Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Boston Theater Community Honors Its Own - The 2014 Elliot Norton Awards

I have often written in this space about how lucky we are in Boston to boast such a vibrant live theater scene.  Last evening, the Boston area theater community gathered for the annual Elliot Norton Awards, hosted by the remarkable Joyce Kulhawik, President of the Boston Theater Critics Association.

It was a wonderful evening of celebration and remembrance.  Olympia Dukakis was honored for a lifetime of contribution to the world of theater.  Her cousin, former Governor Michael Dukakis was eloquent in introducing her.  I had an opportunity before the start of the program to speak with both Governor Dukakis and with Olympia.  They were both gracious, as you might expect.  The Governor and I had spoken in the past about issues of rail travel (an area of passion for him and for me)  We both bemoaned the fact that high speed rail travel is not what it should be in the U.S., especially compared to the wonderful service available in Europe and Asia.

I would like to offer my personal congratulations to all of the winners, nominees and the scores of people responsible for making last evening such a wonderful celebration of the Boston theater world.

Elliot Norton Award Winners 2014

See below for a list of Norton Award Recipients from last evening:
Emceed by BTCA President Joyce Kulhawik, the evening featured three live performances by the nominated musicals which include Stoneham Theatre’s Thoroughly Modern Millie, Gold Dust Orphans’ It’s A Horrible Life,  and the Wheelock Family Theatre’s Hairspray. 
With remarks by Mayor Martin Walsh and former Governor Michael Dukakis (her cousin) the stage was set for the presentation of the 2014 Elliot Norton Lifetime Achievement Award to Academy Award-winner and theater veteran Olympia Dukakis. 
The BTCA presented select awards in memory of longtime ART company member Jeremy Geidt, the legendary Julie Harris and the Huntington Theatre Company’s former Artistic Director Nicholas Martin
To close the evening, SpeakEasy Stage Company’s Paul Daigneault accepted The 2013 Elliot Norton Prize For Sustained Excellence. 

The 32nd Annual Elliot Norton Awards

Elliot Norton Lifetime Achievement Award:  Olympia Dukakis
Elliot Norton Prize for Sustained Excellence: Paul Daigneault
Outstanding Visiting Production:
Mies Julie,  Baxter Theatre Centre; presented by ArtsEmerson 
Outstanding Production by a Large Resident Theater:
All the Way,  American Repertory Theater
Outstanding Production by a Midsize Theater:
Tribes,  SpeakEasy Stage Company
Outstanding Production by a Small Theater:
The Flick, Company One; co-presented by Suffolk University
Outstanding Production by a Fringe Theater:
Punk Rock,  Zeitgeist Stage Company
Outstanding Design, Large Theater:
The Heart of Robin Hood, American Repertory Theater
Set design by Börkur Jónsson, Costumes by Emma Ryott, Lighting by Björn Helgason, Sound by Jonathan Deans.
Outstanding Design, Midsize, Small or Fringe Theater:
The Flick, Company One; co-presented by Suffolk University
Scenic design by Cristina Todesco, Lighting by Jen Rock, Costumes by Amanda Maciel Antunes, Sound by Edward Young, Props Master Anita Shriver. 
Outstanding Musical Production by a Large Theater:
The Jungle Book, Huntington Theatre Company
Outstanding Musical Production by a Midsize, Small or Fringe Company:
Hairspray, Wheelock Family Theatre
Outstanding Musical Performance by an Actor:
Francis Jue, Miss Saigon, North Shore Music Theatre
Outstanding Musical Performance by an Actress:
Aimee Doherty, On the Town (Lyric Stage Company of Boston) and Hairspray (Wheelock Family Theatre)
Outstanding New Script:
Windowmen by Steven Barkhimer, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre
Outstanding Director, Large Theater:
Gisli Örn Gardarsson, The Heart of Robin Hood American Repertory Theater
Outstanding Director, Midsize Theater:
Ilyse Robbins, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Stoneham Theatre
Outstanding Director, Small or Fringe Theater:
David J. Miller, Punk Rock and The Normal Heart, Zeitgeist Stage Company
Outstanding Actor, Large Theater:
Bryan Cranston, All the Way, American Repertory Theater
Outstanding Actress, Large Theater: 
Andrea Syglowski, Venus in Fur, Huntington Theatre Company
Outstanding Actor, Midsize Theater:
Jeremiah Kissel, Imagining Madoff, New Repertory Theatre
Outstanding Actress, Midsize Theater:
Erica Spyres, Tribes, SpeakEasy Stage Company
Outstanding Actor, Small or Fringe Theater:
Alex Pollock, This Is Our Youth (Gloucester Stage Company), Windowmen (Boston Playwrights’ Theatre), and The Flick (Company One; co-presented by Suffolk University)
Outstanding Actress, Small or Fringe Theater:
Maureen Adduci, The Normal Heart  Zeitgeist Stage Company
Outstanding Ensemble, Large Theater:
The Seagull, Huntington Theatre Company
Outstanding Ensemble, Midsize, Small or Fringe Theater
Hairspray, Wheelock Family Theatre

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