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Washington DC by Susan Berlin

Signature's Streamlined Les Misérables Receives Six Helen Hayes Awards at 25th Annual Ceremony in Washington

Signature Theatre's reimagining of Les Misérables took six Helen Hayes Awards during the 25th-anniversary celebration of the awards, April 13 at the Warner Theatre in Washington, DC. The awards honor the best in Washington professional theater.

In addition to Outstanding Resident Musical and the Canadian Embassy Award for Outstanding Ensemble, Resident Musical, the production—which scaled down the epic work to fit in a 272-seat black box theater in Arlington, Virginia—received awards for Eric Schaeffer, Outstanding Director, Resident Musical; Jon Kalbfleisch, Outstanding Musical Direction, Resident Production; and Christopher Bloch and Sherri L. Edelen, Outstanding Supporting Actor and Actress, Resident Musical. Edelen tied in her category with young Angelina Kelly, who won for another Signature production, Ace: The New Musical Adventure.

Legendary performer Chita Rivera tied with Natascia Diaz in the Outstanding Lead Actress, Resident Musical, category for Signature's The Visit and MetroStage's ROOMS a Rock Romance in Alexandria, VA, respectively. Another Signature performer, David Margulies, took Outstanding Lead Actor, Resident Musical, for The Happy Time.

Next to Normal received three awards in the non-resident production category for its production at Arena Stage, which will open April 15 on Broadway. The musical was named Outstanding Non-Resident Production; Alice Ripley received the honor for Outstanding Lead Actress, Non-Resident Production; and Aaron Tveit was named Outstanding Supporting Performer, Non-Resident Production. Ripley tied with Nilaja Sun, who brought her one-woman play, No Child ..., to Washington's Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company. Stacy Keach received the Outstanding Lead Actor, Non-Resident Production, award for Frost/Nixon at the Kennedy Center.

Two productions at Synetic Theatre in Arlington, Virginia, received awards during the ceremony. Irina Tsikurishvili was honored for Outstanding Choreography, Resident Production, for Carmen, while Romeo and Juliet earned her husband Paata Tsikurishvili Outstanding Director, Resident Play, and the cast the Canadian Embassy Award for Outstanding Ensemble, Resident Play.

Studio Theatre's production of Blackbird and the Shakespeare Theatre Company's Twelfth Night tied for Outstanding Resident Play. Lisa Joyce was honored as Outstanding Lead Actress, Resident Play, for Blackbird, tied with Deidra LaWan Starnes for the African Continuum Theatre Company's production of Intimate Apparel. Floyd King received Outstanding Supporting Actor, Resident Play, for Twelfth Night..

Also at the Shakespeare Theatre Company, Ted van Griethuysen and Helen Carey, both of Major Barbara, received the Robert Prosky Award for Outstanding Lead Actor, Resident Play, and Outstanding Supporting Actress, Resident Play.

The design category winners were Marianne Custer, costumes for Alice at Round House Theatre in Bethesda, Maryland; Chris Lee, lighting for Signature's Kiss of the Spider Woman; Daniel Conway, set design for Stunning at Woolly Mammoth; and Matthew Nielson, sound design for 1984 at Catalyst Theater Company in Washington.

The Charles MacArthur Award for Outstanding New Play or Musical went to Honey Brown Eyes by Stefanie Zadravec, marking the first Helen Hayes Award to go to Theater J in Washington.

The Washington Post Award for Innovative Leadership in the Theatre Community went to Bonnie Nelson Schwartz, founder of the Helen Hayes Awards. The annual Helen Hayes Awards Tribute, sponsored by Jaylee Mead, recognized the artistic directors of the Washington area's 68 professional theaters. The John Aniello Award for Outstanding Emerging Theatre Company honored Washington's Constellation Theatre Company.

More information on the awards is available online at www.helenhayes.org.

Helen Hayes Award Nominations and Winners 2009 (winners are in bold)

Outstanding Choreography, Resident Production
Michael J. Bobbitt, Goodnight Moon, Adventure Theatre and Tribute Productions
Karma Camp, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
Robin McFarquhar, Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Daniel Pelzig, Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Ann Reinking, The Visit, Signature Theatre
Irina Tsikurishvili, Carmen, Synetic Theater, Main Stage
Irina Tsikurishvili, Romeo and Juliet, Synetic Theater, Main Stage
 

Outstanding Costume Design, Resident Production
Marianne Custer, Alice, Round House Theatre
Kathleen Geldard, The Neverending Story, Imagination Stage
Miranda Hoffman, Twelfth Night, Shakespeare Theatre Company in association with McCarter Theatre Center
Helen Q. Huang, Stunning, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Robert Perdziola, Major Barbara, Shakespeare Theatre Company
David Zinn, The Mystery of Irma Vep, Arena Stage
 

