2006 Laurence Olivier Nominations Announced; Billy Elliot Leads Pack with Nine Nominations

By John Nathan
January 18, 2006

Billy Elliot—The Musical, the new Elton John musical based on the film of the same name, heads this year’s Olivier Award nominations with nine nods, including one for Best Musical. Its competitors in that field include Acorn Antiques—The Musical! and The Big Life.

For the Best Actor in a Musical award, the judges will have to consider the performances of five actors from two shows, Billy Elliot and Guys and Dolls. Performers James Lomas, George Maguire and Liam Mower, who shared the title role of Billy, are up against Ewan McGregor’s Sky Masterson and Douglas Hodge’s Nathan Detroit for the award.

Guys and Dolls received eight nominations including ones for Jane Krakowski and Jenna Russell in the Best Actress in a Musical category.

The nominations for Best Actress in a Play include two performances from the revival of Schiller’s Mary Stuart with Janet McTeer's Queen Mary up against Harriet Walter's Queen Elizabeth. Best Actor in a Play nominations include Brian Dennehy for Death of a Salesman, Richard Griffiths for Heroes and Derek Jacobi in the other Schiller revival, Don Carlos.

Rosemary Squire, President of the Society of London Theatre, said, “My warmest personal congratulations to all of this year's Laurence Olivier Awards nominees. The competition has been particularly intense after an exceedingly strong year. The list demonstrates what an array of theatrical talent we have in London Theatre, reinforcing London's position as the theatre capital of the world, and confirming its unique appeal as a premium destination for world-class entertainment”.

The 30th annual Olivier Awards, London’s equivalent of the Tony Awards, will take place Feb. 26 at the London Hilton Park Lane and will be hosted by actor/director Richard Wilson.

The complete list of nominations follow.
Best Actress in a Play
Eve Best for Hedda Gabler at the Almeida and Duke of York’s
Clare Higgins for Death of a Salesman at the Lyric
Helen McCrory for As You Like It at Wyndham’s
Janet McTeer for Mary Stuart at the Donmar Warehouse and Apollo
Harriet Walter for Mary Stuart at the Donmar Warehouse and Apollo

Best Actor in a Play
Brian Dennehy for Death of a Salesman at the Lyric
Richard Griffiths for Heroes at Wyndham’s
Derek Jacobi for Don Carlos at the Gielgud
Con O’Neill for Telstar at the New Ambassadors
David Threlfall for Someone Who'll Watch Over Me at the New Ambassadors

Best Performance in a Supporting Role
David Bradley for Henry IV Parts 1 & 2 at the Olivier
Benedict Cumberbatch for Hedda Gabler at the Almeida and Duke of York’s
Noma Dumezweni for A Raisin in the Sun Young Vic at the Lyric Hammersmith
Anne Reid for Epitaph for George Dillon at the Comedy
Paul Ritter for Coram Boy at the Olivier

Best New Play
Coram Boy adapted by Helen Edmundson from a novel by Jamila Gavin at the Olivier
Harvest by Richard Bean at the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court
On the Shore of the Wide World by Simon Stephens at the Cottesloe
Paul by Howard Brenton at the Cottesloe

Best New Comedy
Glorious! by Peter Quilter at the Duchess
Heroes by Gérald Sibleyras translated by Tom Stoppard at Wyndham’s
Shoot the Crow by Owen McCafferty at Trafalgar Studio 1

Best Entertainment
Blue Man Group at the New London
Ducktastic at the Albery
Something Wicked This Way Comes at the Cambridge

Best Revival
Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller at the Lyric
Don Carlos by Friedrich Schiller in a new adaptation by Mike Poulton at the Gielgud
Hedda Gabler by Henrik Ibsen in a new version by Richard Eyre at the Almeida and Duke of York’s
Mary Stuart by Friedrich Schiller in a new version by Peter Oswald at the Donmar Warehouse and Apollo

Best New Musical
Acorn Antiques—The Musical! Book, music and lyrics by Victoria Wood at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket
The Big Life written by Paul Sirett, music by Paul Joseph at the Apollo
Billy Elliot—The Musical book and lyrics by Lee Hall, music by Elton John at the Victoria Palace

Outstanding Musical Production
Guys and Dolls based on a story and characters of Damon Runyon, music and lyrics by Frank Loesser, book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows at the Piccadilly
HMS Pinafore a new version by Herbert Appleman, music by Arthur Sullivan. Original libretto by W. S. Gilbert at the Open Air

