Industry newspaper The Stage has announced the 2004 nominees for its annual Acting Excellence Awards at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The winners of the awards three categories – Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Ensemble – will be announced this Sunday 29 August 2004 in Edinburgh. The nominations, which will be published in this week’s edition of The Stage, are as follows.

BEST ACTOR - Nick Chee Ping Cellington for The Smallest Person at Pod Deco, Des Keogh for The Love-Hungry Farmer at the Assembly Rooms; Mike McShane for Fatboy at the Assembly Rooms (See The Goss, 16 Aug 2004); Paul Rajeckas for Notes to the Motherland at Hill Street; Christopher Simon for When the Bulbul Stopped Singing at the Traverse; and James Urbaniak for Thom Pain (Based on Nothing) at the Pleasance (See News 19 Aug & 20 Aug 2004).

BEST ACTRESS - Angela Clerkin for Third Finger, Left Hand at the Assembly Rooms; Lynn Ferguson for Biographies in a Bag at the Assembly Rooms; Pauline Goldsmith for Not I at the Assembly Rooms; Lesley Hart for Shimmer at the Traverse; Caroline O’Connor for Bombshells at the Assembly Rooms (pictured - See The Goss, 19 Aug 2004); and Shelly Stover for Crooked, Cowgate Central @ Wilkie House.

BEST ENSEMBLE - Ethan Sandler and Adrian Wenner’s Epitaph at the Metro Gilded Balloon Teviot; Grid Iron’s Fierce: An Urban Myth at the Assembly Rooms; One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest at the Assembly Rooms (See News, 12 Aug 2004); Mouthpeace’s Fuse at the Traverse; NIE’s (New International Encounter) My Long Journey Home at the Pleasance; and Traverse Theatre Company’s Shimmer at the Traverse.

The Stage Awards celebrate their tenth anniversary this year. The Edinburgh Fringe, the world's largest arts festival and now in its 58th year, concludes on Monday 30 August 2004.

- by Terri Paddock