Outstanding Director, Resident Musical
Frank Galati, The Visit, Signature Theatre
Eric Schaeffer, Ace: The New Musical Adventure, Signature Theatre
Eric Schaeffer, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
Eric Schaeffer, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
Scott Schwartz, ROOMS a Rock Romance, MetroStage and Geva Theatre Center
Mary Hall Surface, Goodnight Moon, Adventure Theatre and Tribute Productions
 

Outstanding Director, Resident Play
Ethan McSweeny, Major Barbara, Shakespeare Theatre Company
David Muse, Blackbird, The Studio Theatre
David Muse, Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Aaron Posner and Teller, Macbeth, Folger Theatre and Two River Theater Company
Rebecca Bayla Taichman, Twelfth Night, Shakespeare Theatre Company in association with McCarter Theatre Center
Paata Tsikurishvili, Romeo and Juliet, Synetic Theater, Main Stage
John Vreeke, Boom, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
 

Outstanding Lead Actor, Non-Resident Production
Alan Cox, Frost/Nixon, The Kennedy Center
Brian Tyree Henry, The Brothers Size, The Studio Theatre
Stacy Keach, Frost/Nixon, The Kennedy Center
Martin Moran, The Tricky Part, Signature Theatre
J. Robert Spencer, Next to Normal, Arena Stage
 

Outstanding Lead Actor, Resident Musical
Will Chase, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
Hunter Foster, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
George Hearn, The Visit, Signature Theatre
Doug Kreeger, ROOMS a Rock Romance, MetroStage and Geva Theatre Center
David Margulies, The Happy Time, Signature Theatre
Greg Stone, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
 

Outstanding Lead Actress, Non-Resident Production
Carrie Fisher, Wishful Drinking, Arena Stage
Becky Gulsvig, Legally Blonde, The Musical, Kennedy Center
Phindile Mkhize, The Lion King, Kennedy Center
Tie: Alice Ripley, Next to Normal, Arena Stage
Tie: Nilaja Sun, No Child …, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company

 

Outstanding Lead Actress, Resident Musical
Tie: Natascia Diaz, ROOMS a Rock Romance, MetroStage and Geva Theatre Center
Janice Lorraine, Cookin' at the Cookery, MetroStage
Jill Paice, Ace: The New Musical Adventure, Signature Theatre
Tie: Chita Rivera, The Visit, Signature Theatre
Barbara Walsh, Grey Gardens, The Studio Theatre
 

Outstanding Lead Actress, Resident Play
Tana Hicken, The Road to Mecca, The Studio Theatre
Tie: Lisa Joyce, Blackbird, The Studio Theatre
Sarah Marshall, Maria/Stuart, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Kimberly Schraf, Measure for Pleasure, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Tie: Deidra LaWan Starnes, Intimate Apparel, African Continuum Theatre Company
Holly Twyford, The Road to Mecca, The Studio Theatre
 

Outstanding Lighting Design, Resident Production
Colin K. Bills, Stunning, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Andrew Cissna, 1984, Catalyst Theater Company
Dan Covey, In the Heart of America, Rep Stage
Mark Lanks, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
Chris Lee, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
Charlie Morrison, Rabbit Hole, Olney Theatre Center
 

Outstanding Musical Direction, Resident Production
Jon Kalbfleisch, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
Jon Kalbfleisch, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
Konstantine Lortkipanidze, Host and Guest, Synetic Theater, Main Stage
David Loud, The Visit, Signature Theatre
Christopher Youstra, Jerry Springer the Opera, The Studio Theatre 2ndStage
 

Outstanding Set Design, Resident Production
Daniel Conway, Stunning, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Thomas Kamm, Boom, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Adam Koch, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
James Kronzer, 1984, Catalyst Theater Company
James Noone, Major Barbara, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Anastasia Ryurikov Simes, Romeo and Juliet, Synetic Theater, Main Stage
Walt Spangler, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
 

Outstanding Sound Design, Resident Production
Karin Graybash and Kenny Wollesen, Macbeth, Folger Theatre and Two River Theater Company
Irakli Kavsadze and Konstantine Lortkipanidze, Romeo and Juliet, Synetic Theater, Main Stage
Neil McFadden, Boom, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Matthew M. Nielson, 1984, Catalyst Theater Company
Ryan Rumery, Stunning, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
 

Outstanding Supporting Actor, Resident Musical
Christopher Bloch, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
Andrew Call, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
Matthew Dellapina, This Beautiful City, The Studio Theatre, with Actors Theatre of Louisville and The Civilians
Mark Jacoby, The Visit, Signature Theatre
Chris Sizemore, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
Jeremy Webb, The Visit, Signature Theatre
 

