Ceremony to be televised on BBC TV

The National Theater leads the pack with 17 nominations in the Society of London Theaters’ newly relaunched Olivier Awards, set to take place at the Theater Royal Drury Lane on March 13. Making the announcement, new Solt chief exec Julian Bird announced that the ceremony will be broadcast live on BBC TV for the first time in more than eight years.

The National’s haul is spread across a raft of productions including Terence Rattigan’s rediscovered 1939 drama “After the Dance” (six noms) and its production of “Fela!” (three), including a leading actor in a musical bid for Sahr Ngaujah, reprising the role he played in the original Gotham production.

Stiffest competish for the National comes from the Royal Court, whose 10 mentions include four for “Clybourne Park,” including play. Although Bruce Norris’ comedy has bagged every other U.K. new play award, two other Royal Court plays are in contention for the title: Nina Raine’s “Tribes” and Roy Williams’ “Sucker Punch.”

The other U.S. title in the frame is Douglas Carter Beane’s “The Little Dog Laughed,” whose leading lady, Tamsin Greig, is up for the lead actress plaudit in the role that won Julie White a Tony in 2007.

The Donmar Warehouse landed nine noms, with Michael Grandage’s “King Lear” garnering five including director, revival and actor for Derek Jacobi, plus three for Jamie Lloyd’s revival of Sondheim’s “Passion.”

Most bids for a single production went to Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Phantom of the Opera” sequel “Love Never Dies,” which may give the production a useful box office boost. In addition to new musical and a trio of design awards, its stars, Ramin Karimloo and Sierra Boggess, are up for actor and actress in a musical. Boggess will battle it out with Elena Roger in “Passion” and critical and audience favorite Sheridan Smith in her star-making lead performance in “Legally Blonde,” which has a total of five noms.

Sadler’s Wells Theater has pulled off a considerable coup in nabbing five of the six possible bids in the new dance production and achievement in dance categories.

After several years in which it took place at a dinner in a London hotel, the event returns to a theater following lobbying by Solt members and industry insiders. Streets around the Theater Royal Drury Lane will be closed off for the occasion, and the ceremony will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 2 and on digital TV. Proceedings will be accompanied by the BBC Concert Orchestra, with guest presenters and a host whose name currently remains under wraps.

And the nominees are:

Actress
Tracie Bennett, “End of the Rainbow,” Trafalgar Studios 1
Nancy Carroll, “After The Dance,” National Theater, Lyttelton
Tamsin Greig, “The Little Dog Laughed,” Garrick
Sophie Thompson, “Clybourne Park,” Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, Royal Court

Actor
Roger Allam, “Henry IV Parts 1 & 2″,” Shakespeare’s Globe
Derek Jacobi, “King Lear,” Donmar Warehouse
Rory Kinnear, “Hamlet,” National Theater, Olivier
Mark Rylance, “La Bete,” Comedy
David Suchet, “All My Sons,” Apollo

Actress in a Supporting Role
Sarah Goldberg, “Clybourne Park”
Anastasia Hille, “The Master Builder,” Almeida
Gina McKee, “King Lear”
Rachael Stirling, “An Ideal Husband,” Vaudeville
Michelle Terry, “Tribes,” Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, Royal Court

Actor in a Supporting Role
James Laurenson, “Hamlet”
Hilton McRae, “End of the Rainbow”
Lee Ross, “Birdsong,” Comedy
Adrian Scarborough, “After the Dance”

Mastercard Best New Play
“Clybourne Park” by Bruce Norris
“End of the Rainbow” by Peter Quilter
“Sucker Punch” by Roy Williams, Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, Royal Court
“The Little Dog Laughed” by Douglas Carter Beane
“Tribes” by Nina Raine

New Musical
“Fela!,” book by Jim Lewis and Bill T.Jones, music and lyrics by Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, additional lyrics by Jim Lewis, arrangements and additional music by Aaron Johnson and Jordan McLean, National, Olivier
“Legally Blonde,” book by Heather Hach, music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin, Savoy
“Love Never Dies,” music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Glenn Slater, book by Lloyd Webber and Ben Elton, Adelphi
“Love Story,” book and lyrics by Stephen Clark, music and additional lyrics by Howard Goodall, Duchess

