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January 23, 2017 Comments Off on “How To Succeed…” and “The Pride” Lead Nominations For 6th Annual Gypsy Awards Honoring Seattle Theater Views: 2127 *Seattle Theaterland, Arts & Entertainment, Stage

“How To Succeed…” and “The Pride” Lead Nominations For 6th Annual Gypsy Awards Honoring Seattle Theater

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Eric Ankrim, center in blue suit with the ensemble, earned a Best Actor in a Musical nomination for his work in The 5th Avenue Theatre’s production of “How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” in the 6th annual Gypsy Rose Lee Awards honoring excellence in Seattle area theater for 2016. The production earned a total of 9 nominations this year.

A group I’m part of, the Seattle Theater Writers, announced our nominations for the 6th annual GYPSY ROSE LEE AWARDS which honor excellence in Seattle area theater for the 2016 calendar year. Named after the iconic performer Gypsy Rose Lee who was born in Seattle, the awards are unique in that they honor the work of both larger and smaller theater companies. Other awards tend to mostly focus on bigger budgeted theater often ignoring the superb work done by small and fringe theaters in Seattle. For the last six years, the groups has honored theaters and artists in approximately 28 to a high of 33 categories this year, adding “Video Design” to the honorees for the first time.

This year, The 5th Avenue Theatre’s glorious production of the classic 1960s set musical HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING and the intimate gay themed drama THE PRIDE produced by the small but astonishingly productive queer theater company Theatre 22 led the nomination tally with 9 nominations each including a “Best Musical Production” nomination for “How To Succeed…” and a “Best Play Production” nod for “The Pride”.

Other shows racking up big numbers: ACTs compelling boxing drama THE ROYALE and Sound Theatre Company’s production of the musical PARADE each earned 7 nominations. Intiman’s WEDDING BAND and Village Theatre’s BILLY ELLIOT both snagged 6 nominations as did Pork Filled Productions’s charming steampunk adventure play HAND OF TALONS.

Andre Nelson and Trevor Young Marston in Theatre 22's production of "The Pride" which earned 9 Gypsy Award nominations.  Photo Credit:  MR Toomey Photography

Andre Nelson and Trevor Young Marston in Theatre 22’s production of “The Pride” which earned 9 Gypsy Award nominations. Photo Credit: MR Toomey Photography

One of the most astonishing local comebacks is for ArtsWest, the intimate theater space and gallery in West Seattle. Under the new leadership of Artistic Director Mathew Wright and Managing Director Laura Lee, the company has artistically blossomed over the last two seasons with inspired and compelling productions. This year the theater earned six nominations for their production of the musical VIOLET, plus 5 noms for their beautiful version of Arthur Miller’s DEATH OF A SALESMAN as well as 2 nods for their riveting production of Ibsen’s GHOSTS.

Also earning 5 Gypsy nominations: Strawberry Theatre Workshop’s riveting 9 CIRCLES and Book-It’s  time trippy adaptation of the Ruth Ozeki novel, A TALE OF THE TIME BEING.

More about this year’s Gypsy Awards and a complete list of nominees:

Seattle Theater Writers, Seattle’s only critics’ circle, presents the 6th annual Gypsy Rose Lee Awards, theater awards devoted to recognizing excellence across the economic spectrum of professional Seattle theaters. Our aim in developing the awards is to entice the general public to consider seeing excellent theatrical events at myriad venues they may never have entered before!

Miryam Gordon, head writer-wrangler, says, “We know that human nature seems to love awards and we hope to draw more people to pay attention to (and perhaps even attend) an art form that we love. We also feel that a blended opinion, especially from people who often do not agree, is perhaps a more powerful opinion. If we agree on excellence, we think it means more than any one opinion alone.

“The winners represent coming to a consensus, which can be quite a challenge. It’s not easy to bring people with very different opinions to agreement. We all take these selections quite seriously. Invariably, we each champion different people or productions and sometimes there is vigorous debate before we settle on our slate.”

The winners will be announced Friday, January ​27, 2017.

“2016 ​ was a challenging year, from powerhouse co-productions to the proliferation of tiny companies with mighty visions that continue to populate our cultural landscape,” says Gordon. “Our nominations are an enormous acknowledgement of the vibrancy of our theatrical community.”

