2010 Groundling Awards: and the winners are …

If you landed here, you may have clicked the Nominate Now button on Greenroom’s front page. You have jumped the gun a bit! Nominations open for the 2011 Groundlings Awards at one minute past midnight on 1st January. Click on the Nominate Button then or at any time after that until midnight on 31st January and you will find the Nomination Form here … promise! While you are here, though, check out the 2012 Groundling Awards winners.

Congratulations to the winners of the inaugural 2010 Groundling Awards, the people’s award for achievement in theatre in Queensland. The winners in each category are highlighted in green below with the other nominees.

Whilst we were forced to close balloting some 28 hours or so before we’d planned, nearly 600 individuals had already cast their votes and there were finally  3 565 valid votes to count and collate. The category which drew the most votes was that for Outstanding Contribution by a Director. Suffice it to say the Greenroom elves are exhausted, and have retired to the back room to rest. They may not be seen for some time.

We wish we had shiny trophies or cash or something to give all of our winners to mark the occasion. For now, they are just going to have to bask in the support of their fans and we in the memories of their fine work throughout 2010. Well done to them and to all Groundling nominees.

Outstanding Contribution by an Actor

  • Julia Billington in My Name Is Rachel Corrie (La Boite Indie)
  • Jason Klarwein in Thom Pain (Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Lucas Stibbard in Boy Girl Wall (The Escapists for !Metro Arts Independents)

Outstanding Contribution by a Director

  • Michael Futcher for Grimm Tales (Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Steven Mitchell Wright for In God We Trust (Queensland Academy of Creative Industries)
  • Tim O’Connor for Jesus Christ Superstar (Harvest Rain Theatre Company)

Outstanding Contribution to Set Design

  • Greg Clarke (Grimm Tales for Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Lucas Stibbard and The Escapists (Boy Girl Wall for !Metro Arts Independents)
  • Josh McIntosh (Jesus Christ Superstar for Harvest Rain Theatre Company)

Outstanding Contribution to Costume Design

  • Greg Clarke (Grimm Tales for Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Noni Harrison (The Timely Death of Victor Blott for Dead Puppet Society & !Metro Arts Independents)
  • Josh McIntosh (The Secret Story of Cinderella and her Fabulously Fashionable Footwear for Harvest Rain Theatre Company)

Outstanding Contribution to Lighting Design

  • Jason Glenwright (Jesus Christ Superstar for Harvest Rain Theatre Company)
  • Ben Hughes (Furious Angels for !Metro Arts Independents)
  • David Walters – body of work in 2010 including Grimm Tales and Hamlet

Outstanding Contribution to Sound Design

  • Tony Brumpton (The Timely Death of Victor Blott for Dead Puppet Society & !Metro Arts Independents)
  • Phil Slade (Grimm Tales for Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Steve Toulmin (Hamlet for La Boite Theatre Company)

Best New Play in an Inaugural Queensland Season

  • Boy Girl Wall by Lucas Stibbard and Matt Ryan
  • In God We Trust by Chris Beckey
  • The Bitterling by Sven Swenson

Best Production by a Queensland Independent or Subsidised Company

  • Boy Girl Wall: The Escapists and !Metro Arts Independents
  • Grimm Tales: Queensland Theatre Company
  • Jesus Christ Superstar: Harvest Rain Theatre Company
  • The Secret Love Life of Ophelia: Fractal Theatre

Best Co-Production

  • The Clean House (Queensland Theatre Company and Black Swan Theatre Company)
  • King Lear (Queensland Theatre Company and Bell Shakespeare)
  • (Body of Work) !Metro Arts with all of their independent company production partners throughout 2010

Best Community Outreach Program by any Company or Group

  • ACE (Arts in Community Enhancement) Project at Borallon Correctional Centre: Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble
  • Empire Theatre Projects Company’s production and school workshops:  April’s Fool
  • 2high Festival: Backbone Youth Arts

Best Use of Social Media by any theatre or group

  • Harvest Rain Theatre Company for its integration of social media in marketing (Facebook, Twitter, You Tube, website, e-letters)
  • La Boite Theatre Company for its integration of social media in marketing (Facebook, Twitter, You Tube, website, e-letters)
  • I Love You Bro: La Boite Theatre Company for its innovative use of social media in marketing and audience engagement

Outstanding Contribution to the Independent Theatre Sector

  • !Metro Arts for their continuing, tireless support for independent production of new work, and for providing professional development opportunities for developing talent
  • Harvest Rain Theatre Company for their continued contribution to musical theatre development and performance in Brisbane
  • Judith Wright Centre for Contemporary Arts for their Talking Shop and Fresh Ground programs

2010 Groundling Awards: and the nominees are …

Sorry if you’re trying to vote for the Groundlings in this last 24 hours or so of voting, but we were inundated by a spam-horde of identical votes from the same IP address on Saturday evening. Greenroom got hit by ballot crashing – people not playing nicely at all – so, in order to keep things fair, we closed voting at this point. Stay tuned for the results on Monday.

