Nominations were announced today for the 2002 Barclays Theatre Awards, presented by the Theatrical Management Association. Unlike most of the UK's awards for theatre, the Barclays Awards do not focus on London and the West End. They are the only nationwide awards for excellence in regional theatre.

Among this year's nominees are leading actors such as Pete Postlethwaite, Corin Redgrave, Amanda Donohoe and Adrian Dunbar as well as many productions which later transferred to London and the West End, including Gregory Burke's Gagarin Way, Edward Hall's two-part Rose Rage adaptation of Shakespeare's Henry VI trilogy, Shared Experience's revival of The Clearing (pictured - with two nominations) and, opening this month at the Lyric Hammersmith and Riverside Studios respectively, Kneehigh's The Red Shoes and Postlethwaite's one-man turn as Scaramouche Jones.

The 2002 awards presentation - which will be hosted by comedian and broadcaster Sandi Toksvig and held on Sunday 13 October 2002 at the Royal Opera House's Linbury Studio - will include one new award. Following the Arts Council's Eclipse Report on strategies for combating racism in theatre, the new Eclipse Award will recognise an organisation or individual whose work furthers these aims. Applications are now being considered for this category.

In considering the other 13 categories of the awards, more than 1,000 productions were seen by the panel of 150 regular theatregoers from across the country. The 2002 judging year ran from 1 September 2001 to 31 August 2002.

In addition to standard production and performance categories such as Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, Best New Play and Best Musical, the Barclays Theatre Awards also celebrate the best in regional front-of-house, programming and audience development with awards for Theatre of the Year and Most Welcoming Theatre.

The full nominations are as follows:

BEST ACTRESS: Amanda Donohoe for The Royal Exchange Theatre Company's Hedda Gabler; Kathryn Howden for Victory, Royal Lyceum Theatre Company, Edinburgh; Diana Quick for English Touring Theatre's Ghosts.

BEST ACTOR: Adrian Dunbar for Conversations On A Homecoming at the Lyric Theatre, Belfast; Pete Postlethwaite for Scaramouche Jones, Rebbeck Penny and Bristol Old Vic on tour; Corin Redgrave for The Browning Version at Derby Playhouse.

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE: Dorothy Atkinson for Eden End at West Yorkshire Playhouse; Mairead McKinley for Shared Experience Theatre's The Clearing on tour; Una McLean for Borderline Theatre's Perfect Days at The Citizens' Theatre, Glasgow and on tour.

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE: Richard Attlee for Shared Experience Theatre's The Clearing on tour; Michael Begley for Hobson's Choice, produced by Jenny King for The Touring Consortium, Birmingham Repertory Theatre and Theatre Royal, Plymouth on tour; Jimmy Chisholm for Amadeus at Pitlochry Festival Theatre.

BEST DIRECTOR: Lucy Bailey for Stairs To The Roof, a Chichester Festival Theatre production at the Minerva Theatre; Sean Holmes for Comedians, Oxford Stage Company by arrangement with David Aukin for Act Productions and in association with the Northcott Theatre, Exeter; Emma Rice} for Knee High Theatre's The Red Shoes on tour.

BEST DESIGNER: [Imogen Cloet for Noir, Northern Stage Ensemble and Live Theatre at Newcastle Playhouse; Simon Higlett for Elizabeth Rex at Birmingham Repertory Theatre produced in association with Duncan C Weldon and Paul Elliott for Triumph Entertainment Ltd, and for Nuffield Theatre Southampton's Three Sisters in association with Theatre Royal Bath Productions on tour; Philip Whitcomb for Love In A Maze, a Watermill, West Berkshire Playhouse production.

BEST NEW PLAY: Gagarin Way by Gregory Burke, Traverse Theatre Company in association with the National Theatre Studio on tour; Mother Clap's Molly House, a play with songs by Mark Ravenhill with music by Matthew Scott, National Theatre on tour; Tiny Dynamite by Abi Morgan, Paines Plough and Frantic Assembly with Contact, Manchester on tour.

BEST TOURING PRODUCTION: Rose Rage adapted from Shakespeare's Henry VI plays by Edward Hall and Roger Warren, a Watermill West Berkshire Playhouse production; Nuffield Theater Southampton's Three Sisters by Anton Chekhov, translated by Ronald Hingley, presented in association with Theatre Royal Bath Productions; The Seagull by Anton Chekhov, English version by Tom Stoppard, Dundee Rep Theatre Company on tour.

BEST MUSICAL: Fiddler On The Roof, book by Joseph Stein, music by Jerry Bock, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, a Watermill, West Berkshire Playhouse production; Sheffield Theatre's High Society music and lyrics by Cole Porter, book by Arthur Kopit, additional lyrics by Susan Birkenhead; Rodgers and Hart's On Your Toes, presented by arrangement with Josef Weinberger ltd on behalf of the Rodgers and Hammerstein Theatre Library of New York at the Leicester Haymarket Theatre.

BEST SHOW FOR CHILDREN & YOUNG PEOPLE: Company of Angels' Hannah And Hanna by John Retallack at the Battersea Arts Centre; Lifeboat by Nicola McCartney, Catherine Wheels Theatre Company in association with Brunton Theatre, Musselburgh on tour; Red, Red Shoes by Charles Way inspired by Hans Christian Andersen's The Red Shoes, a Unicorn production in association with The Place on tour.

MOST WELCOMING THEATRE: The Byre Theatre of St Andrew's; Wolverhampton Grand Theatre; Theatre by the Lake, Keswick.

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN OPERA: Mark Elder and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment for Euryanthe at Glyndebourne; Opera North for Albert Herring; Scottish Opera for Die Walküre and Siegfried.

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN DANCE: Thomas Edur and Agnes Oaks of English National Ballet, the country's leading classical partnership brilliantly illustrated this year; Christopher Hampson for Double Concerto, an outstanding new ballet in a fine year for repertory at English National Ballet; Royal Ballet Sinfonia for their playing of scores for ballet throughout the year.