The magic of an opera, new WA-made works and the talents of many of our artists shine in this year’s Helpmann Award nominations.
The awards celebrate Australia’s vibrant live performance industry and WA’s thriving arts community is well represented in all categories.
Perth Festival co-commission Le Nor (The Rain) from The Last Great Hunt’s Adriane Daff, Arielle Gray, Chris Isaacs, Tim Watts, Gita Bezard and Jeffrey Fowler along with Anthony Watts, Caitri Jones, Jo Morris, Kristie Smith and Clare Testoni were dual nominees for best scenic design and best new Australian work.
Another of the Festival’s co-commissions, Speechless, was also recognised with Aaron Wyatt nominated for best music direction.
He goes head-to-head with Jordan De Souza nominated for Komische Oper Berlin’s The Magic Flute, which was also presented as part of the Festival. The opera scooped the nominations with six nods, the others are: Barrie Kosky, Suzanne Andrade and 1927 for best direction of an opera; Aleksandra Olczyk for best female performer in a supporting role in an opera; Tom Erik Lie for best male performer in a supporting role in an opera; Aaron Blake best male performer in an opera; best opera.
Two-time Helpmann award winner, Geraldton-raised Kate Mulvany is in the running for best female actor in a play for her performance in Every Brilliant Thing and for best new Australian work for The Harp in the South: Part One and Part Two.
WA Ballet’s Dracula also received two nominations: best ballet; Carina Roberts best female dancer in a ballet, dance of physical theatre production.
Cassie Workman’s first full-length show Giantess — which she wrote to mark her coming out as a trans woman and performed at Perth Comedy Festival — was recognised in the best comedy performer category.
WA’s Kelton Pell was nominated in the best male actor in a play category for his role in Black Swan State Theatre Company’s production of Summer of the Seventeenth Doll. Perth-born and raised Pippa Grandison received a nod in the category of best female actor in a supporting role in a musical for her performance in Muriel’s Wedding the Musical.
WAAPA graduate and East Perth-raised Alexander Lewis is up for a gong in the best male actor in a musical for his role in Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour: West Side Story.
WASO’s Asher Fisch and Stuart Skelton were both recognised for Tristan und Isolde in the best individual classical music performance category. The performance was also nominated for best symphony orchestra concert.
WA’s music- theatre super star Tim Minchin and Live Nation Australasia is nominated for the best Australian contemporary concert award for Back.
Three shows that made it west were also nominated in the best international contemporary concert: Perth Festival’s Christine and the Queens; The Killers 2018 and Celine Dion — Live 2018.