At a star-studded ceremony tonight, the winners of the 2014 Sydney Theatre Awards were announced, with a record 33 Awards presented. Over 340 members of the Sydney theatre community packed the auditorium at Paddington RSL to celebrate the best of Sydney theatre throughout the past calendar year.
Best Mainstage Production was awarded to Bell Shakespeare’s Henry V, which also won Mainstage awards for Best Director (Damien Ryan), Best Stage Design (Anna Gardiner), and Best Score or Sound Design (Steve Francis and Drew Livingston). Best Independent Production went to Sport for Jove’s All’s Well That Ends Well, which also took Independent gongs for Best Actor in a Supporting Role (George Banders), Best Lighting Design (Toby Knyvett) and Best Sound (David Stalley).
Best Actor and Actress in a Leading Role in a Mainstage Production went to Richard Roxburgh (Cyrano de Bergerac) and Sarah Peirse (Switzerland). Best Actor in a Leading Role in an Independent Production was shared by Sean Hawkins and Andrew Henry (Howie the Rookie), while Matilda Ridgway was named Best Actress in a Leading Role in an Independent Production (A Doll’s House).
This is the first time in the history of the Sydney Theatre Awards that an award has been shared. In a highly unusual move, two performers were also named joint winners of Best Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical.
In the Musical categories, it was the Independent sector that triumphed with awards divided between Sweet Charity (Best Musical, Best Actress in a Leading Role for Verity Hunt-Ballard, Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Debora Krizak), Miracle City (Best Actress in a Leading Role for Blazey Best, Best Musical Direction for Max Lambert) and The Drowsy Chaperone (Best Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical and Best Direction of an Independent Production for Jay James-Moody, Best Stage Design for Lauren Peters and Best Costume Design of an Independent Production for Elizabeth Franklin).
The Sydney Theatre Award for Lifetime Achievement was presented to one of Australia’s greatest stage legends, Reg Livermore, whose professional career has spanned 57 years from early roles at the Ensemble, Independent and Tivoli, through musicals including Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar and The Rocky Horror Show and his acclaimed, risqué one-man shows, to his success in recent blockbuster musicals like The Producers and Wicked.
Presenters included David Berthold, Justine Clarke, Lucy Durack, Jane Harders, Christopher Horsey, John Paramor, Craig McLachlan, Suzie Miller, Shannon Murphy, Marshall Napier, Susie Porter, Vanessa Scammell, Terry Serio and Dan Wyllie; with performances from Wicked’s Jemma Rix, Edward Grey and Emily Cascarino, and the cast of Dirty Dancing.
For more information, visit: www.sydneytheatreawards.com for details.
Image: Reg Livermore as The Wizard in Wicked – photo by Jeff Busby