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Olivier Winners 1981

Designer of the Year

Winner: Carl Toms for The Provoked Wife at the National Theatre Lyttelton

Nominees:

  • Eileen Diss for Measure For Measure at the National Theatre Lyttelton
  • John Napier for Cats at the New London
  • Saul Radomsky for Tonight At 8.30 at the Lyric
  • Carl Toms for The Provoked Wife at the National Theatre Lyttelton

Director of the Year

Winner: Peter Wood for On The Razzle at the National Theatre Lyttelton

Nominees:

  • Donald McWhinnie for Translations at the National Theatre Lyttelton
  • Trevor Nunn for Cats at the New London
  • Harold Pinter for Quartermaine’s Terms at the Queen’s
  • Peter Wood for On The Razzle at the National Theatre Lyttelton

Actor of the Year in a Revival

Winner: Daniel Massey for Man And Superman at the National Theatre Olivier

Nominees:

  • Daniel Massey for Man And Superman, at the National Theatre Olivier
  • Warren Mitchell for The Caretaker at the National Theatre Lyttelton
  • David Suchet for The Merchant Of Venice, RSC at the Aldwych
  • John Wood for The Provoked Wife at the National Theatre Lyttelton

Actress of the Year in a Revival

Winner: Margaret Tyzack for Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? at the National Theatre Lyttelton

Nominees:

  • Sinead Cusack for The Maid’s Tragedy, RSC at the Warehouse
  • Rosemary Harris for All My Sons at Wyndham’s
  • Margaret Tyzack for Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? at the National Theatre Lyttelton
  • Penelope Wilton for Man And Superman at the National Theatre Olivier

Actor of the Year in a New Play

Winner: Trevor Eve for Children Of A Lesser God at the Albery

Nominees:

  • Trevor Eve for Children Of A Lesser God at the Albery
  • Edward Fox for Quartermaine’s Terms at the Queen’s
  • James Grout for Quartermaine’s Terms at the Queen’s
  • Karl Johnson for Television Times, RSC at the Warehouse

Actress of the Year in a New Play

Winner: Elizabeth Quinn for Children Of A Lesser God at the Albery

Nominees:

  • Eileen Atkins for Passion Play, RSC at the Aldwych
  • Janet Dale for The Accrington Pals, RSC at the Warehouse
  • Maggie Smith for Virginia at the Theatre Royal Haymarket
  • Elizabeth Quinn for Children Of A Lesser God at the Albery

Comedy Performance of the Year

Winner: Rowan Atkinson for Rowan Atkinson In Revue at the Globe

Nominees:

  • Rowan Atkinson for Rowan Atkinson In Revue at the Globe
  • Georgina Hale for Steaming at the Comedy
  • Donald Sinden for Present Laughter at the Vaudeville
  • Angela Thorne for Anyone For Denis? at the Whitehall

Outstanding Achievement in Opera

Winner: Les Contes D’Hoffman, The Royal Opera at the Royal Opera House

Nominees:

  • Die Frau Ohne Schatten, Welsh National Opera at the Dominion
  • Les Contes D’Hoffman, The Royal Opera at the Royal Opera House
  • Lulu, The Royal Opera at the Royal Opera House
  • Samson Et Delilah, The Royal Opera at the Royal Opera House

Actor of the Year in a Supporting Role

Winner: Joe Melia for Good, RSC at the Warehouse

Nominees:

  • Tony Church for Hamlet, RSC at the Aldwych
  • Joe Melia for Good, RSC at the Warehouse
  • Norman Rodway for Shadow Of A Gunman, RSC at the Warehouse
  • Tom Wilkinson for Hamlet, RSC at the Aldwych

Actress of the Year in a Supporting Role

Winner: Gwen Watford for Present Laughter at the Vaudeville

Nominees:

  • Brenda Bruce for Romeo And Juliet, RSC at the Aldwych
  • Sinead Cusack for As You Like It, RSC at the Aldwych
  • Gwen Taylor for Harvest at the Ambassadors
  • Gwen Watford for Present Laughter at the Vaudeville

