A London theatre director found himself in the lead role Monday at the 16th annual Brickenden Awards.
John Gerry, earlier announced as recipient of the prestigious Chris Doty Award for his contributions to theatre in London, was named outstanding director for the Calithumpian Theatre Company’s musical production, Fun Home, which also took home best musical.
The awards, which celebrate independent theatre in London, drew a near full house to the Wolf Performance Hall.
Brickenden chair Patsy Morgan said new companies on the scene, such as Calithumpian, speak to the health of theatre in London.
“These new theatre folks emerging in London, it’s wonderful to see the creativity continuing and growing,” said Morgan.
“It just keeps growing and growing with more companies every year.”
Of Gerry, Morgan said the awards are deserved.
“John brings a level of excellence, a high standard with him to each production,” Morgan said.
“It speaks to why he deserved the Doty. With his years of experience he knows what he’s doing and he raises the bar for others. He also seems to have a sense of when to stage a certain show, one the public will be receptive to, whether its a commentary (Art) or when they just want a fun show (Fun Home) where they can sit back and laugh.”
In his typically humble, self-deprecating style, Gerry said the award is an “honour.”
“When they called I was a little surprised and said, ‘Really, has the bar fallen that low?’” Gerry said in an interview.
“But the Brickendens are a great celebration of theatre. You know, we do what we do because there’s an artistic itch that needs to be scratched.”
London Community Players, the city’s oldest theatre company, took home several awards for its productions, including outstanding comedy, outstanding female supporting actor (Charlene McNabb) for Jenny’s House of Joy, and outstanding lead actor (Derek Barr) for Cherry Docs.
Calithumpian shows also won for outstanding drama, (Red) and also directed by Gerry, outstanding lighting design (Stephen Mitchell) and outstanding set design (Laura Sepulveda) for Red.
Musical Theatre Productions’ staging of Disney’s Little Mermaid won three awards, including outstanding male supporting actor (Benjamin Kennes), outstanding costume design (Becky Lenko and Kim McCuaig) and outstanding makeup (Heather Heywood and Eva Mien).
The Chris Doty Award is named after the late Londoner, who helped establish the awards in 2002 with the help of Jeff Culbert and Sean Wilson.
They are named in honour of the late London actor, director and playwright Catharine Brickenden.
If you go
Outstanding comedy: Jenny’s House of Joy, London Community Players
Outstanding lighting design: Stephen Mitchell, Red
Outstanding sound design: Graham Mennie and Peter Mennie, Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens
Outstanding youth drama: Concord Floral, Beal secondary school drama
Outstanding youth musical: Chicago: The Musical, Original Kids Theatre Company
Outstanding set design: Laura Sepulveda, Red
Outstanding female supporting actor: Charlene McNabb, Jenny’s House of Joy
Outstanding male supporting actor: Benjamin Kennes, Disney’s Little Mermaid
Outstanding costume design: Becky Lenko and Kim McCuaig, Disney’s Little Mermaid
Outstanding make-up: Heather Heywood and Eva Mien, Disney’s Little Mermaid
Outstanding original script: Erin J. Walker, My Name is Spaceman
Outstanding musical: Fun Home, Calithumpian Theatre Company
Outstanding female youth actor: Caitlin Cahill, Chicago: The Musical
Outstanding male youth actor: Justin Eddy, Pippin
Outstanding female lead actor: Catherine Sullivan, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Pacheco Theatre
Outstanding male lead actor: Derek Barr, Cherry Docs
Outstanding director: John Gerry, Fun Home
Outstanding drama: Red, Calithumpian Theatre Company
Outstanding solo performance: Meaghan Brown, I Sound Like Mom
Source : http://lfpress.com/2018/01/29/troupe-nabs-multiple-brickenden-awards-including-outstanding-drama-musical-director-set-and-lighting-design/wcm/a1b744a4-307a-5e07-567d-558f7d3229c0