The 2017 fosterIAN nominations

Behold the 2017 fosterIAN award nominations, recognising the acting performances that stood out for me, the ones that made me sit up, and sometimes stand up. As ever, I have used the label ‘best’, the categories should really be considered ‘favourite’ as that is what the fosterIANs (fos-tîr’ē-ən) are – my favourites. 


Best Actress in a Play
Victoria Hamilton, Albion
Shirley Henderson, Girl From the North Country
Cherry Jones, The Glass Menagerie
Justine Mitchell, Beginning
Hattie Morahan/Kate O’Flynn/Adelle Leonce, Anatomy of a Suicide
Mimi Ndiweni, The Convert
Connie Walker, Trestle
Best Actor in a Play
Andrew Garfield, Angels in America
Gary Lilburn, Trestle
Ian McKellen, King Lear
Ken Nwosu, An Octoroon
Andrew Scott, Hamlet
Sam Troughton, Beginning
Best Supporting Actress in a Play
Bríd Brennan, The Ferryman
Laura Carmichael, Apologia
Romola Garai, Queen Anne
Kate O’Flynn, The Glass Menagerie
Best Supporting Actor in a Play
Fisayo Akinade, Barber Shop Chronicles
Philip Arditti, Oslo
Fra Fee, The Ferryman
Patrice Naiambana, Barber Shop Chronicles
Brian J Smith, The Glass Menagerie
Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, Angels in America
Best Actress in a Musical
Sharon D Clarke, Caroline or Change 
Janie Dee, Follies
Josefina Gabrielle, A Little Night Music
Amie Giselle-Ward, Little Women
T’Shan Williams, The Life
Best Actor in a Musical
Philip Quast, Follies
Michael Rouse, Superhero
Giles Terera, Hamilton
Jamael Westman, Hamilton
Best Supporting Actress in a Musical
Christine Allado, Hamilton
Julie Atherton, The Grinning Man
Tracie Bennett, Follies
Sharon D Clarke, The Life
Rachel John, Hamilton
Joanna Riding, Romantics Anonymous
Best Supporting Actor in a Musical
Mark Anderson, The Grinning Man
Fred Haig, Follies
Cornell S John, The Life
Jason Pennycooke, Hamilton
Gareth Snook, Romantics Anonymous
Obioma Ugoala, Hamilton

The 2016 fosterIAN nominations

The end of year round-up continues with the acting performances that stood out for me, the ones that made me sit up, and sometimes stand up. As ever, I have used the label ‘best’, the categories should really be considered ‘favourite’ as that is what the fosterIANs (fos-tîr’ē-ən) are – my favourites. So please find below the 2016 fosterIAN award nominations, categories expanded to 7 nominees (and sometimes more!) because I am that indecisive, winners to be announced in the coming days. 

Best Actress in a Play
Uzo Aduba/Zawe Ashton, The Maids

Gemma Arterton, Nell Gwynn
Linda Bassett, Escaped Alone
Helen McCrory, The Deep Blue Sea
Maxine Peake, A Streetcar Named Desire
Juliet Stevenson/Lia Williams, Mary Stuart
Harriet Walter, The Tempest

Best Actor in a Play
Phil Dunster, Pink Mist
Paapa Essiedu, Hamlet
O-T Fagbenle, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Rhys Isaac-Jones, Jess and Joe Forever
Lucian Msamati, Amadeus
Lucian Msamati, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Danny Sapani, Les Blancs


Best Supporting Actress in a Play
Jade Anouka, The Tempest
Lizzy Connolly/Amanda Lawrence, Once in a Lifetime
Nadine Marshall, Father Comes Home From The War (Parts 1, 2, and 3)
Tanya Moodie, Hamlet
Sian Phillips, Les Blancs
Rachael Stirling, The Winter’s Tale
Susan Wokoma, A Raisin In The Sun

Best Supporting Actor in a Play
Anthony Boyle, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Rudi Dharmalingham, Mary Stuart

Nick Fletcher, The Deep Blue Sea
Jonjo O’Neill, Unreachable
Peter Polycarpou, Scenes from 68* Years
Alan Williams, Mary Stuart

Best Actress in a Musical
Samantha Barks, The Last 5 Years
Clare Burt, Flowers for Mrs Harris
Glenn Close, Sunset Boulevard
Kaisa Hammarlund, Sweet Charity
Cassidy Janson, Beautiful
Landi Oshinowo, I’m Getting My Act Together…

