Blonde evening for Whatsonstage Awards

Published February 18, 2011

Legally Blonde The Musical has scooped four awards at the annual Whatsonstage Awards.

The musical, which opened at the Savoy theatre in January 2010, was voted Best New Musical in the only UK theatre awards ceremony to be voted for entirely by the public.

Legally Blonde’s leading lady Sheridan Smith – a co-presenter of Sunday’s ceremony at the Prince of Wales theatre alongside Christopher Biggins and Miranda Hart – picked up Best Actress in a Musical, with co-star Jill Halfpenny collecting Best Supporting Actress in a Musical. Their director and choreographer, Jerry Mitchell, was voted Best Choreographer.

The male musical Actor and Supporting Actor categories were won by Ramin Karimloo and Joseph Millson, the stars of another big budget musical of last year, Love Never Dies.

In non-musical fare, David Suchet and Zoë Wanamaker, the leads in Howard Davies’s revival of Arthur Miller’s All My Sons, were pronounced Best Actor and Actress, though the production itself was pipped to the post in the Best Play Revival category by Cat On A Hot Tin Roof.

Nigel Lindsay and Tamsin Greig triumphed in the Supporting Actor and Actress categories, for Broken Glass and The Little Dog Laughed respectively. Interestingly, Greig is nominated for the same role but in the Best Actress category at this year’s Laurence Olivier Awards.

Shakespeare’s Globe’s production of Anne Boleyn won Best New Play, the National Theatre’s production of Hamlet was named Best Shakespearean Production and Yes, Prime Minister took home Best New Comedy.

Other winners of the 26 awards included Timothy Sheader, who won Best Director for his productions of Into The Woods and The Crucible at the Open Air theatre, Jonathan Groff, who was named London Newcomer of the Year and Meera Syal, who took home Best Solo Performance for Shirley Valentine.

Cameron Mackintosh’s 25th anniversary celebrations for Les Misérables also dominated the awards. The Barbican production won Best Musical Revival while the concert version at the O2 picked up Best Ensemble Performance and Theatre Event of the Year.

Having already celebrated the Evening Standard Theatre Awards and the Critics Circle Awards, London’s Theatreland is currently gearing up for the final, and most prestigious, awards ceremony of the season, the Laurence Olivier Awards, to be held on 13 March at Theatre Royal Drury Lane.

For all the latest news about the awards, as well as a full list of nominations, photographs and video, visit the brand new Olivier Awards website, where you can also vote for your favourite long-running show in the Radio 2 Olivier Audience Award.