The disciplines honored include musical theatre, contemporary music, comedy, opera, classical music, theatre, dance and physical theatre.
Among performers nominated in theatre categories are Geoffrey Rush in The Diary of a Madman, Anthony Warlow in Doctor Zhivago and Philip Quast and Marina Prior in Mary Poppins. Cate Blanchett is nominated for Sydney Theatre Company's Uncle Vanya.
Tony Award winner Des McAnuff is a nominee for his direction of Doctor Zhivago. Richard Eyre and Matthew Bourne share a Direction of a Musical nomination for Mary Poppins, and Bourne's choreography with Stephen Mear is also nommed. Director Simon Phillips was nominated for his new direction of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Love Never Dies (his Down Under production is unique from the London staging).
Below are nominees in the categories of Best Play and Best Musical. For a complete list of nominees (and winners), visit helpmannawards.com.au.
Best Musical Hairspray
Paul Dainty, Dainty Group & Joel Pearlman, Roadshow Live
John Frost, Anita Waxman/Tom Dokton, Latitude Link, Power Arts, Chun-Soo Shin, Corcoran Productions
Disney and Cameron Mackintosh
Love Never Dies
The Really Useful Company Asia Pacific and Arts Capital Trust
Sydney Theatre Company in association with Bell Shakespeare
Do not go gentle
The Diary of a Madman
The Wild Duck
The Helpmann Awards, named in honor of Sir Robert Helpmann and to commemorate his memory and achievements, were established in 2001 by Live Performance Australia (LPA) "to recognize, celebrate and promote our live performance industry, similar to the Tony Awards on Broadway and the Olivier Awards in London." The principal objective of LPA in establishing the awards "is to nationally and internationally serve and promote the Australian live performance industry."