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DURBAN THEATRE AWARDS WINNERS (article first published : 2003-12-16)

The winners of the Durban Theatre Awards 2002-2003 were honoured on December 15 at a sophisticated glitzy evening at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre.

Greg King and his KickstArt Productions swept the board with The Memory of Water winning Lighting Design for Michael Broderick, Lead Actress Of The Year In A Drama for Clare Mortimer; Director of the Year for Greg King and Peter Court as well as the coveted Drama Production of the Year. Andrew Verster won the Costume Design award and Kevin Turner the Supporting Actor award for Private Lives. Steel Magnolias garnered the Supporting Actress of the Year award for Vera Clare and the Set Design award for Greg King.

Far from the Madding Crowd also did well with David Dennis winning the award for Performance of the Year in a Musical or Music Revue – Male with Alan Judd and Michael Burn being joint winners respectively in the categories Musical Director of the Year and New Actor of the Year.

The other joint winner in the Musical Director of the Year category was Evan Roberts for Bloody Mary which also won the Performance of the Year in a Musical or Music Revue – Female award for Carol Trench.

Jerry Pooe’s Eager Artists gained accolade with Skhumbuzo Nsele and Charmain Mpofu being joint winners in the New Actor/Actress of the Year awards for Animal Farm – Musical. Gcina Vilakazi was a joint winner in this category for My Voice- My Life.

Green Mamba won Script of the Year of a New South African Play for John van de Ruit and Ben Voss, with Ben Voss winning the Performance of the Year in a Comedy – Male for his role in the production.

The award for Lead Actor of the Year in a Drama went to Neil Coppen for his performance in Hamlet. Leopard Skin was adjudged Musical Theatre Production of the Year: Very Very Big Productions won Music Revue Production of the Year for Strapless.

Five Special Recognition Awards were presented to members in the theatre industry who were honoured officially for their contribution. These were the Amajika Youth & Children Art Project, Ruby Bernard, Essop Khan & Mahomed Alli, Edmund Mhlongo and Vusi Shashu.

A further presentation was made to Mrs Augusta Andre (now 93), who was a familiar figure at the Playhouse and where she was the chief programme seller for 35 years. A Special Judge’s award was presented to artSMart editor Caroline Smart for her contribution to the arts in Durban.

The evening’s entertainment included excerpts from productions currently running over the festive season.




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