1980s Featured Image

The 1980s saw the beginnings of new playwrights like Christopher Durang, Harvey Fierstein, and David Henry Hwang, all receiving Obie Awards.

Meryl Streep and Morgan Freeman joined the Obies family winnings Obies in performance.


Best New American Play

  • David Henry Hwang


Best Production

  • Emily Mann

    Still Life


  • Bloolips

    Lust in Space

  • Manuel L**Dutgenhorst and Douglas Ball

    Request Concert

Sustained Excellence in Set Design

  • Jun Maeda

Sustained Excellence in Lighting Design

  • Dennis Parichy


  • Melvin Bernhardt

    Crimes of the Heart

  • Wilford Leach

    The Pirates of Penzance

  • Toby Robertson



  • Giancarlo Esposito

    Zooman and the Sign

  • Bob Gunton

    How I Got That Story

  • Mary Beth Hurt

    Crimes of the Heart

  • Kevin Kline

    The Pirates of Penzance

  • John Lone

    FOB and The Dance and the Railroad

  • Mary McDonnell

    Still Life

  • Timothy Near

    Still Life

  • William Sadler

    Limbo Tales

  • Michele Shay


  • John Spencer

    Still Life

  • Meryl Streep

    Alice in Concert

  • Christopher Walken

    The Sea Gulf


  • Charles Fuller

    Zooman and the Sign

  • Amlin Gray

    How I Got That Story

  • Len Jenkin

    Limbo Tales (script and direction)

Special Citations

  • JoAnne Akalaitis and Mabou Mines

    Dead End Kids

  • Joseph Chaikin and the Winter Project

    Tourists and Refuggees

  • Bill Irwin

  • Bruce Myers

    A Dybbuk for Two People

  • Repertorio Espanol

Sustained Achievement

  • Negro Ensemble Company

Obie Committee

  • Eileen Blumenthal,

  • Michael Feingold

  • Terry Curtis Fox

  • Erika Munk

  • Julius Novick

  • Ross Wetzsteon

  • James Leverett

  • Edith Oliver

Hosts & Presenters


Kevin Kline


Sigourney Weaver