Jeff Award

This entry was posted by on Tuesday, 8 November, 2005 at

Last night, Andre and I got a Joseph Jefferson Award for original incidental music. (The Jeff Awards are sort of like the Tony awards for the Chicago theater scene). People poked all sorts of fun at us — “guess you’ll have to add another shelf to your trophy case”, etc. It’s true, we’ve received a bunch of these awards over the last ten years. What unsettling, though, is that this year we got an award based on a semi-misunderstanding.

The show had all sorts of Film Noir music, and most of it was pulled from famous jazz CDs. Yet the nomination was for “original music”. Andre originally emailed the awards committee and tried to explain. They asked him if any of the music was original, and the answer was, “sure, 1 or 2 pieces, maybe”. And that was apparently enough.

So the irony is that of the two shows we were nominated for, the show for which we actually composed and scored music and hired session musicians to record — it didn’t win the award. Instead, it went to the show with the mostly-unoriginal music. One of our sound-designer friends told us not to sweat it, that this sort of thing happens all the time. He told us to think of the award as general recognition from the theater community… and he’s right, we’re still really thankful to be working in such a great town with such amazing artists.

One Response to “Jeff Award”

  1. Erm, congratulations! If that’s appropriate given the above :-). Still, how annoying: they’ve effectively devalued their own award. If they want to give you general recognition award, they should just do that.

    Good for you and Andre for making sure to tell them! At least it’s off your shoulders.

    I always liked the Leventritt piano competition, whose charter left it free to hand out N prizes, one for each contestant the judges felt deserved it. N could be 0, if no one was good enough, or it could be 5, if five contestants gave great performances.