Jenna Russell, Grey Gardens

Best Actor in a Musical
Declan Bennett, Jesus Christ Superstar
Dex Lee, Grease

Louis Maskell, The Grinning Man
Hugh Maynard, Sweeney Todd
Ako Mitchell, Ragtime
Charlie Stemp, Half A Sixpence
Mark Umbers, She Loves Me

Best Supporting Actress in a Musical
Josie Benson, Sweet Charity
Victoria Hamilton-Barritt, Murder Ballad
Sheila Hancock, Grey Gardens
Rachel John, The Bodyguard
Katherine Kingsley, She Loves Me
Gloria Onitiri, The Grinning Man

Jennifer Saayeng, Ragtime

Best Supporting Actor in a Musical
Adam J Bernard, Dreamgirls
Julian Bleach, The Grinning Man
Daniel Crossley, Sweet Charity
Tyrone Huntley, Jesus Christ Superstar
Stuart Neal, The Grinning Man

Dominic Tighe, She Loves Me
Gary Tushaw, Ragtime

The 2015 fosterIAN nominations

The end of year round-up continues with the acting performances that stood out for me, the ones that made me sit up, and sometimes stand up. As ever, I have used the label ‘best’, the categories should really be considered ‘favourite’ as that is what the fosterIANs (fos-tîr’ē-ən) are. So please find below the 2015 fosterIAN award nominations, winners to be announced in the coming days. 

Best Actress in a Play

Thusitha Jayasundera, My Eyes Went Dark
Marianne Jean-Baptiste, hang
Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Nell Gwynn
Lara Rossi, Octagon
Lia Williams, Oresteia
Letitia Wright, Eclipsed

Best Actor in a Play

Chiwetel Ejiofor, Everyman
John Heffernan, Oppenheimer
David Morrissey, Hangmen
Jamie Samuels, Plastic Figurines
Eelco Smits, Glazen Speelgoed
Angus Wright, Oresteia

Best Supporting Actress in a Play

Priyanga Burford, The Effect
Estella Daniels, Octagon
Rosalind Eleazor, Plaques and Tangles
Daisy Haggard, You For Me For You
T’Nia Miller, Eclipsed
Sally Rogers, Hangmen

Best Supporting Actor in a Play

Harm Duco Schut, Glazen Speelgoed
Johnny Flynn, Hangmen
David Moorst, Violence and Son
John Simm, The Homecoming
David Sturzaker, Nell Gwynn

Best Actress in a Musical

Tracie Bennett, Mrs Henderson Presents
Jennifer Harding, The Clockmaker’s Daughter
Debbie Kurup, Anything Goes

Best Actor in a Musical

Ian Bartholomew, Mrs Henderson Presents
Killian Donnelly, Kinky Boots
Scott Garnham, Grand Hotel
Matt Henry, Kinky Boots
Giles Terera, Pure Imagination

Best Supporting Actress in a Musical

Anita Dobson, Follies
Anna Francolini, wonder.land
Amy Lennox, Kinky Boots
Lauren Samuels, Bend It Like Beckham
Emma Williams, Mrs Henderson Presents

Best Supporting Actor in a Musical

Emmanuel Kojo, Show Boat
Matthew Malthouse, Mrs Henderson Presents
Jamie Parker, High Society
George Rae, Grand Hotel


The 2014 fosterIAN nominations

Hurrah, I made it to the end of the year. And despite repeated protestations that I’m cutting down on how much I’m seeing, this year saw me break all records in seeing 383 shows (technically it will be 388 but I’m not counting my Broadway trip in these figures). It’s been hard-going at times, and hugely delightful at times, but I’m glad to have done it and thank you all for coming along with me.
As ever, I have used the label ‘best’, the categories should really be considered ‘favourite’ as that is what the fosterIANs (fos-tîr’ē-ən) are, the acting performances that stood out for me, the ones that made me sit up, and sometimes stand up. So please find below the 2014 fosterIAN award nominations.


