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ALL THE WAY, Bryan Cranston, THE FLICK, ONCE, Andre De Shields and More Among 2014 Elliot Norton Award Nominations

ALL THE WAY, Bryan Cranston, THE FLICK, ONCE, Andre De Shields and More Among 2014 Elliot Norton Award Nominations

The Boston Theater Critics Association (BTCA) has announced over 25 nominations of actors, directors, designers and ensembles to be presented at 32nd Annual Elliot Norton Awards on Monday May 19 at The Wheelock Family Theatre.

This year's recipient of the Elliot Norton Prize for Sustained Excellence will be Paul Daigneault, the Founder and Producing Artistic Director of SpeakEasy Stage Company. Academy Award-winner and international star of stage, television and film Olympia Dukakis will received the 2014 Elliot Norton Lifetime Achievement Award with special remarks by her cousin and former Governor Michael Dukakis. Other highlights include musical performances and award tributes for Julie Harris and Jeremy Geidt.

Tickets are $30 (including post-party) and available by phone at 617-879-2300 or online www.nortonawardsboston.com. (Use "Norton2014" code to receive $10 off thru April 30, 2014.)

Paul Daigneault's vision and leadership have made SpeakEasy Stage one of the most successful and respected professional theaters in New England, with a strong reputation for producing regional premieres of contemporary plays and musicals, and an even stronger commitment to developing the talents and careers of local theatre artists. Paul has directed more than half of his company's roughly one hundred productions over its past 23 seasons. His SpeakEasy directing highlights include works as diverse as: The Color Purple; In the Heights; Next to Normal; Nine; Body Awareness; The Great American Trailer Park Musical; [title of show]; The Savannah Disputation; Jerry Springer - The Opera; Caroline, or Change; A Man of No Importance; Take Me Out; and Company. He has received two Elliot Norton Awards for Direction: the first in 2003, for his work on both Stephen Sondheim's Passion and Bat Boy: The Musical, the latter of which still holds the record as SpeakEasy's longest running show, and then again in 2008, for his work on three productions: Parade, Some Men, and Zanna Don't!. In 2007, Paul was honored with the Boston College Arts Council's Alumni Award for Distinguished Achievement, and in 2011, became the first BC alumnus to serve as the Rev. J. Donald Monan S.J. Professor in Theater Arts. In 2008, SpeakEasy Stage was the first company to receive Stage Source's Theater Hero Award, a distinction given annually to "an exceptional member of the Greater Boston Theatre Community who has demonstrated a history of service and commitment to the community through leadership, support, inspiration, innovation, and promotion of the art of theatre, throughout the region." Paul is currently on the faculty of The Boston Conservatory where he teaches Directing and Musical Theatre and has helmed productions of Merrily We Roll Along, Rent, Sunday in the Park with George, City of Angels, and Grand Hotel. Outside the theatre, he serves on the boards of the Barbara C. Harris Camp & Conference Center and the ICU Patient & Family Advisory Council at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Paul resides in Brookline, MA with his husband, the Rev. Jeffrey W. Mello, and their son Ardani Mello-Daigneault.

The Elliot Norton Awards are named in honor of the distinguished Boston theater critic Elliot Norton, who for many years served on the selection committee and who remained an engaged supporter of the drama, both locally and nationally, until his death in 2003 at the age of 100. For 48 years Mr. Norton was a drama critic for Boston newspapers; concurrently, from 1958 until his retirement in 1982, he was moderator of Elliot Norton Reviews on WGBH television. The Norton Medal was first bestowed in 1983. Since then, the awards have grown to include, in addition to the Prize for Sustained Excellence, almost two dozen awards presented annually to outstanding productions, performers, directors, and designers.

In addition, the event has become a memorable evening, attended over the years by such luminaries as Chita Rivera, Tony Shalhoub and Brooke Adams, Tommy Tune, Julie Harris, Elaine Stritch, Irene Worth, and Al Pacino. The Boston Theater Critics Association, which presents the Elliot Norton Awards, includes Don Aucoin, Jared Bowen, Terry Byrne, Carolyn Clay, Nick Dussault, Iris Fanger, Joyce Kulhawik, Robert Nesti, Kilian Melloy, and Ed Siegel. Together with the thriving local theater community, they carry on his legacy.

32nd Annual Elliot Norton Awards Nominations:

Elliot Norton Prize for Sustained Excellence: Paul Daigneault

Outstanding Visiting Production

Mies Julie (Baxter Theatre Centre, presented by ArtsEmerson)

Waiting for Godot (Gare St Lazare Players and Dublin Theatre Festival, presented by ArtsEmerson)

A Midsummer Night's Dream (Bristol Old Vic in association with Handspring Puppet Company, presented by ArtsEmerson)

Outstanding Production by a Large Resident Theater

All the Way (American Repertory Theater)

The Heart of Robin Hood (American Repertory Theater)

Venus in Fur (Huntington Theatre Company)

Outstanding Production by a Midsize Theater

Tribes (SpeakEasy Stage Company)

Imagining Madoff (New Repertory Theatre)

The Cherry Orchard (Actors' Shakespeare Project)

Outstanding Production by a Small Theater

Windowmen (Boston Playwrights' Theatre)

How We Got On (Company One)

The Flick (Company One)

Outstanding Production by a Fringe Theater

Punk Rock (Zeitgeist Stage Company)

The Normal Heart (Zeitgeist Stage Company)

The Libertine (Co-Produced by Bridge Repertory Theater and Playhouse Creatures Theatre Company

