And so now to recognise a few shows, theatres, companies and individuals, separate to narrative and performance, that had a particular impact on us in 2016.
First up – Nicest Theatre Staff – This goes to the Print Room Notting Hill, for their ever helpful, ever happy staff, not to mention their exquisite bar making skills when they double up as bartenders (in the nicest theatre bar in the whole of London). Thanks for all your help and friendliness!
Next up the Technology Award – this goes to fanSHEN Theatre for their production of ‘Invisible Treasure’ at the Ovalhouse, combining interactive audio, visual and sensory technologies they pushed the bar even higher in terms of theatre technology. Keep up the excellent work fanSHEN! Looking forward to your next project!
Now we have the Design Award. This year there is no way that we could look any further than our December trip to The Lorax at the Old Vic. Rob Howell has done an excellent job bringing Dr. Seuss’ charming fable to life, whilst making some lovely additions: Thneed 2.0 Ironing board anyone? We must also mention Gyre and Gimble for their tremendous puppets, for their central role in bringing the Lorax himself to life. We congratulate both Rob and and Gyre and Gimble for the wonderful design of The Lorax.
And now the big one, Theatre of the Year. It would be impossible to look any further than The Almeida for this year’s title of best theatre. Their stunning Greeks Season sent shockwaves through the London theatre scene and for good reason. It will be a long long while before I see a better version of The Oresteia or Bakkhai. I probably never will. There was also their ingenious live readings of The Iliad and the Odyssey. Live streamed video performances with supporting social media made for a lovely experiment in home theatre. We look forward to seeing how you plan to go about raising the bar still further.
Finally, it would be impossible to end our annual awards round up without a final mention for one of the most bizarre, unique and hysterical shows of 2015. And so without further ado, we would like to present our Sheep Award to ‘King Lear with Sheep’. This show, conceived by Missouri Williams and performed by Alasdair Saksena and eight real life bleeting sheep, did exactly what it said on the tin and did it brilliantly. We await with much anticipation the next sheep-based production.
So that’s it, a full roundup. Now we can look forward to everything we are going to see in 2016…