Outstanding Contribution by an Actor

  • Julia Billington in My Name Is Rachel Corrie (La Boite Indie)
  • Jason Klarwein in Thom Pain (Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Lucas Stibbard in Boy Girl Wall (The Escapists for !Metro Arts Independents)

Outstanding Contribution by a Director

  • Michael Futcher for Grimm Tales (Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Steven Mitchell Wright for In God We Trust (Queensland Academy of Creative Industries)
  • Tim O’Connor for Jesus Christ Superstar (Harvest Rain Theatre Company)

Outstanding Contribution to Set Design

  • Greg Clarke (Grimm Tales for Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Lucas Stibbard and The Escapists (Boy Girl Wall for !Metro Arts Independents)
  • Josh McIntosh (Jesus Christ Superstar for Harvest Rain Theatre Company)

Outstanding Contribution to Costume Design

  • Greg Clarke (Grimm Tales for Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Noni Harrison (The Timely Death of Victor Blott for Dead Puppet Society & !Metro Arts Independents)
  • Josh McIntosh (The Secret Story of Cinderella and her Fabulously Fashionable Footwear for Harvest Rain Theatre Company)

Outstanding Contribution to Lighting Design

  • Jason Glenwright (Jesus Christ Superstar for Harvest Rain Theatre Company)
  • Ben Hughes (Furious Angels for !Metro Arts Independents)
  • David Walters – body of work in 2010 including Grimm Tales and Hamlet

Outstanding Contribution to Sound Design

  • Tony Brumpton (The Timely Death of Victor Blott for Dead Puppet Society & !Metro Arts Independents)
  • Phil Slade (Grimm Tales for Queensland Theatre Company)
  • Steve Toulmin (Hamlet for La Boite Theatre Company)

Best New Play in an Inaugural Queensland Season *

  • Boy Girl Wall by Lucas Stibbard and Matt Ryan
  • In God We Trust by Chris Beckey
  • The Bitterling by Sven Swenson

Best Production by a Queensland Independent or Subsidised Company

  • Boy Girl Wall: The Escapists and !Metro Arts Independents
  • Grimm Tales: Queensland Theatre Company
  • Jesus Christ Superstar: Harvest Rain Theatre Company
  • The Secret Love Life of Ophelia: Fractal Theatre

Best Co-Production

  • The Clean House (Queensland Theatre Company and Black Swan Theatre Company)
  • King Lear (Queensland Theatre Company and Bell Shakespeare)
  • !Metro Arts with all of their independent company production partners throughout 2010

Best Community Outreach Program by any Company or Group

  • ACE (Arts in Community Enhancement) Project at Borallon Correctional Centre: Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble
  • Empire Theatre Projects Company’s production and school workshops:  April’s Fool
  • 2high Festival: Backbone Youth Arts

Best Use of Social Media by any theatre or group

  • Harvest Rain Theatre Company for its integration of social media and youtube marketing (Facebook, Twitter, You Tube, website, e-letters)
  • La Boite Theatre Company for its integration of social media in marketing (Facebook, Twitter, You Tube, website, e-letters)
  • I Love You Bro: La Boite Theatre Company for its innovative use of social media in marketing and audience engagement (vlogs; Twitter)

Outstanding Contribution to the Independent Theatre Sector

  • !Metro Arts for their continuing, tireless support for independent production of new work, and for providing professional development opportunities for developing talent
  • Harvest Rain Theatre Company for their continued contribution to musical theatre development and performance in Brisbane
  • Judith Wright Centre for Contemporary Arts for their Talking Shop and Fresh Ground programs

* Boy Girl Wall was due to have had its inaugural season in 2009 but this was cancelled after two performances due to ill health. The completed 2010 production is considered to be the work’s inaugural Queensland season.

How We Did It

Thanks to all who nominated their favourite artists and creatives, productions and programs from 2010. The Groundlings are a people’s choice award and many joined in to help Greenroom launch the inaugural event.

Sorting through the database took quite a while. First we had to eliminate those nominations made after the closing date. Then we removed second and third votes by individuals – only one permitted – but good to see such enthusiasm from audiences and colleagues! Sadly, some did not indicate which production or role their nominated artist was to have been associated with; we eliminated these nominations too. We then counted the remaining number of individual nominations for each category. The highest scoring top three nominated in each category appear above. There are four nominations for best production; this is because two of the nominees tied with the same number of nominations each.

Voting

Now comes the bit you’ve been waiting for. Click on the big orange button above (right) and go to the voting page. Fill in your selection and vote for one only nominee in all or as many of the categories as you like. You may choose not to vote in some if you have not seen the productions referred to. Your vote – for even one category – will still be counted. Please vote only once, however. If you vote more than once, your initial submission only will be counted; the Greenroom elves have sharp eyes. Fair go, now!

Voting closes at midnight on Sunday February 13 – that’s next Sunday. The winners will be announced on February 14.

We’d love you to send the link to the Groundling vote page to your networks. Click the Facebook share button above or Tweet on. If you like the old fashioned email route, that’s fine too. Just embed the url from this page in your mail, and post away!

