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Bangarra Dance Theatre and Muriel’s Wedding The Musical the early winners at 2018 Helpmann Awards

Bangarra Dance Theatre and Muriel’s Wedding The Musical the early winners at 2018 Helpmann Awards
July 16, 2018

The Bangarra Dance Theatre, Muriel's Wedding The Musical and Beautiful: The Carole King Musical are among the early winners on the first night of this year's Helpmann Awards.

With the Helpmann's 43 awards categories being split, for the first time, across two nights and two events, the first 20 awards, focusing on supporting, craft and technical roles in the performing arts, were presented at an intimate cocktail hour event held at the Sydney Town Hall on Sunday evening.

Live Performance Australia Chief Executive Evelyn Richardson explaines “two shorter shows enables us to better highlight the artistry and excellence in our dynamic live performance industry.

"Over the past 18 years the Helpmann Awards have received nearly 11,000 entries and announced over 2,750 Nominees which highlights the scale of the live performance industry enjoyed by 18.4 million people each year in Australia".

Among awards presented at the 2018 Helpmann Awards Act I last night, Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, which officially opens at QPAC in Brisbane this week, took home the awards for Best Male and Female Performer in a Supporting Role in a Musical thanks to the stand-out performances of Mat Verevis and Amy Lehpamer as New York-based songwriters Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil (Lucy Maunder has since taken over role of Cynthia).

The Sydney Theatre Company's highly-anticipated stage adaptation of Muriel's Wedding took out four creative awards for Best Costume Design, Best Music Direction, Best Original Score and Best Choreography in a Musical.

That achievement was only matched by The Bangarra Dance Theatre, which won Best Lighting Design, Best Scenic Design and Best Choreography in a Ballet, Dance or Physical Theatre Production for Bennelong and Best Regional Touring Production for OUR land people stories.

The State Opera of South Australia's production of Hamlet took out Best Female Performer in a Supporting Role in an Opera and Best Direction of an Opera.

Last night saw hosts Rhoda Roberts and Michael Lynch joined by special guest presenters including actor Mitchell Butel, director Neil Armfield AO, musical theatre stars Verity Hunt-Ballard, Matt Lee and Sharon Millerchip, choreographer Kelley Abbey, actor Peter Carroll, musical director Vanessa Scammell and composer Max Lambert.

Performances included Chloe Dallimore and Amanda Laing with the Lyrebird Song from Monkey Baa Theatre Company’s ‘Josephine Wants to Dance’, the Sydney Youth Orchestra Quartet, musical theatre rising star Georgina Hopson and dynamic opera duo Andrew Jones and Jenny Liu singing the Papageno and Papagena duet from Mozart’s The Magic Flute.

The Helpmann Awards were established by LPA in 2001.

The remaining 23 Awards will be presented at The Helpmann Awards Act II tonight at Sydney's Capitol Theatre and will be broadcast on the ABC at 9.35pm.

Images: The Bangarra Dance Theatre's Bennelong (top, courtesy of Daniel Boud) and Mat Verevis as Barry Mann and Lucy Maunder as Cynthia Weil in a scene from Beautiful: The Carole King Musical (below, courtesy of QPAC).

29th June 2018 - NOMINATIONS ANNOUNCED FOR 18TH ANNUAL HELPMANN AWARDS

22nd May 2018 - MELBOURNE SNATCHES FUTURE HELPMANN AWARDS CEREMONIES FROM SYDNEY

20th February 2018 - LPA RELEASES NEW SAFETY GUIDELINES FOR THE LIVE ENTERTAINMENT AND EVENTS INDUSTRIES

1st December 2017 - LIVE PERFORMANCE AUSTRALIA PRESENT 2017 CENTENARY AWARDS

26th September 2017 - DAVID ATKINS APPOINTED NEW HELPMANN AWARDS ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

25th July 2017 - HELPMANN AWARDS RECOGNISE BOOK OF MORMON AS BEST MUSICAL, NICK CAVE AND PATTI SMITH AS TOP CONCERTS 

20th June 2017 - 17TH ANNUAL HELPMANN AWARDS NOMINATIONS IN 42 CATEGORIES ANNOUNCED

17th June 2017 - RICHARD TOGNETTI TO RECEIVE THE 2017 JC WILLIAMSON AWARD

2nd June 2017 - ROB BROOKMAN TO RECEIVE 2017 SUE NATTRASS AWARD

29th May 2017 - THE 17TH ANNUAL HELPMANN AWARDS TAKES CENTRE STAGE IN SYDNEY IN JULY 

8th July 2016 - MUSICAL THEATRE HAS A MAJOR IMPACT ON VICTORIA’S ECONOMY

21st April 2016 - LIVE PERFORMANCE AUSTRALIA CALLS FOR FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO HAND BACK ARTS FUNDS 

13th August 2015 - NEW AGENCY LAUNCHED FOR VICTORIAN TOURISM AND MAJOR EVENTS

17th June 2015 - VICTORIAN PREMIER VOWS TO FIGHT FOR EVERY MAJOR EVENT ‘WORTH TAKING’


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