Lion King, Contact Vie for L.A. Ovation Awards

News   Lion King, Contact Vie for L.A. Ovation Awards They didn't have to compete with one another in New York, but The Lion King and Contact will vie against one another at Los Angeles 2001 Ovation Awards to be given out at the new Kodak Theatre Nov. 12. Lion King, settled in at the Pantages Theatre, received 12 nominations including Best Musical, Best Director, Best Leading Actress and Best Featured Actor and Actress. Contact received nine (Tony Award winner Susan Stroman and Tony Award winner Julie Taymor are both up for directing honors). The Center Theatre Group, who controls both the Ahmanson and the Mark Taper Forum, garnered a whopping 32 nominations.

They didn't have to compete with one another in New York, but The Lion King and Contact will vie against one another at Los Angeles 2001 Ovation Awards to be given out at the new Kodak Theatre Nov. 12. Lion King, settled in at the Pantages Theatre, received 12 nominations including Best Musical, Best Director, Best Leading Actress and Best Featured Actor and Actress. Contact received nine (Tony Award winner Susan Stroman and Tony Award winner Julie Taymor are both up for directing honors). The Center Theatre Group, who controls both the Ahmanson and the Mark Taper Forum, garnered a whopping 32 nominations.

Some big name and Broadway stars also got the nod. Both theatrical legend Uta Hagen and ""Frasier"'s David Hyde Pierce were nominated for Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks, now on its way to Broadway. John Spencer of "The West Wing" was nominated for Glimmer, Glimmer and Shine and Alan Alda's solo turn in QED was honored with a Best Actor in a Play. Broadway's and Off-Broadway's Anthony Crivello, John Vickery, Carol Lawrence, Alan Campbell, Charlayne Woodard and Jessica Goldberg also received nominations.

Victory Theatre co-founder Tom Ormeny will be given the James A. Doolittle Award for outstanding leadership in the Los Angeles theatre community. Cathy Rigby, star of Peter Pan whose Rigby-McCoy producing arm sponsors a season in the L.A. area, receives the Career Achievement Award.

A complete list of the Ovation nominees follows

Best Musical (Large Theatre)
Titanic, Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities at Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center
The Lion King, Disney Theatricals at Pantages Theatre
Contact, Ahmanson Theatre
Hair, Reprise! at Wadsworth Theater
Brigadoon, Musical Theatre West at Carpenter Center Best Musical (Intimate Theatre)
The Grave White Way, Curtain Down Productions at Hudson Backstage Theatre
A Little Night Music, Interact Theatre
bare, God Help Productions at Hudson Mainstage Theatre
There's No Place Like Hollywood, Shirley Hillard at Stella Adler Theatre
Glad to Be Unhappy: The Lyrical Life of Lorenz Hart, Theatre West

Best Play (Large Theatre)
A Huey P. Newton Story, Cultural Affairs Department at Los Angeles Theatre Center
Looking for Normal, Geffen Playhouse
In Real Life, Mark Taper Forum
Death of a Salesman, Ahmanson Theatre
The Vagina Monologues, James P. Freydberg, Yvette Fromer, William P. Suter at Canon Theatre

Best Play (Intimate Theatre)
Two-Headed, Timescape Arts Group at John Anson Ford Theatre
Good Thing, Mark Taper Forum at Actors' Gang
Weights, Mark Taper Forum at Actors' Gang;
The Godfather Workout (The Last Scenes), Susan O'Sullivan at Theatre East
Underneath the Lintel, Actors' Gang

Best Writing-World Premiere Play or Musical
Nick Zagone, David and Goliath in America
Jessica Litwak, Victory Dance
Damon Intrabartolo and Jon Hartmere Jr., bare
Jane Anderson,Looking for Normal
Jessica Goldberg, Good Thing

Best Writing-New Translation/Adaptation
Clara Bellar, Herb Mendelsohn and cast, A Flea in Her Ear
Brent Hinkley, How to Steal an Election
Karen Leeds Schuler and Richard Miller, Beat for Sparrows
Roland Dubillard, Diablogues

Best Director of a Musical
Susan Stroman, Contact
Julie Taymor, The Lion King
Kristin Hanggi, bare
Brad Rouse, Scott Schwartz and Harold Prince, 3hree
Jon Engstrom, Evita

Best Director of a Play
Brent Hinkley, Underneath the Lintel
Anthony Sandoval, Pathe-X
Ron Lagomarsino, Looking for Normal
Daniel Sullivan, In Real Life
Veronica Brady, Two-Headed

Best Lead Actor in a Musical
Anthony Crivello, Do I Hear a Waltz?
John Griffin, bare
Avi Hoffman, Too Jewish?
Eric Kunze, Evita
John Vickery, The Lion King

Best Lead Actress in a Musical
Fuschia, The Lion King
Karen Morrow, Call Me Madam
Gogi Grant, Glad to Be Unhappy: The Lyrical Life of Lorenz Hart
Keili Lefkovitz, bare
Carol Lawrence, Do I Hear a Waltz?