Arranged in 33 (one more than last year) categories in two divisions (Large Theaters and Small Theaters), the 2016 Gypsy Rose Lee Award Nominees are (by category, in alpha order by name):

Excellence in Production of a Play:
(Large ​Theaters):
  • 9 Circles – Strawberry Theatre Workshop
  • A Raisin in the Sun – Seattle Repertory Theatre
  • The Royale – ACT Theatre
  • The Winter’s Tale – Seattle Shakespeare Company
  • Wedding Band – Intiman Theatre
(Small​ Theaters):
  • A Hand of Talons – Pork Filled Productions
  • Caught – Seattle Public Theater
  • Death of a Salesman – ArtsWest
  • The Last Days of Judas Iscariot – Sound Theatre Company
  • The Pride – Theatre22
Excellence in Production of a Musical:
  • Billy Elliot – Village Theatre
  • How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying – The 5th Avenue Theatre
  • Disney’s The Little Mermaid – The 5th Avenue Theatre
  • Parade – Sound Theatre Company
  • Violet – ArtsWest
Excellence in Direction of a Play:
(Large​ Theaters):
  • Greg Carter9 Circles (Strawberry Theatre Workshop)
  • Desdemona ChiangA Tale For The Time Being (Book-It Repertory Theatre)
  • Valerie Curtis-NewtonWedding Band (Intiman Theatre)
  • Ameenah Kaplan The Royale (ACT Theatre)
  • Victor PappasMrs Warren’s Profession (Seattle Shakespeare Company)
(Small Theaters):
  • Julie BeckmanAnnapurna (Theatre22)
  • Valerie Curtis-NewtonThe Motherfucker With The Hat (Washington Ensemble Theatre/Hansberry Project/eSe Teatro)
  • Julia GriffinIn Arabia, We’d All Be Kings (Theater Schmeater)
  • Corey McDanielThe Pride (Theatre22)
  • Mathew WrightDeath of a Salesman (ArtsWest)
Excellence in Direction of a Musical:
  • Bill Berry How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Andrew Russell Violet (ArtsWest)
  • Steve TomkinsBilly Elliot (Village Theatre)
  • Troy WagemanParade (Sound Theatre Company)
  • Schele WilliamsMy Heart is the Drum (Village Theatre)
Excellence in Performance in a Play as a Lead Actor (Male):
(Large Theaters):
  • Gavin HoffmanThe Brothers K (Book-It Repertory Theatre)
  • Conner Neddersen 9 Circles (Strawberry Theatre Workshop)
  • Alex SilvaTreasure Island (Book-It Repertory Theatre)
  • Jarrod M. SmithThe Royale (ACT Theatre)
  • Adam StandleyStupid Fucking Bird (ACT Theatre)
(Small Theaters):
  • Erwin GalánThe Motherfucker With The Hat (Washington Ensemble Theatre/Hansberry Project/eSe Teatro)
  • Trevor MarstonThe Pride (Theatre22)
  • David PichetteDeath of a Salesman (ArtsWest)
  • David RobyOne Man, Two Guv’nors (Sound Theatre Company)
  • John Q. SmithAnnapurna (Theatre22)
Excellence in Performance in a Musical as a Lead Actor (Male):
  • Eric AnkrimHow To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Nathan BrockettAssassins (ACT Theatre/The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Matthew KacergisDisney’s The Little Mermaid (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Jeff OrtonParade (Sound Theatre Company)
  • Jesse SmithViolet (ArtsWest)
Excellence in Performance in a Play as a Lead Actor (Female):
(Large Theaters):
  • Denise Bursebrownsville, b-side for tray (Seattle Repertory Theatre)
  • Mi Kang A Tale For The Time Being (Book-It Repertory Theatre)
  • Pamela ReedLuna Gale (Seattle Repertory Theatre)
  • Alexandra TavaresThe Brothers K (Book-It Repertory Theatre)
  • Dedra WoodsWedding Band (Intiman Theatre)
(Small Theaters):
  • Suzanne Bouchard Ghosts (ArtsWest)
  • Angela DiMarco The Pride (Theatre22)
  • Stephanie Kim-BryanA Hand of Talons (Pork Filled Productions)
  • Teri Lazzara Annapurna (Theatre22)
  • Eleanor MoseleyDeath of a Salesman (ArtsWest)
Excellence in Performance in a Musical as a Lead Actor (Female):
  • Kate Morgan ChadwickBad Apples (ACT Theatre/Circle X Theatre/ArtsWest)
  • Diana HueyDisney’s The Little Mermaid (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Claudine Mboligikpelani NakoMy Heart is the Drum (Village Theatre)
  • Tori SperoParade (Sound Theatre Company)
  • Brenna WagnerViolet (ArtsWest)
