73rd Annual Tony Award Nominations

Tuesday 30th April 2019

I have always kept an eye on the Tony Awards however this year I will be following the process from start to finish and providing my thoughts. This is helped by the fact that I was able to do my first trip to Broadway back in October 2018! I can actually witness the talent in person!

If you keep tabs on the theatre world then you know the 73rd Annual Tony Award nominations have just been released…literally this morning!

Here are Ginger in the Theatre, we have some blogs planned based around the Tony Awards this year.

The first is coming at you!

A round up of the nominations for the 73rd annual Tony Awards.

 

Best Play 

Choir Boy by Tarell Alvin McCraney

The Ferryman by Jez Butterworth 

Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus by Taylor Mac

Ink by James Graham 

What the constitution Means to Me by Heidi Schreck

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Best Musical

Ain’t too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations

Beetlejuice

Hadestown

The Prom

Tootsie

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Best Book of a Musical 

Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations

Beetlejuice

Hadestown

The Prom

Tootsie

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Best Original Score (Music and/or lyrics) written for the theatre 

Be More Chill Music & Lyrics by Joe Iconis

Beetlejuice Music & Lyrics by Eddie Perfect 

Hadestown Music & Lyrics by Anaïs Mitchell 

The Prom Lyrics by Chad Beguelin 

To Kill a Mockingbird Music by Adam Guettel 

Tootsie Music & Lyrics by David Yazbek 

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Best Revival of a Play 

Arthur Miller’s All My Sons

The Boys in the Band

Burn This

Torch Song

The Waverly Gallery

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Best Revival of a Musical 

Kiss Me, Kate

Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!

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Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play 

Paddy Considine for The Ferryman 

Bryan Cranston for Network 

Jeff Daniels for To Kill a Mockingbird 

Adam Driver for Burn This 

Jeremy Pope for choir Boy 

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Best Performance for an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play 

Annette Bening for Arthur Miller’s All My Sons 

Laura Donnelly for The Ferryman 

Elaine May for The Waverly Gallery 

Janet McTeer for Bernhardt/Hamlet 

Laurie Metcalf for Hillary and Clinton 

Heidi Schreck for What the Constitution Means to Me 

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Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical 

Brooks Ashmanskas for The Prom 

Derrick Baskin for ain’t Too Proud – the Life and Times of the Temptations 

Alex Brightman for Beetlejuice 

Damon Daunno for Rodger & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! 

Santino Fontana for Tootsie

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Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical 

Stephanie J. Block for The Cher Show 

Caitlin Kinnunen for The Prom 

Beth Leaval for The Prom 

Eva Noblezada for Hadestown 

Kelli O’Hara for Kiss Me, Kate

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Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured role in a Play 

Bertie Carvel for Ink 

Robin De Jesús for The Boys in the Band 

Gideon Glick for To Kill a Mockingbird

Brandon Uranowitz for Burn this 

Benjamin Walker for Arthur Miller’s All My Sons

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Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play 

Fionnula Flanagan for The Ferryman 

Celia Keenan-Bolger for To Kill a Mockingbird 

Kristine Nielsen for Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus 

Julie White for Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus 

Ruth Wilson for King Lear

———————————-

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical 

Andre De Shields for Hadestown 

Andy Grotelueshen for Tootsie 

Partick Page for Hadestown 

Jeremy Pope for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations 

Ephraim Sykes for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations 

———————————-

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical 

Lilli Cooper for Tootsie

Amber Gray for Hadestown 

Sarah Stiles for Tootsie

Ali Stroker for Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! 

Mary Testa for Rodger & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! 

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Best Scene Design of a Play 

Miriam Buether for To Kill a Mockingbird 

Bunny Christie for Ink 

Rob Howell for The Ferryman 

Santo Loquasto for Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus 

Jan Versweyveld for Network 

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Best Scene Design of a Musical 

Robert Brill and Peter Nigrini for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations 

Peter England for King Kong 

Rachel Hauck for Hadestown 

Laura Jellinek for Rodger & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! 

David Korins for Beetlejuice 

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Best Costume Design of a Play 

Rob Howell for The Ferryman

Toni-Leslie James for Bernhardt/Hamlet 

Clint Ramos for Torch Song 

Ann roth for Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus

Ann Roth for To Kill a Mockingbird 

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Best Costume Design of a Musical 

Michael Krass for Hadestown 

William Ivey Long for Beetlejuice 

William Ivey Long for tootsie 

Bob Mackie for The Cher Show 

Paul Tazewell for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations 

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Best Lighting Design of a Play 

Neil Austin for Ink 

Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer for Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus 

Peter Mumford for The Ferryman 

Jennifer Tipton for To Kill a Mocking bird 

Jan Versweyveld and Tal Yarden for Netwrok 

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Best Lighting Design of a Musical 

Kevin Adams for The Cher Show 

Howell Binkley for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations 

Bradley King for Hadestown 

Peter Mumford for King Kong 

Kenneth Ponser and Peter Nigrini for Beetlejuice 

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Best Sound Design of a Play 

Adam Cork for Ink 

Scott Lehrer for To Kill a Mockingbird 

Fitz Patton for Choir Boy 

Nick Powell for The Ferryman 

Eric Sleichim for Network 

———————————-

Best Sound Design for a Musical 

Peter Hylenski for Beetlejuice 

Peter Hylenski for King Kong 

Steve Canyon Kennedy for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations

Drew Levy for Rodger & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! 

