February 8, 2007


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Family affair
Winnipesaukee sweeps fifth NH Theatre Awards
By Heidi Masek hmasek@hippopress.com

New Hampshire’s northern thespians extended an invite to their southern counterparts at the fifth New Hampshire Theatre Awards Friday, Feb. 2, at the Palace Theatre in Manchester. And, judging by the awards, they might have a point.

Between the Winnipesaukee Playhouse’s professional summer company and their community production arm, Winni Players, this Weirs Beach outfit took nine awards home. Two couples related by marriage, the Halperins and the Pankhursts, started the playhouse in 2004 and the company also offers youth programs.

Kevin Roberge’s new Pirate Stage troupe made its presence felt during the event from Roberge’s antics as a presenter to bringing their entire ensemble on stage to accept their best community musical trophy for producing The Rocky Horror Show in Nashua. That show also basked in the award for best supporting actor in a musical for Ryan Hagen and a best actor award for Billy Butler, who, after partially singing a few bars of “I’m a wild and an untamed thing,” declared: “I’ve done Hamlet. I’ve done Cuckoo’s Nest. I’ve done The House of Yes and yet Frank N. Furter in The Rocky Horror Show....” This was well after he declared that he had been “drinking out back” after rushing up to accept an award for an absent Scarlett Ridgeway Savage for best original play, She F@&%#$ Hates Me, presented by Women in Theater.

There were more family connections at the event, which attracted almost 800 people. Roberge’s wife Marisa took the award for best actress in a community musical for Manchester’s New Thalian Players’ production of Hot Mikado. The Roberges along with Wayland Bunell took an award for best community original review for Musical Mom. New Thalian founder Beth Ann O’Hara, who came out of directing retirement to stage Hot Mikado, won best director. The show also won best music direction for Joel Mercier. Neither was present. O’Hara was in California; her daughters Sarah and Laura Silverman’s TV show, The Sarah Silverman Show, premiered on Comedy Central this week. The cast also performed a number during the presentation. Actorsingers also performed a medley from Cats, and Peacock Players performed a scene from Aida.

Jennifer Mallard took best supporting actress in a professional musical for Seacoast Repertory’s Fiddler on the Roof. She was also in the cast of Pirate Stage’s Rocky. Her father, Brett, was nominated for best community actor for Actorsingers’ Cats.

The Actorsingers of Nashua’s Cats production won community awards for best set design for John McAllister, Dennis Schneider and Paul Metzger and best costume design for Tracy Smith and Kathleen Gorham.

Bryan Halperin won community awards for best director forOur Town by Winni Players. Best supporting actress went to Dorothy Piquado and her husband John Piquado won best supporting actor. Teagin Morin won best actress for a play.

New Hampshire’s arts commissioner, Van McLeod was given the lifetime achievement award. In the 1980s he helped found the North Country Center for the Arts Papermill Theatre, a professional outfit that won five awards Feb. 2.

Dr. Patricia Lindberg was given the Excellence in Children’s Theatre award, and Kevin Riley, who did much of the awards organization, was given the Special Award for Vision and Tenacity. Peacock Players and The Barnstormers were given general excellence awards for community and professional categories, respectively.

Each company that submits a performance to be judged supplies volunteers who are assigned to adjudicate at other performances. There are five adjudicators each, and the lowest and highest scores are thrown out. Riley announced that this year there will be adjudicator training held throughout the state.

Next year will also include an award for sound.

Visit nhtheatreawards.com for a complete list of winners.

