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December 31, 2015:

30th Robby Awards for Excellence in Theatre 2015 by Rob Stevens

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It seems every theatre critic and website has listed their choices for the Top Ten (or more) in theatre for 2015. I have never made a top ten list, usually can’t stop at that low a number with all the shows and performances I see every year. Instead, here are the 2015 Robby Award nominations. This will be the 30th presentation (date and venue to be announced soon) and the 42nd anniversary (time off for bad behavior and aborted retirement attempts) since the very first Robby Awards were announced for calendar year 1974. Yes, I know, I was a child prodigy critic.

McCoy Rigby’s production of Billy Elliot The Musical at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts led all shows with 12 nominations with Antaeus Theatre Company’s Picnic garnering 11. Cabrillo Music Theatre’s Company was the only other production to pick up double digit nominations with its total of 10. La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts tied with perennial top Robby Award nomination collector South Coast Repertory for a total of 18 each for the year. A Noise Within gathered up 15 nominations.

BEST MUSICAL

Assassins, Red Blanket Productions

Big Fish, Moonlight Stage Productions

Billy Elliot The Musical, McCoy Rigby Entertainment

The Bridges of Madison County, CTG-Ahmanson Theatre

Company, Cabrillo Music Theatre

Fugitive Songs, 2Cents Theatre

I’m Still Getting My Act Together and Taking it on the Road, Laguna Playhouse

Inside Out, Grove Theatre Center

Jesus Christ Superstar, DOMA Theatre Co

Side Show, 3D Theatricals

 

BEST DIRECTOR OF A MUSICAL

Kristen Boule, Fugitive Songs

Gretchen Cryer, I’m Still Getting My Act Together and Taking it on the Road

T.J. Dawson, Side Show

Nick DeGruccio, Company

Dan Fishbach, Assassins

Steven Glaudini, Big Fish

Marco Gomez, Jesus Christ Superstar

Bruce Kimmel, Inside Out

Brian Kite, Billy Elliot The Musical

Bartlett Sher & Tyne Rafaeli, The Bridges of Madison County

 

BEST ACTOR IN A MUSICAL

Josh Adamson, Big Fish

Will Collyer, Road Show

Zachary Ford, The Golden Apple, Musical Theatre Guild

Gregg Hammer, Side Show

Alxander Jon, Company

Craig McEldowney, Road Show

Nate Parker, Jesus Christ Superstar

Andrew Samonsky, The Bridges of Madison County

Mitchell Tobin, Billy Elliot The Musical

Nick Tubbs, Assassins

Robert Yacko, Do I Hear a Waltz?, Musical Theatre Guild

 

MICHELLE NICASTRO AWARD FOR BEST ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL

Teri Bibb, The Golden Apple

Misty Cotton, Carrie The Musical, La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts

Cynthia Ferrer, Hello, Dolly!, Welk Resort Theatre

Erica Hanrahan-Ball, I’m Still Getting My Act Together and Taking it on the Road

Kim Huber, Do I Hear a Waltz?

Vicki Lewis, Billy Elliot The Musical

Emily Lopez, Carrie The Musical

Bets Malone, Big Fish

Afton Quast, Side Show

Sami Staitman, Welcome to My World, Grove Theatre Center

Elizabeth Stanley, The Bridges of Madison County

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A MUSICAL

Scott Arnold, Hello, Dolly!

Sean Benedict, Assassins

Chad Borden, Serrano The Musical, Matrix Theatre

Kelly Brighton, Jesus Christ Superstar

Patrick Cummings, Big Fish

Chad Doreck, Serrano The Musical

Zachary Ford, Road Show

Jesse Johnson, I’m Still Getting My Act Together and Taking it on the Road

Jake Kitchin, Billy Elliot The Musical

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL

Janna Cardia, Assassins

Fran Drescher, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella, CTG-Ahmanson Theatre

Melissa Fahn, The Golden Apple

Chelsea Emma Franko, Company

Carol Kline, The Golden Apple

Charlene Koepf, Hello, Dolly!

Tracy Lore, Company

Jane Papageorge, Company

Valerie Perri, Serrano The Musical

 

DOM SALINARO AWARD FOR BEST CHOREOGRAPHY

Cate Caplin, Company

Ray Limon, Hello, Dolly!

