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Priscilla and Oliver! named Theatregoers' Choice

Reporter: Charlotte Marshall, first published Mon 15 Feb 2010 12:45

Musicals Priscilla Queen Of The Desert and Oliver! proved the big winners of the night at the 2010 Theatregoers’ Choice Awards, the only major UK theatre awards voted for by members of the public.

The results were announced at the Prince of Wales theatre last night in a live awards concert, after theatregoers voted for their favourites in 26 categories.

The flamboyant musical Priscilla Queen Of The Desert took home an impressive five accolades, winning the Best New Musical award, Best Supporting Actor in a Musical – awarded to Oliver Thornton – Best Set Design for the production’s Brian Thomson, as well as the late Ross Coleman being awarded the Best Choreographer award. The musical will celebrate a year in the West End next month after opening last year on 23 March at the Palace theatre.

Oliver!, the Rupert Goold directed classic, was celebrated in three categories winning Best Musical Revival as well as Rowan Atkinson collecting the Best Actor in a Musical for his turn as Fagin and Jodie Prenger taking home Best Supporting Actress in a Musical for her role as Nancy.

Wicked also enjoyed success, winning the Best West End Show award. Executive Producer Michael McCabe said: “It has been an incredible year for West End theatre, and the productions that made the shortlist for this special award are proof of the diversity and quality that have helped maintain London as the world leader for live entertainment.  We are therefore truly honoured that the public has chosen Wicked as London’s ‘Best West End Show’, and our heartfelt thanks go to everyone who voted.”

Other big winners of the night were Rachel Weisz who took home Best Actress In A Play for her role in A Streetcar Named Desire and Best Actor In A Play winner Jude Law for his turn as Hamlet as part of the Donmar West End season at the Wyndham’s theatre. These awards add to their growing collection, with both actors taking home awards at the Critics’ Circle Awards earlier this year and both nominated for Laurence Olivier Awards. Mirroring the Evening Standard and Critics’ Circle Awards, the Royal Court’s Jerusalem beat Enron to take home the Best New Play Award.

Other winners announced at last night’s ceremony include Miriam Margolyes (Best Supporting Actress in a Play), Patina Miller (Best Actress in a Musical), Patrick Stewart (Best Supporting Actor in a Play), Derren Brown (Best Solo Performance), John Barrowman (Best Takeover in a Role), Calendar Girls (Best New Comedy ), A Streetcar Named Desire (Best Play Revival), Hamlet (Best Shakespearean Production), Trevor Nunn (Best Director for Inherit The Wind at the Old Vic & A Little Night Music at the Menier Chocolate Factory & Garrick), Natasha Katz (Best Lighting Designer), Diana Vickers (London Newcomer of the Year), The Pirates of Penzance (Best Off-West End Production), Adolf Hitler: My Part in His Downfall (Best Regional Production) and Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart in Waiting For Godot (Theatre Event of the Year).

Following last night’s event, the stage is now set for the most prestigious and star-studded award ceremony in the theatre award season’s line-up, the Laurence Olivier Awards. The awards will be presented at Grosvenor House Hotel on 21 March, where Official London Theatre will bring you live coverage of the glittering event.

Before that, the nominees will gather for a celebratory lunch on Tuesday 2 March at the Haymarket Hotel, where Official London Theatre will once again be on hand to keep you informed of the day’s events.

Don’t forget, this year you can also have your say at the Olivier Awards with the brand new Audience Award. The 2010 shortlist for the theatregoers’ favourite long running show is comprised of Billy Elliot The Musical, Wicked, We Will Rock You, War Horse and The Phantom Of The Opera. Vote now and be in with the chance to win tickets to the winning show.

CM

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