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Jamael Westman (Alexander Hamilton) and the West End cast of Hamilton (Photo: Matthew Murphy)

Jamael Westman (Alexander Hamilton) and the West End cast of Hamilton (Photo: Matthew Murphy)

Hamilton rewrites records in 2018 Olivier Award nominations

Robin Johnson

By Robin Johnson Published 6 March 2018

Lin-Manuel Miranda musical Hamilton has become the most nominated production in the history of the Olivier Awards with Mastercard, receiving 13 nominations for theatre’s biggest accolades this year.

Mirroring its achievements on Broadway, where the musical also made history in garnering 16 Tony Award nominations, Hamilton surpasses previous record-holders Harry Potter And The Cursed Child (2017) and Hairspray (2008)’s total of 11 Olivier nominations. Having reopened London’s Victoria Palace Theatre in December, the show’s remarkable impact in the West End was confirmed today in today’s live nominations announcement, hosted by musical theatre stars Elaine Paige and Alexandra Burke.

The show has 6 nominees in the acting categories – cast members Giles Terera, Jamael Westman, Rachel John, Michael Jibson, Jason Pennycooke and Cleve September, as well as director Thomas Kail and composer-lyricist Miranda, are all in the running for awards – in addition to nominations for Best Lighting Design, Best Costume Design, Best Sound Design and Best Theatre Choreographer.

Hamilton will also compete in a hotly-contested Best New Musical category, which includes four other acclaimed shows in An American In Paris (recipient of 3 nominations), Everybody’s Talking About Jamie (5 nominations), Girl From The North County (5 nominations) and Young Frankenstein (3 nominations).

Theatre fans will now be keen to see whether the production can top the record 9 wins claimed by Harry Potter And The Cursed Child in 2017, when the Olivier Awards ceremony returns to the Royal Albert Hall on Sunday 8 April.

Elsewhere, the National Theatre are celebrating a triumphant year, claiming 22 nominations in total for productions encompassing their hit revivals of Sondheim musical Follies (10 nominations), recently confirmed to be returning to London by its Best Director nominee Dominic Cooke, and epic two-parter Angels In America (6 nominations).

Meanwhile, Jez Butterworth’s Broadway-bound drama The Ferryman became the most nominated new play of the year, receiving 8 nominations which include nods for Best Director (for Sam Mendes) and Best New Play. In the latter category, it is up against Ink, Network and Oslo.

Original new work dominated many of the categories, with a significant number of artists receiving their first ever Olivier nominations. This was particularly salient in the Best Actor category, in which Paddy Considine (for The Ferryman), Bryan Cranston (for Network), and Andrew Garfield (for Angels In America) all received their first Olivier Award nominations; they will take on previous Olivier-winner Andrew Scott, recognised for his portrayal of Hamlet.

In the Best Actress category, Northern Irish actress Laura Donnelly and six-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald received their first nominations for their performances in The Ferryman and Lady Day At Emerson’s Bar And Grill respectively. They are pitted against recent Academy Award nominee Lesley Manville (put forward for her role in Long Day’s Journey Into Night) and four-time Olivier winner Imelda Staunton (for Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?). Staunton will have eyes on a rare double Olivier Award win at the ceremony, as she is also nominated for Best Actress in a Musical for Follies.

The Outstanding Achievement in Affiliate Theatre category this year demonstrates fresh, contemporary new writing in London’s off-West End theatres, and is symbolic of numerous strong producing relationships between London and other UK-based theatre makers. The nominated shows were The B*easts at Bush Theatre, produced by Something For The Weekend in association with the Bush Theatre; Killology at Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court Theatre, a co-production with the Sherman Theatre; The Red Lion at Trafalgar Studios 2, a transfer from Newcastle’s Live Theatre; and The Revlon Girl at Park Theatre, an Independence Shows production in association with Park Theatre.

The very best of opera in London will be celebrated at the Olivier Awards 2018 ceremony; a Best New Opera Production nomination went to La Bohème at Trafalgar Studios 2, with 2 nods for the Royal Opera House with The Exterminating Angel and Semiramide.