Excellence in Performance of a Play as a Supporting Actor (Male) – any non-lead:
(Large Theaters):
  • Sam Hagen9 Circles (Strawberry Theatre Workshop)
  • William Hall Jr.Sorry (Thalia’s Umbrella)
  • MJ SieberThe Winter’s Tale (Seattle Shakespeare Company)
  • G. Valmont ThomasStick Fly (Intiman Theatre)
  • R. Hamilton WrightThe Royale (ACT Theatre)
(Small Theaters):
  • Moises CastroThe Motherfucker With The Hat (Washington Ensemble Theatre/Hansberry Project/eSe Teatro)
  • Nik DonerIn Arabia, We’d All Be Kings (Theater Schmeater)
  • Doug Fahl The Pride (Theatre22)
  • Erwin GalánThe Last Days of Judas Iscariot (Sound Theatre Company)
  • Ray TagavillaThe Last Days of Judas Iscariot (Sound Theatre Company)
Excellence in Performance of a Musical as a Supporting Actor (Male) – any non-lead:
  • Greg McCormick Allen Singin’ in the Rain (Village Theatre)
  • Justin Gregory LopezPaint Your Wagon (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Casey RaihaViolet (ArtsWest)
  • Adam StandleyHow To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Dane Stokinger Disney’s The Little Mermaid (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
Excellence in Performance of a Play as a Supporting Actor (Female) – any non-lead:
(Large Theaters):
  • Anne AllgoodWedding Band (Intiman Theatre)
  • Molli CorcoranJoyful Noise (Taproot Theatre)
  • Tracy Michelle HughesWedding Band (Intiman Theatre)
  • Claudine Mboligikpelani NakoA Raisin in the Sun (Seattle Repertory Theatre)
  • Amy ThoneThe Winter’s Tale (Seattle Shakespeare Company)
(Small Theaters):
  • Keiko GreenCaught (Seattle Public Theater)
  • Rachel Guyer-MafunePuny Humans (Annex Theatre)
  • Meg McLynnThe Motherfucker With The Hat (Washington Ensemble Theatre/Hansberry Project/eSe Teatro)
  • Shermona MitchellThe Last Days of Judas Iscariot (Sound Theatre Company)
  • Ayo TushindeIn Arabia, We’d All Be Kings (Theater Schmeater)
Excellence in Performance of a Musical as a Supporting Actor (Female) – any non-lead:
  • Delaney GuyerParade (Sound Theatre Company)
  • Mari NelsonBilly Elliot (Village Theatre)
  • Sara PorkalobPump Boys and Dinettes (Village Theatre)
  • Jessica SkerrittHow To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Jessica Skerritt Singin’ in the Rain (Village Theatre)
Excellence in Performance as an Ensemble:
(Large Theaters):
  • 9 Circles – Strawberry Theatre Workshop (Norah Elges, Sam Hagen, Sylvester F. Kamara, Conner Neddersen)
  • A Tale For The Time Being – Book-It Repertory Theatre (Khanh Doan, Mi Kang, Mariko Kita, Scott Koh, Kevin Lin, Michael Patten, Rachel Rene, Annie Yim)
  • The Royale – ACT Theatre (Lorenzo Roberts, Jarrod M. Smith, Zenobia Taylor, G. Valmont Thomas, R. Hamilton Wright)
  • Sorry – Thalia’s Umbrella (Macall Gordon, William Hall, Jr., Leslie Law, Terry Edward Moore, Jeanne Paulsen)
  • The Big Meal – New Century Theatre Company (Jonelle Jordan, Darragh Kennan, Maire Kennan, Todd Jefferson Moore, Hannah Mootz, Julian Mudge-Burns, Conner Neddersen, Betsy Schwartz, Amy Thone)
(Small Theaters):
  • Duels – stokes/amador (Daniel Christensen, Marianna de Fazio, Carter Rodriquez)
  • In Arabia, We’d All Be Kings – Theater Schmeater (Draeko Damen, Nik Doner, Brandon Felker, Elena Flory-Barnes, Samuel Hagen, Drew Hobson, Jacquelyn Miedema, Michael Ramquist, Andrew Shanks, Yolanda Suarez, Ayo Tushinde)
  • Puny Humans – Annex Theatre (Patty Bonnell, Kevin Bordi, Grace Carmack, Rachel Guyer-Mafune, Lauryn Hochberg, Cole Hornaday, Kelly Johnson, Ben McFadden, Nic Morden, Heather Persinger, David Rollison, Zenaida Smith, Te Yelland)
  • The Pride – Theatre22 (Angela DiMarco, Doug Fahl, Trevor Marston, Andre Nelson)
  • The Toxic Avenger – STAGEright (Ann Cornelius, Sara Henley-Hicks, Brian Lange, Jessi Little, Nick Michael Watson)
Excellence in Set Design:
(Large Theaters):
  • Michael Ganio Luna Gale (Seattle Repertory Theatre)
  • Shawn Ketchum JohnsonDaisy (ACT Theatre)
  • Tommer PetersonThe Birds (Strawberry Theatre Workshop)
  • Matthew SmuckerBrooklyn Bridge (Seattle Children’s Theatre)
