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‘Spring’ leads Lortel nominations

Musical scores six nods

See Nominees

Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater’s dreamy meditation on turbulent teen sexuality, “Spring Awakening,” leads the field with six nominations in the 22nd Lucille Lortel Awards for Off Broadway theater.

Since its hit run at the Atlantic Theater Company last summer, the production has transferred to Broadway where it’s playing to strong houses and a growing cult following. Based on German expressionist playwright Frank Wedekind’s 1891 drama, the youth tuner scored nods for musical; choreographer Bill T. Jones; costumer Susan Hilferty; lighting designer Kevin Adams (also nommed for “Some Men” at Second Stage); and Brian Ronan for sound. Michael Mayer was the sole musical helmer to make the cut for best director.

Following with five nominations each are the Public Theater’s staging of David Hare’s “Stuff Happens,” about the run-up to war in Iraq, and the Atlantic’s production of David Mamet’s new adaptation of “The Voysey Inheritance,” Harley Granville Barker’s 1905 drama about a corrupt clan of English finance barons.

Hare’s drama is nominated for play, director (Daniel Sullivan), actor (Peter Francis James), actress (Gloria Reuben) and featured actor (Robert Sella), while “Voysey” scored for revival, director (David Warren), actor (Michael Stuhlbarg), sets (Derek McClane) and costumes (Gregory Gale).

The awards are dominated this year by three companies. Buoyed by its double-whammy with “Spring Awakening” and “Voysey,” the Chelsea-based Atlantic came out in front with eleven noms, followed by the Public with nine, including nods for resident LAByrinth Theater Company. More unexpected, however, was the success of Signature Theater Company, with eight noms for its polished revivals besting several major Off Broadway houses known for launching new work, among them Playwrights Horizons, Second Stage, Lincoln Center Theater and New York Theater Workshop.

Signature earned three noms apiece for its productions of August Wilson’s “King Hedley II” and “Two Trains Running,” and an additional two for John Guare’s “Landscape of the Body,” all of which compete with “Voysey” in the revival race. The company last year topped the Lortels with four prizes for Horton Foote’s “The Trip to Bountiful.”

Up against “Spring Awakening” for musical are Scott Brown and Anthony King’s “Gutenberg! The Musical!,” Lin-Manuel Miranda and Quiara Alegria Hudes’ “In the Heights” and Brendan Milburn, Rachel Sheinkin and Valerie Vigoda’s “Striking 12.” “In the Heights” also drew nods for choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler and for Anna Louizos’ set design. The upbeat tuner, set in a Washington Heights Latino neighborhood, is backed by producing team Kevin McCollum, Jeffrey Seller and Jill Furman, whose collective credits include “Rent” and “The Drowsy Chaperone.”

“Stuff Happens” competes in the play slot with Keith Bunin’s “The Busy World Is Hushed” (Playwrights Horizons), Christopher Shinn’s “Dying City” (LCT) and A.R. Gurney’s “Indian Blood” (Primary Stages). Mayer, Sullivan and Warren face off for director honors against PJ Paparelli for “columbinus” at NYTW, and Derrick Sanders” for “King Hedley II.”

In addition to James and Stuhlbarg, other lead actor noms include Philip Seymour Hoffman for LAByrinth’s “Jack Goes Boating,” Russell Hornsby for “King Hedley II” and Lee Pace for “Guardians” at Culture Project. Actress contenders include Rebecca Brooksher in “Dying City,” Jill Clayburgh in “Busy World,” Patricia Heaton in Second Stage’s “The Scene” and Laila Robins in “Sore Throats” from Theater for a New Audience.

Solo play nominations are Thaddeus Phillips, Tatiana Mallarino and Victor Mallarino’s “El Conquistador!” at New York Theater Workshop; Nilaja Sun’s “No Child …,” presented by Epic Theater Center; and Neil LaBute’s “Wrecks” at the Public.

Kevin Kline, starring in “King Lear” at the Public, will receive this year’s lifetime achievement award. Playwright’s Sidewalk inductee is Christopher Durang, while fight director Rick Sordelet receives the Edith Oliver award for sustained excellence, Classical Theater of Harlem will be honored for body of work, and Actors’ Fund of America receives a special award.

The Lortels will be presented May 7 in a ceremony at New World Stages.

