-Scott, President, BRIC Arts Media
  • The Public Theater, Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director, and Patrick Willingham, Executive Director
  • Steven Schmidt, General Manager, Riverside Concerts/City of Rochester (MN) Civic Music Department
  • Kathy Schuman, Vice President & Artistic Director, Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts
  • Roberta Uno, Director, Arts in a Changing America
  • Works & Process at the Guggenheim, Caroline Cronson, Producer and Duke Dang, General Manager


  • Andre Bouchard, Principal and Founder, Indigenous Performance Productions, a nonprofit company
  • Mario Garcia Durham, arts administrator, educator
  • María López De León, President and CEO, National Association of Latino Arts & Cultures (NALAC)
  • Deana Haggag, President & CEO, United States Artists
  • Steve Lerian, Director, Cal Poly Arts
  • Charles Miller, Program Consultant, Mayo Performing Arts Center
  • Norton Owen, Director of Preservation, Jacob’s Pillow
  • Diane Rodriguez, Director, Rodriguez Projects (posthumously)
  • Vera Wilson, Founder, Astral Artists, Inc.

APAP is also pleased to announce Olga Garay-English as the 2021 recipient of the Halsey & Alice North Board Alumni Award. Garay-English is currently an independent arts consultant and is Senior Advisor for International Affairs to Fundación Teatro a Mil. The Halsey & Alice North Board Alumni Award is presented to an APAP Board Alum who has demonstrated in their words and actions the beautiful spirit of generosity and giving, not only on a continuing basis to Association of Performing Arts Professionals, but to the field at large.

Additionally, we look forward to celebrating the recipients of the NAPAMA Awards who were announced in January: Kevin Spencer, Self-Represented Artist, Educator and Advocate, Hocus Focus, Inc. will receive the Liz Silverstein Award for Agent-Manager of the Year, and Hollis Ashby, Artistic and Executive Director, Williams Center for the Arts will receive the NAPAMA Award for Presenter of the Year.

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APAP Award Descriptions

Award of Merit for achievement in the performing arts

Awarded to an individual whose genius, energy and excellence have defined or redefined an art form for today's audiences. In previous years, organizations, which had a profound and lasting effect on the performing arts, also were eligible for this award. View past winners here.

Sidney R. Yates Advocacy Award for outstanding advocacy on behalf of the performing arts

The Sidney R. Yates Advocacy Award honors an individual, or an organization, for a particular advocacy effort or for a sustained advocacy campaign at the national, state or local level that has had a significant impact on the performing arts. The award honors the late Congressman Sidney R. Yates, whose commitment to the arts was legendary and who continues to serve as an inspiration to all of us. View past winners here

Fan Taylor Distinguished Service Award for exemplary service to the field of professional presenting

The Fan Taylor Distinguished Service Award is presented to an individual whose outstanding service, creative thinking and leadership have had a significant impact on the profession of presenting and/or on the Association of Arts Professionals. This award honors Fan Taylor for her many contributions to the field of presenting. Taylor was instrumental in the development of what was then called the Association of College and University Concert managers. She served as Arts Professionals' first secretary-treasurer and eventually as the first executive director. View past winners here

William Dawson Award for Programmatic Excellence and sustained achievement in programming

The William Dawson Award for Programmatic Excellence is presented to an individual or organization for the quality, innovation and vision of program design, audience building and community involvement efforts. The award is named to honor William M. Dawson for the service he provided to the field of arts administration during his 14 years as Director of the Association of Performing Arts Presenters, then the Association of College, university and Community Arts Administrators (ACUCAA). View past winners here

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Past APAP Award Recipients

Award of Merit for achievement in the performing arts

  • Toshi Reagon (2021)

  • Ping Chong + Company (2020)

  • Carmen de Lavallade (2019)

  • Arthur Mitchell (2018)

  • Laurie Anderson (2017)

  • Dr. Charles "Chuck" Davis (2016)

  • Midori (2015)

  • Philip Glass (2014)

  • Judith Jamison (2013)

  • George Wein (2012)

  • Charles Reinhart (2011)

  • John O'Neal (2010)

  • Jessye Norman (2009)

  • Marlboro Music Festival (2008)

  • Tina Ramirez (2007)

  • Ornette Coleman (2006)

  • Paul Taylor (2005)

  • Sweet Honey in the Rock (2004)

  • Kronos Quartet (2003)

  • Jennifer Tipton (2002)

  • Rachel Rosenthal (2001)

  • Bill T. Jones (2000)

  • Wynton Marsalis (1999)

  • Mikhail Baryshnikov (1998)

  • National Endowment for the Arts (1996)

  • Katherine Dunham (1995)

  • Harvey Lichtenstein (1993)

  • Guarneri String Quartet (1992)

  • Dr. Billy Taylor (1991)

  • Merce Cunningham (1990)

  • Young Concert Artists (1988)

  • Lloyd Richards (1985)

  • Alvin Ailey (1984)

  • Ralph Burgard (1982)

  • Patrick Hayes (1981)

  • Rudolf Serkin (1978)

  • Aaron Copland (1976)

  • Johnson Foundation (1973)

  • Martha Graham (1969)

  • Marian Anderson (1964)

  • Isaac Stern (1960)

  • Sol Hurok (1959)

Fan Taylor Distinguished Service Award for exemplary service to the field of professional presenting

