BHAC DRAMA AWARDS 2018

Listed in order of Public Adjudication dates, entries were received from the following theatre groups:

 

Hurstpierpoint Players  –  Habeas Corpus by Alan Bennett

The antics at the Wicksteed home are a satirical merry-go-round.  Family, friends and the sexual satisfaction of the “corpus” (body) are the ruling passions in this farcical comedy of ill-manners. Through a dance of mistaken identities and carnal encounters, one motto holds fast: “He whose lust lasts, lasts longest.”

 

Burgess Hill Theatre Club  –  A Steady Rain by Keith Huff

 “A Steady Rain” is a gritty two-hander that explores various relationships and complex bonds formed and grown on the tough streets of Chicago.  Often amusing and violent in equal measure , we follow Joey and Denny who have been best friends since school as they try to survive as policemen on the unforgiving streets of Chicago.  With biting , often poetic repartee & a rainbow of coloured dialogue , we journey with the two friends & a host of other characters on a fateful journey of love & life & family & pimps & drink & drugs……… and ultimately ask ourselves what is true Friendship!

 

Wick Theatre Company  –  Plaza Suite by Neil Simon

Wonderful funny farce – three couples successively occupying the same suite in the Plaza Hotel.  A marriage in tatters, a search for sexual diversion and a mother and father trying to coerce their daughter out of the bathroom, on her wedding day….wild and uproarious!”

 

New Venture Theatre  –  Happy Now? by Lucinda Coxon

A chance encounter at a conference hotel plays upon high-flying Kitty’s mind as she struggles to balance personal freedom with family life, friendships, fidelity, ageing parents and a testing job.  Blisteringly truthful and wonderfully funny, Happy Now? is a wise and darkly comic take on contemporary life and how to survive it.

 

Southwick Players  –  The Corn is Green by Emlyn Williams

Into a tiny Welsh mining village in 1900 steams an opinionated and driven English woman – determined to educate them all, whether they like it or not.  Into this mix of opposites is thrown the most talented, if uneducated, Welsh miner that she has ever seen, and she sets him on the road to a future nobody ever dreamed possible.  A story of triumph over adversity, of following your heart, following your dreams.  Of conflict and sorrow.  Of inspiration.

 

Rottingdean Drama Society  –  Mother Courage and her Children by Bertolt Brecht

In a land ravaged by war, Mother Courage pulls her cart with her three children in the wake of the army, trading with soldiers and attempting to make profit from war.  Described as the greatest anti-war play of all time, written in response to Germany’s invasion of Poland in ’39, it is set in the 30 years war 1618-48.

 

Henfield Theatre Company  –  Brighton Beach Memoirs by Neil Simon

Dreaming of baseball and girls, Eugene must cope with the mundane existence of his family life in Brooklyn: formidable mother, overworked father, and his worldly older brother Stanley.  Throw into the mix his widowed Aunt Blanche and her two young (but rapidly aging) daughters and you have a recipe for hilarity, served up Simon-style.

 

Saints Theatre Group  –  The Ghost Train by Arnold Ridley

A young man accidentally strands six passengers at a small Cornish wayside station.  Despite the Cornish Stationmaster’s weird stories of a ghost train, they decide to stay the night in the waiting room.  Soon they regret this decision as ghostly (and not so ghostly) apparitions materialize…

 

 

 

The 2018 Brighton & Hove Arts Council Drama Awards evening took place on 4th December in the main hall at BHASVIC, with the eight productions listed above participating.  Our host this year was actor and producer Trevor Jones and the prizes were given out by this year’s Adjudicator, Jane Collins, Professor of Theatre and Performance at Wimbledon College of Art. 

 

Brighton and Hove Arts Council Drama Awards 2018

Best Set Design

Nominations

David Hubner for Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

Martin Oakley for The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

Sean Lippett-Fall for A Steady Rain, Burgess Hill Theatre Club

Mark Oliver and Phil Martin for The Ghost Train, Saints Theatre Company

WINNER

Martin Oakley for The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

 

Best Costume Design

Nominations

Linsay Oliver for The Ghost Train, Saints Theatre Group

Diane Fuell for Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

The company for Habeus Corpus, Hurstpierpoint Players

Heather Butler and Janet Geary for Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