Best Actress in a Play
Gillian Anderson, A Streetcar Named Desire
Linda Bassett, Visitors
Susannah Fielding, The Merchant of Venice (Almeida)
Denise Gough, Adler and Gibb
Halina Reijn + Chris Nietvelt, Maria Stuart (Toneelgroep Amsterdam)
Imelda Staunton, Good People

Best Actress in a Musical
Gemma Arterton, Made In Dagenham
Charlotte Baptie, Free As Air
Natalie Mendoza, Here Lies Love
Christina Modestou, In The Heights
Imelda Staunton, Gypsy
Sophie Thompson, Guys and Dolls

Best Actor in a Play
Jonathan Broadbent, My Night With Reg
Chris Connel, Wet House
Cary Crankson, The Saints
Jack Holden, Johnny Get Your Gun
Harry Melling, peddling
Mark Strong, A View From The Bridge

Best Actor in a Musical
Adrian der Gregorian, Made In Dagenham
Killian Donnelly, Memphis
Sam Mackay, In The Heights
Jon Robyns, The Last Five Years
Benjamin Scheuer, The Lion
Jeremy Secomb, Sweeney Todd (Tooting Arts Club)

Best Supporting Actress in a Play
Blythe Duff, The James Plays
Phoebe Fox, A View From The Bridge
Vanessa Kirby, A Streetcar Named Desire
Nicola Walker, A View From The Bridge
Liz White, Electra
Lydia Wilson, Charles III

Best Supporting Actress in a Musical
Samantha Bond, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
Victoria Hamilton Barritt, In The Heights
Kiara Jay, Sweeney Todd (Tooting Arts Club)
Lara Pulver, Gypsy
Zoe Rainey, The Return of the Soldier
Jenna Russell, Urinetown

Best Supporting Actor in a Play

Joe Caffrey, Wet House
Patrick Godfrey, Donkey Heart
Hans Kesting, Maria Stuart (Toneelgroep Amsterdam)
Julian Ovenden, My Night With Reg
Hugh Skinner, Thérèse Raquin (Theatre Royal Bath)
Geoffrey Streatfeild, My Night With Reg

Best Supporting Actor in a Musical

Damian Buhagiar, In The Heights
Tyrone Huntley, Memphis
Nadim Naaman, Sweeney Todd (Tooting Arts Club)
Jason Pennycooke, Memphis
Jonathan Slinger, Urinetown
Aaron Tveit, Assassins
Results will be announced in the coming days. Now let’s dance!

The 2013 fosterIAN nominations

Sifting through 300+ productions has proved harder work than I thought, though a much welcomed reminder of just how much I managed to see this year. Though I have used the label ‘best’, the categories should probably best be considered ‘favourite’ as that is what the fosterIANs (fos-tîr’ē-ən) are, the acting performances that stood out for me, the ones that made me sit up, and sometimes stand up. So please find below the 2013 fosterIAN award nominations. 

Best Actress in a Play
Lucy Ellinson, Grounded
Stella Gonet/Fenella Woolgar, Handbagged
Marianne Jean-Baptiste, The Amen Corner
Lesley Manville, Ghosts (Almeida)
Shuna Snow, Iron

Best Actor in a Play

Brian Cox, The Weir
Philip Duguid-McQuillan, Jumpers for Goalposts 
Jamie Samuel, Jumpers for Goalposts
Al Weaver, The Pride
Benedict Wong, Chimerica 

Best Supporting Actress in a Play

Linda Bassett, Roots
Anna Calder-Marshall, The Herd
Deborah Findlay, Coriolanus
Isabella Laughland, The Same Deep Water As Me
Cecilia Noble, The Amen Corner

Best Supporting Actor in a Play

Richard McCabe, The Audience
Jeff Rawle, Handbagged
Alexander Vlahos, Macbeth (MIF)

Best Actress in a Musical

Rosalie Craig, The Light Princess
Zrinka Cvitešić, Once the musical
Cynthia Erivo, The Color Purple
Scarlett Strallen, A Chorus Line
Charlotte Wakefield, The Sound of Music

Best Actor in a Musical

Declan Bennett, Once the musical
David Birrell, Sweeney Todd 
Nick Hendrix, The Light Princess 
Kyle Scatliff, The Scottsboro Boys 
Matt Smith, American Psycho
Michael Xavier, The Sound of Music

Best Supporting Actress in a Musical

Amy Booth-Steel, The Light Princess
Katie Brayben, American Psycho
Nicola Hughes, The Color Purple
Cassidy Janson, Candide
Sophia Nomvete, The Color Purple
Leigh Zimmerman, A Chorus Line

Best Supporting Actor in a Musical

Ben Aldridge, American Psycho
Christian Dante White, The Scottsboro Boys
Michael Matus, The Sound of Music
Kane Oliver Parry, The Light Princess
Kit Orton, The Hired Man
Gary Wood, A Chorus Line


The 2012 fosterIAN nominations

I did it, I saw nearly 60 less plays than last year! Granted it only took me down from about 330 to about 270, but it is still progress. So here’s an attempt to try and determine whose performances I enjoyed the most across the year – and those which have stuck in my mind – with the 2012 fosterIAN (fos-tîr’ē-ən) award nominations for acting this year.
(NB Eligibility is quite simple: if I saw this play/production for the first time this year, it went in the hat. So since I saw Sweeney Todd in 2011, it fell into last’s year cohort.)

