Ahmanson, Mark Taper and Deaf West Lead Ovation Nominations

News   Ahmanson, Mark Taper and Deaf West Lead Ovation Nominations There are smiling faces and happy hands over at Los Angeles' Deaf West Theatre. The company, which uses American Sign Language and hearing and hearing-impaired actors to perform classic dramas and now, for the first time, a musical, won a staggering 17 nominations, the highest number for a musical production (10 for Oliver!) and the most for a play (7 for A Streetcar Named Desire). The Ahmanson Theatre and the Mark Taper Forum both earned 18 nominations each, but for several productions (Amadeus, Jitney, The Dead, Space, etc.) than Deaf West's two.

There are smiling faces and happy hands over at Los Angeles' Deaf West Theatre. The company, which uses American Sign Language and hearing and hearing-impaired actors to perform classic dramas and now, for the first time, a musical, won a staggering 17 nominations, the highest number for a musical production (10 for Oliver!) and the most for a play (7 for A Streetcar Named Desire). The Ahmanson Theatre and the Mark Taper Forum both earned 18 nominations each, but for several productions (Amadeus, Jitney, The Dead, Space, etc.) than Deaf West's two.

The complete nominations follow:

Best Musical (Large Theatre)
The Boys from Syracuse, Reprise! Broadway’s Best in Concert at UCLA Freud Playhouse
Dreamgirls, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
Les Miserables, Ahmanson Theatre
Sweeney Todd, Gold Coast Plays at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza
Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Canon Theatricals at the Henry Fonda Theatre

Best Musical (Intimate Theatre)
Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre
Stand-Up Opera, Tiffany Theatres
Merrily We Roll Along, West Coast Ensemble
Miss Desmond Behind Bars, Savalas Productions at the Court Theatre
Forbidden Broadway Y2K/LA, Tiffany Theatres

Best Play (Large Theatre)
Wit, Geffen Playhouse
Jitney, Mark Taper Forum
Metamorphoses, Mark Taper Forum
Uncle Vanya, Geffen Playhouse
Amadeus, Ahmanson Theatre Best Play (Intimate Theatre)
Taking Sides, Odyssey Theatres
A Streetcar Named Desire, Deaf West Theatre
The Servant of Two Masters, The Servant of Two Masters Company at Bergamot Station
Save It for the Stage, The Life of Reilly, Falcon Theatre
Waiting for Godot, The Matrix Theatre Company

Best Writing-World Premiere Play or Musical
Paul Mullin, Louis Slotin Sonata, Circle X Theatre Company at the Hollywood Court Theatre
Victor Kaufold, The Why, The Blank Theatre Company at the Hudson Mainstage Theatre
Luis Alfaro, Alma Cervantes, Sandra C. Munoz and Marisela Norte, Black Butterfly, Jaguar Girl, Pinata Woman and Other Superhero Girls, Like Me, Taper, Too at the Actors Gang Theatre
Dominic Hoffman, Uncle Jacques’ Symphony, Stages Theatre
Hershey Felder, George Gershwin Alone, Tiffany Theatres

Best Writing-New Translation/Adaptation
Brian Senter, Fathers and Sons, Circle X Theatre Company at the Space
Michael Franco and Richard Helweg, The Master and Margarita, Zoo District at Art Share
Bob Daniels, Linda Bove and Phyllis Frelich, A Streetcar Named Desire, Deaf West Theatre
Jeff Calhoun, Bob Daniels, Deanne Bray, Betsy Ford, Lisa Hermatz and Kissy Keast, Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre
Dakin Matthews, The Liar, Antaeus Company at the Secret Rose Theatre

Lead Actor in a Musical
Douglas Sills, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Ahmanson Theatre
Kingsley Leggs, Dreamgirls, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
George McDaniel, Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre
Jeremiah Schalberg, Crazy for You, Golden Performing Arts Center at the Madrid Theatre
Michael Cerveris, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Canon Theatricals at the Henry Fonda Theatre

