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

  • Maria Irene Fornes

    Abingdon Square

  • Caryl Churchill

    Serious Money

Obie Grant

  • Theatre for a New Audience

  • CSC Repertory

Sustained Achievement

  • Richard Foreman


  • Peter Brook

    The Mahabharata

  • Julie Taymor

    Juan Darien

  • Anne Bogart

    No Plays No Poetry...


  • Huck Snyder

    Sustained Excellence of Scenic Design

  • Eva Buchmuller

    Sustained Excellence of Stage Design

Special Citations

  • Elliot Goldenthal, for Music

    Juan Darien

  • Christopher Reeve

    for his courageous work on behalf of Chilean artists

  • B. H. Barry

    Sustained Excellence of Stage Combat Choreography


  • Yvonne Bryceland

    The Road to Mecca

  • Victor Garber

    Wenceslas Square

  • Tina Shepardl

    The Three Lives of Lucie Cabro

  • Peggy Shaw

    Dress Suits to Hire

  • Lauren Tom

    American Notes

  • Larry Bazzell

    The Signal Season of Dummy Hoy

  • Kathy Bates

    Frankie & Johnny in the Clair de Lune

  • John Seitz

    Abingdon Square

  • Gordana Rashovich

    A Shayna Maidel

  • Erland Josephson

    The Cherry Orchard

  • Amy Irving

    The Road to Mecca

Obie Committee

  • Ross Wetzsteon, Eileen Blumenthal, Robert Massa, Erika Munk, Julius Novick, Gordon Rogoff, Clinton Davis, Judith Malina

Hosts & Presenters


Morgan Freeman


Lee Breuer