Best Actor in a Play
Billy Carter, Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me
David  Suchet, Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Rafe Spall, Constellations
Hugh Ross, A Life
Luke Treadaway, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
Dominic Rowan, A Doll’s House

Best Actress in a Play
Laurie Metcalf, Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Helen McCrory, The Last of the Haussmans
Cate Blanchett, Big and Small
Hattie Morahan, A Doll’s House
Sally Hawkins, Constellations
Kate O’Flynn, Lungs

Best Actor in a Musical
Richard Dempsey, Victor/Victoria
Simon Russell Beale, Privates on Parade
Julian Ovenden, Finding Neverland
Will Young, Cabaret
Dominic West, My Fair Lady
Mark Umbers, Merrily We Roll Along

Best Actress in a Musical
Caroline O’Connor, Gypsy
Janie Dee, Hello, Dolly!
Anna Francolini, Victor/Victoria
Rosalie Craig, Ragtime
Carly Bawden, My Fair Lady
Jenna Russell, Merrily We Roll Along

Best Supporting Actor in a Play
Robin Soans, Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me
Charles Edwards, This House
Paul Chahidi, Twelfth Night 
Rory Kinnear, The Last of the Haussmans
Cyril Nri, Julius Caesar
Olly Alexander, Mercury Fur

Best Supporting Actress in a Play
Ruth Sheen, In Basildon
Nicola Walker, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
Niamh Cusack, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
Laura Howard, Lost in Yonkers
Katie Brayben, A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Fenella Woolgar, Hedda Gabler

Best Supporting Actor in a Musical
Alistair Brookshaw, A Winter’s Tale
Stuart Matthew Price, Sweet Smell of Success
Ben Kavanagh, Boy Meets Boy
Oliver Boot, Finding Neverland
Michael Xavier, Hello, Dolly!
Damian Humbley, Merrily We Roll Along

Best Supporting Actress in a Musical
Josefina Gabrielle, Merrily We Roll Along
Bonnie Langford, 9 to 5 The Musical
Debbie Kurup, The Bodyguard
Clare Foster, Merrily We Roll Along
Helena Blackman, A Winter’s Tale
Laura Pitt-Pulford, Hello, Dolly!

The 2011 fosterIAN award nominations

So here it is, as best a summation of what I liked most about the year’s theatregoing as I can manage. I racked up 332 plays in the end this year (a further analysis will come in a later post) so it has taken quite some considerable time to narrow these down (especially the supporting actress categories which should surprise no-one who knows me) and considering which were the performances that stood out for me this year led to some surprises. Thus here we go, the 2011 fosterIAN (fos-tîr’ē-ən) award nominations for acting this year.
(NB Eligibility is quite simple: if I saw this play/production for the first time this year, it went in the hat. I saw Propeller’s Richard III last November so that fell into last’s year cohort.)


Best Actor in a Play
Benedict Cumberbatch, Frankenstein
Charles Edwards, Much Ado About Nothing (Globe)
Trevor Fox, The Pitmen Painters
Jude Law, Anna Christie
Andrew Scott, Emperor and Galilean
Dominic West, Othello

Best Actress in a Play
Eve Best, Much Ado About Nothing (Globe)
Siân Brooke, Ecstasy
Geraldine James, Seagull
Lisa Palfrey, The Kitchen Sink
Ruth Wilson, Anna Christie
Rosie Wyatt, Bunny

Best Supporting Actor in a Play
Edward Franklin, Many Moons
Harry Hadden-Paton, Flare Path
Robert Hands, The Comedy of Errors (Propeller)
Adam James, Much Ado About Nothing (Wyndhams)
Craig Parkinson, Ecstasy
Ryan Sampson, The Kitchen Sink

Best Supporting Actress in a Play
Kirsty Bushell, Double Feature 1
Alexandra Gilbreath, Othello
Esther Hall, Many Moons
Sinéad Matthews, Ecstasy
Billie Piper, Reasons to be Pretty
Sheridan Smith, Flare Path