Lee Martino, Carrie The Musical

Dana Solimando, Billy Elliot The Musical

Angela Todaro, Jesus Christ Superstar

Karl Warden, Big Fish

 

BEST MUSICAL DIRECTION

Allan Everman, Side Show

John Glaudini, Billy Elliot The Musical

Joshua Eli Kranz, Fugitive Songs

Julie Lamoureux, Road Show

Kevin Levenson, The Bridges of Madison County

Elan McMahan, Big Fish

Cassie Nickols, Company

Chris Raymond, Jesus Christ Superstar

Gerald Sternbach, Sondheim on Sondheim, ICT

Matthew Wrather, I’m Still Getting My Act Together and Taking it on the Road

 

BILLY BARNES AWARD FOR BEST MUSIC & LYRICS

Billie Joe Armstrong, These Paper Bullets!, Geffen Playhouse

Jason Robert Brown, The Bridges of Madison County

Elton John and Lee Hall, Billy Elliot The Musical

Bruce Kimmel, Welcome to My World

Chris Miller and Nathan Tysen, Fugitive Songs

Stephen Sondheim, Road Show

Wayne Moore and Chandler Warren, Adam & Eve and Steve

 

NAN MARTIN AWARD FOR BEST DRAMA

All My Sons, A Noise Within

La La La Strada, Probiscis Theatre

My Barking Dog, The Theatre @ Boston Court

The Other Place, The Road Theatre Company

Picnic, Antaeus Theatre Company

Reborning, The Fountain Theatre

R&J, Mine is Yours theatre company

Tristan & Yseult, South Coast Repertory

 

MARTIN BENSON AWARD FOR BEST DIRECTOR OF A DRAMA

Andre Barron, The Other Place

Abby Craden, R&J

Geoff Elliott, All My Sons

Michael Michetti, My Barking Dog

Jeff Mills, La La La Strada

Emma Rice, Tristan & Yseult

Ken Sawyer, Hit the Wall, LALGBT Center

Cameron Watson, Picnic

 

BEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA

Stephen Caffrey, Henry IV Part One, Antaeus Theatre Company

Joshua Wolf Coleman, Oedipus Machina

Jason Dechert, Picnic

Geoff Elliott, All My Sons

Matthew Hancock, Hit the Wall

Michael Kirby, Henry IV Part One

Rick Marcus, Pocket Universe, Mariner Pictures

Ed F. Martin, My Barking Dog

Dane Oliver, R&J

 

BEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA

Michelle Azar, My Barking Dog

Taylor Gilbert, The Other Place

Sarah Halford, Picnic

Annika Marks, All American Girl, InterACT Theatre Company

Nan McNamara, Pocket Universe

Ann Noble, Stanley Ann, L.A. LGBT Center

Mary Ellen Schneider, R&J

Deborah Strang, All My Sons

Joanna Strapp, Reborning

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A DRAMA

San Anderson, The Other Place

Alan Blumenfeld, R&J

Ryan Doucette, Reborning

Matthew Gallenstein, Picnic

Brendan Griffin, The Power of Duff, Geffen Playhouse

Joe Paulik, The Power of Duff, Geffen Playhouse

Jake Shears, Bent, CTG-Mark Taper Forum

Everette Wallin, Disconnection, Skylight Theatre Company

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA

Rhonda Aldrich, Picnic

Kristin Carey, Reborning

Shannon Holt, Picnic

Katherine James, R&J

Jackie Preciado, Picnic

Janellen Steininger, Picnic

 

CAROLE COOK AWARD FOR BEST COMEDY

Around the World in 80 Days

Figaro, A Noise Within

The Heir Apparent, International City Theatre

The House of Yes, Zephyr Theatre

Murder for Two, Geffen Playhouse

One Man, Two Guvnors, South Coast Repertory

Peter and the Starcatcher, South Coast Repertory

 

RON LINK AWARD FOR BEST DIRECTOR OF A COMEDY

David Ivers, One Man, Two Guvnors

Rhonda Kohl, Around the World in 80 Days

Art Manke, Peter and the Starcatcher

Michael Michetti, Figaro

Lee Sankowich, The House of Yes

Scott Schwartz, Murder for Two

Matt Walker, The Heir Apparent

 

BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY

Jeff Blumenkrantz, Murder for Two

Dan Donohue, One Man, Two Guvnors

Jeremy Guskin, Figaro

Jim Mahoney, Cash on Delivery

Matt McGrath, Peter and the Starcatcher

Sam Meader, Cash on Delivery

Brett Ryback, Murder for Two

Adam J. Smith, The Heir Apparent

 

LU LEONARD AWARD BEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY

Jessica Collins, Outside Mullingar

Kate Maher, The House of Yes

Gabrielle McClinton, Peter and the Starcatcher

Elyse Mirto, Figaro

Angela Sauer, Figaro

Paige Lindsey White, The Heir Apparent

 

ALBERT LORD AWARD FOR BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR  IN A COMEDY

Tony Abatemarco, Peter and the Starcatcher

Brad Culver, One Man, Two Guvnors

Rafael Goldstein, A Flea in Her Ear, A Noise Within

Matthew Henerson, The Heir Apparent

Nicholas McDonald, The House of Yes

Andrew Ross Wynn, Figaro

 

