On Thursday, December 16th, The New York Women in Film and Television (NYWIFT) hosted a virtual award ceremony, their 42nd annual Muse Awards which celebrated women of vision and achievement in the film, television, and the music industry.
The theme of this year’s Muse Awards was perseverance, to honor the individuals in the entertainment industry who continued to work hard and push boundaries throughout the second year of the Covid-19 pandemic. The event was hosted by CBS Sunday Morning contributor, comedian, and actress, Nancy Giles.
The first muse award was presented to Christy Haubegger, EVP, Communications and Inclusion Officer at WarnerMedia, recognized for advancing diversity in the entertainment industry. Haubegger founded Latina Magazine in 2014, a platform created to give a voice to members of the Latinx community. She also worked as a film producer on the romantic comedy, Spanglish in 2005. Haubegger continues her fight to increase the representation of Latinx men and women in the entertainment industry. “I am so grateful for this muse award, I plan to honor you every day to continue to serve the community every day,” said Haubegger.
Next came the Made in New York award presented to Patina Miller for her contributions to entertainment in New York City. The actress is known for her Tony Award-winning performance in Pippin, Daisy Grant in the political drama Madam Secretary, and her most recent role of Raquel Thomas in Power Book III: Raising Kanan. As an African American woman from rural South Carolina, now living out dreams on the stage in New York City, Miller accepted this award with great honor, “I am a new yorker, I’m not from here originally, but I am claiming it now,” said Miller. “I’m patina miller and I am made in NYC,” said Miller, confidently holding her Muse Award.
As the program progressed, Alexis Fish, producer, creative consultant, and activist, was awarded a Muse award in honor of her for the 15 plus years she has spent advocating for the LGBTQ community in the entertainment business. “I see you as your authentic self and I love you and I want to elevate you,” said Fish.
The Loreen Arbus Changemaker Award, given to Jason Da Silva, filmmaker and disability rights activist. Da Silva is best known for the Emmy Award-winning documentary, When I Walk, a film that narrates his own personal experience with multiple sclerosis, as he progresses from being about to walk to depending on a wheelchair. “Jason Da Silva might be a male, but he is a male ally,” said Giles.
Darnell Martin, director, writer, and producer, received the Nancy Malone Directing Award. Martin has directed episodes on hit shows such as Law & Order, Grey’s Anatomy, and New Amsterdam, just to name a few. She continuously fights for the representation of African American individuals in the entertainment industry and does not plan on stopping anytime soon. “You cannot keep me down,” said Martin.
The final muse award was presented to Sandra Oh, actor and producer. Oh is best known for her lead role on Grey’s Anatomy as Dr. Christina Yang, or as producer and lead character in the hit show Killing Eve. When accepting her award Oh acknowledged this year’s theme of Perseverance, “I came from a loving family, this is a brutal business. I profoundly feel that that base of security, and fundamental love, has grounded me.” Oh’s love for her family shines through in her acceptance speech and she lets us know that they are the reason for her tremendous success.