Arts and Entertainment

Olivier Awards take centre stage at the Royal Opera House

The Olivier Awards were held Sunday 12 April at London's Royal Opera House. Image: @OlivierAwards

The Olivier Awards were held Sunday 12 April at London’s Royal Opera House. Image: @OlivierAwards

Last night, London’s Royal Opera house played host to the most prestigious awards ceremony in theatre.

Hosted by Lenny Henry, the star-studded event played host to some of the biggest names in acting including Dame Judi Dench, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Anne-Marie Duff.

The 2015 Olivier Awards were hosted by Lenny Henry. Image: @OlivierAwards

The 2015 Olivier Awards were hosted by Lenny Henry. Image: @OlivierAwards

The Kinks-inspired musical Sunny Afternoon, and the drama A View From A Bridge both walked away with multiple awards.

Dame Angela Lansbury walked away with the award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as eccentric medium Madame Arcati in Blithe Spirit.

The 89-year old actress joked in her acceptance speech,

I can’t remember a lot of things these days – except I can remember my lines. Here I am creeping up to 90 and feeling like a million dollars because I’m in London in this magnificent hall with all you – my roots, where I began.

The actress’s star role in Blithe Spirit opened at the Gielgud Theatre.

This was where her mother, actress Moyna Macgill, made her debut on the same stage in 1918.

At that time, the theatre was known as The Globe.

Image: @OlivierAwards

Image: @OlivierAwards

The prize for best actor went to Mark Strong for his role as the tragic hero Eddie Carebone in Arthur Miller’s A View From A Bridge.

The role managed to draw Strong back to the stage after 12 years away.

In his acceptance speech he said,

Thousands of years have gone by and we still have this thing called live theatre – and the reason is that we need to be able to compare ourselves to what we see up there and judge ourselves as human beings.

Penelope Wilton won the award for best actress for her role in Taken at Midnight where she played a German lawyer imprisoned by Nazis.

Joe Penhall’s Sunny Afternoon, inspired by the story and music of the Kinks, scooped the prize for best new musical.

Sunny Afternoon’s stars, John Dagleish and George Maguire, who play brothers Ray and Dave Davis, won the awards for best actor and best supporting actor in their category.

The event featured musical performances from Cats’ Nicole Scherzinger, Natalie Mendoza, performing alongside the composer David Byrne and a surprise finale by Kevin Spacey and Beverly Knight.

For full details of all the awards click here.

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