Mirren, Lewis laud British theatre at London awards show
Sunday, November 17, 2013 - 01:27
London theatre comes out the big winner after a stellar nominations list lauds West End work at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards. (Rough cut - no reporter narration)
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ROUGH CUT - NO REPORTER NARRATION
Hollywood actors including Helen Mirren, Hugh Grant and Damian Lewis descended on The Savoy hotel in London on Sunday (November 16) for the Evening Standard Theatre Awards, recognising actors, directors and playwrights working in the West End. Compered by Homeland star Damian Lewis, the Evening Standard, London's free daily newspaper, described the last 12 months as a "remarkable year for theatre," which looked at all performances and productions that opened in London in the 12 months between this and last year's final judges meetings. Mirren was named best actress for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II in "The Audience", while the best actor award was split between Rory Kinnear and Adrian Lester as the leads in "Othello". Mirren, who won an Oscar for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth in Steven Frears's movie "The Queen", said she feels such awards are being given to the queen as much as to her. The award for best play on the London stage went to Lucy Kirkwood for "Chimerica", an exploration of the relationship between the United States and China as seen through the eyes of an American photojournalist trying to track down a young protester who faced down a tank in Tiananmen Square in 1989. A revival of Stephen Sondheim's "Merrily We Roll Along", a flop on Broadway in 1981, was named best musical while Richard Eyre won best director for a revival of Ibsen's "Ghosts". Homeland star Damian Lewis presented the awards, which he said were a testament to the strongest stage acting anywhere. The awards have been presented annually since 1955 and past winners include Laurence Olivier, Richard Burton, Michael Gambon, Vanessa Redgrave, Gwyneth Paltrow and Patrick Stewart.
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