Did the OLIVIER AWARDS overlook one of THE GIRLS in their nominations?
Looking over the nominees again from yesterday’s Olivier Awards announcement, I have several thoughts and questions about them all swirling around in my brain but one in particular.
The nominees for Best Actress In A Musical include all six leading ladies from Gary Barlow‘s new musical The Girls which opened at the Phoenix Theatre on 21 February 2017. Now, I am confused as to how six people can all be nominated for a Best Actress award but the Olivier’s must have good reasoning for doing it as they have also nominated all eight girls from Our Ladies Of Perpetual Succour at the National Theatre. In 2015, the Olivier Awards also shortlisted all of the young women who shared the role of Iris in The Nether at the Duke Of Yorks Theatre for Best Actress In A Supporting Role. So for now, I will put that question to one side.
On 18 February 2017, it was announced that on Doctors orders, Michele Dotrice had to withdraw from the production of The Girls and 67 year old Understudy Judith Street would assume the role in her place. So, when the show had it’s official opening night on 21 February, Judith was well and truly ‘one of the girls’.
I therefore find it sad and a little confusing that Michele Dotrice has been listed as one of the nominees for an Olivier Award and yet Judith Street who is actually playing the role instead of Michele seems to have been overlooked.
In a year where understudies have been all over the news, it is not only a shame to not see the introduction of a Best Understudy category at the 2017 Olivier Awards but also to see that an actress who has been performing in a lead role since the show officially opened in the West End, has not been recognised in this category.
***CORRECTION*** It transpires than Michele Dotrice was only briefly off from the show and Judith Street only performed at a few performances. The press release issued three days before press night led me to believe Michele would not be performing for the foreseeable future. She was in fact back in the show before press night which I was not aware of.
Watch Press Night Action from Gary Barlow’s new musical THE GIRLS