Oliviers 2022: Jason’s best jokes and 7 other highlights

By Steven McIntosh
Leisure reporter on the Oliver Awards

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Host Jason Manford made repeated references to Will Smith hitting Chris Rock on the Oscars

Earlier than Sunday’s Olivier Awards bought beneath approach, host Jason Manford popped on stage for a fast housekeeping chat with the viewers.

“T. will probably be moments w. I’ve bought to fill a little bit of time once they’re altering the set,” he defined. “So I will come out and have a chat with a few of you guys within the viewers. Please do not slap me within the face.”

The gang on the Royal Albert Corridor laughed and cheered – grateful that Manford had damaged the ice so early within the night time.

The Salford-born comedian was within the fortunate place of internet hosting one of many first main awards ceremonies because the Oscars, w. Will Smith famously smacked Chris Rock.

“I am a comic, and that is an awards ceremony, and people two issues haven’t gone down properly collectively currently,” Manford continued as soon as the Oliviers ceremony began, kicking off what is going to absolutely be a complete yr of Oscars jokes from awards hosts.

“So earlier than we get into this correctly, let me inform you, I feel all of your hair seems to be pretty, and I’ll very a lot be conserving your wives names out of my chuffing mouth this night. That is a night of back-slapping, not face-slapping.

“The very last thing I want is a slap within the face from the seven actors who performed the tiger,” he added, a reference to the stage adaptation of Lifetime of Pi which went on to win a number of prizes on the ceremony.

Cabaret was the opposite large winner, and t. was a joyful temper on the first Olivier Awards to happen since reside performances resumed final yr. Listed below are eight highlights:

1. Eddie Redmayne wants a relaxation

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Eddie Redmayne: “That is the half I performed once I was a child at college”

It isn’t typically you get two Hollywood stars within the West Finish, however following the massive success of Cabaret, might Jessie Buckley and Eddie Redmayne be tempted again quickly?

“100%,” says Buckley. “I grew up in theatre, these persons are my household.”

Redmayne is much less enthusiastic. “Jessie’s like ‘yeah’, I am like ‘I want a relaxation!'” he laughs. “We have each simply completed [Cabaret], and we each must go on vacation.”

In the meantime, their co-stars Elliot Levey and Liza Sadovy, who received greatest supporting actor and actress, are filled with reward for Redmayne and his work ethic.

“I decide actors on their skill to work on stage,” says Levey. “When large stars come and check out [theatre], if they cannot do it, I form of write them off. I feel they’re nice and fantastic, however a little bit of me goes ‘you are not correct’. Eddie Redmayne is correct.”

For Sadovy, successful an Olivier for Cabaret was a full-circle second. “After I was an adolescent, I used to be obsessive about the movie,” she explains. “My identify is Jane Elizabeth, however I switched it spherical to Liza Jane as a result of I used to be obsessive about Liza Minelli and Cabaret. So I’ve at all times felt Cabaret is in my bones, and now it’s.”

2. You’re invited to Hiran’s after celebration

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Hiran Abeysekera was named greatest actor for his efficiency within the stage adaptation of Lifetime of Pi

Hiran Abeysekera stated he was “overwhelmed” to win greatest actor, describing the method of bringing Lifetime of Pi to the stage as “fantastic”.

The formidable present sees a boy named Piscine recount his expertise of surviving for weeks on a ship alongside a Bengal tiger and different animals following a shipwreck.

“The problem has been loopy – it is pushing your im.nation or pushing actuality to the max,” he says backstage. “The ebook was so beloved by everybody, it was fairly a scary proposition. However after we began, and after we had the primary rehearsal we thought, ‘we now have one thing fairly particular’.”

(Aspect word: When you go to see Lifetime of Pi, our tip is to keep away from the stalls. You will get a significantly better view of the crashing ocean waves projected on the stage flooring from the Royal Circle).

How does Abeysekera plan to have a good time his win? “Tonight, I feel t.’s an after celebration, however then t.’s going to be an after-after celebration at mine, so if you happen to’re free, I will see you at my place!”

We thought he was joking about this till he actually gave us his house postcode. (Sadly we could not attend as a result of we have been writing this text).

3. Isobel McArthur wants a (small) trophy cupboard

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Isobel McArthur (centre) was offered together with her trophy by Hamilton Giles Terera and & Juliet’s Cassidy Janson

Phrase-of-mouth hit Pleasure and Prejudice* (*Type Of) took house the prize for greatest leisure or comedy play following its West Finish switch final yr.

“It was unbelievable for us to do something greater than the 2 weeks we have been booked to do it in a 200-seater theatre within the east finish of Glasgow, which was the case in 2018,” mirrored co-director and author Isobel McArthur backstage.

“So to then get any curiosity from anyone else, then get a UK tour after which go to the West Finish, for me is completely surreal. However I feel it simply goes to indicate that whenever you’re intimidated and initially of your profession and also you ask: ‘How did I eat an elephant?’ The reply is one step at a time.”

