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Imelda Staunton and Nicole Kidman win at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards 2015

If you can't get Nicole Kidman on the bill, catchy titles can help. Photo: Marc Brenner Nicole Kidman has won best actress at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards. Photo: Marc Brenner
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Imelda Staunton, James McAvoy and Nicole Kidman have won acting honours at this year’s London Evening Standard Theatre Awards.

The ceremony also saw Stephen Sondheim honoured for his contribution to musical theatre, and the Royal Court take away three prizes, giving it the biggest number of awards for a single venue.

Staunton won the best musical performance prize for her role in Gypsy, the Chichester Festival Theatre production that transferred to the Savoy Theatre in the West End earlier this year. Staunton’s role in the show also earned her the UK Theatre award for best musical performance earlier this year.

Kidman was named best actress for Photograph 51 at the Noel Coward, a play that marked her return to the West End stage after 17 years, with McAvoy named best actor for The Ruling Class, Jamie Lloyd’s production at the Trafalgar Studios.

Elsewhere, Gemma Arterton won the best newcomer in a musical award for Made in Dagenham, while Kinky Boots won the best musical award, as voted for by the public.

Meanwhile, Robert Icke was named best director for Oresteia, which originally ran at the Almeida Theatre before moving to the Trafalgar Studios.

The best play category was won by the National Theatre’s The Motherf**ker with the Hat, with Molly Davies winning the award for most promising playwright for God Bless the Child, which ran at the Royal Court.

The Royal Court also won prizes in the design category, with Anna Fleischle winning for Hangmen, and in the emerging talent section. This prize was won by actor David Moorst, for Violence and Son.

This year’s editor’s award was presented to Vanessa Redgrave, while the Lebedev award, the equivalent of an outstanding achievement prize, was given to composer Stephen Sondheim.

The awards ceremony was presented by Rob Brydon at the Old Vic in London.

The winners in full

 Best actor

  • Simon Russell Beale, Temple, Donmar Warehouse
  • Kenneth Cranham, The Father, Ustinov Bath, Tricycle & Wyndham’s Theatre
  • Ralph Fiennes, Man and Superman, National Theatre’s Lyttelton
  • James McAvoy, The Ruling Class, Trafalgar Studios – WINNER

 Best actress

  • Denise Gough, People, Places and Things, National Theatre’s Dorfman
  • Nicole Kidman, Photograph 51, Noel Coward Theatre – WINNER
  • Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Nell Gwynn, Shakespeare’s Globe
  • Lia Williams, Oresteia, Almeida Theatre & Trafalgar Studios

 Best play

  • The Motherf**ker with the Hat (Stephen Adly Guirgis), National Theatres Lyttelton – WINNER
  • Hangmen (Martin McDonagh) Royal Court
  • The Father (Florian Zeller, translated by Christopher Hampton) Ustinov Bath, Tricycle & Wyndham’s Theatre

Best director

  • Robert Icke, Oresteia, Almeida Theatre & Trafalgar Studios – WINNER
  • Jamie Lloyd, Assassins, Menier Chocolate Factory
  • Indhu Rubasingham, The Motherf**ker with the Hat, National Theatre’s Lyttelton

Best design

  • Anna Fleischle, Hangmen, Royal Court – WINNER
  • Tim Hatley, Temple, Donmar Warehouse
  • Robert Jones, City of Angels, Donmar Warehouse

 Most promising playwright

  • Molly Davies, God Bless the Child, Royal Court Upstairs – WINNER
  • Alistair McDowall, Pomona, Orange Tree Theatre & National Theatre’s Temporary Theatre
  • Diana Nneka Atuona, Liberian Girl, Royal Court Upstairs

Emerging talent award

  • Calvin Demba, The Red Lion, National Theatre’s Dorfman
  • Patsy Ferran, Treasure Island, National Theatre’s Olivier
  • David Moorst, Violence and Son, Royal Court Upstairs – WINNER

Best musical performance

  • Katie Brayben, Beautiful, Aldwych Theatre
  • Rosalie Craig, City of Angels, Donmar Warehouse
  • Killian Donnelly, Kinky Boots, Adelphi Theatre
  • Imelda Staunton, Gypsy, Savoy Theatre

Newcomer in a musical

  • Gemma Arterton, Made in Dagenham, Adelphi Theatre – WINNER
  • Ellie Bamber, High Society, Old Vic
  • Natalie Dew, Bend It Like Beckham, Phoenix Theatre

Evening Standard Radio 2 audience award for best musical

  • Assassins, Menier Chocolate Factory
  • Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, Aldwych Theatre
  • Bend It Like Beckham, Phoenix Theatre
  • Gypsy, Savoy Theatre
  • Kinky Boots, Adelphi Theatre – WINNER

Beyond Theatre

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty

Editor’s award

Vanessa Redgrave

Lebedev award

Stephen Sondheim

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