‘Twelfth Night,’ ‘The Music Man’ Top Connecticut Critics Circle Nominations

Yale Repertory Theatre’s Afro-futuristic “Twelfth Night” and Goodspeed Musical’s nostalgic “The Music Man” lead the shows nominated for the 29th annual Connecticut Critics Circle Awards.

The awards event, which celebrates the best in professional theater in the state, will be held Monday, June 3 at 7 p.m. at the Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam. Jennifer Cody, who stars in “Mamma Mia!” at Connecticut Repertory Theatre’s Nutmeg Summer Series next month, will preside over the show which is free and open to the public.

“Twelfth Night” earned nine nominations, including outstanding play production, projections, sound, lighting, costumes, director, two featured actresses and another for featured actor. “The Music Man” received eight nods, including outstanding musical production, leading actor and actress, director, choreographer, set, lights and costumes.

Other outstanding play nominees are Westport Country Playhouse’s “A Flea in Her Ear;’ “Yale Rep’s “el Huracan;” Hartford Stage’s “The Engagement Party” and Hartford Stage’s “Make Believe.”

Also earning outstanding musical nods are Playhouse on Park’s “In the Heights;” Westport Country Playhouse’s “Man of La Mancha;” Ivoryton Playhouse’s “Once;” and Westport Country Playhouse’s “In the Heights.”

In an unusual situation, two productions of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical “In the Heights” — one at Westport Country Playhouse and the other at West Hartford’s Playhouse on Park — both received multiple nominations, including outstanding musical.

Receiving the annual Tom Killen Award for lifetime achievement in Connecticut theater is Tony Award-winning set designer Michael Yeargan.

Two actors will be receiving acting awards out of competition. Rachel Christopher will receive an award for her outstanding solo performance as The Poet in “An Iliad” at Long Wharf Theatre. Kenneth Galm will receive an award for outstanding debut for his role as Tobias in Connecticut Repertory Theatre’s Nutmeg Summer Series production of “Sweeney Todd.”

Other nominees are:

Actor in a play: Zach Appelman for Hartford Stage’s “The Engagement Party;” Brad Heberlee for Hartford Stage’s “Make Believe;” Jordan Sobel for Playhouse on Park’s “My Name Is Asher Lev;”: Michael Raver for MTC’s “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof;” Marc D. Lyons for Ivoryton Playhouse’s “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?”

Actress in a play: Megan Byrne for Hartford Stage’s “Make Believe;” Peggy Cosgrave for Seven Angels’ “Ripcord;” Linda Powell for Long Wharf Theatre’s “The Roommate;” Marina Re in Seven Angels’ “Ripcord;” Andrea Lynn Green for MTC’s “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.”

Actor in a musical: Philip Hernandez for Westport Country Playhouse’s “Man of La Mancha;” Terrence Mann for CRT’s “Sweeney Todd;” Niko Touros for Playhouse on Park’s “In the Heights;” Rodolfo Soto for Westport Country Playhouse’s “In the Heights;” Donald Corren in Goodspeed Musicals’ “Oliver!”; Edward Watts for Goodspeed Musicals’ “The Music Man.”

Actress in a musical: Gisela Adisa for Westport Country Playhouse’s “Man of La Mancha;” Liz Larsen in CRT’s “Sweeney Todd;” Emily Ferranti for CRT’s “The Mystery of Edwin Drood;” Ellie Fishman for Goodspeed Musical’s “The Music Man;” Christina Carlucci in Seven Angels’ “First Date.”

Director of a play
: Mark Lamos for Westport Country Playhouse’s “A Flea in Her Ear;’ Darko Tresnjak for “The Engagement Party;” Laurie Woolery for Yale Rep’s “el Huracan;” Carl Cofield for Yale Rep’s “Twelfth Night;” Jackson Gay for Hartford Stage’s “Make Believe.”

Director of a musical: Sean Harris for Playhouse on Park’s “In the Heights;” Ben Hope for Ivoryton Playhouse’s “Once;” Mark Lamos for Westport Country Playhouse’s “Man of La Mancha;” Marcos Santana for Westport Country Playhouse’s “In the Heights;” Jenn Thompson for Goodspeed Musicals’ “The Music Man.”

Choreography: Patricia Wilcox for Goodspeed Musicals’ “The Music Man;” Darlene Zoller for Playhouse on Park’s “In the Heights;” Chris Bailey for Goodspeed Musicals’ “The Drowsy Chaperone;” Charlie Sutton for ACT of CT’s “Evita;” Marcos Santana for Westport Country Playhouse’s “In the Heights.”