Best Revival
Anna Christie
The Comedy of Errors (Propeller)
Ecstasy
Flare Path
Much Ado About Nothing (Globe)
The Tempest (Cheek By Jowl)

Best New Play
Di and Viv and Rose
For Once
The Kitchen Sink
Many Moons
The Village Bike
13

Best Actor in a Musical
Michael Ball, Sweeney Todd
Alistair Brookshaw, Parade
Bertie Carvel, Matilda
Daniel Crossley, Me and My Girl
Daniel Evans, Company
Vincent Franklin, The Day We Sang

Best Actress in a Musical
Adrianna Bertola, Josie Griffiths, Cleo Demetriou, Kerry Ingram, Eleanor Worthington Cox and Sophia Kiely   Matilda
Beverley Klein, Bernarda Alba
Laura Pitt-Pulford, Parade
Jemima Rooper, Me and My Girl
Imelda Staunton, Sweeney Todd
Scarlet Strallen, Singin’ in the Rain

Best Supporting Actor in a Musical
David Burt, Crazy For You
Daniel Crossley, Singin’ in the Rain
Connor Dowling, Guys and Dolls
Jack Edwards, Betty Blue Eyes
Nigel Harman, Shrek
Nick Holder, London Road

Best Supporting Actress in a Musical
Ann Emery, Betty Blue Eyes
Kate Fleetwood, London Road
Josefina Gabrielle, Me and My Girl
Josie Walker, Matilda
Rosalind James, Ragtime
Samantha Spiro, Company

Best Musical Revival
Company
The Hired Man
Perchance to Dream
Ragtime
Singin’ in the Rain
Sweeney Todd

Best New Musical
Betty Blue Eyes
The Day We Sang
Hamlet the musical
The Importance of Being Earnest the musical
London Road
Matilda

The 2010 fosterIAN award nominations

For all the talk of people setting up blogs just to get free tickets that provoked my ire earlier this year, the simple truth of why I started my blog is much more self-obsessed…it was to get this word into the lexicon: fosterIAN (fos-tîr’ē-ən), my very own award for theatrical excellence! Last years’ winners and nominations can be read by clicking on the links, but I present to you, after much deliberation and several sleepless nights, the nominations for the 2010 fosterIAN awards, based on my trips to the theatre this year which total up to 271 in the final analysis. (Results to come in the New Year)
Best Play

Best Actor in a Play
Roger Allam, Henry IV Part I & Part II
Jacob Casselden, Tribes
Benedict Cumberbatch, After the Dance
John Heffernan, Love Love Love
Andrew Scott, Design for Living
David Suchet, All My Sons

Best Actress in a Play
Nancy Carroll, After the Dance
Miranda Raison, Anne Boleyn
Michelle Terry, Tribes
Sophie Thompson, Clybourne Park
Zoë Wanamaker, All My Sons

Best Supporting Actor in a Play
William Gaunt, Henry IV Part I & Part II
Nigel Lindsay, Broken Glass
Stephen Campbell Moore, All My Sons
Eddie Redmayne, Red
Adrian Scarborough, After the Dance
Robin Soans, Palace of the End

Best Supporting Actress in a Play
Clare Higgins, Hamlet
Sylvestra Le Touzel, Les Parents Terribles
Madeleine Potter, Broken Glass
Jessica Raine, Earthquakes in London
Jemima Rooper, All My Sons
Rachael Stirling, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Best Musical

Best Actor in a Musical
Dean Charles Chapman, Billy Elliot The Musical
Sam Harrison, Salad Days
John Owen-Jones, Les Misérables
Alan Richardson, Iolanthe

Best Actress in a Musical
Tracie Bennett, End of the Rainbow
Kirsty Hoiles, Spend! Spend! Spend!
Katie Moore, Salad Days
Emma Williams, Love Story
Best Supporting Actor in a Musical
Earl Carpenter, Les Misérables
Michael Howe, The Drowsy Chaperone
Tom Parsons, Avenue Q
Liam Tamne, Departure Lounge
Matthew James Williams, Iolanthe
Michael Xavier, Into the Woods

Best Supporting Actress in a Musical
Jodie Jacobs, State Fair
Twinnie Lee Moore, Flashdance The Musical
Siobhan McCarthy, The Drowsy Chaperone
Hannah Waddingham, Into the Woods