Manchester Theatre Awards

> Independent informed reviews by the region’s most experienced critics

News: MTA 2013 nominations

The nominations for this year’s Manchester Theatre Awards celebrate another truly remarkable year for theatre in Greater Manchester. A hundred nominations in twenty categories – with a few surprises to be announced soon! – range from blockbuster productions to fringe energy, and from the familiar faces of stars like Kenneth Branagh and Maxine Peake to fresh new talent. They’ll all be honoured at a glittering ceremony hosted at the city’s iconic Royal Exchange theatre on March 7th by popular performer Justin Moorhouse and some starry friends.

Chosen by an entirely independent panel of theatre experts, who see hundreds of shows at venues small, large and unusual to pick the cream of the crop, awards range from Musical, Dance, Opera and Visiting Production to acting categories. New writing and talent is high on the agenda too, as is the backstage dedication and skill that help make so many of the shows we’re privileged to have on our doorsteps so special.

We think it’s a genuinely exciting shortlist that proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that, even in a time when the arts generally and regional theatre especially seem to be under threat, Greater Manchester remains a fearless, vibrant and creative hub. We’re thrilled to be able to acknowledge, here and in March, just some of the talent that helps to make it so great.

Best Actor

David Birrell, Sweeney Todd, Royal Exchange

Kenneth Branagh, Macbeth, Manchester International Festival, St Peter’s Church

Nigel Cooke, To Kill A Mockingbird, Royal Exchange

Paul Webster, Sugar Daddies, Oldham Coliseum

Jack Wilkinson, David Copperfield, Oldham Coliseum

Best Actress

Marianne Benedict, Chicago, Oldham Coliseum

Cush Jumbo, A Doll’s House, Royal Exchange

Gillian Kearney, Educating Rita, Library at The Lowry

Alex Kingston, Macbeth, Manchester International Festival, St Peter’s Church

Maxine Peake, Masque Of Anarchy, Manchester International Festival, Albert Hall

Shannon Tarbet, To Kill A Mockingbird, Royal Exchange

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

Ray Fearon, Macbeth, Manchester International Festival, St Peter’s Church

Kieran Hill, The Glass Menagerie, Octagon Theatre Bolton

Robin Simpson, David Copperfield, Oldham Coliseum

Best Actress in a Supporting Role

Sally Bankes, That Day We Sang, Royal Exchange

Shirley Darroch, Chicago, Oldham Coliseum

Heather Phoenix, Sugar Daddies, Oldham Coliseum

Kelly Price, That Day We Sang, Royal Exchange

Best Actor in a Visiting Production

Paul Michael Glaser, Fiddler On The Roof, The Lowry

Julian Glover, Maurice’s Jubilee, Opera House

Louis Maskell, West Side Story, Palace

Barrie Rutter, Rutherford and Son, The Lowry

Tim Treloar, Birdsong, Oldham Coliseum

Best Actress in a Visiting Production

Michele Dotrice, The Ladykillers, The Lowry

Katie Hall, West Side Story, Palace

Catherine Kinsella, Rutherford and Son, The Lowry

Karen Mann, Fiddler On The Roof, The Lowry

Sian Phillips, People, The Lowry

Best Production

Of Mice and Men, directed by David Thacker, Octagon Theatre Bolton

Macbeth, directed by Rob Ashford, Manchester International Festival, St Peter’s Church

The Accrington Pals, directed by James Dacre, Royal Exchange

The Glass Menagerie, directed by David Thacker, Octagon Theatre Bolton

The Old Woman, directed by Robert Wilson, Manchester International Festival, Palace

To Kill A Mockingbird, directed by Max Webster, Royal Exchange

Best Visiting Production

Birdsong, The Original Theatre Company and Birdsong Productions Ltd, Oldham Coliseum

The Full Monty, Sheffield Theatres, The Lowry

The Ladykillers, Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse / Fiery Angel, The Lowry