  • Tom Sturge & David Sumner How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
(Small Theaters):
  • Brandon Estrella A Hand of Talons (Pork Filled Productions)
  • Silas JamesDuels (amador/stokes)
  • Robin MacartneyRevolt. She Said. Revolt Again. (Washington Ensemble Theatre)
  • Michael MoweryAnnapurna (Theatre22)
  • Julia WelchThe Things Are Against Us (Washington Ensemble Theatre)
Excellence in Costume Design:
(Large Theaters):
  • Nanette AcostaJoyful Noise (Taproot Theatre)
  • Melanie Taylor BurgessA Raisin in the Sun (Seattle Repertory Theatre)
  • Sarah Burch GordonThe Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge (Taproot Theatre)
  • Catherine HuntDangerous Liaisons (ACT Theatre)
  • Rose PedersonHow to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
(Small Theaters):
  • Chelsea Cook Amadeus (Seattle Public Theater)
  • Jocelyne FowlerA Hand of Talons (Pork Filled Productions)
  • Carolyn Hall The Wedding Gift (Forward Flux Productions)
  • Helen Roundhill The Toxic Avenger (STAGEright)
  • K.D. SchillPuny Humans (Annex Theatre)
Excellence in Lighting Design:
(Large Theaters):
  • Robert Aguilar Wedding Band (Intiman Theatre)
  • Alex BerryBilly Elliot (Village Theatre)
  • Reed Nakayama The Birds (Strawberry Theatre Workshop)
  • Tristan RobersonA Tale for the Time Being (Book-It Repertory Theatre)
  • Ben ZamoraThe Royale (ACT Theatre)
(Small ​ Theaters):
  • Ahren Buhmann The Pride (Theatre22)
  • Ryan DunnDeath of a Salesman (ArtsWest)
  • Tess MaloneA Hand of Talons (Pork Filled Productions)
  • Alyssa MilioneGhosts (ArtsWest)
  • Tristan RobersonThe Things Are Against Us (Washington Ensemble Theatre)
Excellence in Sound Design:
(Large Theaters):
  • Brendan Patrick HoganThe Birds (Strawberry Theatre Workshop)
  • Sharath Patel The Royale (ACT Theatre)
  • Kyle ThompsonTreasure Island (Book-It Repertory Theatre)
  • Nathan WadeTitus Andronicus (Seattle Shakespeare Company)
  • Robertson WitmerDaisy (ACT Theatre)
(Small Theaters):
  • Erin BednarzThe Lost Girls (Annex Theatre)
  • Brian BrooksKing Kirby (Ghost Light Theatricals)
  • Erick JohnsonThe Pride (Theatre22)
  • Alex PotterPuny Humans (Annex Theatre)
  • James SchreckThe Things Are Against Us (Washington Ensemble Theatre)
Excellence in Musical Direction:
  • Dan PardoHow To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Brandon PeckThe Toxic Avenger (STAGEright)
  • Tim SymonsBilly Elliot (Village Theatre)
  • R.J. TanciocoViolet (ArtsWest)
  • Nathan YoungParade (Sound Theatre Company)
Excellence in Choreography or Movement:
  • Scott BratengParade (Sound Theatre Company)
  • Donald Byrd Medea (Seattle Shakespeare Company)
  • Sonia DawkinsMy Heart is the Drum (Village Theatre)
  • Bob RichardHow To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (The 5th Avenue Theatre)
  • Katy TabbBilly Elliot (Village Theatre)
Excellence in Local Playwriting:
  • Rose CanoBernie’s Apt. (eSe Teatro)
  • Laura Ferri A Tale for the Time Being (Book-It Repertory Theatre)
  • Maggie Lee A Hand of Talons (Pork Filled Productions)
  • Nick Stokes Duels (amador/stokes)
  • Seayoung Yim Do It For Umma (Annex Theatre)
Excellence in Local Composing:
  • Shenandoah DavisMedea (Seattle Shakespeare Company)
  • Paul LewisThe Pride (Theatre22)
  • Paul Lewis & Carrisa Meisner SmitThe Crossing (Theater Schmeater)
  • Lauren WilderThe Mechanics of Love (SiS Productions)
  • Annastasia WorkmanTo Savor Tomorrow (Café Nordo)
Excellence in Video Design (New Category for 2016):
  • Tristan RobersonDaisy (ACT Theatre)
  • MJ SieberTitus Andronicus (Seattle Shakespeare Company)
The participants in this year’s award process were Candace Brown (goodlifenw.blogspot.com), Miryam Gordon (Seattle Gay News and miryamstheatermusings.blogspot.com), David-Edward Hughes (jetspacemagazine.com/), Rosemary Jones (www.seattletheateranddance.com/), Dusty Somers (contributor for The Seattle Times), Michael Strangeways (www.seattlegayscene.com/), and Nancy Worssam (artsstage-seattlerage.com/).

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