THE HELPMANN AWARDS

Published on 8th Sep, 2010

‘And the Bobby Goes to…Jersey Boys for Best Musical! The Helpmann Awards night ended on a high with what seemed like the whole cast and crew of Jersey Boys bounding to the stage to collect the coveted award.

The other highlight wins that audiences were hanging out for included Best Male Actor in a Musical which went to Mitchell Butel and Best Female Actor in a Musical which went to Michala Banas, both from the famous puppet musical Avenue Q. Avenue Q also took out the awards for Best Male and Female Actor in a Supporting Role, Luke Joslin and Christina O’Neill respectively. Best Direction for a Musical went to Jonathan Biggins for Avenue Q. Kelley Abbey took out the gong for Best Choreography in a Musical for Fame.

In between the awards there was a good amount of entertainment, everything from a string quartet to iOTA singing as a hunched bunny rabbit. The highlights were David Campbell singing ‘When I Get My Name in Lights’ with a string of dancing girls headed up by Kate Wormald-Leopold from SYTYCD fame. Campbell opened the show and was his usual ever personable, charming self as MC/Host. The stunning triple threat Alinta Chidzey performed ‘America’ with her pack of Puerto Rican gals and my favourite number, after four hours worth of awards was ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’ from the Mary Poppins cast headed up by the superb Verity Hunt-Ballard as Poppins. It was colourful, high energy and an overall hoot!

Suprisingly, the Helpmann Awards were in need of some help when it came to their technical hiccups. The sound seemed out-of-action in the beginning and then half way through Act II, by the time Ms Blanchett came out to present an award the nominations big screen was completely MIA! Presenters peered up to a missing screen, so we all sat and listened to the nominees announced via voice-over – very strange.

Post-show the winners, losers and VIPs piled into coaches which ferried us to the Argyle for champers and sushi. There were smiles all round and lots of congrats shared. It was a fun-filled night with some great entertainment teasers for people who can now run out and buy tickets to all the shows.

Despite the technical hitches and glitches the Bobbies are about awarding and recognising the actors, writers, directors, dancers, choreographers, singers and more that the world of live performance counts on to continue to generate a thriving theatrical industry that is so clearly valued and loved here in Oz!

All the world’s a stage after all is it not?!

Emma Bell is a writer, reviewer and interviewer and can be found at www.emmabell.com.au

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