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2019 Philadelphia Theater Critic’s Awards — The Nominees

You never know when you will enter a theater and see the “best.”

Of a season. Of a year. Of a decade. Of a lifetime.

I don’t go to the theater to find competitive superlatives. I go because of a lifelong passion for seeing stories acted out, a passion that began with television’s Armstrong Circle Theatre and the US Steel Hour and continued when I started, at age 3, going to movies. Seeing actor perform live was the pinnacle. I don’t go the theater to decide the finest or to give awards. I go because that’s my favorite good time.

Think of it. Night after night, I am treated to the ideas of various people of various minds. Some of those minds are brilliant, and you learn a lot about life by listening to what they have their characters say. Some minds are mundane, but it’s good to have them for comparison. So you’ll know the different, the brilliant, the new, and the original when you hear it.

Not only do I hear what playwrights think and say, but I see directors and actors bringing human behavior to life.

I’ve been going to the theater non-stop since 1967, and I still can’t get enough of it.

Hence, I honor the works and the people who impressed me the most.

Sure, I have a penchant for making lists and keeping records, but the impetus for the Philadelphia Theater Critic’s Awards is to say “thank you.”

The “best” is to be cherished, the 40 best to be recognized.

That’s how this all works.

Five nominees have been chosen among qualifiers in six categories. From that five, recipients will emerge. Those recipients will be published within a few days. At that time, the Top 40 in each category will be listed.

 

The Nominees for the 2019 Philadelphia Theater Critic’s Award are:

 

For BEST PRODUCTION

 

THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME by Simon Stephens after Mark Haddon; Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia

HAMILTON by Lin-Manuel Moreno; National Tour, Forrest Theatre, Philadelphia

MARY SHELLEY’S FRANKENSTEIN by David Catlin after Mary Shelley; Lookingglass Theatre at McCarter Theatre Company, Princeton

NIXON IN CHINA by John Adams and Alice Goodman; Princeton Festival, Princeton

ROMEO AND JULIET by William Shakespeare; Wilma Theater, Philadelphia

 

For BEST ACTOR

 

SEAN ANDERSON, Nixon in China, Princeton Festival, Princeton

WALTER BRIGGS, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, McCarter Theatre Company, Princeton

NATHAN DARROW, A Number, People’s Light & Theatre Company, Malvern, Pa.

AUSTIN NEDROW, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia

MATTEO SCAMMELL, Romeo and Juliet, Wilma Theater, Philadelphia

 

For BEST ACTRESS

 

NATALIE CARTER, Dot, People’s Light & Theatre Company, Malvern, Pa.

CORDELIA DEWDNEY, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, McCarter Theatre Company, Princeton

SARAH GLIKO, The Bridges of Madison County, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Philadelphia

MAHIRA KAKKAR, Skylight, McCarter Theatre Company, Princeton

SABRINA PROFITT, Awake and Sing, Quintessence Theatre Group, Philadelphia

 

For BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

 

LUKE BRADT, Young Frankenstein, Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia

KEITH D. GALLAGHER, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, McCarter Theatre Company, Princeton

ANTHONY MARTINEZ-BRIGGS, Romeo and Juliet, Wilma Theater, Philadelphia

LAWRENCE PRESSMAN, Awake and Sing, Quintessence Theatre Group, Philadelphia

ALLEN LEWIS RICKMAN, The Sunshine Boys, Bristol Riverside Theatre, Bristol, Pa.

 

For BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

 

MICHE BRADEN, Nina Simone: Four Women; People’s Light & Theatre Company, Malvern, Pa.

E. ASHLEY IZARD, King Lear, The Wizard of Oz, The Tinker’s Wedding, Quintessence Theatre Group, Philadelphia

DANIELA MACK, Semele, Opera Philadelphia, Philadelphia

KAREN PEAKES, A Comedy of Tenors, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Walnut Street Theater, Philadelphia

ZUHAIRAH, Dot, People’s Light & Theatre Company, Malvern, Pa., and Gem of the Ocean, Arden Theatre Company, Philadelphia

 

For BEST DIRECTOR

 

DAVID CATLIN, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, McCarter Theatre Company, Princeton

JOHN COLLINS, Gatz, Elevator Repair Service at McCarter Theatre, Princeton

THOMAS KAIL, Hamilton, National Tour, Forrest Theatre

STEVEN LaCOSSE, Nixon in China, Princeton Festival, Princeton

BLANKA ZIZKA, Romeo and Juliet, Wilma Theater, Philadelphia

 

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