This article was originally published in PRODIJEE MAGAZINE #19
This past month I have attended some of the best Parties and Events, it seems that the UK really know how to have fun! The most exciting however was The Olivier Awards held at the Royal Opera House in London’s Covent Garden, due to my work in the theatre it was a natural and thrilling event to attend.
Walking down the red carpet is a calm experience here in London, unlike LA and New York where there are screams and mania here in the UK it is respectful and consequently delightful. Everyone was attending, Dame Judi Dench floated by, along with Martin Freeman (“The Hobbit”). All who were in attendance were impeccably dressed and extraordinarily stylish. From turquoise blue velvet jackets to gold shoes… and that was just the men! I opted for a classic tuxedo and black bow tie.
Before the ceremony began we all sipped champagne and talked about how good this last season of theatre had been. Sir Richard Eyre was congratulating his company from “Ghosts” on their numerous nominations. Tom Hiddleston talked with Hayley Atwell and Kristin Davis was darting about all over the place with much enthusiasm.
Before long it was time for “The Show” to begin, I took to my seat and was surrounded by the most talented pool of theatre makers, performers and producers. The atmosphere was electric!
The beautiful Gemma Arterton and the hysterical Stephen Mangan hosted the ceremony and thankfully they moved it along at a clip, unlike other award ceremonies that seem to drag along forever…
At intervals during the awards there were some incredible performances, from the cast of “Les Mis” and “The Scarborough Boys”, “Matilda” and “Wicked” then at one point Bernadette Peters stepped on to the stage and regaled us with a song from “Follies”, I had seen her perform this exact piece a couple of years ago in New York when she was in this role. The UK audience ate it up! Possibly the most exciting performance for me was when “Abba” came on to the stage and performed with the cast of Mama Mia in tribute of its 15th year birthday, it was a spectacular sight to see and dance along to… a truly epic way to finish the show!
At the party afterwards where the wine and champagne flowed like there was no tomorrow I spoke with one of the nominees for “Best supporting Actor” Mark Gatiss, an absolutely charming and humble fellow. He was nominated for his performance in “Coriolanus”. He told me how it was honor enough to have been nominated, we then spoke of his previous work in television on such shows as “Nighty Night”, “The League of Gentlemen”, “Fear of Fanny” and upcoming in “Game of Thrones”. He was so down to earth and approachable, ‘normal’ is the word and that makes it all the more delightful!
There was a spectacular band playing all the hits and the dance floor was filled. There was photo booth fun happening in one corner and cheers and celebrations in every other!
I left around 1am and had to take the entire next day off simply to ‘rest’… Only 364 days left until next years bash!