Outstanding Design, Large Theater

The Heart of Robin Hood: Set design by Börkur Jónsson, costumes by Emma Ryott, lighting by Björn Helgason, sound by Jonathan Deans (American Repertory Theater)

Mies Julie: Set and lighting design by Patrick Curtis, original lighting design by Paul Abrams, costumes by Birrie Le Roux, music composed and performed by Daniel and Matthew Pencer (Baxter Theatre Centre, presented by ArtsEmerson)

The Jungle Book: Scenic design by Daniel Ostling, costumes by Mara Blumenfeld, lighting by T.J. Gerckens, sound by Joshua Horvath, Ray Nardelli, and Andre J. Pluess (Huntington Theatre Company)

Outstanding Design, Midsize, Small or Fringe Theater

Windowmen: Scenic design by Anthony R. Phelps, sound and lighting by David Wilson, costumes by Rachel Padula Shufelt (Boston Playwrights' Theatre)

The Flick: Scenic design by Cristina Todesco, lighting by Jen Rock, costumes by Amanda Maciel Antunes, sound by Edward Young, props master Anita Shriver (Company One)

The Whale: Scenic design by Cristina Todesco, costumes by Gail Astrid Buckley, lighting by Jeff Adelberg, sound by David Remedios (SpeakEasy Stage Company)

Outstanding Musical Production by a Large Theater

Once (Broadway in Boston)

The Jungle Book (Huntington Theatre Company)

Witness Uganda (American Repertory Theater)

Outstanding Musical Production by a Midsize, Small or Fringe Company

Thoroughly Modern Millie (Stoneham Theatre)

It's a Horrible Life (Gold Dust Orphans)

Hairspray (Wheelock Family Theatre)

Outstanding Musical Performance by an Actor

Andre De Shields, The Jungle Book (Huntington Theatre Company)

Paul Melendy, It's a Horrible Life (Gold Dust Orphans)

Francis Jue, Miss Saigon (North Shore Music Theatre)

Outstanding Musical Performance by an Actress

Melody Betts, Witness Uganda (American Repertory Theater)

Aimee Doherty, On the Town (Lyric Stage Company of Boston), Hairspray (Wheelock Family Theatre)

Ephie Aardema, Thoroughly Modern Millie (Stoneham Theatre)

Outstanding New Script

Windowmen, by Steven Barkhimer (Boston Playwrights' Theatre)

Absence, by Peter M. Floyd (Boston Playwrights' Theatre)

Breaking the Shakespeare Code, by John Minigan (Vagabond Theatre Group)

Outstanding Director, Large Theater

Gisli Örn Gardarsson, The Heart of Robin Hood (American Repertory Theater)

Mary Zimmerman, The Jungle Book (Huntington Theatre Company)

Yael Farber, Mies Julie (Baxter Theatre Centre, presented by ArtsEmerson)

Outstanding Director, Midsize Theater

M. Bevin O'Gara, Tribes (SpeakEasy Stage Company)

Ilyse Robbins, Thoroughly Modern Millie (Stoneham Theatre)

Melia Bensussen, The Cherry Orchard (Actors' Shakespeare Project)

Outstanding Director, Small or Fringe Theater

Summer L. Williams, How We Got On (Company One)

David J. Miller, Punk Rock and The Normal Heart (Zeitgeist Stage Company)

Shawn LaCount, The Flick (Company One)

Outstanding Actor, Large Theater

Bryan Cranston, All the Way (American Repertory Theater)

Bongile Mantsai, Mies Julie (Baxter Theatre Centre, presented by ArtsEmerson)

Denis O'Hare, An Iliad (Homer's Coat, presented by ArtsEmerson)

Outstanding Actress, Large Theater

Hilda Cronje, Mies Julie (Baxter Theatre Centre, presented by ArtsEmerson)

Andrea Syglowski, Venus in Fur (Huntington Theatre Company)

Christina Bennett Lind, The Heart of Robin Hood (American Repertory Theater)

Outstanding Actor, Midsize Theater

John Kuntz, The Whale (SpeakEasy Stage Company)

Steven Barkhimer, The Cherry Orchard (Actors' Shakespeare Project)

Jeremiah Kissel, Imagining Madoff (New Repertory Theatre)

Outstanding Actress, Midsize Theater

Erica Spyres, Tribes (SpeakEasy Stage Company)

Georgia Lyman, The Whale (SpeakEasy Stage Company)

Marianna Bassham, The Cherry Orchard (Actors' Shakespeare Project)

Outstanding Actor, Small or Fringe Theater

Phil Gillen, Punk Rock (Zeitgeist Stage Company)

Alex Pollock, This Is Our Youth (Gloucester Stage Company), Windowmen (Boston Playwrights' Theatre), The Flick (Company One)

Victor Shopov, The Normal Heart (Zeitgeist Stage Company)

Outstanding Actress, Small or Fringe Theater

Maureen Adduci, The Normal Heart (Zeitgeist Stage Company)

Brenna Fitzgerald, The Flick (Company One)

Cloteal Horne, How We Got On (Company One)

Outstanding Ensemble, Large Theater

All the Way (American Repertory Theater)

The Heart of Robin Hood (American Repertory Theater)

The Seagull (Huntington Theatre Company)

Outstanding Ensemble, Midsize, Small or Fringe Theater

Punk Rock (Zeitgeist Stage Company)

Windowmen (Boston Playwrights' Theatre)

Hairspray (Wheelock Family Theatre)

Thoroughly Modern Millie (Stoneham Theatre)

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