By: Dale King Contributing Writer
The Wick Theatre in Boca Raton kicked off its 2018-2019 season with a production of the whimsical Gilbert & Sullivan operetta, The Pirates of Penzance.
Audiences dubbed it a hit. But the judges for South Florida’s Carbonell Awards – the region’s equivalent of a Tony – liked it even more. They have nominated the show for five Carbonell trophies.
In the meantime, the Theatre Lab at Boca Raton’s Florida Atlantic University racked up a half-dozen nominations for its stage work over the past year.
Among this year’s recently announced Carbonell hopefuls, Miami-Dade theaters earned 43 nominations, Palm Beach County performance centers copped 37and Broward County venues, 21. Nominations recognized 37 shows at theaters stretching from Coral Gables to Jupiter.
The awards will be presented during a ceremony Monday, April 8 at 7:30 p.m. at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Fort Lauderdale.
“South Florida’s regional theaters continue to grow and excel,” said Jody Leshinsky, president of the Carbonell Awards Board of Directors. “In 2018, 97 productions met the eligibility requirements for Carbonell Award evaluation, including more musicals than in any other year.”
Palm Beach Dramaworks performances earned 18 nominations overall, the most of any theater in the Tri-county region, for its productions of the plays Indecent, Equus and Edgar and Emily, and the musical Woody Guthrie’s American Song. Slow Burn Theatre Company in Fort Lauderdale earned 16 nominations, the most of any theater in Broward County. Zoetic Stage received 14 nominations, the most for any theater in Miami-Dade County. Both Slow Burn and Zoetic Stage hold the distinction of earning at least one nomination for every show the companies produced in 2018.
One of the stars of Wick’s Pirates performance, Clay Cartland, was nominated for Best Actor, but he also picked up two other nominations — Best Supporting Actor for Gloria at GableStage and Best Supporting Actor, Musical, for Rock of Ages at Slow Burn Theatre.
Wick also notched the following for the same show: Michael L. Walters, for Best Supporting Actor; Eric Alsford, Best Musical Director; Jim Buff, Best Costume Designer and Norb Joerder, Best Director (musical).
Two married couples received nominations: Matt Stabile, artistic director of Theatre Lab, earned a nomination for his direction of the play The Revolutionists, while his wife, Niki Fridh, earned a supporting actress nod for the play Tar Beach, directed by Stabile. Fridh took home the Carbonell Award for Best Actress, Play, in 2018 for Grounded at Thinking Cap Theatre.
The Primal Forces troupe received two nominations for shows in two different counties. Elizabeth Price, an adjunct professor at FAU, got a Best Actress (play) nomination for her role in An Accident, produced at Empire Stage in Fort Lauderdale. Angie Radosh, a star of Primal Forces’ Breadcrumbs produced at Sol Theatre in Boca Raton, also received a Best Actress (play) nod.
In addition, Laura Hodos received a Carbonell nomination in the category of Best Actress (musical) for Freaky Friday at Slow Burn Theatre Company. Hodos will appear March 2 in a two-woman musical show (with Shelley Keelor) at Delray Beach Playhouse.
In addition to recognizing today’s stars, the Carbonell Awards’ core mission is to award scholarships to the talent of tomorrow.
The Carbonell Awards is a not-for-profit organization funded by tax-deductible donations and award sponsorships.