Best Actress in a Musical
Haydn Gwynne for Billy Elliot—The Musical at the Victoria Palace
Jane Krakowski for Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly
Jenna Russell for Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly
Julie Walters for Acorn Antiques—The Musical! at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket

Best Actor in a Musical
Douglas Hodge for Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly
Ewan McGregor for Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly
James Lomas, George Maguire and Liam Mower for Billy Elliot—The Musical at the Victoria Palace

Best Performance in a Supporting Role in a Musical
Tameka Empson for The Big Life at the Apollo
Tim Healy for Billy Elliot—The Musical at the Victoria Palace
Celia Imrie for Acorn Antiques—The Musical! at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket
Scarlett Strallen for HMS Pinafore at the Open Air

Best Director
Stephen Daldry for Billy Elliot—The Musical at the Victoria Palace
Richard Eyre for Hedda Gabler at the Almeida and Duke of York’s
Michael Grandage for Don Carlos at the Gielgud
Phyllida Lloyd for Mary Stuart at the Donmar Warehouse and Apollo
Melly Still for Coram Boy at the Olivier

Best Theatre Choreographer
Rob Ashford for Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly
Peter Darling for Billy Elliot—The Musical at the Victoria Palace

Best Lighting Design
Billy Elliot—The Musical designed by Rick Fisher at the Victoria Palace
Don Carlos designed by Paule Constable at the Gielgud
Mary Stuart designed by Hugh Vanstone at the Donmar Warehouse and Apollo
Guys and Dolls designed by Howard Harrison at the Piccadilly

Best Set Design
Billy Elliot—The Musical designed by Ian MacNeil at the Victoria Palace
Don Carlos designed by Christopher Oram at the Gielgud
Hedda Gabler designed by Rob Howell at the Almeida and Duke of York’s

Best Costume Design
The Dog in the Manger designed by Es Devlin at the Playhouse
Don Carlos designed by Christopher Oram at the Gielgud
Hedda Gabler designed by Rob Howell at the Almeida and Duke of York’s
Mary Stuart designed by Anthony Ward at the Donmar Warehouse and Apollo

Best Sound Design
Billy Elliot—The Musical designed by Paul Arditti at the Victoria Palace
Coram Boy designed by Christopher Shutt at the Olivier
Guys and Dolls designed by Terry Jardine & Chris Full at the Piccadilly

Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre
Bloody Sunday — Scenes from the Saville Inquiryat the Tricycle Theatre
Comfor Me with Applesat Hampstead Theatre
My Name Is Rachel Corrie at the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court
Laura Wade for Breathing Corpses at the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court and Colder Than Here at Soho Theatre

Best New Dance Production
Rambert Dance Company’s Constant Speed at Sadler’s Wells
Fabulous Beast Dance Theatre’s Giselle at the Barbican
Sylvie Guillem and Russell Maliphant’s Push at Sadler’s Wells
Akram Khan/Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui/Antony Gormley/Nitin Sawhney’s Zero Degrees at Sadler’s Wells

Outstanding Achievement in Dance
Ballet Nacional de Cuba’s corps de ballet for their season at Sadler’s Wells
Pina Bausch for the creation of Nelken and Palermo Palermo at Sadler’s Wells
Johan Kobborg for his performance in the Royal Ballet’s The Lesson and his production of La Sylphide at the Royal Opera House
Russell Maliphant for his choreography and performance in Push at Sadler’s Wells

Best New Opera Production
English National Opera’s Billy Budd at the London Coliseum
English National Opera’s La Clemenza Di Tito at the London Coliseum
English National Opera’s Madam Butterfly at the London Coliseum
English National Opera’s On the Town at the London Coliseum

Outstanding Achievement in Opera
Sarah Connolly for her performance in English National Opera’s La Clemenza Di Tito at the London Coliseum
Simon Keenlyside for his performances in the Royal Opera’s 1984 at the Royal Opera House and English National Opera’s Billy Budd at the London Coliseum
David McVicar for his direction of English National Opera’s La Clemenza Di Tito at the London Coliseum
Anthony Minghella and Carolyn Choa for the direction and choreography of English National Opera’s Madam Butterfly at the London Coliseum