OLIVIERS 2015: Kevin Sherwin's Picks!
The Best New Musical category seems tighter than usual this year - of the four nominees, I can see three of them winning (sorry, Sunny Afternoon) but my money is on Memphis. In my review of the show, I said it deserved to become "the original musical at the Shaftesbury that could" and while racking up nine nominations is impressive in itself, I'm really hoping this terrific little show will pick up its fair share on Sunday night. Beautiful and Here Lies Love will certainly give it a run for its money, but I haven't seen either of those and I've seen Memphis four times so by that scientific logic it definitely deserves to win.
Killian Donnelly's performance as Huey Calhoun is charming, carefree and vocally strong enough to bag him the Best Actor award too, but the Actress category isn't quite so straightforward: while Beverley Knight's vocal performance as Felicia Farrell is absolutely extraordinary, I wonder if the other nominees (Gemma Arterton, Katie Brayben and Tamsin Greig) might have stronger acting chops. Still, for single-handedly reinvigorating The Bodyguard and blowing the roof off the Shaftesbury Theatre with her rendition of Colored Woman, I'd love to see her win.
So basically: Memphis please. The show has had a tough week thanks to the social media rumour mill, so I'll be crossing my fingers and preparing to startle my neighbours by occasionally screaming "Hockadoo!" on Sunday.
Elsewhere, I'd love to see the touching and hilarious My Night With Reg beat the behemoths in its Best Revival category, and I'm hoping against hope for a Best Actress win for Imelda Staunton - strange to consider her an underdog, but Good People didn't get the plaudits it deserved and surely it's Gillian Anderson's to lose.
And finally, I'd very much like to see the anti-Wicked brigade's noses put out of joint, so I'm hoping the Audience Award goes its way.