2020 Artsies results: TheatreLAB wins big, VA Rep honored for Children’s Theatre

“Lucky 13” Annual Theater Awards Winners Announced

TheatreLAB wins ten “Artsies,” VA Rep honored for Children’s Theatre

Richmond, VA – September 14, 2020. The 13th Richmond Theatre Critics Circle Awards (Artsies), which is typically an in-person black-tie event, was all virtual this year. With a “Lucky 13” theme, the show highlighted the funny – and often outrageous – ways that theater can go wrong, elevating what is unique and vital about live performance: the thrill of the unexpected.

Not only are the Artsies the community’s recognition of excellence in Richmond-area theater, but they are the primary fundraising event for the Theatre Artist Fund of Greater Richmond (The Fund). The Fund provides emergency financial assistance to theater artists who have experienced an exceptional financial need related to a specific crisis beyond their control. Since its inception, the Artsies have raised $83,446 for the Fund, which has written 21 grants totaling $30,468 for artists in need. While no tickets were sold for this year’s event, attendees were urged to consider donating in support of the Theatre Artist Fund of Greater Richmond

Although the 2019-2020 theater season was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Richmond-area professional theaters staged a number of remarkable productions. Virginia Repertory Theatre received a special award this year for Excellence in Children’s Theatre for its productions of “Tuck Everlasting” and “Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad,” the latter written by local playwright Douglas Jones. In addition, the theater came away with an impressive eight wins, including Best Play for its production of August Wilson’s “Fences.” Virginia Rep’s production of “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder” garnered four of those wins, including Scott Wichmann’s award for Best Actor in a Musical.

TheatreLAB swept the night with ten Artsies, most of them for its production of “Urinetown,” which was also the production that won the most Artsies. “Urinetown” received seven awards, including Best Musical; Best Direction of a Musical for Matt Polson; Best Actress in a Musical, which went to Bianca Bryan; Best Supporting Actor in a Musical for Luke Schares; and Best Supporting Actress in a Musical for Kelsey Cordrey. The show also picked up awards for Best Choreography for Nicole Morris-Anastasi’s work and Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Design in a Musical for Michael Jarett’s lighting. And, the first show of the season, TheatreLAB’s production of “Level 4,” was honored as Outstanding Original Work.

Among Firehouse Theatre’s five awards this year was the Best Acting Ensemble award to the cast of “Passing Strange,” which also won Jimmy Fecteau an award for his sound design. Lorin Hope Turner’s role in the theater’s production of “Stupid Kid” earned her an Artsie for Breakout Performance, and Alison Devereaux won an award for her direction of the play. 

“Our organization has tried at this unprecedented time to support theater artists who continue making their art and sharing it with the world,” said Susie Haubenstock, RTCC President. “The RTCC embraces the rich diversity of backgrounds and perspectives that our local theater artists bring to their craft and is proud to honor and pay tribute to the excellence they bring to Richmond-area theater.”

Best Musical
“Urinetown”
TheatreLAB

Best Direction, Musical
Matt Polson
“Urinetown”

Best Actor, Musical
Scott Wichmann
“A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder”

Best Actress, Musical
Bianca Bryan
“Urinetown”

Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Musical
Luke Schares
“Urinetown”

Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Musical
Kelsey Cordrey
“Urinetown”

Best Musical Direction
Sandy Dacus
“A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder”

Best Choreography
Nicole Morris-Anastasi
“Urinetown”

Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design, Musical
Sue Griffin
“A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder”

Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Design, Musical
Michael Jarett
“Urinetown”

Outstanding Achievement in Set Design, Musical
Chris Raintree
“A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder”

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Design, Musical
Jimmy Fecteau
“Passing Strange”

Best Play
“Fences”
Virginia Rep

Best Direction, Play
Alison Devereaux
“Stupid Kid”

Best Actor, Play
James Craven
“Fences”

Best Actress, Play
Terri Moore
“The Cake”

Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Play
Joe Pabst
“Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead”

Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Play
Maggie Bavolack
“The Revolutionists”

Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design, Play
Ruth Hedberg
“The Revolutionists”

Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Design, Play
Joe Doran
“Holmes and Watson”

Outstanding Achievement in Set Design, Play
Josafath Reynoso
“Fences”

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Design, Play
Nicholas Seaver
“Fences”

2020 Ernie McClintock Best Acting Ensemble Award 
The cast members of Firehouse Theatre’s “Passing Strange” 
are honored for their notable performance as a cohesive and compelling ensemble:

Patricia Alli
Keydron Dunn
Keaton Hillman
Dylan Jones
Jamar Jones
Katrinah Carol Lewis
Jeremy V. Morris

Breakout Performance
Lorin-Hope Turner
“Stupid Kid”

Outstanding Original Work
Level 4, TheatreLAB

Excellence in Children’s Theatre
“Tuck Everlasting” and “Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad,” Virginia Rep

To view the “Lucky 13” Artsies video, visit http://www.artsies.org/.

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