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Miriam-Teak Lee at The Stage Debut Awards 2017 (Photo credit: Alex Brenner)

& Juliet star Miriam-Teak Lee to host The Stage Debut Awards 2020

Published 27 August 2020

The Stage has today announced the award-winning & Juliet actress Miriam-Teak Lee will host this year’s The Stage Debut Awards, in association with Access Entertainment.

The Stage Debut Awards celebrate the very best breakthrough talent in theatre, from actors and directors to designers, writers, composers and lyricists, all of whom have made their professional debuts in the past year.

Having only graduated from Arts Ed in 2017, Miriam-Teak is already well on her way to being a West End sensation. She wowed the judges with her debut performance for her role of Claire DeLoone in Drew McOnie’s On The Town, for which she was awarded Best Actress in a Musical at the inaugural The Stage Debut Awards four years ago. From there, she performed in the original London cast of Hamilton and is currently leading the acclaimed West End musical & Juliet. Lee scooped Best Actress in a Musical at the What’s On Stage awards for her celebrated performance as Juliet, and has also received an Olivier nomination.

Speaking about the awards, Miriam-Teak Lee said, “I’m so delighted that The Stage Debut Awards are still going ahead this year to recognise the amazing talent who made their first steps in theatre from September until March 16.

“It is incredible that these performers, directors, designers, composers and writers will have a light shone on them, so others will know what they achieved. It is so important.”

She added, “The Stage holds such a special place in my heart. From being nominated for the first edition of The Stage Debut Awards in 2017 to actually winning, and then singing at the ceremony the year later. It now feels incredible to have come full circle and help acknowledge these new talents.”

The full shortlist celebrates the breadth of emerging talent across the UK. As well as these more established theatremakers, the shortlist includes newcomers from productions in Cardiff, Ipswich, Leeds, Leicester and Manchester, as well as from shows across London. Productions featuring debuts showcase the full range of theatre with nominees shortlisted for some of the largest productions in the West End and around the UK as well as pub, fringe and open-air theatre. Debuts made after August 1, 2019 were eligible for this year’s awards.

Wendell Pierce (The Wire, Suits), Robbie Williams (Take That), David Mitchell (Peep Show), Aimee Lou Wood (Netflix’s Sex Education) and the stars of West End musical Dear Evan Hansen are among the nominees for The Stage Debut Awards 2020, in association with Access Entertainment.

This year, The Stage is excited to host everyone at its prestigious awards ceremony with a free online event on Sunday, September 27 at 7pm. The ceremony will be available to watch on The Stage websiteThe Stage Facebook Page and Scenesaver.

For more details on how to watch The Stage Debut Awards online visit thestage.co.uk/debuts

The shortlist in full:

Best Performer in a Play – sponsored by Audible 

  • Saida Ahmed for Little Miss Burden at The Bunker, London
  • Katie Erich for Oliver Twist at Leeds Playhouse  (in a co-production with Ramps on the Moon)
  • Brooklyn Melvin for Oliver Twist at Leeds Playhouse (in a co-production with Ramps on the Moon)
  • Daniel Monks for Teenage Dick at the Donmar Warehouse, London
  • Rachel Nwokoro for Little Baby Jesus at the Orange Tree Theatre, London
  • Jessica Rhodes for The Sugar Syndrome at the Orange Tree Theatre, London
  • Khai Shaw for Little Baby Jesus at the Orange Tree Theatre, London
  • Bobby Stallwood for Faith, Hope and Charity at the National Theatre, London

Best Performer in a Musical  

  • Shan Ako for Les Misérables at the Sondheim Theatre, London
  • Lucy Anderson for Dear Evan Hansen at the Noël Coward Theatre, London
  • Chase Brown for Mame at the Hope Mill Theatre, Manchester
  • Oli Higginson for The Last Five Years at the Southwark Playhouse, London
  • Adriana Ivelisse for West Side Story at Curve, Leicester
  • Tom Noyes for Preludes at the Southwark Playhouse, London
  • Bethany Tennick for Islander at the Southwark Playhouse, London
  • Sam Tutty for Dear Evan Hansen at the Noël Coward Theatre, London

Best Director – sponsored by Smith & Williamson  

  • Georgia Green for The Mikvah Project at the Orange Tree Theatre, London
  • Martha Kiss Perrone for When It Breaks It Burns at the Battersea Arts Centre, London
  • Alex Sutton for Preludes at the Southwark Playhouse, London

Best Designer – sponsored by Robe Lighting  

  • Liam Bunster (set and costume) for The Taming of the Shrew at Shakespeare’s Globe, London
  • Andrew Exeter (lighting) for High Fidelity at the Turbine Theatre, London
  • Rose Revitt (set and costume) for Dr Korczak’s Example at Leeds Playhouse

Best Composer or Lyricist  

  • Jim Barne and Kit Buchan for The Season at the New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich and Royal & Derngate, Northampton
  • Jherek Bischoff for The Ocean at the End of the Lane at the National Theatre, London
  • Robbie Williams for The Boy in the Dress at the Royal Shakespeare Company, Stratford-upon-Avon

Best Writer  

  • Samuel Bailey for Shook at the Southwark Playhouse, London
  • Mari Izzard for Hela at The Other Room, Cardiff
  • Eleanor Tindall for Before I Was a Bear at The Bunker, London
  • Temi Wilkey for The High Table at the Bush Theatre, London (in a co-production with Birmingham Rep)

Best West End Debut Performer – sponsored by Trafalgar Entertainment 

  • Shan Ako for Les Misérables at the Sondheim Theatre
  • David Mitchell for The Upstart Crow at the Gielgud Theatre
  • Daniel Monks for Teenage Dick at the Donmar Warehouse
  • Samantha Pauly for Evita at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre
  • Wendell Pierce for Death of a Salesman at the Piccadilly Theatre
  • Sam Tutty for Dear Evan Hansen at the Noël Coward Theatre
  • Aimee Lou Wood for Uncle Vanya at the Harold Pinter Theatre

Best Creative West End Debut – sponsored by the Noël Coward Foundation 

  • Fabian Aloise (choreographer) for Evita at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre
  • Nadia Latif (director) for Fairview at the Young Vic Theatre
  • Benj PasekJustin Paul and Steven Levenson (composer, lyricist & book) for Dear Evan Hansen at the Noël Coward Theatre
  • Femi Temowo (composer) for Death of a Salesman at the Piccadilly Theatre and for Three Sisters at the National Theatre
  • David West Read (book) for & Juliet at the Shaftesbury Theatre

The Stage Debut Awards celebrate the very best breakthrough talent in theatre, from actors and directors to designers, writers, composers and lyricists, all of whom have made their professional debuts in the past year.

For more information visit thestage.co.uk/debuts

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