Featured actor in a play
: Leon Addison Brown in Long Wharf Theatre’s “Paradise Blue;” Brian Patrick Murphy in Hartford Stage’s “The Engagement Party;” Dan Shor in Playhouse on Park’s “My Name Is Asher Lev;” Mic Matarrese in Westport Playhouse’s “A Flea in Her Ear;” Allen Gilmore in Yale Rep’s “Twelfth Night.”

Featured actress in a play: Jennifer Paredes in Yale Rep’s “el Huracan;” Tiffany Denise Hobbs in Yale Rep’s “Twelfth Night;” Ilia Isorelys Paulino in Yale Rep’s “Twelfth Night;” Adriana Sevahn Nichols in Yale Rep’s “el Huracan;”” Brenda Pressley in Westport Country Playhouse’s “Flyin’ West.”

Featured actor in a musical
: Brandon Andrus in Goodspeed Musicals’ “Oliver!”; Blakely and Parker Slaybaugh in Goodspeed Musicals’ “The Drowsy Chaperone;” Ed Dixon for CRT’s “Sweeney Todd;” Jim Schilling in MTC’s “Cabaret; and James Donohue in Seven Angels’ “First Date.”

Featured actress in a musical: Amy Jo Phillips for Playhouse on Park’s “In the Heights;” Rachel MacIsaac for Summer Theatre of New Canaan’s “Kiss Me, Kate;” Stephanie Pope in Playhouse on Park’s “In the Heights;” Alexa Racioppi in Ivoryton Playhouse’s “A Chorus Line;” Anne Kanengeiser in MTC’s “Cabaret.”

Ensemble: Casts of Hartford Stage’s “Jeeves & Wooster in ‘Perfect Nonsense’ ” (Arnie Burton, Eddie Korbich, Chandler Williams); Playhouse on Park’s “The Revolutionists;”” (Rebecca Hart, Olivia Jampol, Jennifer Holcombe, Erin Roche); Seven Angels’ “Altar Boyz’ (Maclain Dassatti, Louis Griffin, Jeff Jordan, Spiro Marcos, Andrew Poston, and Justin Henry); Westport Country Playhouse’s “Thousand Pines” (Katie Ailion, Anne Bates, Joby Earle, Kelly McAndrew, William Ragsdale, Andrew Veenstra); and Yale Repertory Theatre’s “Cadillac Crew” (Dria Brown, Ashley Bryant, Bronte England-Nelson, Chalia La Tour).
Projection design: Brittany Bland for Yale Rep’s “Twelfth Night;” Yaara Bar for Yale Rep’s “el Huracan;” Caite Hevner for ACT of CT’s “Working;” Rasean Davonte Johnson for Yale Rep’s “Cadillac Crew.”

Set design: Alexander Dodge for Hartford Stage’s “The Engagement Party;” Wilson Chin for Westport Country Playhouse’s “Man of La Mancha;” Adam Koch for Westport Country Playhouse’s “In the Heights;” Paul Tate dePoo III for Goodspeed Musicals’ “The Music Man;” Kristen Robinson for Westport Country Playhouse’s “A Flea in Her Ear”

Costume design: Mika H. Eubank’s for Yale Rep’s “Twelfth Night;” Gregg Barnes’ for Goodspeed Musicals’ “The Drowsy Chaperone;” Brittny Mahan for CRT’s “The Mystery of Edwin Drood;” David Toser for Goodspeed Musicals’ “The Music Man;” Herin Kaputkin for Yale Rep’s “el Huracan.”

Lighting design: Matthew Richards for Hartford Stage’s “The Engagement Party;” John Lasiter for Goodspeed Musicals’ “Oliver!”; Samuel Kwan Chi Chan for Yale Rep’s “Twelfth Night;” Alan C. Edwards for Westport Country Playhouse’s “Man of La Mancha;” Paul Miller for “The Music Man.”

Sound design: Joshua D. Reid for TheaterWorks’ “Girlfriend;” Frederick Kennedy for Yale Rep’s “Twelfth Night;” Lee Kinney for Long Wharf Theatre’s “An Iliad;” Michael Vincent Skinner for CRT’s “Sweeney Todd;” Megumi Katayama for Yale Rep’s “el Huracan.”

Because of the necessity to hold the annual awards ceremony slightly earlier this year, several productions in May — including Hartford Stage’s “The Flamingo Kid,” TheaterWorks’ “Actually” and Long Wharf Theatre’s “A Doll’s House, Part Two” will be eligible for next year’s awards.

DIRECTIONS: Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam is located off exit 7 of Route 9. goodspeed.org.

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