Theater nabs 27 nominations for D.C. honors

WASHINGTON — Arena Stage led the field among local theaters with 27 nominations for the Helen Hayes Awards, D.C.’s professional legit honors.

The awards will be presented here April 16.

Arena’s haul included 10 nominations for its production of “Cabaret” last fall — the most for any show. “Cabaret’s” popularity with Hayes judges, which in-cluded a nom for top resident musical, is vindication for a production that choked at the box office after being pilloried by some local crix.

Arena’s nominated shows also included “She Loves Me,” “3 Mo’ Divas” and Heather Raffo’s solo perf “Nine Parts of Desire.”

Among touring shows, “Monty Python’s Spamalot” at the National Theater was tapped for six noms, while “The Light in the Piazza” at the Kennedy Center received five. The Kennedy Center also was recognized for visiting productions “The Subject Was Roses,” “Twelve Angry Men” and the Royal Shakespeare Company’s “The Canterbury Tales, Part 1.”

The Shakespeare Theater Company received 21 Hayes noms, followed by the Folger Theater’s 11. Five productions from the Shakespeare Theater were sin-gled out by judges, led by Ibsen’s “An Enemy of the People” with nine. As usual, the theater dominated most design categories while its artistic director, Michael Kahn, was tapped for his staging of “The Beaux’ Stratagem” and the company’s production of “Love’s Labor’s Lost.”

Other multiple nominees included Signature Theater’s production of Stephen Sondheim’s “Assassins” (seven), Round House Theater’s “A Prayer for Owen Meany” (five) and the Folger’s productions of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and “Measure for Measure” (five each).

Tiny Synetic Theater’s movement-based productions continue their popularity with Hayes judges. They handed co-founder Irina Tsikurishvili three of the pos-sible five nominations for choreography, for “The Dybbuk,” “Faust” and “Frankenstein.”

Five productions will vie for best new play or musical: Renee Calarco’s “Short Order Stories” at Charter Theater Company, Bridget Carpenter’s “The Faculty Room” at Woolly Mammoth, Richard Greenberg’s “Bal Masque” at Theater J, Aaron Posner and James Sugg’s “A Murder, a Mystery & a Marriage” at Round House and Phoebe Rusch’s “3/4 of a Mass for St. Vivian” at Theater Alliance.

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