Nevin Steinberg and Jessica Paz for Hadestown 

———————————-

Best Direction of a Play 

Rupert Goold for Ink 

Sam Mendes for The Ferryman 

Bartlett Sher for To Kill a Mockingbird 

Ivon van Hove for Netwrok

George C. Wolfe for Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus 

———————————-

Best Direction of a Musical 

Rachel Chavkin for Hadestown 

Scott ellis for Tootsie 

Daniel Fish for Rodger & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! 

Des McAnuff for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations

Casey Nicholaw for The Prom

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Best Choreography 

Camille A. Brown for Choir Boy 

Warren Carlyle for Kiss Me, Kate

Denis Jones for Tootsie

David Neumann for Hadestown

Sergio Trujillo for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations

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Best Orchestrations 

Michael Chorney and Todd Sickafoose for Hadestown

Simon Hale for Tootsie

Larry Hochman for Kiss Me, Kate

Daniel Klager for Rodger & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!

Harold Wheeler for Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations  

 

All the best to those nominated! The 73rd Annual Tony Awards will take place on Sunday 9th June 2019.

Don’t forget to let us know your thoughts and predictions!

 

Lorna Dallas: Stages – REVIEW

Lorna Dallas: Stages

The Crazy Coqs, Live at Zédel, London

★★★★

Lorna Dallas: Stages

The Crazy Coqs, Live at Zédel, London

Reviewed by Mark Sykes

Seen March 6th, 2019

★★★★

Lorna Dallas has had an illustrious career spanning many decades, but has only recently returned to the stage after a 20-year hiatus. From Broadway to the West End (and many locations in between); from Show Boat to Hello Dolly! (and countless others), Lorna Dallas has ‘been there, done that’  – and then some! The journey from being a small town girl in Illinois, to a world-renowned stage performer is what provides the setting in Lorna’s latest one-woman show called Stages.

The show sees Lorna on stage alongside her Musical Director on piano, Chris Denny. Stages begins its journey in Lorna’s childhood years in Illinois and her parent’s initial disapproval of her having any thoughts of a singing career. Her opening number of “There’s No Business Like Show Business / A Glamourous Night” instantly proved that age hasn’t dampened those soaring soprano vocals and Lorna immediately had the audience (sprinkled with some familiar showbiz faces) enthralled.

The show, directed by Barry Kleinbort, was littered with songs written by some of the most famous names in music, such as Irving Berlin, Stephen Sondheim, Cole Porter, Kurt Weill, Kander & Ebb, etc. What stood out for me though was many of the songs were not the usual fare that you would usually hear in this type of show. Each song had been perfectly curated to fit Lorna’s life story, both on-stage and off, with each having a specific personal meaning to her. 

The singing career of Lorna Dallas really began when she won a singing contest whilst still in high school. With 20,000 contestants participating, that first showed the pedigree that she had and which would provide the initial foundation for the lengthy career that was to follow. 

Songs such as “Blues In The Night” (by Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer) and Cole Porter’s “Never Give Anything Away” (with additional lyrics by show director Barry Kleinbort) continued Lorna’s journey. Songs were interjected by fascinating stories and anecdotes, many amusing but with some striking a more personal note. “Poor Little Hollywood Star / At The Crossroads” was another song for Lorna to display her vocal skills, and it was here that she impressively proved that she could still hold a note.

There is certainly an eclectic mix of song choices in Stages, but it was obvious that much thought had gone into their selection. I suppose none more so that Jerome Kern and P.G. Wodehouse’s song “London, Dear Old London” from their 1922 musical comedy The Cabaret Girl. This fitted well with Lorna’s 2-year stint in Show Boat starring alongside Cleo Laine, and a time that she fell in love with this great city.

The highlight of the evening for me had to be Lorna’s performance of Larry Grossman & Hal Hackaday’s “Empty”. It was a stunning rendition of such a beautiful song; unbelievably, the song was cut prior to the opening of the 1970 Broadway show Minnie’s Boys. Lorna also sang one of my personal favourites, “Teach Me Tonight”, written by Gene de Paul and Sammy Cahn. Whilst the song was written in 1953 (well before I was born!), Lorna’s interpretation still feels fresh – and it also provided the opportunity to shine the light on Chris Denny’s keyboard skills with a lovely solo spot. 