Outstanding Supporting Actor, Resident Play
Che Ayende, Resurrection, Arena Stage in collaboration with Hartford Stage
Drew Eshelman, Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Floyd King, Twelfth Night, Shakespeare Theatre Company in association with McCarter Theatre Center
Owen Scott, The History Boys, The Studio Theatre
Tom Story, Twelfth Night, Shakespeare Theatre Company in association with McCarter Theatre Center
Jay Sullivan, The History Boys, The Studio Theatre
 

Outstanding Supporting Actress, Resident Musical
Felicia Curry, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
Tie: Sherri L. Edelen, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
Carrie A. Johnson, The Happy Time, Signature Theatre
Tie: Angelina Kelly, Ace: The New Musical Adventure, Signature Theatre
Christiane Noll, Ace: The New Musical Adventure, Signature Theatre
Tracy Lynn Olivera, Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
 

Outstanding Supporting Actress, Resident Play
Helen Carey, Major Barbara, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Sarah Marshall, Boom, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Jennifer Mendenhall, Measure for Pleasure, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Nancy Robinette, Twelfth Night, Shakespeare Theatre Company in association with McCarter Theatre Center
Deidra LaWan Starnes, Doubt: A Parable, Olney Theatre Center
 

Outstanding Supporting Performer, Non-Resident Production
Jennifer Damiano, Next to Normal, Arena Stage
Sofia Jean Gomez, Argonautika, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Robert Prosky, The Price, Theater J
Mark Shunock, The Lion King, The Kennedy Center
Aaron Tveit, Next to Normal, Arena Stage
 

The Charles MacArthur Award for Outstanding New Play or Musical
Stunning, David Adjmi, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
ROOMS a Rock Romance, Book, music and lyrics by Paul Scott Goodman, book by Miriam Gordon, MetroStage and Geva Theatre Center
Chasing George Washington: A White House Adventure, Book and lyrics by Karen Zacarías, music by Deborah Wicks La Puma, The Kennedy Center in collaboration with The White House Historical Association
Mermaids, Monsters, and the World Painted Purple, Marco Ramirez, The Kennedy Center
Honey Brown Eyes, Stefanie Zadravec, Theater J
 

The Robert Prosky Award for Outstanding Lead Actor, Resident Play
René Auberjonois, The Imaginary Invalid, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Aubrey Deeker, Boom, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Edward Gero, Nixon's Nixon, Round House Theatre
Karl Kenzler, Major Barbara, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Floyd King, The History Boys, The Studio Theatre
Ian Merrill Peakes, Macbeth, Folger Theatre and Two River Theater Company
Ted van Griethuysen, Major Barbara, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Jerry Whiddon, Blackbird, The Studio Theatre
 

Outstanding Non-Resident Production
Frost/Nixon, The Kennedy Center
The Lion King, The Kennedy Center
Next to Normal, Arena Stage
No Child …, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
The Price, Theater J
 

Outstanding Resident Musical
Ace: The New Musical Adventure, Signature Theatre
Jerry Springer the Opera, The Studio Theatre 2ndStage
Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
ROOMS a Rock Romance, MetroStage and Geva Theatre Center, in association with Van Hill Entertainment, The Musical Machine, Jeffrey M. Raff, and Small Pond Enterprises
The Visit, Signature Theatre
 

Outstanding Resident Play
Tie: Blackbird, The Studio Theatre
Macbeth, Folger Theatre and Two River Theater Company
Major Barbara, Shakespeare Theatre Company
Romeo and Juliet, Synetic Theater
Tie: Twelfth Night, Shakespeare Theatre Company in association with McCarter Theatre Center
 

The Canadian Embassy Award for Outstanding Ensemble, Resident Musical
Goodnight Moon, Adventure Theatre and Tribute Productions
Jerry Springer the Opera, The Studio Theatre 2ndStage
Kiss of the Spider Woman, Signature Theatre
Les Misérables, Signature Theatre
This Beautiful City, The Studio Theatre, in association with Actors Theatre of Louisville and The Civilians
The Visit, Signature Theatre
 

The Canadian Embassy Award for Outstanding Ensemble, Resident Play
Alice, Round House Theatre
Carmen, Synetic Theater
The History Boys, The Studio Theatre
In the Heart of America, Rep Stage
Intimate Apparel, African Continuum Theatre Company
The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, Forum Theatre
Measure for Pleasure, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Rabbit Hole, Olney Theatre Center
Resurrection, Arena Stage in collaboration with Hartford Stage
Romeo and Juliet, Synetic Theater
Translations, The Keegan Theatre
Twelfth Night, Shakespeare Theatre Company in association with McCarter Theatre Center
  The John Aniello Award for Outstanding Emerging Theatre Company: Constellation Theatre Company


-- Susan Berlin


Also see the Current Theatre Season Calendar for D.C.



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