Lead Actor in a Play
Dominic Hoffman, Uncle Jacques’ Symphony, Stages Theatre
Charles Nelson Reilly, Save It for the Stage, The Life of Reilly, Falcon Theatre
Ted Ronney, The Foreigner, Actors Co-Op at the Crossley Theatre
William H. Bassett, King Lear, Los Angeles Repertory Company at the Met Theatre
Leland Crooke, Taking Sides, Odyssey Theatre

Lead Actress in a Musical
Lea DeLaria, The Boys from Syracuse, Reprise! Broadway's Best in Concert at the Freud Playhouse
BJ Ward, Stand-Up Opera, Tiffany Theatres
Faith Prince, James Joyce’s The Dead, Ahmanson Theatre
Kecia Lewis, Dreamgirls, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
Amanda McBroom, Sweeney Todd, Gold Coast Plays at Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza

Lead Actress in a Play
Emily Kuroda, Straight as a Line, Playwrights’ Arena
Kathleen Chalfant, Wit, Geffen Playhouse
Suanne Spoke, A Streetcar Named Desire, Deaf West Theatre
Megan Mullally, Berlin Circle, Evidence Room
Maripat Donovan, Late Nite Catechism, Upstairs at the Coronet

Featured Actor in a Musical
Michael Arnold, Martin Guerre, Ahmanson Theatre
Harris Doran, Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre
Stephen Spinella, James Joyce’s The Dead, Ahmanson Theatre
Troy Kotsur, Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre
Billy Porter, Dreamgirls, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center

Featured Actor in a Play
Neil Vipond, Hamlet, Odyssey Theatre
Michael Kastroff, Immortality, Los Angeles Theatre Center
Fred Applegate, Expecting Isabel, Mark Taper Forum
Joe Hart, The Angels of Lemnos, The Road Theatre Company
Ogie Zulueta, Cockroach Nation, Moving Arts

Featured Actress in a Musical
Tonya L. Dixon, Dreamgirls, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
Sally Ann Howes, James Joyce’s The Dead, Ahmanson Theatre
Antoinette Abbamonte, Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre
Carol Kline, Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre
Marni Nixon, James Joyce’s The Dead, Ahmanson Theatre

Featured Actress in a Play
Jo Nell Kennedy, Monkey Grass, Victory Theatre
Paula Pizzi, Wit, Geffen Playhouse
Brenda Ballard, The Foreigner, Actors’ Co-Op at the Crossley Theatre
Kathryn Joosten, The Ladies of the Corridor, Geo Hartley at the Tamarind Theatre
Brigid Cleary, Expecting Isabel, Mark Taper Forum

Ensemble Performance
The cast of Forbidden Broadway Y2K/LA, Tiffany Theatres
The cast of The Servant of Two Masters, The Servant of Two Masters Company at Bergamot Station
The cast of Jitney, Mark Taper Forum
The cast of The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, Theatre 40
The cast of A Fairy Tale, Actors’ Gang

Director of a Musical
John Caird and Trevor Nunn, Les Miserables, Ahmanson Theatre
Gerard Allessandrini, Forbidden Broadway Y2K/LA, Tiffany Theatre
Robert Clater, Dreamgirls, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
Gordon Hunt, Stand-Up Opera, Tiffany Theatre
Jeff Calhoun, Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre

Director of a Play
Beth Milles, The Servant of Two Masters, Bergamot Station
Mary Zimmerman, Metamorphoses, Mark Taper Forum
Deborah LaVine, A Streetcar Named Desire, Deaf West Theatre
Ken Sawyer, The Angels of Lemnos, The Road Theatre Company
Derek Anson Jones, Wit, Geffen Playhouse

Choreographer
Fred Tallaksen, Miss Desmond Behind Bars, Savalas Productions at the Court Theatre
Robert Clater, Dreamgirls, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
Phillip George, Forbidden Broadway Y2K/LA, Tiffany Theatre
Sha Newman, The King and I, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
Brian Paul Mendoza, Oliver!, Deaf West Theater