The raw emotions of the evening came to the fore with Ivor Novello & Christopher Hassall’s “My Dearest Dear”. The song has a deep personal meaning for Lorna and it left a deep imprint on the hearts of the audience as well. It was a special moment of the evening.

The evening ended with Anthony Newley & Herbert Kkretzmer’s “If All The World’s A Stage”. It was a perfect way to round off a wonderful journey through time. From a small town in Illinois, to shows such as The King And I and even a Royal Variety Performance in front of Her Majesty, the Queen Mother, Lorna Dallas has come a long way. For me it was as much about the personal tales used to segue the song choices as it was the actual songs being performed; but putting them together lead to perfect combination of music and chat.

The fact that Lorna can continue to deliver shows like Stages to sell out audiences, and importantly provide a fresh interpretation on songs that go back to the early decades of the 20th century, is proof of her pedigree and staying power – the likes of which is such a rare commodity in the 21st century.

The Grand Expedition – REVIEW

The Grand Expedition

Top secret location!!!!

★★★★★ and all the stars between here and the moon!

The Grand Expedition

Top secret London location!!!!

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Reviewed by Jade Prince

Seen February 26th, 2019

★★★★★ and all the stars between here and the moon!

I can’t rave about this enough! The two and a half/three hours spent with GingerLine were a dream. For those who love both theatre and food, your time has come. There is a place where the two worlds intertwine!

GingerLine has a reputation for creating journeys for their audience members that not only teleport them to another world but also sets their taste buds alight. With past adventures including Juniper Manor, The Faculty of Eatucation, and Chambers of Flavour (V 1, 2 & 3) where tickets sold out in a blink of an eye. It is safe to say that this one appears to be following suit.

This was my first GingerLine experience and, in all honesty, I had no idea what to expect. After all, it isn’t every day one gets to indulge in an immersive dining experience. 

For those not familiar with immersive dining, you still get the theatrical story however the food is part of this story. They compliment each other perfectly; enriching all your senses. This type of immersive theatre has really taken off over the past few years with GingerLine paving the way.

Now, the event itself…

Just like any grand expedition, the destination is always in mind but never visible until the final stretch. In this case, 4pm on the day! The location is finally revealed but contrary to popular belief, it is not on the ginger line this time.

We stepped into the clouds and were sworn to secrecy. You really need the element of surprise to add to the wow factor! I can’t be giving away all their secrets! That being said, we have been granted special permission to share some production shots in order to give you a tiny glimpse into this “floating, feeding, falling dream”.

Throughout the night the action is delivered straight to the table. No need to move and trust me, with the amount of delicious food served, you did not want to move!

Majestic poetry carries you through a world where whimsical choreography, larger than life characters, hand-drawn animations, exquisite set design and explosions of flavour flow seamlessly together.

The night was meticulously planned so nothing felt rushed. There was always something to entertain and for those with wondering eyes, like myself, an endless amount of detail to discover.

I had opted for the vegetarian menu to sample for our vegetarian audience and was delighted with the way these dietary requirements were handled. Everyone was catered for all at the same time. And the presentation of the dishes remained the same. I also have to add, the vegetarian menu was delicious!

After floating, being fed and then gently falling back down to earth, it was time to finish our grand expedition. My taste buds have sampled exotic cuisine and everything just tastes bland now!

We’ll have to go on another grand expedition.

Seriously, you need to experience this. Initially, I thought it was a bit pricey but now I have experienced everything you receive and with it all to a very high standard, it is worth every penny!

Tickets and more information can be found here.

There are new worlds waiting for you!


An Enemy of the People – REVIEW

An Enemy of the People

Union Theatre, London

★★★

“In a way, it did reflect the current government state perfectly; it seemed so promising yet failed to deliver.”

An Enemy of the People

Union Theatre, London

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Reviewed by Jade Prince

Seen January 16th, 2019

★★★

The Union Theatre has opened their doors up once again to a fabulous series bringing focus on past great writers and their work in relation to today’s issues. The Phil Willmott Company have returned to The Union Theatre for their fourth season of “Essential Classics”. Between the months of January and March 2019, three shows are being presented in such a way that pulls the classic writing into the 21st century. On display is Arthur Miller’s adaptation of Henrick Ibsen’sAn Enemy of the People’, Offenbach’sCan-Can!’ and William Shakespeare’s classic, ‘Othello’. 