  • Mario Garica Durham (2021)

  • Rena Shagan (2020)

  • David J. Fraher (2019)

  • Ann Rosenthal and Cathy Zimmerman of MAPP International Productions (2018)

  • Mikki Shepard (2017)

  • MK Wegmann (2016)

  • Alberta Arthurs (2015)

  • Holden & Arts Associates (2014)

  • Abel Lopez (2013)

  • Alicia Adams (2012)

  • Ken Fischer (2011)

  • Byron Gustafson (2010)

  • Phil Bither (2009)

  • Kenneth Foster (2008)

  • Colleen Jennings-Roggensack (2007)

  • Robert Browning (2006)

  • Terrence Jones (2005)

  • John Killacky (2004)

  • Olga Garay (2003)

  • Susie Farr (2002)

  • Jacqueline Davis (2001)

  • Ivan Sygoda (2000)

  • Tim Van Leer (1999)

  • Jo Long (1998)

  • Bill Mitchell (1996)

  • Klaus W. Kolmar (1995)

  • Arnie Malina (1994)

  • John Gingrich (1993)

  • Gerald Yoshitomi (1992)

  • David White (1991)

  • Ralph Sandler (1990)

  • Jan Oetinger (1989)

  • Halsey North (1988)

  • Lawrence Wilker (1987)

  • Henry Bowers (1986)

  • Gail Rector (1985)

  • Tom Bacchetti (1984)

  • Bill Dawson (1983)

  • Rudy Alexander (1982)

  • Jack Cohan (1981)

  • Ella Pratt (1980)

  • Betty Connors (1979)

  • Jim Wockenfuss (1978)

  • Wayne Stark (1977)

  • Howard Jones (1976)

  • Jerry Willis (1975)

  • Francis Inglis (1973)

  • Fan Taylor (1972)

William Dawson Award for Programmatic Excellence and sustained achievement in programming

  • The Public Theater (Oskar Eustis, artistic director, and Patrick Willingham, executive director) (2021)

  • Emil Kang, UNC Chapel Hill (2020)

  • The Joyce Theater (Linda Shelton, executive director and Martin Weschler, former director of programming) (2019)

  • globalFEST (Bill Bragin, Isabel Soffer and Shanta Thake) (2018)

  • Mary Rose Lloyd, The New Victory Theater (2017)

  • Jedidiah Wheeler, Montclair State University (2016)

  • Margaret Lawrence, Hopkins Center for the Arts, Dartmouth College (2015)

  • Harlem Stage (2014)

  • On the Boards (2013)

  • White Bird Dance (2012)

  • Mark Russell, Under The Radar (2011)

  • Pamela Tatge (2010)

  • New Jersey Performing Arts Center (2009)

  • Stephanie Hughley (2008)

  • Ella Baff (2007)

  • Rachel Cooper (2006)

  • Ruth Felt (2005)

  • Baraka Sele (2004)

  • Luis Valdez and Teatro Campesino (2003)

  • La Pena Cultural Center (2002)

  • Ellis Finger, Williams Center for the Arts at Lafayette College (2002)

  • New World Theater, University of Massachusetts Amherst (2001)

  • Grand Performances (2000)

  • Quad City Visiting Artists' Series (1999)

  • Cal Performances (1998)

  • Theatreworks/USA (1998)

  • CITYFOLK (1996)

  • Hancher Auditorium/University of Iowa (1996)

  • North Carolina Black Repertory Company (1995)

  • Walker Art Center (1995)

  • Oregon Bach Festival (1994)

  • Bushnell Memorial Hall (1994)

  • John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (1992)

  • The Sheldon Arts Foundation (1991)

  • Arts Midwest (1990)

  • University Musical Society of the University of Michigan (1990)

  • Krannert Center (1989)

  • Chamber Music Chicago (1988)

  • 92nd Street Y (1988)

  • O'Shaughnessy Auditorium (1987)

  • Purdue University (1986)

  • The Claremont Colleges/Bridges Auditorium (1986)

  • Metropolitan Arts Council of Omaha (1986)

  • Lee County Alliance of the Arts (1986)

Sidney R. Yates Award for outstanding advocacy on behalf of the performing arts

  • Creating New Futures: Working Guidelines for Ethics & Equity in Presenting Dance & Performance (2021)

  • National Independent Venue Association - NIVA (Dayna Frank, Board President/Co-Founder, and Reverend Moose, Executive Director/Co-Founder) (2021)

  • The League of American Orchestras (Jesse Rosen, President and CEO; Heather Noonan, Vice President for Advocacy)(2020)

  • Kaisha S. Johnson (2019)

  • Carlton Turner (2018)

  • Michael Alexander (2017)

  • Sheila Smith (2016)

  • Patrice Walker Powell (2015)

  • Robert L. Lynch (2014)​

  • Philip Horn (2013)

  • Ben Cameron (2012)

  • Frank Hodsoll (2011)

  • FTM Arts Law (2010)

  • Billy Taylor (2008)

  • The Honorable Edward M. Kennedy (2007)

  • Louise Slaughter (2006)

  • The Wallace Foundation (2005)

  • Tim Miller (2004)

  • Nancy Pelosi (2003)

  • Masaru “Pundy” Yokouchi (2002)

  • Tom Ridge (2002)