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Executive Director of Thalia Theater to Receive Sunnysider of Year Award Tuesday


Angel Gil Orrios

Nov. 2, 2015 By Michael Florio

The sixth annual Sunnysider of the Year award will be given out tomorrow night.

Angel Gil Orrios, Artistic/Executive Director of the Thalia Hispanic Theatre, will receive the Luke Adams Sunnysider of the Year award for his cultural contributions to the neighborhood.

The award ceremony will take place Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. at Tangra Ballroom (39-23 Queens Blvd).

The Luke Adams Sunnysider of the Year award is co-presented by the Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce and Sunnyside Artists. The award is given without regard to fundraising, politics or affiliation and recipients may live or work in the area.

The nominating committee includes members of the Chamber and Sunnyside Artists, as well as all living past recipients of the award. This year Manny Gomez, Chamber Vice President and Sunnyside Artists President, nominated Orrios, who won unanimously.

Orrios, a Manhattan resident, is being recognized for his cultural contributions to Sunnyside. He is known in the community for his work at the Thalia Hispanic Theatre, located at 41-17 Greenpoint Ave.

The theater presents all of its shows in both English and Spanish to reach a larger audience in Sunnyside, according to Patricia Dorfman, Director of the Chamber and founder of Sunnyside Artists.

Orrios has also held free weekend classes and performances for children on weekends in Thomas P. Noonan Playground for years, Dorfman added.

“We can go see world class theater within footsteps,” Dorfman said. “He put Sunnyside on the cultural map and that got him unanimous approval for the award.”

Orrios has created more than 150 productions in the past 40 years in venues in France, Spain, South America and the U.S., including Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall.  He was the artistic director of the Royal Theater of Spain and has won the silver medal of the French Academie des Arts-Sciences-Lettres.

“I am not sure how he is not a household name,” Dorfman said.

Luke Adams won the inaugural award in 2011. Other winners include Father Brian P. Dowd, Pastor of Queen of Angels Church, Frances Schmidt,

Lions Club and community volunteer, Donald McCallian, President of the United Forties Civic Association, and Oguzhan Turan, Vice President of the Turkish Cultural Center Queens.

Turan will give a crystal plaque to Orrios.

“It is more of a challenge to have just one recipient,” Dorman said. “But we want it to mean something as years go by.”

She is expecting over 100 people to attend the award ceremony, including several local officials.

Tickets to the ceremony can be purchased online for $45 and will cost $50 at the door. Those interested can purchase tickets online here.

email the author: [email protected]


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40th street resident

Walked by the amazing marching band and the red carpet wall tonight. Was so pleased when I found out what the affair was celebrating. I’m proud to live in one of the neighborhoods in this city that takes pride in protecting such a strong community spirit. I’m proud to live in a place that celebrates positive citizenship as they did tonight. Bravo, Sunnyside!

Flavia Williams

Congratulations to Angel. This is so well deserved. I was surprised that he was not chosen earlier. I am also surprised that Thalia theatre is known to more people from outside Sunnyside/Woodside and as far as Brooklyn, New Jersey and Connecticut that I have spoken to at the Theatre. A huge “BRAVO” to Angel and his wife too!!!

it aint 1940 anymore people...

nice, congrats! I like this dude, he does a lot to make this a real community

Manny Gomez/Pat Dorfman

thank you, sunnysidepost and michael florio!

100 party animals en route to wish angel well, but tangra is roomy so if you feel like coming . . .3-course dinner, free glass of wine and free raffle gift, step and repeat banner red carpet photos, sunnyside drum corps greeting, dressy/costumes welcome, picasso cake from sugarroom from juan arache, DJ/dancing for all & live flamenco dancers. . .


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