To start the season off, we got to see ‘An Enemy of the People’ which sees the struggle of a small town scientist as he battles the mayor and local community after making a shocking discovery which could significantly impact the future of the town’s current project. It soon becomes clear that despite the town’s people believing the harsh truth of their actions, the ability to stand against the political body of the town is non-existent. Despite Ibsen writing this piece back in 1882, the context remains relatable in today’s political climate, especially in the US with Trumps’ regime. Arthur Miller’s adaptation of Henrick’s original work was brilliant and also hit the audience hard with the realisation that regardless of the century, the same issues prevail. 

An Enemy of the People definitely delivered the message intended however the lack of professionalism really detracted from the experience. This low budget performance definitely had an impact on how a great play was received by the audience. It was clear it had so much potential. In a way, it did reflect the current government state perfectly; it seemed so promising yet failed to deliver. 

The play definitely got better with time. It gradually built up momentum. This was helped by the passion delivered by David Mildon (Dr. Thomas Stockman) which was compelling to watch. This then reached the pinnacle towards the end of act two where the level of emotion displayed by Mildon was through the roof. I applaud him for the stunning performance. 

Unfortunately, the rest of the show was rather bland. The full package was not there for me. This ranged from the lack of American accents (it appeared that this element was optional for the cast) to the mediocre set design. This really hindered the flow of the play. It was very difficult to distinguish changes in scenes which ultimately slowed the show down. The only way you could identify the scene changes were through the over exaggerated blackouts. It would have been great to see the scenes changes tackled in a different way instead of the simplest solution being selected. 

A lot of thought had been put into setting the scene and this typically came in the form of background noise. It was a very simple addition; birds chirping for when the scenes took place outside and cheering during the debate. It was a nice touch although there were some parts where the background noise was too loud and made it difficult to focus on the scene being played out infront of us. 

The Union theatre is a wonderfully intimate venue where this show could have been right at home however the space was not fully utilised and ended up coming across as very low budget. Overall it was enjoyable but very evident that there was so much more the show could have given to the audience. 

An Enemy of the People is playing at The Union Theatre until 2nd February 2019. For more information and tickets, head to  http://www.uniontheatre.biz/an-enemy-of-the-people.html

Brendan Cole: All Night Long – UK TOUR (Review)

Brendan Cole: All Night Long (UK tour )

New Theatre, Oxford

★★★★

Brendan Cole: All Night Long

New Theatre, Oxford

Seen November 5th, 2018 

Reviewed by Jade Prince 

★★★★

If you watch Strictly Come Dancing religiously, then Brendan Cole is a familiar name in your household. I like to think he warmed your hearts every Saturday night…that was until he got the boot! 

He is still doing what he loves however he isn’t static anymore. Brendan is now touring the UK with his very own show. A show you can see he has put his all into. Dazzling the audience with the classic dance genres you’d expect, from the Rumba to American Smooth to Jive with fabulous vocals and a 13-piece band to accompany. 

This is not a show I would have normally considered seeing. That being said, I really enjoyed it. It started off a little shaky and I was sat there thinking, “Oh! What have I done? Why am I here?”, but it did not take long for Brendan to convert me! Yes, the opening number was shaky. There was a near miss on stage when the spacing went out the window and a rather anticlimactic quick change. But the show itself was very much like a great red wine, it got better with time. Each number topped the one before. 

It definitely was not the set up I was expecting. I very much thought I’d be watching group dance, after group dance, after group dance. Obviously, it was very dance based, its a dance show! But it was split into bitesize sections and kept the audience engaged. It was a continuous change of solos, duet work, vocal performances and extravagant group numbers. 

The choreography was incredibly varied. Occasionally, from my limited experience of watching live dance, the steps can feel very repetitive from number to number. Not in this show. I’d say that no style of dance neighboured a similar style of dance in this line up. My favourite dance of the night had to be the Argentine Tango to ‘Skyfall’. It was mesmerising and a stunning demonstration of dreamy teamwork between Brendan and Faye Huddleston

In between the dance numbers brought a more intimate vibe to the show. Just the audience and Brendan. The script was cheesy in places however the sass it what killed me! It was vicious but delivered in such a  nonchalant way. 

Certain numbers where the music worked better with the addition of the lyrics as a pose to the backing track saw Ian Mackenzie and Jenna Lee-James came into play. I was very impressed with these two. Their vocals were on point and suited every style. It was a really nice touch to have breaks in the show for the dancers where both Ian and Jenna could have their own moments to shine. 

Aside from the couple of messy legs, it was a really enjoyable night. If you love watching strictly as a family you need to come along and see this with them. A night of great entertainment. Mr. Brendan Cole will surely warm your heart. 

Be sure to keep an eye out for Brendan’s new show which will be quickstepping its way across the UK in early 2019. Click here for tickets, venues and the latest information on “Brendan Cole Show Man Tour”