2/1/2007 Curtain calls

1/25/2007 Curtain calls
1/18/2007 Curtain calls
1/11/2007 Curtain calls
1/4/2007 Fork in the road
12/28/2006 Standout performances of '06
12/21/2006 Curtain Calls
12/14/2006 Players remember Peter Bridges
12/07/2006 Young talent
11/30/2006 Lighthearted farce for the holidays
11/23/2006 Curtain Calls
11/16/2006 Good theater
11/9/2006 Preview roundup
11/2/2006 Access to the ancients
10/26/2006 Aida on a Nashua stage
10/19/2006 Children of a Lesser God brilliantly played
10/12/2006 A true love triangle
10/05/2006 Curtain Calls
09/28/2006 Bringing people back to life
09/21/2006 Getting judged
09/14/2006 Long strange journey
09/07/2006 Curtain Calls
08/31/2006 Curtain Calls
08/24/2006 Putting kids in charge
08/17/2006 Curtain Calls
08/10/2006 All theater, all summer
08/03/2006 A Jesus musical, reworked
07/27/2006 A match made in Maine
07/20/2006 Variations on a theme
07/13/2006 I Hate Hamlet
07/06/2006 Serious theater
06/29/2006 L.A. in Peterborough
06/22/2006 Da Vinci to Rube Goldberg
06/15/2006 Peter Bridges remembered
06/08/2006 From Hairspray to monkeys
06/01/2006 Special Theatrics
05/25/2006 Live Brit-com
05/18/2006 Evil stepsisters earn the yuks
05/11/2006 A message to mom
05/04/2006 Meet the cast
04/27/2006 'I hope i get it'
04/20/2006 Find yourself in Yonkers
04/13/2006 Nashua rocks The Wiz
04/06/2006 Nashua rocks The Wiz
03/30/2006 Cabaret is Mnchester bound
03/23/2006 A 42nd Street detour
03/16/2006 Actor-director wants your ideas
02/23/2006 Yellow Taxi's Theater Festival opens March 1
02/16/2006 Herding CATS
02/09/2006 An actors' studio
02/02/2006 A thing about love
01/26/2006 Spring theater season warming up
01/19/2006 Gearing up for the big night
01/12/2006 This Phantom is not a menace
01/05/2006 Jim Kelly, sci-fi writer and alternate historian
10th anniversary at Capitol Center
10 Ways To Survive The Audition
A Chorus Line
A Figaro Worth Cheering
A 'Living Newspaper' on stage
A tale of two wives
A Tribute To Music
Actorsingers Deliver On Superstar
Beauty and the Beast
Bedford Off-Broadway Gets Spooky
Being The Beatles, 1964 The Tribute
Bringing NYC to Wilton
Creating the venue from antiques
Crimes Of The Heart
Curtain to rise on Dana Center
Dana Center Takes Center Stage
Ensemble elevates Palace’s Godspell
From stage to the silver screen
Great play, too bad it’s over
Greater Tuna
Humble Boy
It’s cabaret, hear it sing, joke, tease
It's Child's Play
Jesus Christ Superstar
Kids Tackle Edgar Allan Poe
Local boy hits the big time, doesn’t lose his head
Lowell theater opens with a winner of a satire
Madco welcomes Boston actor-director
Meet John Sefel, Director
Meet Suzanne Delle, Yellow Taxi’s driver
Music Man to run three weekends
New Thalian Players
Palace announces 2005-06 season
Peterborough Players’ Solidarity is solid gold
Plaid (II)
Playing with man’s best friend
Proud of the Peacock
Racy, crazy blast at the Palace
Reviving His Passion
Robert Dionne, The man behind the Majestic
Rosemary Dann
Secrets Every Smart Traveler Should Know
Short-Attention Span Theater
Side Show
Sideshow slips sideways
Spending The Summer On Stage
Stages of learning
Steel Magnolias
Suessical: The Musical
Theater Of The Imagination
Theater Kids Without A School
Theater in the park draws big
The Drawer Boy
The Festival
The Five best shows of 2005
The Prisoner Of Second Avenue
The Russian/American Kids Circus
The Senator Wore Pantyhose
The Tony Awards, they're grrrrreat
The Warmth Of The Cold
Three nights, three shows at the Palace

Under the Caribbean with the little mermaid

Wake up to ‘night Mother