Olivier Award winner Tracie Bennett will host the 12th annual West End Gala for The Stephen Sondheim Society Student Performer of the Year and the 11th anniversary of The Stiles + Drewe Prize this Summer.
The annual competition, co-produced by The Stephen Sondheim Society and Mercury Musical Developments, sees twelve of the top student performers from musical theatre and drama schools across the UK each perform a classic song by Stephen Sondheim and a new musical theatre song, written by members of Mercury Musical Developments.
The 2018 competition is being staged at the Savoy Theatre on Sunday 10 June at 3pm.
Writer and broadcaster Edward Seckerson returns to chair the Student Performer judges, with Rebecca Caine (the original Cosette in Les Misérables), the Olivier Award-winning Rebecca Trehearn, Stephen Ridley (Musical Director for An American In Paris), and David Benedict (Sondheim’s official biographer). Past finalists of the student performer prize have included Hollywood star Taron Egerton, Tony Award winner Cynthia Erivo and Alex Young (Carrie in Carousel at ENO, Young Sally in Follies).
The Stiles + Drewe Prize supports and develops new musical theatre writing via its two distinct arms. Recognising an outstanding song from a new musical and supported by The Entertainment Business, the winner of Best New Song receives £1,000 to put towards developing their work. Judging the Best New Song entries with Stiles and Drewe will be Sharon D Clarke (Caroline, Or Change) and writer/director Susie McKenna (former Creative Director of Hackney Empire).
In addition, the winner of the Stiles and Drewe Mentorship Award – now in its third year, generously supported by Music Theatre International (Europe) – will also be announced at the Gala.
Tickets for the evening can be purchased through the ATG website.