Born and raised in Toronto, McCormack served as a member of Stratford’s company for five seasons in the late 1980s, appearing in more than a dozen productions, including Measure for Measure, Much Ado About Nothing and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
He has performed in Canadian theatres across the country as well as on Broadway (The Music Man, The Best Man) in addition to his TV credits. Along with the reboot of Will & Grace, McCormack is also the producer, director and star of the Netflix series Travelers.
“I first met Eric when he was playing Romeo to my then girlfriend and now wife Brigit Wilson’s Juliet,” artistic director Antoni Cimolino said in a statement.
“Over time as we worked together at the Stratford Festival he became a dear friend. At every point his enormous talent and originality shone like a beacon.”
The festival will honour McCormack on Sept. 18 at a gala held at Toronto’s Four Seasons Hotel.
Past recipients of the Stratford award include Christopher Plummer, Gordon Pinsent, Martha Henry and Maggie Smith.