WINNER

The company for Habeus Corpus, Hurstpierpoint Players

Best Stage Crew

Nominations

Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

A Steady Rain, Burgess Hill Theatre Club

The Ghost Train, Saints Theatre Group

Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

WINNER

The Ghost Train, Saints Theatre Group

Best Sound Design

Nominations

Ian Black and Dan Skelt for The Ghost Train, Saints Theatre Group

Ian Black for Happy Now? New Venture Theatre

Jeff Woodford for The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

Luke Deane for Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

WINNER

Ian Black and Dan Skelt for The Ghost Train, Saints Theatre Group

Best Lighting Design

Nominations

Mike Cawte for Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

Howie Kirk for The Ghost Train, Saints Theatre Group

Keith Dawson for Happy Now? New Venture Theatre

Martin Oakley for Plaza Suite, The Wick

WINNER

Mike Cawte for Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

 

Best Publicity

Nominations

Charley Roberts, Gary Cook and Amanda Reeves for The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

Steph Somerville, Nicki Plank, Nicola Collins, Tim Kendell, Dale Smith, Dan Knight for A Steady Rain, Burgess Hill Theatre Club

Rosemary Bouchy, Peter Joyce, Maggi Pierce, Judith Berrill for Plaza Suite, The Wick

Emmie Spencer and Max Videaux for Happy Now? New Venture Theatre

WINNER

Charley Roberts, Gary Cook and Amanda Reeves for The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

 

The Mike Padley Award for Best Supporting Actress

Nominations

Jan Bell as Muriel Wickstead in Habeas Corpus, Hurstpierpoint Players

Victoria Thomson as Jean McCormack and Muriel Tate in Plaza Suite, The Wick

Sidonie Lake as Yvette Pottier in Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

Saskia Monteiro as Nora in Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

WINNER

Victoria Thomson as Jean McCormack and Muriel Tate in Plaza Suite, The Wick

The Mike Padley Award for Best Supporting Actor

Nominations

Raphael Key as Stanley in Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

Robert Purchese as Carl in Happy Now?, New Venture Theatre

Sam Bullen as the Cook in Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

Phil Nair-Brown as John Goronway-Jones in The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

WINNER

Sam Bullen as Peter the Cook in Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

The Vaughan Rees Award for Best Actor

Nominations

Culann Smyth as Denny, in A Steady Rain, Burgess Hill Theatre Club

Trevor Hodgson as Jack, in Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

Ben Pritchard as Joey in A Steady Rain, Burgess Hill Theatre Club

Simon Hudson as Michael in Happy Now? New Venture Theatre

WINNER(s)

Ben Pritchard as Joey and Culann Smyth as Denny in A Steady Rain, Burgess Hill Theatre Club

 

The Vaughan Rees Award for Best Actress

Nominations

Lesley Arnold as Mother Courage in Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

Louise Yeo as Miss Moffat in The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

Sophie Dearlove as Kitty in Happy Now?, New Venture Theatre

Lauren Morley as Blanche in Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

WINNER

Louise Yeo as Miss Moffat in The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

Best Technical Achievement

For the steady rain that fell throughout the play

WINNER

Steady Rain, Burgess Hill Theatre Club

The Gabbus Denny Award for Best Director

Nominations

Sean Lippett-Fall for Steady Rain, Burgess Hill Theatre Club

Susanne Crosby for The Corn is Green, Southwick Players

Shelia Nye for Brighton Beach Memoirs, Henfield Theatre Company

Claire Lewis for Happy Now?, New Venture Theatre 

WINNER

Claire Lewis for Happy Now?,  New Venture Theatre

Arthur Churchill Award for Excellence

Awarded for excellence as the most promising newcomer

WINNER

Stephanie Gilbert as Kattrin in Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

The Coffin Mew Award

For excellent ensemble work that permeated every aspect of the production and all the activities surrounding it, creating a real sense of a community event that was engaged with the past and the current political situation and that I believe the writer of this play would have totally supported.

WINNER

Mother Courage and Her Children, Rottingdean Drama Society

The Bea Waters Challenge Cup for Best Overall Production

WINNER

Brighton Beach Memoirs,  Henfield Theatre Company

Our special thanks for yet another successful evening go to our hosts, BHASVIC, to our committee member, Kate Armes, for the many hours she spent on organising this annual event, to Trevor Jones for his work in hosting it, to BHAC’s principal sponsors, Coffin Mew, to our photographer Nick Ford, and of course to this year’s Adjudicator – Jane Collins.

(Anyone wishing to access larger-sized photos of the event should contact Nick Ford at his Brighton studio (https://www.nickfordphotography.co.uk/) or via his Facebook site (https://www.facebook.com/NickFordPhotography/)