And the nominees are…

“The Busy World Is Hushed” — by Keith Bunin. Producer: Playwrights Horizons
“Dying City” — by Christopher Shinn. Producer: Lincoln Center Theater
“Indian Blood” — by A.R. Gurney. Producer: Primary Stages
“Stuff Happens” — by David Hare. Producer: The Public Theater

“Gutenberg! The Musical!” — by Scott Brown and Anthony King. Producers: Trevor Brown, Ron Kastner, Terry Allen Kramer, Joseph Smith, in association with Upright Citizens Brigade Theater
“In the Heights” — book by Quiara Alegria Hudes; music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda. Producers: Kevin McCollum, Jeffrey Seller, and Jill Furman
“Spring Awakening” — book and lyrics by Steven Sater; music by Duncan Sheik. Producers: Atlantic Theater Company, in association with Tom Hulce and Ira Pittelman
“Striking 12” — book, music and lyrics by Brendan Milburn, Rachel Sheinkin and Valerie Vigoda. Producers: Nancy Nagel Gibbs and Greg Schaffert, in association with Mark Johannes and Amy Danis

“¡El Conquistador!” — by Thaddeus Phillips and Tatiana Mallarino in collaboration with Victor Mallarino. Producer: New York Theatre Workshop. Performed by Thaddeus Phillips
“No Child …” — written and performed by Nilaja Sun. Producers: Scott Morfee, Tom Wirtshafter and Epic Theater Center
“Wrecks” — by Neil LaBute. Producer: The Public Theater. Performed by Ed Harris

“King Hedley II” — by August Wilson. Producer: Signature Theatre Company
“Landscape of the Body” — by John Guare. Producer: Signature Theater Company
“Two Trains Running” — by August Wilson. Producer: Signature Theater Company
“The Voysey Inheritance” — by Harley Granville-Barker; adapted by David Mamet. Producer: Atlantic Theater Company

Michael Mayer — “Spring Awakening”
PJ Paparelli — “columbinus”
Derrick Sanders — “King Hedley II”
Daniel Sullivan — “Stuff Happens”
David Warren — “The Voysey Inheritance”

Hinton Battle — “Evil Dead the Musical”
Andy Blankenbuehler — “In the Heights”
Devanand Janki — “Henry and Mudge”
Bill T. Jones — “Spring Awakening”

Philip Seymour Hoffman — “Jack Goes Boating”
Russell Hornsby — “King Hedley II”
Peter Francis James — “Stuff Happens”
Lee Pace — “Guardians”
Michael Stuhlbarg — “The Voysey Inheritance”

Rebecca Brooksher — “Dying City”
Jill Clayburgh — “The Busy World Is Hushed”
Patricia Heaton — “The Scene”
Gloria Reuben — “Stuff Happens”
Laila Robins — “Sore Throats”

Arthur French — “Two Trains Running”
David Greenspan — “Some Men”
Ron Cephas Jones — “Two Trains Running”
Robert Sella — “Stuff Happens”
Harris Yulin — “Frank’s Home”

Anna Camp — “The Scene”
Mamie Gummer — “The Water’s Edge”
Nina Hellman — “The Internationalist”
Michele Ragusa — “Adrift in Macao”
Sherie Rene Scott — “Lan
dscape of the Body”

David Korins — “Jack Goes Boating”
Eugene Lee — “The Hairy Ape”
Anna Louizos — “In the Heights”
Derek McLane — “The Voysey Inheritance”
Allen Moyer — “The Busy World Is Hushed”

Gregory Gale — “The Milliner”
Gregory Gale — “The Voysey Inheritance”
Susan Hilferty — “Spring Awakening”
Willa Kim — “Adrift in Macao”
Valerie Marcus Ramshur — “Victoria Martin: Math Team Queen”

Kevin Adams — “Some Men”
Kevin Adams — “Spring Awakening”
Christopher Akerlind — “KAOS”
Jeff Croiter — “The Internationalist”
Japhy Weideman — “Jack Goes Boating”

John Collins — “Faust”
Martin Desjardins — “columbinus”
Robert Kaplowitz — “The Internationalist”
Brian Ronan — “Spring Awakening”
Eric Shim — “Essential Self-Defense”

Kevin Kline

Christopher Durang

Rick Sordelet

Classical Theater of Harlem

Actors’ Fund of America

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