In Best New Dance Production, Sadler’s Wells dominated, reprsented by Goat by Ben Duke for Rambert Dance Company; Grand Finale by Hofesh Shechter; and Tree Of Codes by Wayne McGregor and The Paris Opera Ballet. They will take on Crystal Pite’s Flight Pattern (which played at the Royal Opera House) for the Award.

For Outstanding Achievement in Dance, Rocío Molina has been nominated for pushing the boundary of flamenco in Fallen From Heaven (Caída Del Cielo) at Barbican Theatre. Francesca Velicu has been nominated for her performance in English National Ballet’s production of Pina Bausch’s Le Sacre Du Printemps at Sadler’s Wells, while Zenaida Yanowsky has been put forward for her performance in Liam Scarlett’s Symphonic Dances at Royal Opera House.

Julian Bird, Chief Executive of the Society of London Theatre and Executive Producer of the Olivier Awards, said: “This year’s Olivier nominations reflect a strong and exciting performing arts scene in the UK with fresh, new work coming to the fore. It is wonderful to see so many first time nominees recognised and we look forward to welcoming everyone to this celebratory occasion on Sunday 8 April.”

The eyes of the theatregoing community will now fall on the Royal Albert Hall on Sunday 8 April, where Catherine Tate will host the Olivier Awards with Mastercard ceremony, set to once again be broadcast to the UK and worldwide. Tickets to theatre’s biggest night are available exclusively for Mastercard cardholders via Priceless.com.

Full list of nominees:

Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical

  • Michael Jibson for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre
  • Ross Noble for Young Frankenstein at Garrick Theatre
  • Jason Pennycooke for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre
  • Cleve September for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre

Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical

  • Sheila Atim for Girl From The North Country at The Old Vic
  • Tracie Bennett for Follies at National Theatre – Olivier
  • Rachel John for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre
  • Lesley Joseph for Young Frankenstein at Garrick Theatre

Outstanding Achievement in Music

  • Everybody’s Talking About Jamie – Music and Orchestrations by Dan Gillespie Sells, his debut as a musical theatre composer and orchestrator at Apollo Theatre
  • Follies – The Orchestra, under the Music Supervision of Nicholas Skilbeck and Music Director Nigel Lilley at National Theatre – Olivier
  • Girl From The North Country – Music & Lyrics by Bob Dylan, Original Orchestrations & Arrangements by Simon Hale at The Old Vic
  • Hamilton – Composer-Lyricist Lin-Manuel Miranda at Victoria Palace Theatre

Best New Dance Production

  • Flight Pattern by Crystal Pite at Royal Opera House
  • Goat by Ben Duke for Rambert Dance Company at Sadler’s Wells
  • Grand Finale by Hofesh Shechter at Sadler’s Wells
  • Tree Of Codes by Wayne McGregor and The Paris Opera Ballet at Sadler’s Wells

Outstanding Achievement in Dance

  • Rocío Molina for pushing the boundary of flamenco in Fallen From Heaven (Caída Del Cielo) at Barbican Theatre
  • Francesca Velicu for her performance in English National Ballet’s production of Pina Bausch’s Le Sacre Du Printemps at Sadler’s Wells
  • Zenaida Yanowsky for her performance in Liam Scarlett’s Symphonic Dances at Royal Opera House

Best Entertainment and Family

  • David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny at Garrick Theatre
  • Derren Brown: Underground at Playhouse Theatre
  • Dick Whittington at London Palladium
  • Five Guys Named Moe at Marble Arch Theatre

Best Theatre Choreographer

  • Andy Blankenbuehler for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre
  • Bill Deamer for Follies at National Theatre – Olivier
  • Kate Prince for Everybody’s Talking About Jamie at Apollo Theatre
  • Randy Skinner for 42nd Street at Theatre Royal Drury Lane
  • Christopher Wheeldon for An American In Paris at Dominion Theatre

Magic Radio Best Musical Revival

  • 42nd Street at Theatre Royal Drury Lane
  • Follies at National Theatre – Olivier
  • On The Town at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

Best Actor in a Musical

  • Ciarán Hinds for Girl From The North Country at The Old Vic
  • John McCrea for Everybody’s Talking About Jamie at Apollo Theatre
  • Giles Terera for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre
  • Jamael Westman for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre

