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Actor Eric McCormack is pictured in Toronto on June 8, 2017.Chris Young/The Canadian Press

The actor Eric McCormack, familiar to many as Will Truman in the American sitcom Will & Grace, is set to be honoured by the Stratford Festival as this year's Legacy Award winner. Born and raised in Toronto, McCormack was a member of the festival's acting company from 1985 to 1989.

In a news statement, McCormack, 54, spoke of the repertory theatre festival's rise in prestige."When I first came to the States over two decades ago and told people I'd spent five years at the Stratford Festival, the response was often, 'In England?' That never happens any more."

McCormack, who joins previous Legacy Award winners Gordon Pinsent, Martha Henry, William Shatner, Maggie Smith and Christopher Plummer, will take a short break from shooting the reboot of Will & Grace to attend (and perform at) a festival gala on Sept. 18 at Toronto's Four Seasons Hotel.

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