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Saturday, November 13, 2010


The eighth annual awards evening of The Mercury Durban Theatre Awards will take place on November 22 at 19h30 at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre.

“The awards system considers only those productions originating in Durban and presented during the period October 1, 2009, to September 30, 2010,” says administrator Peter Taylor. These productions include the genres of drama and comedy, musical theatre, music revue / music compilation/ cabaret, and children’s theatre, with a total of 46 productions vying for honours at this year’s awards ceremony.

The Mercury Durban Theatre Awards recognise and acknowledge the quality of work produced in Durban in a given year. This work is maintained at a consistently high standard. Nominations for this year’s awards are as follows:

Poster Design: Artworks Communications for My Fair Lady; Zoné Meiring for Bend it like Beauty, and Shirley Berko for Duet for One, Miracle and Peter Pan. Sound Design: Jackie Cunniffe for The Guitar that Rocked the World; Luke Holder for Man of La Mancha, and Megan Levy for Peter Pan and Reality Bites. Lighting Design: Michael Broderick for Reality Bites; Brandon Bunyan for The Motown Show; Dylan Heaton for My Fair Lady; Mark Kleinert for The Guitar that Rocked the World, and Tina le Roux for Duet for One and Peter Pan.

Costume Design: Peter Court, Steven Stead & Neil Stuart-Harris for Peter Pan; Margot Fleish for Duet for One; Shaneel Sookdeo for Sleeping Beauty – A Bollywood Fairytale and Tracy Voss for Bend it like Beauty. Set Design: Brandon Bunyan & Themi Venturas for The Guitar that Rocked the World; Peter Court & Bryan Hiles for A Mariner’s Tale and Greg King for Duet for One and Peter Pan.

New Performer – Female: Khanyisile Jwaha (The Dictionary) and Caitlin Kilburn (Man of La Mancha). New Performer – Male: Daniel Basckin (The Guitar that Rocked the World); James MacEwan (Mein Soldat) and Senzo Mthethwa (The Boolulu Uncle)

In the Children’s Theatre category, Lead Actress: Kerry-Lee McKibbin (Jonah and the Whale) and Daisy Spencer (Marvellous Mixtures). Lead Actor: Peter Court (A Mariner’s Tale; and Bryan Hiles (A Mariner’s Tale and Marvellous Mixtures). Director: Peter Court & Bryan Hiles (A Mariner’s Tale) and Neil Coppen (Marvellous Mixtures). Production: A Mariner’s Tale (Creative Madness) and Marvellous Mixtures (ThinkTheatre). There were no nominations for supporting actress and actor.

In the Musical Theatre & Music Revue / Music Compilation / Cabaret categories, nominations for Choreography went to Janine Bennewith (Peter Pan and The Guitar that Rocked the World); Mark Hawkins (My Fair Lady) and Shivani Kara (Sleeping Beauty – A Bollywood Fairytale). Up for the Performer award in this category are Lisa Bobbert, Anthony Stonier and Andrew Warburton individually for Brutal Tunes; Andrew Webster (You’re so Vain); Jaziel Vaugh’hann (Elvis has Left the Building) and Nux Schwartz and Tim Wells, both for Big Blue. Music Revue Production: Big Blue (Tim Wells); Brutal Tunes (Sue Clarence Promotions); The Motown Show (Black Coffee Design & Williams-Ros Agency) and Rocking it Gently ( Lloyd de Gier, John Ellis, Marion Loudon & Shelley McLean)

Musical Theatre: Supporting Actress: Paddy McKew (My Fair Lady) and Shelley McLean (Peter Pan). Supporting Actor: Peter Court (Peter Pan); Liam Magner (Man of La Mancha) and Frank Graham, Cobus Venter and Themi Venturas (My Fair Lady). Lead Actress: Musical Theatre: Lisa Bobbert and Gina Shmukler who shared the role of Eliza in My Fair Lady; Francis Currie (Peter Pan) and Caitlin Kilburn (Man of La Mancha). Lead Actor: Musical Theatre: Bryan Hiles and Darren King individually for Peter Pan; Ralph Lawson (My Fair Lady) and Cobus Venter: (Man of La Mancha). Musical Director: Shelley McLean, Evan Roberts & Justin Southey: (Peter Pan); Dawn Selby (The Guitar that Rocked the World) and Andrew Warburton (My Fair Lady). Director: Ralph Lawson (My Fair Lady); Caroline Smart (Brutal Tunes); Steven Stead (Peter Pan) and Themi Venturas for both Man of La Mancha and The Guitar that Rocked the World. Musical Theatre Production: The Guitar that Rocked the World (TGTRTW Collective); Man of La Mancha (TheatreBIZ / Catalina Unlimited); My Fair Lady (The Playhouse Company) and Peter Pan (KickstArt)

In the Drama/Comedy section: New South African Script: Peter Court & Bryan Hiles (A Mariner’s Tale); Christopher Hurst & Bhoyi Ngema (The Dictionary); Kumseela Naidoo (The Boolulu Uncle); Janna Ramos-Violante (Mein Soldat); Steven Stead & Justin Southey (Peter Pan) and Ben Voss (Bend it like Beauty). Supporting Actor: Michael Gritten (Miracle) and Menzi Mzobe (Last Kick of a Dying Horse). Performance in a Comedy by a Male: Aaron McIlroy (Reality Bites) and Ben Voss (Bend it like Beauty). Solo Performance: Senzo Mthethwa (The Boolulu Uncle) and Ben Voss (Bend it like Beauty). There were no nominations for Supporting Actress and no nominations for Performance in a Comedy by a Female

Lead Actress: Khanyisile Jhawa (The Dictionary); Margaret Logan (Miracle); Clare Mortimer (Duet for One) and Janna Ramos-Violante (Mein Soldat). Lead Actor: James MacEwan (Mein Soldat); Senzo Mthethwa (The Boolulu Uncle); Bhoyi Ngema (The Dictionary); Michael Richard (Duet for One) and Ben Voss (Bend it like Beauty). Director: Josette Eales (Mein Soldat); Christopher Hurst (The Dictionary); Aaron McIlroy (Bend it like Beauty), and Steven Stead (Duet for One and Miracle). Production: Bend it like Beauty (Mamba Productions); The Boolulu Uncle (Dingalings Productions); Duet for One (KickstArt) and Mein Soldat (Thin Skin Collective)

This year’s ceremony will be hosted by Jailoshini Naidoo (Eastern Mosaic) and promises to be a sophisticated and glamorous celebration of Durban’s theatre industry. As Monday night is a “night-off” for the theatre industry in Durban, the audience can expect to brush shoulders with the who’s who of Durban’s theatre fraternity. The evening will include excerpts from productions being presented in Durban throughout the festive season, offering the audience a glimpse of what will be on offer this festive season.

Booking is through Computicket.