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The Ovation Awards are the only peer-judged theatre awards in Los Angeles, created to recognize excellence in theatrical performance, production and design in the Greater Los Angeles area.

In 1989, the Ovation Awards were created to celebrate the theatrical community of Greater LA. They were conceived as honorary awards and remained so until 1993, when they became competitive.


Since then, over 300 theatrical productions have competed each year in 35 different categories to be recognized as Ovation Awards recipients. These productions are evaluated by a pool of 250 vetted Ovation voters, all of whom are working theatre professionals of Greater LA.

Each Ovation Awards season (September through August) concludes with a tabulation that determines the nominees in each category, followed by a black-tie ceremony at a prominent Greater Los Angeles theatre.


Receiving an Ovation Award is a significant point of recognition for LA theatre artists. The LA Times has referred to the Ovation Awards as the “highest-profile contest for local theatre.”

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The Ovation Awards ceremony has been held at many different theatres throughout the Los Angeles area, showcasing the great variety of our region’s stages.


The ceremony is typically attended by around 1,200 prominent members of the Greater LA theatre community, including presenters, nominees, celebrities, luminaries, and major supporters and partners of LA STAGE and the arts.


Our list of distinguished hosts has included Nathan Lane, Lily Tomlin, Neil Patrick Harris, French and Vanessa Claire Stewart, Michael McKean, Alfred Molina and Alexandra Billings.

The formal ceremony is a yearly celebration of achievement and excellence, and is a way for our expansive community to converge for an evening of recognition, engagement, and entertainment.


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