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The Green Room: Who should be recognised at award ceremonies?

Royal Opera House. Photo: Alistair Muir Royal Opera House. Photo: Alistair Muir

Meet our panel: We have given our panellists pen-names and used stock images but their biographies reflect their real career details…

Albert_Parker

Albert Parker is 58 and has appeared as a regular in soaps, two BAFTA award winning sitcoms, theatre and TV

Ted-Baloo

Ted Baloo is 35. He trained at Rose Bruford and has since worked in regional theatre and on tour, with occasional TV appearances

eoghan barry

Eoghan Barry is 30. He has worked professionally as an actor on fringe projects and work for young people and more recently as a writer

Pierce_Caffrey

Pierce Caffrey, 23, graduated from drama school and has performed on TV and in theatre

Molly_Muffet

Molly Muffet is 37. After graduating from university, she joined the cast of a major BBC sitcom. Since then, she has worked extensively on stage

Jit_Singh

Jit Singh is 41 and has worked extensively in theatre, film and TV, including new plays for companies such as the National Theatre

Pierce I’m really not up on the whole awards scene.

Eoghan That’s a hard question.

Albert Given the recent uproar, perhaps ‘most audible actor’ might be a category we should consider.

Thomas Are there any unsung heroes you have come across? People you feel deserve some recognition – maybe a brilliant, unheard of actor (don’t say you) or a great stage manager, or a brilliant dresser?

Eoghan I do think it’s generally a shame that so-called technical and design awards often get bumped in broadcast ceremonies. It’s not unusual for a host to say something like: “And now here, off tape, are some other awards (with non-famous people getting them).”

Jit Not so much awards, but I was talking to a hatter who works on big films and theatre. Has done for decades and she was complaining she has only been credited for her work about four times.

Eoghan I’ve often felt that calling some theatre shows can require superhuman acts. Perhaps an award for ‘technical achievement’ to encompass that area of stage management?

Albert May I just publicly state that I think all stage managers should be given an award.

Eoghan There is a move to get casting directors acknowledged at awards.

Jit I absolutely think casting directors should get awards. They bring together a whole company of actors that can make or break a project. They have a huge influence on the success of a production.

Albert Oh God no. Why not start acknowledging drivers then? You get a bad one, it can put you in a terrible mood by the time you arrive on location. Best catering?

Eoghan I think assembling a good cast is a skill. But I agree that ultimately it’s the director’s call (in theatre anyway) and quality and input of casting can vary from the casting director.

Albert And in TV it is nearly always the producer’s call.

Pierce Yup.

Molly I do think it is ridiculous that the Tony Awards no longer recognise sound designers. And there also seems to be a lack of acknowledgement for composers.

Albert I think that, now we have a lot more disciplines in productions and a lot more physical theatre, perhaps somebody should look at the work of movement directors.

Thomas Interesting – movement directors and choreographers?

Albert Look at the wonderful stuff that Polly Bennett has done on People, Places and Things. The work on The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Integral to the show and yet it’s not choreography.

Thomas Yes – the work the Frantic Assembly team did on Curious Incident is surely integral to the show’s success, and yet if feels like it is rarely mentioned or credited.

Ted The major overlooked areas at awards are generally musical ones, I think.

Thomas What awards would you like to see?

Ted There should be a musical director category and also possibly orchestrator/arranger ones, too. They are such intrinsic parts of the success (or failure) of a show and also, with the continued success of actor-musician productions and chamber re-imagining’s of large-scale work, have a major impact on the feel and interpretation of a work – as much as direction does.

Eoghan Yes – I’ve felt that in theatre, musical direction can be often overlooked.

Thomas Have you seen anything that closed early and you felt deserved better recognition?

Eoghan I thought Urinetown was an excellent show, but didn’t last more than a few months in the West End. I can’t recall if it won many awards.

Pierce I’ve seen some stuff that I thought should/would spark a whole new genre of excellent theatre, but for whatever reason wasn’t as commercially viable as you would think, and so nobody else really decided to take the leap.

Thomas Like what, Pierce?

Pierce The last one that comes to my mind there is London Road. After I saw that, I thought verbatim stuff would just explode.

Eoghan London Road is a good shout actually.

Pierce But I haven’t seen anything like that since. So interesting, thought provoking, and what a wonderful medium to express the story – just mesmerising. But no money in it.

Thomas I’m not sure I would agree with you there, Pierce. Verbatim has been a pretty big part of theatre programming both before and after London Road. Although I guess we haven’t seen any verbatim musical theatre pieces since.

Eoghan I find I get more riled up not by things being overlooked, but by things being nominated that are just to plump up the awards themselves. Certain awards ceremonies think the bigger the name, the more dead-cert they should be to be nominated.

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