The shortlist for the 64th Evening Standard Theatre Awards has been unveiled. The winners will be announced on Sunday 18 November at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.
While the subsidised theatres dominate, many of the productions shortlisted have been such strong critical and commercial hits that they have transferred or are about to transfer to the West End or Broadway.
- Laura Linney and Carey Mulligan shortlisted in Best Actress category
- Bryan Cranston, Ralph Fiennes and Ian McKellen up for Best Actor
- Gender-swap revival of Sondheim’s Company shortlisted in four categories
- Post-AIDS play The Inheritance competes in three categories
- National Theatre has 14 mentions on the shortlist
In the category of Natasha Richardson Award for Best Actress, two performances in one-woman plays go head to head. Laura Linney is shortlisted for her solo performance in an adaptation of Elizabeth Strout’s novel, My Name Is Lucy Barton. Up against her is Carey Mulligan in Dennis Kelly’s Girls and Boys.
Completing the Best Actress line-up are Cecilia Noble in a comic role in Nine Night, Lia Williams as the schoolmistress in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and Sophie Okonedo as the Egyptian queen in Antony and Cleopatra.
Okonedo’s co-star Ralph Fiennes, playing Antony in the National Theatre production, is shortlisted for Best Actor. Two other National Theatre productions are recognised in the Best Actor category: Bryan Cranston in Network and Colin Morgan for Translations, a revival of Brian Friel’s classic play. Also competing for Best Actor are Ian McKellen as King Lear and Kyle Soller in the post-Aids play The Inheritance.
Contenders for Best Play include three female writers – Laura Wade, Annie Baker and Ella Hickson. They are up against works by New Yorker Matthew Lopez and, from Italy, Stefano Massini (with his adaptor Ben Power, deputy artistic director of the National Theatre).
The National Theatre leads the shortlist with 14 mentions. The production to make the most appearances on the shortlist is Marianne Elliott’s gender-swap revival of Sondheim’s musical, Company, followed by The Inheritance, which has three.
The Emerging Talent Award, recognises the stars of tomorrow. The contenders are Hamilton’s Jamael Westman, Rona Morison in The Pride of Miss Jean Brodie, Debris Stevenson, creator and star of Poet in da Corner, and Chris Walley, making his stage debut in The Lieutenant of Inishmore. Director Roy Alexander Weise is also shortlisted for his work on two productions: Nine Night at the National Theatre and Br’er Cotton at Theatre503.
The Evening Standard Theatre Awards are hosted by the newspaper’s owner Evgeny Lebedev with his co-hosts Anna Wintour, Claire Foy and Idris Elba. The ceremony will be presented by Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
Evening Standard Theatre Awards 2018: Shortlist
Best Actor in partnership with Ambassador Theatre Group
Bryan Cranston – Network, National Theatre (Lyttelton)
Ralph Fiennes – Antony and Cleopatra, National Theatre (Olivier)
Ian McKellen – King Lear, Minerva Chichester and Duke of York’s
Colin Morgan – Translations, National Theatre (Olivier)
Kyle Soller– The Inheritance, Young Vic and Noël Coward Theatre
Natasha Richardson Award For Best Actress in partnership with Christian Louboutin
Laura Linney – My Name Is Lucy Barton, Bridge Theatre
Carey Mulligan – Girls and Boys, Royal Court
Cecilia Noble – Nine Night, National Theatre (Dorfman)
Sophie Okonedo – Antony and Cleopatra, National Theatre (Olivier)
Lia Williams – The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Donmar Warehouse
Best Play in partnership with Chanel
Home, I’m Darling – Laura Wade, National Theatre (Dorfman)
The Inheritance – Matthew Lopez, Young Vic & Noël Coward Theatre
John – Annie Baker, National Theatre (Dorfman)
The Lehman Trilogy – Stefano Massini, (adapted by Ben Power), National Theatre
The Writer (Lyttelton) – Ella Hickson, Almeida
Milton Shulman Award For Best Director
Stephen Daldry – The Inheritance, Young Vic & Noël Coward Theatre
Marianne Elliott– Company, Gielgud Theatre
Robert Hastie– The York Realist, Donmar Warehouse
Phyllida Lloyd– Tina, Aldwych Theatre
Ian Rickson – Translations, National Theatre (Olivier)
Caroline, or Change – Minerva Chichester & Hampstead Theatre
Company – Gielgud Theatre
Everybody’s Talking About Jamie – Apollo Theatre
Fun Home – Young Vic
Hamilton – Victoria Palace
Best Musical Performance
Sharon D Clarke – Caroline, or Change, Minerva Chichester & Hampstead
Rosalie Craig– Company, Gielgud Theatre
Arinzé Kene– Misty, Bush and Trafalgar Studios
Kelli O’Hara – The King and I, Palladium
Adrienne Warren– Tina, Aldwych
Miriam Buether – The Jungle, Young Vic and Playhouse Theatre
Bunny Christie– Company, Gielgud Theatre
Es Devlin – Girls and Boys, Royal Court
Rae Smith – Translations, National Theatre (Olivier)
Jan Versweyveld – Network, National Theatre (Lyttelton)
Charles Wintour Award For Most Promising Playwright
Tearrance Arvelle Chisholm – Br’er Cotton, Theatre503
Natasha Gordon– Nine Night, National Theatre (Dorfman)
Francis Turnly– The Great Wave, National Theatre (Dorfman)
Emerging Talent Award in partnership with Access Entertainment
Rona Morison – The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Donmar Warehouse
Debris Stevenson – Poet in da Corner, Royal Court
Chris Walley – The Lieutenant of Inishmore, Noël Coward Theatre
Roy Alexander Weise(director) – Nine Night, National Theatre (Dorfman)/Br’er Cotton, Theatre503
Jamael Westman – Hamilton, Victoria Palace