The stunning revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Follies at the National Theatre has garnered 10 nominations in the 2018 Olivier Awards. This five-star production was lauded by critics when it opened, with David Jays in the Sunday Times calling it “triumphantly unsentimental but compassionate”, leading to “tears, cackles and goose bumps, sometimes all together”.
Equally well received has been The Ferryman, written by Jez Butterworth and directed by Oscar-winner Sam Mendes, which scooped eight nominations.
Follies will face stiff competition from musicals Hamilton, Everybody’s Talking About Jamie and Girl from the North Country. But the show has been nominated for Magic Radio Best Musical Revival and Best Director (Dominic Cooke). Its leading ladies are ahead of the pack with Tracie Bennett up for Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical and Janie Dee and Imelda Staunton for Best Actress in a Musical.
The show’s orchestra, under the music supervision of Nicholas Skilbeck and music director Nigel Lilley, has been nominated for Outstanding Achievement in Music, while Paule Constable is nominated in the White Light Award for Best Lighting Design.
Also, for Follies, Vicki Mortimer is given the nod for Best Costume Design and for the Blue-I Theatre Technology Award (Best Set Design), and Bill Deamer is up for Best Theatre Choreographer, where he goes against Christopher Wheeldon, who is responsible for the hugely popular An American in Paris.
Among the plays honoured this year, The Ferryman (at the Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court) stands out with nominations for Best Actor (Paddy Considine), Best Actress (Laura Donnelly), Best Director (Sam Mendes) and American Airlines Best New Play.
The Ferryman is also nominated for the Blue-I Theatre Technology Award for Best Set Design (Rob Howell), Best Actor in a Supporting Role (John Hodgkinson) and Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Brid Brennan and Dearbhla Molloy).
Both Hamlet (staged at the Almeida Theatre) and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Harold Pinter Theatre) are nominated for Best Revival. Andrew Scott gets a nomination as Best Actor for his interpretation of the lead role in Hamlet and Tom Gibbons is nominated for Best Sound Design for the same play.
Completing the nominations are two more for An American in Paris: Mastercard Best New Musical and the Blue-I Theatre Technology Award for Best Set Design (Bob Crowley and 59 Productions).
The Olivier Awards 2018 will take place on April 8 at the Royal Albert Hall.