KING KONG Wins Big at 2013 Helpmann Awards
The 13th Annual Helpmann Awards were presented in Sydney at the Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House and broadcast on Foxtel's Arena. Co-hosts Eddie Perfect and Christie Whelan Browne kicked off the night's proceedings with an incredibly entertaining opening number written specifically for the occasion by the multi-talented Mr Perfect himself.
The Helpmann Awards recognise distinguished artistic achievement and excellence across the major disciplines of Australia's live performance industry. In total 43 awards were presented this evening by some of Australia's most celebrated talent including, Tina Arena, Baz Luhrmann, Sarah Murdoch, John Waters, Hugh Sheridan, Marcus Graham, Elizabeth Debicki, Patrick Brammall, Chloe Dallimore, Erika Heynatz, Ashley Zukerman, Miranda Tapsell, Rob Mills, ShaRon Millerchip, Toby Schmitz, Alison Bell, David Harris, Wayne Scott Kermond, Lynette Curran, Christen O'Leary, Russell Dykstra, Esther Hannaford, The Hon. George Souris, Ewen Leslie, Jennifer Vuletic and Helen Thomson.
Further showcasing Australia's unique and diverse live performance industry, show highlights included live performances by Tim Minchin, the casts of GREASE and HOT SHOE SHUFFLE, Sydney Dance Company, Silvie Paladino and the Sydney Children's Choir, Emma Birdsall and Timomatic.
In addition, as previously announced pop music icon Kylie Minogue OBE and Arts philanthropist David Blenkinsop CBE AM were co-recipients of the 2013 JC Williamson AWARD. By bestowing this award, Live Performance Australia (LPA) recognises individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the Australian live entertainment industry and shaped the future of our industry for the better. Both recipients were specially honoured at the ceremony with jazz great James Morrison AM performing in honour of David Blenkinsop and his tireless work and passion for live performance, while Michael Gudinski AM paid tribute to Kylie Minogue and her unparalleled achievements in the Australian and international live entertainment arena.
This year the Helpmann Awards also made two additional presentations, the first awarded to White Night Melbourne for Best Special Event. Further to this the Industry Awards Panel and Helpmann Awards Administration Committee felt strongly that the ground breaking Australian creation of King Kong, the first of its kind in the world, was worthy of individual recognition and created a new award to honour this. Outstanding Theatrical Achievement was presented for the design, creation and operation of King Kong - the creature.
Chief Executive, Live Performance Australia, Evelyn Richardson said "Tonight we celebrated the very best of our talented live performance industry. Our annual Ticketing Survey 2012 released today shows that the industry remains strong with ticket sales and attendances stable and revenue exceeding $1.2 billion. More than 16 million people attended live events in 2012 indicating that Australians continue to engage with and be entertained by our wonderful productions across all the live performance genres."
NSW Minister for Tourism, Major Events and the Arts, George Souris said: "Congratulations to all the winners. The Helpmanns are the premier awards for the live performance industry in Australia. Our investment in the 2013 Helpmann Awards and the staging of them in Sydney re-affirms the NSW Government's commitment to the arts and further strengthens Sydney's position as the live performance capital of Australia."
The NSW Government, through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW, is a strategic partner for the 2013 Helpmann Awards.