Judith Light has had quite the outstanding career up to this point. One of the biggest stars of stage and screen showed up looking absolutely dashing last night as she was the honoree at the 17th Monte Cristo Award ceremony. Taking place at 583 Park Avenue, Judith was awarded for being a prominent theater artist whose lifetime work has had an extraordinary impact on American theater, in memory of its namesake.
There was so much love in the room for Judith Light, who came ready to be seen in a gorgeous red outfit and was surrounded by colleagues and people who adore her, including her Lombardi costar Dan Lauria, who was all smiles when she arrived throughout cocktail hour, as well as fellow theater mainstays like Shakina Nayfack, Lena Hall, Tom Kitt, Margo Seibert, Tom Viertel, Susan Blackwell.
I asked Judith what her favorite theater moment has been, as she has had forty amazing years of experience within it. She said, “I would say that working with Thomas Kail was major, as well as Joe Mantello, Jon Robin Baitz, Eric Simonson and Richard Greenberg. I guess I should mention the two Tony’s that I won, back to back. That was kind of extraordinary. More than anything, the sense of being welcomed back to this community which I was away from for so long. I didn’t go back into theater for 22 years, and then Tommy Kail took a chance back in 1998 on me so I am truly honored to receive this award.”
One of her Ugly Betty costars Michael Urie was on hand to celebrate the occasion with Judith. When asked what she has meant to him, he told me “Well, Judith Light means everything to me. When I was a kid, “Who’s The Boss” was on TV and I was the same age as the kid on that show, and a lot like him. Then i got to work with her when I was first on TV in “Ugly Betty”. Now, she’s literally a phone call away if I ever need any advice. I am not someone who generally asks for advice, however I can text her and she will talk to me for hours to talk about whatever I need, she truly has done that for me.”
Past recipients of the Award include actors Meryl Streep, Michael Douglas, Nathan Lane, Christopher Plummer, James Earl Jones, Kevin Spacey, Jason Robards, Jr., Zoe Caldwell, Brian Dennehy, and Karl Malden; playwrights August Wilson, Wendy Wasserstein, Edward Albee, and Neil Simon; directors Harold Prince and George C. Wolfe; and Arthur & Barbara Gelb.
For more information on The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, check out their official site.