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    Posted April 11, 2007

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2007 Helen Hayes Award Nominees Announced

By Gregory Gorton

The nominees for the 2007 Helen Hayes Awards have been announced and the awards ceremony will once again take place during a gala presentation at Washington's Warner theater, on Monday, April 16th. The celebration of the 23rd annual awards will continue at the J. W. Marriot hotel immediately following the awards and performances.

After yet another season of terrific theater in Washington, many of those productions find themselves with nominations. The interesting thing about this year's list of nominees is the number of individuals with multiple award nominations.

This year also saw the resurgence of some of Washington's landmark theaters and some of the larger LORT and SPT theaters in strong competition for the coveted award.

Leading the list with twenty-seven total nominations is Arena Stage. Following Arena is The Shakespeare Theater with twenty-one nominations. With these two theaters combining for a total of forty-eight nominations, little room was available for the rest of the DC theater community.

But that is the beauty and a hallmark of our little town; we never stop trying to put forth our best efforts and never allow all of the hot air in Washington to dispel our creative dreams.

The Studio Theater, which has received many awards over the years, is right in the thick of it with twelve nominations, including those for productions on its Secondstage. The Folger Theater garnered eleven nominations and last year's big winner, Signature Theater, has seven nominations.

Seven may well be lucky for The Woolly Mammoth Theater and Round House Theater as they each have seven nominations, as well.

Non-Resident productions provided The Kennedy Center with thirteen nominations and The National Theater with five. Synetic Theater, one of our newest and smaller theaters continues to make itself known during the Helen Hayes Awards. It has been a multiple nominee since its beginnings and enters the 2007 race with nine. Three different shows have been nominated at Synetic. Two of the nominated shows were produced in conjunction with other area theaters.

In the category of Outstanding Choreography for a Resident Production, a former winner has scored the triple threat. Irina Tsikurishvila has received three nominations; FAUST, at Synetic Theater, THE DYBBUK, presented by Synetic Theater and Theater J and FRANKENSTEIN, produced by Synetic Theater as part of the Kennedy Center's Prelude Festival.

Other nominees include Marion J. Caffrey for 3 MO' DIVAS and David Neumann for CABARET , both produced by Arena Stage.

For Outstanding Set Design in a Resident Production, Daniel Conway has a trio of nominations. MARTHA, JOSIE AND THE CHINESE ELVIS at Woolly Mammoth, MEASURE FOR MEASURE at The Folger Theater and THE LONG CHRISTMAS RIDE HOME at The Studio Theater. James Kronzer is a double nominee for THE FOREIGNER at Olney Theater and THE BEAUX STRATAGEM at The Shakespeare Theater. Antje Ellerman is nominated for 9 PARTS OF DESIRE at Arena Stage and Timian Alsaker is nominated for The Shakespeare Theater's AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE.

John Hoey has been nominated for his work in Outstanding Lighting Design for Resident Production for the Folger Theater production of MEASURE FOR MEASURE.

Charlie Morrison was nominated for both Olney Theater's production of THE ELEPHANT MAN and Shakespeare Theater's, AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE. Colin K. Bills is a double nominee for Synetic's productions of THE DYBBUK and FRANKENSTEIN.

In the field of Outstanding Director of a Resident Production nominees, The Shakespeare Theater's Michael Kahn scored a double with his direction of THE BEAUX STRATAGEM and LOVE'S LABOR'S LOST. The impressive field of directorial nominees includes, Blake Robison for The Round House Theater, Christopher Gallu for The Catalyst Theater production of THE RESISTIBLE RISE OF ARTURO UI, and Kjetil Bang-Hansen for An ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE at The Shakespeare Theater, Aaron Posner for MEASURE FOR MEASURE at The Folger Theater, Paata Tsikurishvili for Synetic's and the Kennedy Center's Prelude Program production of FRANKENSTEIN and John Vreeke for MARTHA, JOSIE AND THE CHINESE ELVIS at The Woolly Mammoth Theater Company.

Washington's musical directors continue to make an impression on the Helen Hayes voters. The double decker nominee for Outstanding Musical direction of a Resident Production is Jon Kalbfleisch for CAROLINE OR CHANGE at The Studio Theater and Signature's encore production of ASSASSINS. Perennial Hayes' nominees George Fulginiti-Shakar and Howard Breitbart are again honored for CABARET at Arena Stage and CAROLINE OR CHANGE at The Studio Theater, respectively. Joining in the music are Adam Wernick for Shakespeare Theater's LOVE'S LABOR'S LOST and Victor Simonson's work at Arena Stage on 3 MO' TENORS.

Among the acting nominations, J. Fred Shiffman was nominated for his work as Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Resident Musical for CABARET and SHE LOVES ME, both produced by Arena Stage. Andy Brownstein and Mike Duncan were both nominated for their work in ASSASSINS at Signature Theater. Jim Corti is nominated for SHE LOVES ME at Arena Stage.

For a complete listing of all the nominees and any information you need about the Helen Hayes Awards go to and click on the "Washington Theater" link.

Congratulations to all of the nominees and I'll see you at the Warner.

-Gregory Gorton

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