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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Merritt Award nominees reflect great year of theatre

Tough competition: 2b theatre leads the NS award nominations.

Posted By on Wed, Mar 17, 2010 at 12:45 PM

Daniel MacIvor and A Beautiful View, nominees for outstanding director and production
  • Daniel MacIvor and A Beautiful View, nominees for outstanding director and production

Last year was a super year for Halifax theatre, and the Robert Merritt Awards (merrittawards.ca) nominations reflect the calibre of productions—-not just in acting and directing, but music, set and lighting design too.

2b theatre fills a carton with a dozen nominations, competing against themselves in several categories for two productions, East of Berlin and Homage. Jackie Torrens and Kathryn MacLellan, so believable as women struggling with their relationship boundaries in A Beautiful View (also up for Outstanding Production and Director for Daniel MacIvor), will fight it out for best performance by an actress. It’s Dinuk Wijeratne vs. Wijeratne, with two haunting scores he composed for Onelight Theatre, but he has stiff competition from Zuppa Theatre’s Poor Boy rock ’n’ roll team of David Christensen and Jason MacIsaac.

Awards will be presented on March 29 at Alderney Landing. Tickets are $15, call 425-3876.

MERRITT NOMINEES

Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor: Marty Burt as Gershom Born, Rockbound, Two Planks and a Passion Theatre; David Patrick Flemming, Rudi, East of Berlin, 2b theatre company; Duncan Fraser, Calum MacDonald, No Great Mischief, Neptune Theatre; Stuart Hughes, Father Flynn, Doubt, A Parable, Neptune Theatre; Ron Pederson, James, Extinction Song, Eastern Front Theatre.

Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actress: Kathryn MacLellan, Mandy, A Beautiful View, The Distinct Theatre Society/Neptune Theatre; Sherry Smith, Eva, The Sunnyside Café, Forerunnner Playwrights Theatre; Shelley Thompson, Florence Foster Jenkins, Glorious, Festival Antigonish; Jackie Torrens, Liz, A Beautiful View, The Distinct Theatre Society/Neptune Theatre.

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role: Burgandy Code, Anapest Krauss, Rockbound, Two Planks and a Passion Theatre; Ann-Marie Kerr, various characters, Homage, 2b theatre company; Genevieve Steele, Sir Andrew Aguecheek, Twelfth Night, LunaSea Theatre Company; Katie Swift, Sarah, East of Berlin, 2b theatre company; Mary Vingoe, Minnie, Ivor Johnson’s Neighbours, Ship’s Company Theatre.

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role: John Dunsworth, Grandpa, No Great Mischief, Neptune Theatre; Bill Forbes, Duddy, Ivor Johnson’s Neighbours, Ship’s Company Theatre; Billy MacLellan, Cousin Alexander/California Cousin, No Great Mischief, Neptune Theatre; Ed Thomason, Mr. Moreen, Geometry in Venice, Festival Antigonish; Bill Wood, Hermann, East of Berlin, 2b theatre company.

Outstanding Direction: Christian Barry, East of Berlin, 2b theatre company; Ron Jenkins, Extinction Song, Eastern Front Theatre; Daniel MacIvor, A Beautiful View, The Distinct Theatre Society/Neptune Theatre; Richard Rose, No Great Mischief, Neptune Theatre; Ken Schwartz, Rockbound, Two Planks and a Passion Theatre.

Outstanding Costume Design: Rosie Browning, Rockbound, Two Planks and a Passion Theatre; Patrick Clark, The Game of Love and Chance, Neptune Theatre; Jennifer Coe and Jennifer Mills, Glorious, Festival Antigonish; Leesa Hamilton, East of Berlin, 2b theatre company; D’Arcy Morris-Poultney, A Christmas Carol-The Musical, Neptune Theatre.

Outstanding Lighting Design:
Bruce MacLennan, Extinction Song, Eastern Front Theatre; Mike Mader, Return Ticket: Halifax-Abadan-Halifax, Onelight Theatre; Will Perkins, Homage, and East of Berlin, both productions of 2b theatre company; Ingrid Risk, A Beautiful View, The Distinct Theatre Society/Neptune Theatre.

Outstanding Sound Design:
Brian Buckle, A Christmas Carol, Off The Leash and Return Ticket: Halifax-Abadan-Halifax, Onelight Theatre; Michael Doherty, Homage, 2b theatre company; Terry Pulliam, The Gravesavers, Halifax Theatre for Young People and Mike Ross, musical director, No Great Mischief, Neptune Theatre.

Outstanding Original Music or Score:
David Christensen and Jason MacIsaac, Poor Boy, Zuppa Theatre/Neptune Theatre; Allen Cole, Rockbound, Two Planks and a Passion Theatre; Eric Hughes, composer/lyricist, A Christmas Carol — The Musical, Neptune Theatre; Dinuk Wijeratne, Return Ticket: Halifax-Abadan-Halifax and The Toxic Bus Incident, both for Onelight Theatre.

Outstanding New Play (Playwright): B
everly Brett, Out The Meadow, Forerunner Playwrights Theatre; Allen Cole, Rockbound, Two Planks and a Passion Theatre; Christopher Heide, The Gravesavers, Halifax Theatre for Young People; Ron Jenkins, Extinction Song, Eastern Front Theatre; Daniel MacIvor, A Beautiful View, The Distinct Theatre Society/Neptune Theatre.

Outstanding Production: A Beautiful View, The Distinct Theatre Society/Neptune Theatre; East of Berlin, 2b theatre company; Extinction Song, Eastern Front Theatre; No Great Mischief, Neptune Theatre; Rockbound Two Planks and a Passion.

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