Nominees for the 29th annual Dora Mavor Moore Awards were announced yesterday morning at the Sony Centre. Over muffins and coffee, various TAPA members, politicians, and mainstays of the Toronto theatre scene presented three awards and read off a long list of those eligible for taking home the coveted (if heavy) jesters come June 30th. This year’s nominee list, for the most part, is a rich cross-section of the Toronto theatre-going scene over the past year.
Following the presentation of the Barbara Hamilton, George Luscombe, and newly-created Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Awards (to Fiona Reid, Iris Turcott, and Jim LeFrancois, respectively), Tracy Wright and Daniel MacIvor got down to the business of reading the long list of nominees.
Nominations were as diverse as the jury who chose them, and the 219 shows they sat through to make their choices. The inventive Theatre Centre/Urbanvessel production of Stitch was recognized with two nominations, and the Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company received five nominations for its inaugural company production of Rose. Actor-director David Ferry was nominated (in the Independent Theatre Division) for his excellent, creepy performance in the site-specific work Lullaby, while Megan Follows competes against herself with two nominations—one for Top Girls, one for Three Sisters, both of which were Soulpepper productions. The much-lauded company itself is up for thirteen nominations, mainly for that scorchingly good production of Top Girls (to be remounted this fall).
But it’s the recently-troubled Canadian Stage Company that leads the Dora nominations, with twenty-one in total, including five for The December Man, the moving three-person play by award-winning playwright Colleen Murphy, and three for Judith Thompson’s The Palace of The End. Also nominated are the two musicals staged by the company this past season, the kitschy comedy Little Shop of Horrors and the pseudo–Jerry Lee Lewis rock and roll stylings of Fire.
With the indefatigable Sharron Matthews hosting (plus talented Thom Allison joining in), the Doras, on at the Elgin June 30, ought to be a night of good fun, celebration, and theatrical merriment.
Photo by Antonio Tan.