Musical Revival
“Into the Woods,” Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre
“Passion,” Donmar Warehouse
“Sweet Charity,” Theatre Royal Haymarket

Entertainment
“Beauty and the Beast,” devised by Katie Mitchell, text by Lucy Kirkwood, National, Cottesloe
“Ghost Stories” by Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman, Duke of York’s
“Potted Panto” by Daniel Clarkson, Jefferson Turner and Richard Hurst, Vaudeville
“The Railway Children” by E Nesbit, adapted by Mike Kenny, Waterloo Station Theater

Actress in a Musical
Sierra Boggess, “Love Never Dies”
Elena Roger, “Passion”
Sheridan Smith, “Legally Blonde”
Emma Williams, “Love Story”

Actor in a Musical
Alex Gaumond, “Legally Blonde”
Ramin Karimloo, “Love Never Dies,”
Sahr Ngaujah, “Fela!”
David Thaxton, “Passion”
Michael Xavier, “Love Never Dies”

Supporting Role in a Musical
Josefina Gabrielle, “Sweet charity”
Jill Halfpenny, “Legally Blonde”
Summer Strallen, “Love Never Dies”
Michael Xavier, “Into the Woods”

Director
Dominic Cooke, “Clybourne Park”
Howard Davies, “The White Guard”
Michael Grandage, “King Lear”
Thea Sharrock, “After the Dance”

Revival
“After The Dance”
“King Lear”
“When We Are Married”, directed by Christopher Luscombe, Garrick

Choreographer
Leon Baugh, “Sucker Punch”
Bill T. Jones, “Fela!”
Stephen Mear, “Sweet Charity”
Jerry Mitchell, “Legally Blonde”

Lighting
Mark Henderson, “After The Dance”
Hugh Vanstone, “Deathtrap,” Noël Coward
Paule Constable, “Love Never Dies”
Neil Austin, “The White Guard”

XL Video Award for Best Design
Lez Brotherston, Design for Living,” The Old Vic
Miriam Buether, “Earthquakes in London, ” National, Cottesloe
Bob Crowley, Love Never Dies”
Bunny Christie, “The White Guard”

Costume
Hildegard Bechtler, “After The Dance”
Lez Brotherston, “Design For Living”
Mark Thompson, “London Assurance”
Bob Crowley, Love Never Dies”

Sound
Gareth Owen, “End of the Rainbow”
Nick Manning, “Ghost Stories,” Duke of York’s
Adam Cork, “King Lear”
Craig Vear, “The Railway Children”

Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theater
“Empire,” The Royal Court Theater and Drum Theater, Plymouth
“Ivan and the Dogs,” Soho Theatre and ATC
“Les Parents Terribles,” Trafalgar Studios 2 and Donmar Warehouse
“Blasted,” Lyric Hammersmith

New Opera Production
English National Opera and Young Vic’s “Elegy For Young Lovers,” Young Vic
De Nederlandse Opera, English National Opera and Complicite’s “A Dog’s Heart,” London Coliseum
Royal Opera, Vienna State Opera, San Francisco Opera, the Liceu, Barcelona, and Opéra Bastille’s “Adriana Lecouvreur,” Royal Opera House
OperaUpClose and Soho Theater’s “La Boheme,” Soho Theatre

Outstanding Achievement in Opera
Jonas Kaufmann his performance in the Royal Opera’s “Adriana Lecouvreur”
Andrew Shore his performance in English National Opera’s “The Elixir of Love,” London Coliseum
Christian Gerhaher his performance in the Royal Opera’s “Tannhauser,” Royal Opera House

New Dance Production
“Mambo 3XX1,” Danza Contemporanea de Cuba, choreographed by George Cespedes, Sadler’s Wells
“Babel (Words),” Eastman vzw and Theatre Royal de la Monnaie, Sadler’s Wells, choreographed by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Damien Jalet
“Cinderella,” New Adventures, choreographed by Matthew Bourne, Sadler’s Wells,

Outstanding Achievement in Dance
John MacFarlane for his designs for “Asphodel Meadows,” Royal Ballet, Royal Opera House
Antony Gormley for his set design of “Babel (Words)”
Yoshi Sunahata for her drumming in “Gnosis” by Akram Khan, Sadler’s Wells

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