During a ceremony at the Prince of Wales Theatre, the Circle’s Drama Section dished out awards for nine categories for productions staged in 2005. The award winners included Kevin Spacey, whose Richard II took the Best Shakespearean Performance Award, and Simon Russell Beale for his performance in the Donmar production of The Philanthropist. Eve Best scooped the Best Actress Award for the title role in the Almeida production of Hedda Gabler.
Best New Play went to Richard Bean for his rural epic Harvest staged at the Royal Court, with Best Musical going to Billy Elliot.
The list of winners follows:
Best New Play
Harvest by Richard Bean, Royal Court
Billy Elliot, Victoria Palace
Michael Grandage for The Wild Duck, Donmar
Simon Russell Beale for The Philanthropist, Donmar
Eve Best for Hedda Gabler, Almeida
Best Shakespearean performance
Kevin Spacey for Richard II, Old Vic
Timothy Bird and David Farley for Sunday in the Park with George, Menier Chocolate Factory
Most Promising Playwright
Laura Wade for Breathing Corpses and Colder Than Here, Royal Court and Soho Theatre.
Most Promising Newcomer (apart from a playwright)
Mariah Gale for ’Tis Pity She’s a Whore, Southwark Playhouse.