Getting on …

With a few notable exceptions – !Metro Arts in Edward Street, The Roundhouse at Kelvin Grove, and the Judith Wright Centre in the Valley – most of the major theatre premises in Brisbane have been damaged in some way as a direct result of the incursion of floodwaters last week. Fixtures and fittings and stock, costumes, props and tools have been destroyed.  Some theatres are planning to reopen again today and continue their business; others will be dark for some time. Performances have been cancelled or postponed.

For those theatre buildings directly affected by the flooding, especially those by the river – QPAC and Queensland Theatre Company‘s home at 78 Montague Road – the task of just wading in and cleaning up was daunting. They weren’t the only places affected, of course. Many, for example, turned out to help Drift Restaurant at Milton, a favourite spot for indie cabaret-style shows. Continue reading “Getting on …”

… all losses are restored, and sorrows end

Intersection of Creek and Adelaide Streets dur...
Image via Wikipedia

Much of the world now knows about the awful Queensland flood disaster which took so many lives and properties this week. Other cities and towns throughout the state have been dealing with floods caused by deluge, swollen creeks and rivers. This week it was the turn of Ipswich, and of the state capital, Brisbane as their rivers rose and burst their banks. ‘Burst’ is a dramatic word, ‘gradual creep’ better describes the slow, inexorable rise of torrential brown water into the city and its streets, homes and businesses. It’s not the first time the state’s capital has been flooded. This image was taken during the floods of 1893. Another great flood happened in 1974. 2011 is probably the worst so far.

As I write, the immediate danger from rising floodwaters has passed and the Brisbane River has gradually slowed what has been a frighteningly fast surge out into Moreton Bay.  The weather pattern has changed to blue skies and sunshine, and Brisbane, as with all flood-affected towns in the state, is in full clean-up mode. It’s been a terrible, exhausting time, one that has taxed everyone to some degree; it will go on for months, maybe years. State Premier Anna Bligh has likened this time to one of ‘post-war recovery’ proportions. Federal, state and local governments are coming together to assist in the recovery.

Our theatres and arts company premises have not escaped either. Shows have been cancelled, foyers and orchestra pits and studios are inundated with water and mud, and equipment has been damaged or destroyed. Hearts are broken, but heads are unbowed.

With typical generosity the wider community are pitching in and volunteering, as always happens when the going is bad. The big cleanup has begun. The arts community are also mobilising to get things back to normal. 23rd Productions Artistic Director Kathryn Fray is coordinating Brisbane artists and creatives to help out with entertainment in the Evacuation Centres in the state, while Harvest Rain Theatre Company under Tim O’Connor are calling for people to register for the Brisbane Arts Community big cleanup crew.

Dear friends, you do the heart good.

Follow @23rdProductions and @harvest_rain on Twitter

Review: Jesus Christ Superstar: Harvest Rain Theatre

This review refers to Harvest Rain’s recent ‘first’ production of JCS and was originally published on August 26, 2010

And so, finally, to the theatre last night for Jesus Christ Superstar at QPAC …

From the moment those unforgettable screeching guitar riffs at the top of the show break the silence, you know you’re in for a wild ride.  At its inception JCS was a brilliant, irreverent break with tradition and, given its subject matter, which brought protesters out with placards (yes, really), it was a triumph for a musical theatre which had got used to sweetly melodic, fairly safe and predictable plotlines in mostly Broadway shows – as well as the fact that Brits couldn’t write blockbuster musicals.

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice put paid to that with their second biblical opus – the first was Joseph and His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat. JCS is arguably their freshest and best – Cats notwithstanding. It’s the gutsiest and was, and still is, a big show on all fronts. It brought rock rhythms and song lyrics that shocked and delighted with their contemporary edge: ‘Hey JC, JC’ you’re all right with me’; ‘I couldn’t cope, just couldn’t cope’; ‘Prove to me that you’re no fool, walk across my swimming pool’ are just a few. At the time, the show’s self-styling as a rock opera took a lot of people by surprise; we’d not heard those words before, although Pete Townshend and The Who had produced the first of the genre (Tommy) a couple of years before. The rock part of the name provided the sounds, the style, the gutsiness, whilst the opera gave the drama and the gravitas with, in the case of Jesus Christ Superstar, subject matter straight out of the New Testament.

This revival nearly 40 years on by Tim O’Connor for Harvest Rain Theatre at QPAC’s Playhouse takes on the 1971 breakthrough musical, and gives it a good run for its money. The epic nature of the work is reflected well in the production’s staging. Visually it’s a treat, and musically – well, for a start those those melodies just won’t go away will they – stunning stuff. Many of the musical stylings have been reworked and reworked well under the musical direction of Maitlohn Drew. It’s a big, big cast of talented, good looking principals and an energetic all-singing, all dancing chorus; set and lighting are terrific. Continue reading “Review: Jesus Christ Superstar: Harvest Rain Theatre”