Atlanta Theater Fan Awards Guidelines

Established in 2011, the Atlanta Theater Fan Awards are given annually to recognize the general public’s opinion of outstanding achievement in Atlanta professional theater. Nominees and winners are chosen solely by fans.

Any non-profit or for-profit professional theater in the Atlanta area and its surrounding counties are eligible for the Atlanta Theater Fan Awards. However, each production must play at least eight shows to be eligible for any nomination unless specified differently below. Multiple nominations in a single category are allowed for theaters and individuals. For example, one theater can receive two nominations for Best Play (for two different plays) and one actor can receive two nominations for Best Actor in a Play if he has appeared in multiple plays during the year.

The eligibility period is July 1 to June 30 each year. Using the 2013 Atlanta Theater Fan Awards as an example, productions must have played from July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013 to be eligible. Productions opening near the June 30 cut-off must complete the minimum number of shows as outlined in these guidelines before June 30, 2013 or the show will be considered eligible for the following year’s awards.

Remounts of shows from the previous awards year are not eligible since those productions were eligible in the prior year. If it has been two seasons or more since the last production, the show will be eligible for awards consideration. Holiday shows that repeat each year will be eligible for the Best Holiday Show award regardless of remount status.

To be eligible for the Best Family/Children’s Show, the play, musical or puppet show must have at least two performances before the June 30 eligibility cut-off. The site member completing the nomination ballot determines whether a production should be classified as a Family/Children’s Show. By nominating a show as Best Family/Children’s Show, the nominator declares that this is the category it should be placed in. If the production also meets the eligibility requirements for Best Play or Best Musical and the nominator also votes for the show in either Best Play or Best Musical, then that vote will be disqualified since the nominator determined that the show is a Family/Children’s Show.

To be eligible for Best Holiday Show, the play or musical must be performed at least four times during the holiday season and have a holiday theme. A holiday show is one that is intended to celebrate the holiday, and it can be any holiday (it does not just refer to December holidays.) A show that does not celebrate the holiday but may take place or feature a holiday scene should not be considered a holiday show. Touring shows that have a holiday theme are not eligible to be considered and can only be nominated in the touring show category. Annual holiday shows are eligible for this award regardless of remount status.

By nominating a show as Best Holiday Show, the nominator declares that this is the category it should be placed in. If the production also meets the eligibility requirements for Best Play or Best Musical and the nominator also votes for the show in either Best Play or Best Musical, then that vote will be disqualified since the nominator determined that the show is a Holiday Show.

Holiday and Family/Children’s shows are eligible for design and individual performance awards only if they meet the previously outlined criteria for the design and individual performance awards. The different number of required shows mentioned in the preceding two paragraphs are for the Best Family/Children’s Show and Best Holiday Show awards only. These productions must meet the eight show requirement for design and individual performance awards.

For the Best Touring Show award, any production (play or musical) that comes to Atlanta as part of a national tour is eligible. However, that production must play a minimum of four shows to be eligible for a nomination. The recipient of this award will be the Atlanta organization that sponsors the production while it is in Atlanta (e.g. Broadway Across America, Theater of the Stars, Gas South Broadway Series, etc.) Touring shows are not eligible for technical or individual performance awards since they are not Atlanta productions.

Separate awards for plays and musicals will be presented for best production, direction, and individual performance awards. Best Musical Direction will be awarded to a musical’s music director. Plays and musicals are both eligible for the choreography, scenic design, costume design, lighting design and sound design awards. A total of 21 competitive awards will be presented each year; however the editors of Atlanta Theater Fans may decide to award a limited number of special non-competitive awards at their discretion. Below is a list of the competitive awards that will be presented each year.

  • Best Play
  • Best Musical
  • Best Direction of a Play
  • Best Direction of a Musical
  • Best Leading Actor in a Play
  • Best Leading Actress in a Play
  • Best Leading Actor in a Musical
  • Best Leading Actress in a Musical
  • Best Featured Actor in a Play
  • Best Featured Actress in a Play
  • Best Featured Actor in a Musical
  • Best Featured Actress in a Musical
  • Best Musical Direction
  • Best Choreography
  • Best Scenic Design
  • Best Costume Design
  • Best Lighting Design
  • Best Sound Design
  • Best Touring Show
  • Best Family/Children’s Show
  • Best Holiday Show

The nominations and winners of the regular 21 competitive Atlanta Theater Fan Awards are determined solely by fans. A fan is any person who enjoys attending live theater regardless of their status as professional or non-professional employment in theater. Anyone who registers on the Atlanta Theater Fans website is eligible to submit one nomination form.

Online nominations forms will be available the first week of July on the Atlanta Theater Fans website with a cut-off date set for the second week of July. To complete a nomination form, a fan must join the Atlanta Theater Fans website. Each member of the site may nominate up to four nominees in each category. Incomplete nomination forms will be accepted, i.e. a member does not have to list four nominees for each category or can choose to skip entire categories.

The editors of the Atlanta Theater Fans website will review all submitted nomination forms and determine whether the nominees meet the above-mentioned criteria. If a nomination does not meet the criteria, it will be disregarded. Each category will have four nominations. In the event of a tie during the nomination process, more than four nominations may be allowed. Nominations will be announced the third week in July.

The winners will also be selected by fans via online ballots. Any person who visits the Atlanta Theater Fans website is eligible to vote regardless of whether he/she participated in the nomination process. Voters for the winners do not have to be members of the site. Each fan is allowed to complete the online ballot once and is allowed to vote for only one nominee in each category, which will be enforced by IP address logging or other electronic means. Voting will be open for approximately a two-week period. The winners will be announced the first or second week of August. If a tie results from the final voting, then the award for that category will be jointly given to those with the highest number of votes.

Exact dates and deadlines will be set each year and can be found below for the current year. The dates listed above are meant to be a general guideline.

2014 Atlanta Theater Fan Awards Timeline

  • Nomination ballots available online no later than 11:59 pm on Monday, June 30, 2014
  • Deadline to submit nominations: 11:59 pm on Wednesday, July 9, 2014
  • Nominations announced and online voting begins no later than 11:59 pm on Wednesday, July 16, 2014
  • Voting deadline: 11:59 pm on Wednesday, July 30, 2014
  • Winners announced no later than 11:59 pm on Wednesday, August 6, 2014