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Huntington Theatre Company receives 39 IRNE Award nominations for its 2011 productions from Independent Reviewers of New England — more nominations than any theatre company in New England.

Boston, MA — The Huntington Theatre Company has received 39 IRNE Award nominations from the Independent Reviewers of New England, which recognized all seven of the Huntington's 2011 productions when the nominations were announced last Friday. The 39 nominations are five more than the Huntington received for its 2010 productions and more than twice as many as any other theatre company in New England.

The Huntington's September — October 2011 production of Leonard Bernstein's glorious musical CANDIDE received 13 nominations, more than any other production of 2011, and is nominated in every category in which it is eligible:

  • Best Set Design: Daniel Ostling
  • Best Lighting Design: T.J. Gerckens
  • Best Costume Design: Mara Blumenfeld
  • Best Sound Design: Richard Woodbury
  • Best Choreography: Daniel Pelzig
  • Best Supporting Actress — Musical: Cheryl Stern (The Old Lady)
  • Best Supporting Actor — Musical: Timothy John Smith (The Governor)
  • Best Actress — Musical: Lauren Molina (Cunegonde)
  • Best Actor — Musical: Geoff Packard (Candide
  • Best Music Director: Doug Peck
  • Best Director of a Musical: Mary Zimmerman
  • Best Ensemble
  • Best Musical

The Huntington's production of RUINED (January 2011), Lynn Nottage's drama about the conflict in the Congo, which was included on a number of "Best of 2011" lists last month and produced in association with Berkeley Repertory Theatre and La Jolla Playhouse, tied with the American Repertory Theater's The Gershwin's Porgy and Bess for the second most nominations with eleven:

  • Best Set Design: Clint Ramos
  • Best Lighting Design: Lap Chi Chu
  • Best Costume Design: Kathleen Geldard
  • Best Supporting Actress — Drama: Pascale Armand (Salima)
  • Best Supporting Actress — Drama: Zainab Jah (Josephine)
  • Best Supporting Actor — DramaL Oberon K.A. Adjepong (Christian)
  • Best Actress — Drama: Tonye Patano (Mama Nadi)
  • Best Director of a Drama: Liesl Tommy
  • Best Sound Design: Broken Chord (Daniel Baker/Aaron Meicht)
  • Best Ensemble
  • Best Play

Tommy, Ramos, and Broken Chord reunite on the Huntington's upcoming production of August Wilson's MA RAINEY'S BLACK BOTTOM, which begins performances on March 9.

Each of the world premieres the Huntington produced in 2011 was nominated for Best New Play, in addition to other categories. Stephen Karam's SONS OF THE PROPHET (April — May 2011), a comedy about suffering that transferred to Off Broadway in a hit Roundabout Theatre Company production where it was hailed by The New York Times as "the first important play of the fall season," received seven nominations:

  • Best Set Design: Anna Louizos
  • Best Supporting Actress — Drama: Joanna Gleason (Gloria)
  • Best Director of a Drama: Peter DuBois
  • Best Sound Design: M.L. Dogg
  • Best Ensemble
  • Best New Play
  • Best Play

Huntington Playwriting Fellow Rosanna Yamagiwa Alfaro's BEFORE I LEAVE YOU (October — November 2011) about four longtime friends facing the third chapter of their lives received three nominations: Best Supporting Actor — Drama: Ross Bickell (Jeremy), Best Support Actress — Drama: Kippy Goldfarb (Emily), and Best New Play.

Evan M. Weiner's CAPTORS (November — December 2011) about the surprising connection formed between architect of the Holocaust Adolf Eichmann and his Israeli captor received two nominations: Best Actor — Drama: Michael Cristofer (Eichmann) and Best New Play.

EDUCATING RITA (March — April 2011), the story of a brash, young hairdresser eager to improve her lot in life, received three nominations: Best Set Design: Allen Moyer, Best Actress — Drama: Jane Pfitsch (Rita), and Best Director of a Drama: Maria Aitken. Aitken and Moyer reunite for the Huntington's production of PRIVATE LIVES, which begins May 25, 2012.

The Propeller Theatre Company's production of RICHARD III, presented in repertory with The Comedy of Errors by Boston University's School of Theatre in association with the Huntington in May and June, was nominated for Best Visiting Production.

Huntington Playwriting Fellow John Kuntz was nominated for Best New Play for THE HOTEL NEPENTHE, originally produced by Actors' Shakespeare Project and to be remounted by the Huntington this coming June as part of the Emerging America festival. More information at emergingamericafestival.org.

The full list of IRNE nominations is available online.

The IRNE Awards will be presented on Monday, April 23 at 7:30pm at the Boston Center for the Arts' Cyclorama. The Independent Reviewers of New England Committee includes Jules Becker, Sheila Barth, Kay Bourne, Shanni Brown, Beverly Creasey, Kathi Scrizzi Driscoll, Shirley Esthimer, Rich Fahey, Tom Garvey, Guy Giampapa, Norm Gross, Nancy Grossman, Robert Israel, Becca Kidwell, Bryce Lambert, Kilian Malloy, and Larry Stark. More information at irneawards.com.

ABOUT HUNTINGTON THEATRE COMPANY:

Over the past 30 years the Huntington Theatre Company has developed into Boston's leading professional theatre. Under the direction of Artistic Director Peter DuBois and Managing Director Michael Maso and in residence at Boston University, the Huntington brings together world—class theatre artists from Boston and Broadway and the most promising new talent to create an eclectic season of exciting new works and classics made current. By also mentoring playwrights in the Huntington Playwriting Fellows program, educating young people in theatre through its nationally renowned programs in education, and providing Boston—based companies with discounted audience services and first—class facilities at the Huntington—built and operated Stanford Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts, the Huntington cultivates, celebrates, and champions theatre as an art form. The Huntington has transferred over a dozen productions to New York, including two last fall: the Broadway premiere of Lydia R. Diamond's Stick Fly and the Roundabout Theatre Company production of Stephen Karam's Sons of the Prophet. A national leader in the development of new plays, the Huntington has produced 83 New England, American, or world premieres to date, with three world premieres scheduled for the 2011 — 2012 Season, and its education and community programs serve 25,000 young people and underserved audiences each year. The Huntington performs in two homes — the BU Theatre on the Avenue of the Arts and the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA in the South End. The Huntington was founded in 1982 by Boston University and separately incorporated as an independent non—profit in 1986. Its two prior artistic leaders were Peter Altman (1982 — 2000) and Nicholas Martin (2000 — 2008). For more information, visit huntingtontheatre.org.

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