Broadway actress Bernadette Peters will receive the Westport Country Playhouse's Distinguished Dedication and Service to the American Musical Theater Award at the theater's 80th Birthday event, "Playing Our Songs: Celebrating 80 Years of Musical Theate," on Sept. 19. This year's production will be a retrospective of the musicals performed at the playhouse stage since its founding in 1931.

Peters appeared at the playhouse in "Riverwind" in 1967, and presented a tribute to Angela Lansbury at its 2008 gala. The playhouse's 2012 season will open with "Into the Woods," a musical that starred Peters as the witch in the original Broadway production.

The Tony Award-winning actress most recently starred in the Kennedy Center's production of James Goldman and Stephen Sondheim's Tony Award-winning musical, "Follies," which will begin previews on Broadway at the Marquis Theatre on Aug. 7, with a Sept. 12 opening. Before that, she starred on Broadway opposite Elaine Stritch in the Tony Award-winning play, "A Little Night Music."

A native of Ozone Park, N.Y, Peters began performing at 3 years old. She made her theatrical debut in "This Is Goggle," starring James Daly and Kim Hunter, directed by Otto Preminger. She made her Broadway debut in 1967 in "Johnny No-Trump," and in 1968 starred with Joel Grey in the musical "George M!," earning a Theatre World Award for her portrayal of Josie Cohan. That year, she received a Drama Desk Award for her performance in the off-Broadway musical "Dames at Sea."

Peters, who has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, received the Tony Award and Drama Desk Award for her performance in Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Song and Dance." In 1999, Peters earned her second Tony Award, her third Drama Desk Award and an Outer Critics Circle Award for her portrayal of Annie Oakley in the Broadway revival of "Annie Get Your Gun."

The actress, who has also recorded six solo albums and appeared in 17 films, received a Golden Globe Award for her performance in "Pennies from Heaven." She has also received the Sarah Siddons Actress of the Year Award and Harvard's Hasty Pudding Woman of the Year for her "lasting and impressive contribution to the world of entertainment."

Peters devotes her time and talents to numerous events that benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Her pet project is Broadway Barks, which she co-founded with friend Mary Tyler Moore.

Westport Country Playhouse's annual fundraising gala will include pre-show cocktails, a performance and post-show dinner and parties. In addition, there will be silent and live auctions.

Tickets are $2,500, $1,000 and $500. Corporate sponsorship packages are available.

For information or ticket purchases, contact Kathryn Gloor at 203-227-5137, ext. 122, or