Actor of the Year in a Musical

Winner: Michael Crawford for Barnum at the London Palladium

Nominees:

  • Brian Blessed for Cats at the New London
  • Michael Crawford for Barnum at the London Palladium
  • Henderson Forsythe for The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane
  • Wayne Sleep for Cats at the New London

Actress of the Year in a Musical

Winner: Carlin Glynn for The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane

Nominees:

  • Petula Clark for The Sound Of Music at the Apollo Victoria
  • Carlin Glynn for The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane
  • Patricia Hodge for The Mitford Girls at the Globe
  • Sylvia Kumba Williams for One Mo’ Time at the Cambridge

Outstanding Achievement of the Year in a Musical

Winner: Gillian Lynne, choreographer of Cats at the New London

Nominees:

  • Vernel Bagneris, writer and director of One Mo’ Time at the Cambridge
  • Gillian Lynne, choreographer of Cats at the New London
  • The Staging, Barnum at the London Palladium
  • The Style And Design, The Mitford Girls at the Globe

Most Promising Newcomer of the Year in Theatre

Winner: Alice Krige for Arms And The Man at the Lyric

Nominees:

  • Catherine Hall for Naked Robots, RSC at the Warehouse
  • Alice Krige for Arms And The Man at the Lyric
  • Jeremy Nicholas for Three Men In A Boat at the Mayfair
  • Eric Peterson for Billy Bishop Goes To War at the Comedy

Outstanding First Achievement of the Year in Opera

Winner: Anne Mackay for The Gypsy Princess at Sadler’s Wells

Nominees:

  • Helen Field for The Cunning Little Vixen at the Dominion
  • Anne Mackay for The Gypsy Princess at Sadler’s Wells
  • Claire Powell for The Royal Opera’s Les Contes D’Hoffman at the Royal Opera House
  • David Wilson-Johnson for The Lighthouse at Sadler’s Wells

Outstanding First Achievement of the Year in Ballet

Winner: Bryony Brind for The Royal Ballet’s Dances of Albion at the Royal Opera House

Nominees:

  • Bryony Brind for The Royal Ballet’s Dances of Albion at the Royal Opera House
  • Stephen Beagley for work in new productions with the Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House
  • Michael Clark for work in new productions with Ballet Rambert at Sadler’s Wells
  • Ashley Page for The Royal Ballet’s Isadora at the Royal Opera House

Outstanding Achievement of the Year in Ballet

Winner: Forgotten Land, The Stuttgart Ballet at the London Coliseum

Nominees:

  • Dances Of Albion, The Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House
  • Death And The Maiden, London Contemporary Dance Theatre at Sadler’s Wells
  • Forgotten Land, The Stuttgart Ballet at the London Coliseum
  • Night Moves, Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet at Sadler’s Wells

Comedy of the Year

Winner: Steaming by Nell Dunn at the Comedy

Nominees:

  • Anyone For Denis? by John Wells at the Whitehall
  • Can’t Pay? Won’t Pay! by Dario Fo at the Criterion
  • On The Razzle by Tom Stoppard at the National Theatre Lyttelton
  • Steaming by Nell Dunn at the Comedy

Musical of the Year

Winner: Cats, based on the poems by T.S. Eliot, music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, additional material by Trevor Nunn and Richard Stilgoe at the New London

Nominees:

  • Cats, based on the poems by T.S. Eliot, music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, additional material by Trevor Nunn and Richard Stilgoe at the New London
  • Barnum, book by Mark Bramble, songs by Cy Coleman at the London Palladium
  • One Mo’ Time, book by Vernon Bagneris, music and lyrics by various, at the Cambridge
  • The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas, Larry King and Peter Masterson, music and lyrics by Carol Hall, at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane

Play of the Year

Winner: Children Of A Lesser God by Mark Medoff at the Albery

Nominees:

  • Children Of A Lesser God by Mark Medoff at the Albery
  • Passion Play by Peter Nichols, RSC at the Aldwych
  • Translations by Brian Friel, at the National Theatre Lyttelton
  • Quartermaine’s Terms by Simon Gray at the Queen’s