The Pirates Of Penzance, Scottish Opera and D'Oyly Carte, Opera House

Twelfth Night, Propeller, The Lowry

War Horse, National Theatre, The Lowry

Best Musical

Chicago, Oldham Coliseum

Fiddler On The Roof, The Lowry

Paradise Moscow, Royal Northern College Of Music

Singin’ In The Rain, Opera House

Sweeney Todd, Royal Exchange

Wicked, Palace

Opera

Festival of Britten (Peter Grimes / A Midsummer Night’s Dream / Death In Venice), Opera North, The Lowry

La Finta Giardiniera, Buxton Festival

L’Elisir d’Amore, Royal Northern College Of Music

La Voix Humaine, Buxton Festival

Otello, Opera North, The Lowry

Dance

Aladdin, Birmingham Royal Ballet, The Lowry

Michael Clark Triple Bill, The Lowry

Rambert, The Lowry

Richard Alston Dance Company, The Lowry

The Chelsea Hotel, Earthfall, The Lowry

Design

La Colombe/La Princesse Jaune, design Lez Brotherston; light John Bishop, Buxton Festival

Macbeth, design Christopher Oram; light Neil Austin; sound Christopher Shutt, Manchester International Festival, St Peter’s Church

Of Mice and Men, design and light Ciaran Bagnall; sound Andy Smith; costume designer Mary Horan, Octagon Theatre Bolton

The Accrington Pals, design Jonathan Fensom; light Charles Balfour; sound Emma Laxton, Royal Exchange

The Old Woman, designer/director Robert Wilson; sound Marco Oilvieri; light A J Weissbard, Manchester International Festival, Palace

The Machine, design Lucy Osborne; light Mark Henderson; sound Ian Dickinson/Autograph; video Andrzej Goulding, Manchester International Festival, Upper Campfield Market

Best Newcomer

Marcus Collins, Hairspray, The Lowry

Laura Elsworthy, The Accrington Pals, Royal Exchange

Nathan Ives-Moiba, Tull, Octagon Theatre Bolton

Freya Sutton, Hairspray, The Lowry

Nathan Wiley, The Glass Menagerie, Octagon Theatre Bolton

Best New Play

Away From Home, by Rob Ward and Martin Jameson, 24:7 Festival

Brilliant Adventures, by Alistair McDowall, Royal Exchange Studio

Cannibals, by Rory Mullarkey, Royal Exchange

Flesh, by Sarah McDonald Hughes, Royal Exchange Studio

Best Studio Production

A Wondrous Place, Royal Exchange Studio

Brilliant Adventures, Royal Exchange Studio

That Is All You Need To Know, The Lowry Studio

Best Fringe Production

Away From Home, Working Progress Theatre, 24:7 Festival

Little Shop of Horrors, Kings Arms

Mary Bell by Mary Bell, Studio Salford

The Best, Lass O’Gowrie

Word:Play, Box Of Tricks, various venues

Withnail and I, Shred Productions, Lass O’Gowrie

Best Studio Performance

Joseph Arkley, Brilliant Adventures, Royal Exchange Studio

David Judge, Pages From My Songbook, Royal Exchange Studio

Robert Lonsdale, Brilliant Adventures, Royal Exchange Studio

Gerry McLaughlin, Mugabeland!, The Lowry Studio

Best Fringe Performance

Rebecca Fenwick, Spoonface Steinberg, The Swan, Dobcross and tour

Stella Grundy, The Rise and Fall Of A Northern Star, Studio Salford

Dickie Patterson, The Best, Lass O’Gowrie

David Slack, Withnail and I, Lass O’Gowrie

Rob Ward, Away From Home, 24:7 Theatre Festival

Best Ensemble

Chicago, Oldham Coliseum

David Copperfield, Oldham Coliseum

Duck!, Z-Arts Manchester

Manchester Sound: The Massacre, Library

Of Mice and Men, Octagon Theatre Bolton

Best Special Entertainment

Dick Whittington, Opera House

Jack and the Beanstalk, Oldham Coliseum

Strictly Confidential, The Lowry

Sutra, The Lowry

Kevin Bourke
14 January 2014