By Skanda Panditharatne
The first ANU Theatre Awards took place last night, recognising productions from this year. The National University Theatre Society (NUTS) won several of the major awards for its shows, including Show of the Year for ‘The Physicists’, and Best Overall Ensemble and the Award for Production Excellence for ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’.
The sold-out awards night, which was held at the National Museum, was organised as a collaboration between a number of different campus theatre groups. The event was the brainchild of Georgia-Cate Westcott, Lily Iervasi, and Claire Holland, who formed the organising committee.
Westcott told Observer that they decided to create the awards as there is “such an abundance of talented individuals at ANU”. “We wanted to create an accessible way for our incredible community to be celebrated – not just actors, but everyone involved behind the scenes,” she said. She noted that while awards were presented to clubs and societies at Clubs Ball and to some productions at the Canberra Area Theatre (CAT) Awards, not all production groups were affiliated to Clubs Council or could afford CAT’s fees.
In other major awards, the award for Performer of the Year went to Jack Shanahan, who performed in ‘The Physicists’, ‘Wit’, and ANU Arts Revue. Best Direction was awarded to Holly Johnson for ‘The Physicists’. Kat Carrington was also honoured for ‘Outstanding contribution to the Arts at ANU’.
The awards were judged by Laura Emerson, Marni Mount and Sachini Poogoda. As all three are heavily involved in the ANU theatre community, proxy judges were selected for productions they were involved with. Emerson described the night as a “huge success”, calling it a “well executed and long awaited (nay! needed!) event”. The awards were sponsored by ANU Women’s Revue, NUTS, Unilodge and the Clubs Council.
The full list of awards may be found below:
- Award for Technical Excellence: Joel Ramsay, Stephen Still, Zoe Swan, Jacob Schyvens, Olivia Sparrow, Zyl Hovenga-Wauchope and Marni Mount – ANU Law Revue
- Best Costume Design: Ingrid Petersen, Fuyuka Sato, Jasmyne Bowler – The Remembered Mother
- Best Set Design: Kat Carrington and Millie Bull – Dogfight
- Best Musical Number: Around Here – 9 to 5
- Best Band: Angus Ogborne, Jia Ying Lim, Renee Selvey, Jessica Coote, Isaac Said, Vivian Zhu, Musical Director Jack Quail – Dogfight
- Best Choreography: Isabelle Lee and Maddison Perkins – ANU Law Revue
- Outstanding contribution to the Arts at ANU: Kat Carrington
- Best Debut: Harry Power – City of Angels and Chloe Sinclair – Women’s Revue
- Best Original/Parody Work: Record Scratch – ANU ARTS Revue
- ‘Magic Moment’ Award: A Stroll Through Union Court – ANU Women’s Revue
- Actor in a leading role in a play: Claudia Harris – Wit
- Actor in a supporting role in a play: Caitlin Burke – The Physicists
- Actor in a leading role in a musical: Tegan Braithwaite – Dogfight
- Actor in a supporting role in a musical: Alison Mount – Dogfight
- Outstanding performance by an individual in a revue: Anastassia Krstevska – Women’s Revue
- Best Overall Ensemble: The cast of The Importance of Being Earnest
- Show of the Year: The Physicists, NUTS
- Performer of the Year: Jack Shanahan – The Physicists, ANU Arts Revue, Wit
- Award for Production Excellence: The Importance of Being Earnest
- Best Direction: Holly Johnson – The Physicists
Production groups considered for the awards included ANU Musical Theatre Company, NUTS, Bruce Hall, Ethnocultural Revue, Women’s Revue, UniLodge, Burgmann College, John XXIII College, Arts Revue, Law Revue, Za Kabuki, Science Revue, and Ursula Hall.
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