DEE CROXTON AWARD FOR BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY

Jill Hill, A Flea in Her Ear

Sarah Moser, One Man, Two Guvnors

Irene Roseen, Sons of the Prophet, The  Blank Theatre

Jeanne Syquia, The House of Yes

Eileen T’Kaye, The House of Yes

Tamara Zook, Sons of the Prophet

 

MICHAEL DEVEREAUX AWARD FOR BEST PLAYWRITING

Eric Coble, My Barking Dog

Zayd Dohrn, Reborning

Rick Elice, Peter and the Starcatcher

Carl Grose and Anna Maria Murphy, adapted by Emma Rice, Tristan & Yseult

Lee Hall, Billy Elliot The Musical

Jeff Mills, La La La Strada

Marsha Norman, The Bridges of Madison County

Chandler Warren, Adam & Eve and Steve

Sharr White, The Other Place

 

BEST SCENIC DESIGN

Tom Buderwitz, Company

Stephen Gifford, Billy Elliot The Musical

Stephen Gifford, Side Show

David Goldstein, Around the World in 80 Days

Fred Kinney, A Flea in Her Ear

Michael B. Raiford, Peter and the Starcatcher

Jeanine A. Ringer, Figaro

Robert Selander, Picnic

 

BEST PROJECTION DESIGN

Brian Gale, Carrie The Musical

John Infante, Big Fish

Aaron Rhyne, The Power of Duff

 

 

BEST LIGHTING DESIGN

Brian Gale, Carrie The Musical

Donald Holder, The Bridges of Madison County

Tom Ontiveros, My Barking Dog

Matt Richter, Hit the Wall

Christina Schwinn, Jesus Christ Superstar

Jaymi Lee Smith, Peter and the Starcatcher

Jean-Yves Tessier, Side Show

Steven Young, Billy Elliot The Musical

 

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Kate Bergh, Side Show

Angela Balogh Calin, Figaro

Angela Balogh Calin, Peter and the Starcatcher

Kim DeShazo, The Heir Apparent

Jessica Ford, These Paper Bullets!

Terri A. Lewis, Picnic

William Ivey Long, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella

Lauren Oppelt, Jesus Christ Superstar

 

BEST SOUND DESIGN

Josh Bessom, Billy Elliot The Musical

Jonathan Burke, Company

Gregory Clarke, Tristan & Yseult

Julie Ferrin, Jesus Christ Superstar

Cricket Myers, Carrie The Musical

Juan Sanson, I’m Still Getting My Act Together and Taking it on the Road

 

BEST ENSEMBLE PERFORMANCE

Kelley Dorney, William Knight, Jotape Lockwood, Weston Nathanson, Michael Spaziani, Adam & Eve and Steve

Eva Abramian, Andrew Carter, Kevin Coubal, Philip Kreyche, Bruce Ladd, Around the World in 80 Days

Tiffany Asta, Katy Harvey, Jessica J’aime, Michael Noah Levine, Juan Lozano, Reagan Osborne, Fugitive Songs

Sandy Bainum, Jill Marie Burke, Cynthia Ferrer, Stephanie Fredricks, Dana Meller, Adrienne Visnic, Inside Out

Genevieve Anderson, Erica Flor, Blythe Foster, Christina McCarthy, Jeff Mills, Dana Fox Ortner, Dillon Yuhasz, La La La Strada

 

JOHN RAITT AWARD FOR BEST CABARET PERFORMANCE

Sharon McNight, Alive and Well at the Gardenia, The Gardenia

Kimberly Hessler, Jean Louisa Kelly, Bruce Kimmel, Damon Kirsche, Andrea Marcovicci, Madison Claire Parks and Jeffrey Christopher Todd, All The Things You Are-The Songs of Jerome Kern, Kritzerland, Sterling’s Upstairs at The Federal

Stan Chandler, Kevin Early, Kimberly Hessler, Bruce Kimmel, Valerie Perri, Sue Raney, Bruce Vilanch and Adrienne Visnic, The Birthday Boys, Kritzerland, Sterling’s Upstairs at the Federal

Sandy Bainum, It Might Be Fun, Sterling’s Upstairs at the Federal

Kevin Earley, On the Record, Sterling’s Upstairs at the Federal

Faith Prince and Jason Graae, The Prince and the Showboy, Sterling’s Upstairs at the Federal

Tyler Matthew Burk, Jill Marie Burke, Laura Dickinson, Bruce Kimmel, Jeffrey Christopher Todd, Adrienne Visnic, You’re Gonna Hear From Me, Kritzerland, Sterling’s Upstairs at the Federal

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