Clever phrases. The now Olivier-winning present is ready to go on tour later this yr.

“W. am I going to maintain my trophy? It is the primary trophy I’ve ever obtained!” she notes. The right time to purchase a trophy cupboard then, we advise. “Sure I will purchase one very, very small cupboard!”

4. Jason Manford delivered some zingers

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References to slap-gate apart, Manford as soon as once more proved to be an ideal Oliviers host, delivering some prime one-liners in his opening monologue.

  • “At first, theatres have been solely allowed to open at half capability. I could not inform the distinction alone stand-up tour however I am certain it was very tough for lots of you.”
  • “I made certain I did my hour’s train [during lockdown], what a bizarre second in historical past w. we have been in our homes however solely allowed out for an hour a day to train. Half the nation have been furious, asking ‘solely an hour?’, the opposite half asking ‘is it obligatory?!'”
  • “Andrew Lloyd Webber stated he would fortunately danger arrest if he might open his theatres. He was just like the Che Guevara of the West Finish.”
  • “It was a noble gesture, however I’ve met him, and he would not final 5 minutes inside would he? ‘What are you in for?’ ‘Homicide, what about you?’ ‘St.ng Cinderella on the Gillian Lynne Theatre.'”

5. The Lifetime of Pi puppeteers might have some throat sweets

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The tiger is operated by two groups of three, in addition to a seventh actor who offers its voice in some scenes

In one of many night time’s most sensible moments, one of the best supporting actor prize was shared between the seven-strong crew who function the tiger in Lifetime of Pi.

The position requires quite a lot of bodily stamina, in addition to a capability to roar, loudly, all through the present.

“We positively had sore throats at first,” laughs one of many puppeteers, Fred Davis.

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Tiger crew L-R: Scarlet Wilderink, Romina Hytten, Tom Stacy, Tom Larkin, Daisy Franks, Fred Davis and Habib Nasib Nader

The animal is bodily operated by two groups of three, with a seventh actor, Habib Nasib Nader, offering the voice of the tiger, (as heard by Pi).

“It feels wonderful that we have been up for greatest supporting position, as a result of being a puppeteer is such a suppor-tive position,” notes Romina Hytten. “It’s important to have the help of all three of you each night time, in order that appears like an additional stage to this award.”

6. Rebecca Frecknall’s win for Cabaret was poignant

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Rebecca Frecknall devoted her award to her late father, who beforehand acted in a scholar manufacturing of Cabaret

One of many ceremony’s most transferring speeches noticed Cabaret director Rebecca Frecknall dedicate her prize to her late father.

“Within the second week of rehearsals, I misplaced my dad to prostate most cancers,” she stated on stage, “and this firm and crew picked me up and carried me once I wanted it. So that is for them and my dad Paul, who performed the Emcee as a scholar in 1975.”

Backstage, she continues: “My dad gave me a videotape of Cabaret when he was an adolescent, and I fell in love with it again then and I knew he’d performed it.

“It is unhappy that he cannot be . tonight however it feels actually poignant that I’ve received it for this present, so it means quite a bit.”

7. Catherine Zuber is aware of the worth of understudies

Picture supply, Reuters
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Catherine Zuber designed the cosutmes for the stage manufacturing of Moulin Rouge! The Musical

Costume designer Catherine Zuber explains she’s “been working world wide throughout Covid doing Moulin Rouge!”

And she or he is not joking – the stage adaptation of the 2002 movie has opened in Australia, on Broadway and in London’s West Finish. And it isn’t stopping t..

“We have been simply in Chicago doing the US tour,” Zuber explains, “and earlier than we opened, all of the principals had to enter quarantine due to Covid.

“And the covers [understudies] went on, they usually have been incredible, they have been so ready, we have been ready with costumes, and that is the best way it must be now. We actually should be conscious that we’d like nearly a complete second firm to maintain issues that will come our approach.”

8. We are able to verify an Olivier is sort of heavy

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Liz Carr says “artwork as activism is essential” to the roles she chooses to play

The very first thing greatest supporting actress winner Liz Carr asks on the pink carpet is whether or not we will maintain her Olivier for a second, (“simply because it is so heavy, really feel it, it is heavier than I’m”), one thing we’re delighted to do.

Trophy safely in our possession, we ask Carr why tales concerning the AIDS disaster within the Nineteen Eighties are hanging a chord in the mean time – her play The Regular Coronary heart adopted the published of . 4’s acclaimed drama It is a Sin.

“It is two issues,” she says. “You have bought entire generations who do not actually know what it was like again then, after which you have got these of us who do bear in mind, so it is hitting two audiences.”

Carr says she enjoys engaged on tasks which cope with social and societal points near her coronary heart. “Artwork as activism to me is essential,” she says. “Individuals will hear whenever you entertain them, they’re extra open, and I feel it breaks down divides.”

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