Best Lead Actor in a Play
Roger Guenveur Smith, A Huey P. Newton Story
David Hyde Pierce, Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks
Alan Alda, QED
John Spencer, Glimmer, Glimmer and Shine
Brian T. Finney, Underneath the Lintel

Best Lead Actress in a Play
Laurie Metcalf, Looking for Normal
Mary Mara, Two-Headed
Charlayne Woodard, In Real Life
Uta Hagen, Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks
Caroline Aaron, Call Waiting

Featured Actor in a Musical
William Akey, The Lion King
Hugh Panaro, Call Me Madam
Adam Dannheisser, Contact
Danny Rutigliano, The Lion King
Alan Campbell, Contact

Best Featured Actress in a Musical
Holly Cruikshank, Contact
Donna McKechnie, Mack & Mabel
Moe Daniels, The Lion King
Meg Howrey, Contact
Tina Gasbarra, Do I Hear a Waltz?

Best Featured Actor in a Play
Daniel Reichert, Side Man
Leslie Jordan, Southern Baptist Sissies
Howard Witt, Death of a Salesman
Derek Sitter, The Dead Boy
Scott Venters, Molly's Delicious

Best Featured Actress in a Play
Anastasia Basil, In Flagrante Gothicto
Elizabeth Franz, Death of a Salesman"
Ann Walker, Southern Baptist Sissies
Daphne Ashbrook, Landscape of the Body
Brenda Ballard, Wait Until Dark

Best Ensemble Performance
The Vagina Monologues
Infinity
Pathe-X
Good Thing
Night and Her Stars

Best Choreographer
Lynne Taylor-Corbett, Swing!
Garth Fagan, The Lion King
Rob Ashford, Daniel Stewart, Michael Arnold, 3hree
Susan Stroman, Contact
Jon Engstrom, Evita

Best Set Design (Large Theatre)
Walt Spangler, 3hree
Roy Christopher, Do I Hear a Waltz?
Richard Hudson, The Lion King
Thomas Buderwitz, Titanic
David Gallo, King Hedley II

Best Set Design (Intimate Theatre)
Cecil Schmidt, The Slow and Painful Death of Sam Shepard
Desma Murphy, A Mislaid Heaven
Greg Richman, Call Waiting
John Patrick, The Night of the Iguana
Susan Fellman, Night and Her Stars

Best Lighting Design (Large Theatre)
Donald Holder, The Lion King
Tom Ruzika, Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks
Michael Gilliam, Do I Hear a Waltz?
Howell Binkley, 3hree
Kathy A. Perkins, In Real Life

Best Lighting Design (Intimate Theatre)
Robert L. Smith, A Mislaid Heaven
Robert L. Smith, David and Goliath in America
Robert Fromer, Sleepwalk
Frank McKown, On the Open Road
Fredrick Wenzlaff, Infinity

Costume Design (Large Theatre)
Candice Cain, The Body of Bourne
William Ivey Long, Contact
Beaver Bauer, Everything's Ducky
Julie Taymor, The Lion King
Miguel Angel Huidor, 3hree

Costume Design (Intimate Theatre)
Sarah Fernandez and Moira Moore, A Mislaid Heaven
Kara Feely, Paule Lemasson, Norma Ramos, Pathe-X
Talia Jones, Night and Her Stars
Peter A. Lovello, A Little Night Music
Shon LeBlanc, They Shoot Horses, Don't They?

Sound Design (Large Theatre)
Philip G. Allen, Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks
Scott Stauffer, Contact
Richard Woodbury, Death of a Salesman
Steve C. Kennedy, The Lion King
Marc Anthony Thompson, A Huey P. Newton Story

Best Sound Design (Intimate Theatre)
Randy Schulman and DE3, Infinity
Karl Fredrik Lundenberg and Al Jackson, Weights
Jef Bek and Eric Snodgrass, Pathe-X
Jef Bek, Eric Snodgrass and J Warner, The Slow and Painful Death of Sam Shepard
Wav Magic and Ken Sawyer, A Mislaid Heaven

First established by the Theatre League Alliance of Southern California in 1989, the Ovation Awards are given in 26 categories, separated in all cases, except acting, directing, choreography and writing, into large and intimate theatre divisions. Two achievement awards, the Career Achievement Award and the James A. Doolittle Award for Outstanding Leadership in the Theatre, are also included in the event.

Tickets to the Ovation Awards are now available through the Theatre League website at http://www.theatrela.org.

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In 2000, the Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities' revival of Dreamgirls and Mary Zimmerman's Metamorphoses won the most prizes at Oct. 30 Ovation Awards. Dreamgirls netted best musical in a large theatre, best lead actress in a musical for Kecia Lewis (picked over Faith Prince and Lea DeLaria) and best featured actress and actor in a musical for Tonya L. Dixon and Billy Porter. Zimmerman took home best director for Metamorphoses, while the theatrical retelling of Ovid's ancient stories won best play in a large theatre (besting Pultizer Prize winner Wit and August Wilson's Jitney), best lighting design in a large theatre and best sound design in a large theatre.

The Deaf West Theatre production of Oliver!, a Los Angeles first for its blending of deaf and hearing actors in a musical, garnered best musical in an intimate theatre, while the company's revival of A Streetcar Named Desire won best play in an intimate theatre. Deaf West won a total of four awards during the night - three of which went to Oliver!, including best director of a musical.

Two actors who have received accolades in New York City for their roles were also given the nod in Los Angeles - Douglas Sills won an Ovation for his title turn in The Scarlet Pimpernel while Kathleen Chalfant won best actress in a play for Wit.