“You need to write like the devil and act like one when necessary.”
— Lillian Hellman
The Lillys began in the Spring of 2010 as The Lilly Awards, an outlet to honor the work of women in the American theater. The founders are: Julia Jordan, Marsha Norman, and Theresa Rebeck. The organization is named for Lillian Hellman, a pioneering American playwright who famously said “You need to write like the devil and act like one when necessary.”
In partnership with the Dramatists Guild, we have gathered our resources and conducted a national survey simply called The Count that accurately showcases which theaters are producing the work of women, and which are not. The Lillys have expanded its initiatives since its conception- celebrating, supporting, and advocating for women theater artists by promoting gender parity at all levels of theatrical production. The Lillys are dedicated to carrying on Lillian Hellman’s spirit and are proud to continue to honor the work of women in the American theater.
The Lillys are a grantee of The New York Women’s Foundation. As a voice for women and a force for change, The New York Women’s Foundation are a cross-cultural alliance of women catalyzing partnerships and leveraging human and financial capital to achieve sustained economic security and justice for women and girls. With fierce determination, they mobilize hearts, minds and resources to create an equitable and just future for women, families and communities in New York City.
The work of The Lillys is made possible by individuals and these generous supporters:
Our vision is large. Our scope is far-reaching. Our promise is clear. Without you, none of this is possible. Want to help us make a difference? Consider making a donation to support us— a gift of any size is greatly appreciated.