From left, “Falling” director Lori Adams, set designer John Stark, with playwright Deanna Jent and a friend in New York. 

Laurie Metcalf

Laurie Metcalf

Illinois State theater alums Laurie Metcalf ’76 and Judith Ivey ’73 were nominated this week for Tony Awards, and a play directed by professor Lori Adams was up for several Drama Desk Awards.

Metcalf, best known for her work in films such as JFK and the hit TV show Roseanne, was nominated for best performance by an actress in a leading role in a play for The Other Place. In the play, the Steppenwolf Theater Company alum played Juliana Smithton, a successful neurologist whose life seems to be coming unhinged. She was also nominated for a Tony in 2008 for her performance in November.

Ivey is already a two-time Tony Award winner (Steaming in 1983, Hurlyburly in 1985). She picked up another nomination this year for best performance by an actress in a featured role for The Heiress.

Judith Ivey and her award

Judith Ivey accepts a College of Fine Arts Hall of Fame award while backstage at “The Heiress.”

The Tony Awards air June 9 on CBS.

Adams, who is the head of acting in the School of Theatre and Dance, directed Falling, a play by Deanna Jent about a family dealing with autism. It was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for best play. Its lead actors, Daniel Everidge and Julia Murney, were also nominated. (The School of Theatre and Dance’s head of production/design area, John Stark, designed the New York set for Falling.)

Adams was profiled last fall on STATEside when Falling first opened in New York.

Drama Desk Awards are the only major New York theater honors for which productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway compete against each other in the same category. The winners were announced May 19.