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Suchet, Court, Donmar & NT Win Critics’ Awards

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Veteran stage and screen actor David Suchet was the sole winner from the commercial sector at the Critics’ Circle Theatre Awards, which were presented today (25 January 2011) at an informal ceremony at the Prince of Wales Theatre’s Delfont Room. Suchet was awarded the Best Actor gong for his performance alongside Zoe Wanamaker in Howard Davies' West End revival of Arthur Miller classic All My Sons.

In the Best Actress category, the critics’ prize went to Jenny Jules for her performance in Ruined at the Almeida, with the rest of the winners’ board also dominated by the subsidised sector.

There were two wins apiece for the Royal Court, the Donmar Warehouse and the National Theatre while the Royal Shakespeare Company’s adaptation of Roald Dahl's Matilda, which plays the Courtyard Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon until 31 January 2011, was crowned Best Musical.

The Best Director prize was this year jointly awarded to Michael Grandage for the Donmar's current production of King Lear and Thea Sharrock for her revival of Terence Rattigan’s After the Dance at the NT Lyttelton.

Also for King Lear at the Donmar, Derek Jacobi was awarded the John and Wendy Trewin Award for Best Shakespearean Performance for his portrayal of the title role. And for The White Guard at the National, Bunny Christie took home the Best Designer prize. Christie and Sharrock are the first individual women to ever win the critics’ gongs for designer and director, respectively.

Building on their wins at the Evening Standard Awards in November, Bruce Norris' Clybourne Park, which opens at the West End’s Wyndham's on 8 February 2011 (previews from 28 January) following its run last year at the Royal Court, is awarded the gong for Best New Play, while the Court's latest teenage discovery, Anya Reiss, collects Most Promising Playwright for her debut Spur of the Moment, which premiered at the Court Upstairs.

Reiss is the fourth successive Royal Court playwright to win the prize, following Alia Bano (for Shades) in 2009, 2008's Alexi Kaye Campbell (The Pride) and Polly Stenham (That Face in 2007.

The 2011 critics’ prize for Most Promising Newcomer sees Daniel Kaluuya recognised for his role in the Royal Court's premiere of Roy Williams’ Sucker Punch. Kaluuya also consolidates his success at the Evening Standard Awards, where he was the recipient of a specially created “Shooting Star” accolade.

NOTE: Whatsonstage.com is tweeting live from today’s event - FOLLOW US ON TWITTER. In addition, photos and further reporting from the Critics’ Circle and the South Bank Awards, which are also held today, will be posted shortly. Check back for updates…

Agree or disagree?

Many of today’s winners are also in the running for the 2011 Whatsonstage.com Awards, the only major theatre prize-giving decided by the public, for which online voting continues until midnight on Monday 31 January 2011, with winners’ trophies presented on Sunday 20 February 2011 at the Whatsonstage.com Awards Concert, also held at the Prince of Wales Theatre (although in the 1,100-seat auditorium). The awards season culminates with the Laurence Olivier Awards, which are announced this year on Sunday 13 March 2011 at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane.

Whatsonstage.com Awards Concert tickets, which range from £25-£47.50, are now on sale and can be booked by phone on 0844 482 5133 or online at www.whatsonstage.com/concert.

The full list of winners for the Critics’ Circle Theatre Awards 2010 are as follows:

Clybourne Park by Bruce Norris - Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court
(Award presented to Bruce Norris by Kate Bassett of the Independent on Sunday)

The Peter Hepple Award for BEST MUSICAL
Matilda, A Musical - Royal Shakespeare Company at the Courtyard Theatre, Stratford-Upon-Avon
(Award presented to Matthew Warchus and Josie Griffiths by Matt Wolf of the International Herald Tribune)

David Suchet in All My Sons - Apollo Theatre
(Award presented to David Suchet by Charles Spencer of the Daily Telegraph)

Jenny Jules in Ruined at the Almeida Theatre
(Award presented to Jenny Jules by freelancer Jane Edwardes)

The John and Wendy Trewin Award for BEST SHAKESPEAREAN PERFORMANCE
Derek Jacobi in King Lear - Donmar Warehouse
(Award presented to Derek Jacobi by Michael Billington of the Guardian)

BEST DIRECTOR awarded jointly to
Michael Grandage for King Lear - Donmar Warehouse
(Award presented to Michael Grandage by Georgina Brown of the Mail on Sunday)

Thea Sharrock for After The Dance - NT Lyttelton
(Award presented to Thea Sharrock by Claire Allfree of the Metro)

Bunny Christie for The White Guard - NT Lyttelton
(Award presented to Bunny Christie by Paul Taylor of the Independent)

Anya Reiss for Spur of the Moment - Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court
(Award presented to Anya Reiss by Ian Shuttleworth of the Financial Times and Theatre Record)

Daniel Kaluuya for Sucker Punch - Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court
(Award presented to Daniel Kaluuya by Henry Hitchings of the Evening Standard)

Agree or disagree with the critics?
For the full list of Whatsonstage.com Awards
nominations & to vote – click here.


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