Lighting Design (Large Theatre)
T.J. Gerckens, Metamorphoses, Mark Taper Forum
Kevin Adams, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Canon Theatricals at the Henry Fonda Theatre
David Hersey, Les Miserables, Ahmanson Theatre
Scott Zielinski, Space, Mark Taper Forum
Paule Constable, Amadeus, Ahmanson Theatre

Lighting Design (Intimate Theatre)
Geoff Korf, An Antigone Story, Cornerstone Theatre Company at the Historic Subway Terminal Building
Michael Gilliam, Oliver!, Deaf West Theatre
J. Kent Inasy, Waiting for Godot, The Matrix Theatre Company
David Flad, The Angels of Lemnos, The Road Theatre Company Ken Booth, A Streetcar Named Desire, Deaf West Theatre

Set Design (Large Theatre)
David Jenkins, The Poison Tree, Mark Taper Forum
David Gallo, Jitney, Mark Taper Forum
William Dudley, Amadeus, Ahmanson Theatre
John Napier, Les Miserables, Ahmanson Theatre
Daniel Ostling, Metamorphoses, Mark Taper Forum

Set Design (Intimate Theatre)
Robert A. Prior, A Fairy Tale, Actors’ Gang
Desma Murphy, Ballad Hunter, The Road Theatre Company
Bob Steinberg, A Streetcar Named Desire, Deaf West Theatre
Desma Murphy, The Angels of Lemnos, The Road Theatre Company
Thomas Buderwitz, Against the Glass, T’Kaye Productions at the Court Theatre

Costume Design (Large Theatre)
Andreane Neofitou, Les Miserables, Ahmanson Theatre
Mara Blumenfeld, Metamorphoses, Mark Taper Forum
Susan Hilferty, Jitney, Mark Taper Forum
William Dudley, Amadeus, Ahmanson Theatre
Jane Greenwood, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Ahmanson Theatre

Costume Design (Intimate Theatre)
Maggie Morgan, Waiting for Godot, The Matrix Theatre Company
Audrey Eisner, Tonight at 8:30, Pacific Resident Theatre
Audrey Eisner, The Swan, Pacific Resident Theatre
Alvin Colt, Forbidden Broadway Y2K/LA, Tiffany Theatre
Holly Poe Durbin, Berlin Circle, The Evidence Room

Sound Design (Large Theatre)
Rob Milburn, Jitney, Mark Taper Forum
Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen, Space, Mark Taper Forum
Andre Pluess and Ben Sussman, Metamorphoses, Mark Taper Forum
Andrew Bruce/Autograph, Les Miserables, Ahmanson Theatre
Matt McKenzie, Amadeus, Ahmanson Theatre

Sound Design (Intimate Theatre)
Wav Magic, Eden’s Journal and Ken Sawyer, The Angels of Lemnos, The Road Theater Company
Nathan Wang, The Square, Taper, Too at the Actors’ Gang Theatre
Jef Bek and Eric Snodgrass, Nosferatu, Zoo District at Art Share
Bill O’Brien, A Streetcar Named Desire, Deaf West Theatre
John Zalewski, Berlin Circle, Evidence Room

The Ovation's special awards will honor Disney and Michael Eisner, and actor Ray Stricklyn. Eisner and company receive the James A. Doolittle Award for Outstanding Leadership in Theatre for their musical productions Aida, Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King. Stricklyn garners the Career Achievement Award for his work in Southern California, which would eventually include Broadway where he portrayed Tennessee Williams in Confessions of a Nightingale.

The Ovation nominations were announced Sept. 25 at the new Colony Theatre. The Ovations themselves will be awarded Oct. 30 at the Ahmanson Theatre. First established by the Theatre League Alliance of Southern California in 1989, these prizes are given in 26 categories, separated in all cases, except acting, directing, choreography and writing, into large and intimate theatre divisions.