Best Actress in a Musical

  • Janie Dee for Follies at National Theatre – Olivier
  • Shirley Henderson for Girl From The North Country at The Old Vic
  • Imelda Staunton for Follies at National Theatre – Olivier
  • Josie Walker for Everybody’s Talking About Jamie at Apollo Theatre

Best Revival

  • Angels In America at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Hamlet at Almeida Theatre
  • Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? at Harold Pinter Theatre
  • Witness For The Prosecution at London County Hall

Best New Comedy

  • Dry Powder at Hampstead Theatre
  • Labour Of Love at Noël Coward Theatre
  • Mischief Movie Night at Arts Theatre
  • The Miser at Garrick Theatre

Outstanding Achievement in Affiliate Theatre

  • The B*easts at Bush Theatre
  • Killology at Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court Theatre
  • The Red Lion at Trafalgar Studios 2
  • The Revlon Girl at Park Theatre

White Light Award for Best Lighting Design

  • Howell Binkley for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre
  • Paule Constable for Angels In America at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Paule Constable for Follies at National Theatre – Olivier
  • Jan Versweyveld for Network at National Theatre – Lyttelton

Best Sound Design

  • Tom Gibbons for Hamlet at Almeida Theatre
  • Gareth Owen for Bat Out Of Hell The Musical at London Coliseum
  • Eric Sleichim for Network at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Nevin Steinberg for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre

Best Costume Design

  • Hugh Durrant for Dick Whittington at London Palladium
  • Roger Kirk for 42nd Street at Theatre Royal Drury Lane
  • Vicki Mortimer for Follies at National Theatre – Olivier
  • Paul Tazewell for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre

Blue-I Theatre Technology Award for Best Set Design

  • Bunny Christie for Ink at Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre
  • Bob Crowley and 59 Productions for An American In Paris at Dominion Theatre
  • Rob Howell for The Ferryman at Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre
  • Vicki Mortimer for Follies at National Theatre – Olivier

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

  • Bertie Carvel for Ink at Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre
  • John Hodgkinson for The Ferryman at Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre
  • James McArdle for Angels In America at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Peter Polycarpou for Oslo at Harold Pinter Theatre

Best Actress in a Supporting Role

  • Bríd Brennan for The Ferryman at Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre
  • Denise Gough for Angels In America at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Dearbhla Molloy for The Ferryman at Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre
  • Imogen Poots for Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? at Harold Pinter Theatre

Best New Opera Production

  • La Bohème at Trafalgar Studios 2
  • The Exterminating Angel at Royal Opera House
  • Semiramide at Royal Opera House

Outstanding Achievement in Opera

  • Paul Brown for his set and costume designs for Iolanthe at London Coliseum
  • Joyce DiDonato and Daniela Barcellona for their performances in Semiramide at Royal Opera House
  • Roderick Williams for his performance in The Royal Opera’s The Return Of Ulysses at the Roundhouse

Best Actor

  • Paddy Considine for The Ferryman at Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre
  • Bryan Cranston for Network at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Andrew Garfield for Angels In America at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Andrew Scott for Hamlet at Almeida Theatre

Best Actress

  • Laura Donnelly for The Ferryman at Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre
  • Lesley Manville for Long Day’s Journey Into Night at Wyndham’s Theatre
  • Audra McDonald for Lady Day At Emerson’s Bar & Grill at Wyndham’s Theatre
  • Imelda Staunton for Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? at Harold Pinter Theatre

Best Director

  • Dominic Cooke for Follies at National Theatre – Olivier
  • Marianne Elliott for Angels In America at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Rupert Goold for Ink at Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre
  • Thomas Kail for Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre
  • Sam Mendes for The Ferryman at Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

American Airlines Best New Play

  • The Ferryman at Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre
  • Ink at Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre
  • Network at National Theatre – Lyttelton
  • Oslo at Harold Pinter Theatre

Mastercard Best New Musical

  • An American In Paris at Dominion Theatre
  • Everybody’s Talking About Jamie at Apollo Theatre
  • Girl From The North Country at The Old Vic
  • Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre
  • Young Frankenstein at Garrick Theatre
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