The National Theater emerged triumphant at the U.K.’s Critic’s Circle Drama Awards, taking five of nine available nods.
In a show of strength, the venue’s haul was spread across four productions. Benedict Cumberbatch took the actor kudo for Danny Boyle’s production of “Frankenstein,” which also garnered the design nod for set designer Mark Tildesley. Richard Bean’s Gotham-bound “One Man, Two Guvnors” won for new play, while Mike Leigh took the director trophy for his own play “Grief,” and the Peter Hepple Award for musical went to experimental tuner “London Road,” by Alecky Blythe and Adam Cork.
Remaining four awards reflected the diversity of London theater, with spoils split between commercial, not-for-profit and fringe venues.
Sheridan Smith, winner of a 2011 Olivier for her perf in “Legally Blonde,” nabbed an award for her highly praised turn in Trevor Nunn’s Theater Royal Haymarket revival of Terence Rattigan’s “Flare Path.” Eddie Redmayne picked up the John and Wendy Trewin Award for Shakespearean perf for “Richard II” at the Donmar Warehouse.
In the new talent categories, the promising playwright laurel went to Tom Wells for “The Kitchen Sink” at the Bush Theater, and the Jack Tinker Award for promising newcomer went to helmer Blanche McIntyre for her productions of “Accolade” and “Foxfinder” at the Finborough Theater.