Théâtre la Seiziéme wins big at Jessies

According to Stats Canada, roughly only one per cent of Vancouverites speak French as their native tongue, so it was a bit of a coup that Théâtre la Seiziéme pulled off at last night’s Jessie Richardson Theatre Awards ceremony held at the Commodore Ballroom. The city’s sole French theatre troupe took home a total of eight awards at Vancouver’s answer to the Tony Awards, including six for À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, in the large theatre category. The production of Michel Tremblay’s 1971 tragedy was named outstanding production and won for direction (Craig Holzschuh), lead actor (Joey Lespérance), actress (Julie Trépanier), supporting actress (France Perras) and set design (Drew Facey).

"I'm just a lucky guy in a lucky job,” said Holzschuh in his acceptance speech. “That's all I can say."

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This was only the second year Théâtre la Seiziéme was considered in a category historically dominated by the Arts Club Theatre Company and Bard on the Beach after the Jessies revamped their three categories – Large Theatre, Small Theatre and Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA) – based on annual operating budgets that also moved up Pacific Theatre, Touchstone, and the Firehall Arts Centre.

Théâtre la Seizième also picked up hardware for outstanding artistic creation (director Rachel Peake) and outstanding performances (Julie Trépanier, Siona Gareau-Brennan and Vincent Leblanc-Beaudoin) in the TYA category for its production of Selfie.

The Arts Club’s production of George Bernard Shaw’s Saint Joan also did well in the large theatre category, with Dean Paul Gibson winning for best supporting actor and Alessandro Juliani for sound design. The Gateway Theatre’s goofy musical Crazy for You won for both costume design (Carmen Alatorre) and significant artistic achievement  for Julie Tomaino’s choreography.

In the small theatre category, Ruby Slippers Theatre’s After Me (Après Moi) won both lead acting awards (Scott Bellis and Jennifer Lines), while Pi Theatre’s artistic director Richard Wolfe won best direction for Sarah Kane’s gruesome play Blasted.

Hiro Kanagawa won the Jessie for outstanding original script for Rumble Theatre’s Indian Arm, while the Critics’ Choice Innovation Award went to Theatre Conspiracy’s Foreign Radical.

The complete list of winners is below:

Large Theatre

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Lead Role
Joey Lespérance, À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Théâtre la Seiziéme

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Lead Role
France Perras, À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Théâtre la Seiziéme

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Dean Paul Gibson, Saint Joan, Arts Club Theatre Company

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Julie Trépanier, À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Théâtre la Seiziéme

Outstanding Lighting Design
Lauchlin Johnston, The Whipping Man, Pacific Theatre

Outstanding Set Design
Drew Facey, À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Théâtre la Seiziéme

Outstanding Costume Design
Carmen Alatorre, Crazy for You, Gateway Theatre

Outstanding Sound Design or Original Composition
Alessandro Juliani, Saint Joan, Arts Club Theatre Company

Outstanding Direction
Craig Holzschuh, À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Théâtre la Seiziéme

Outstanding Production Play
À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Théâtre la Seiziéme

Significant Artistic Achievement
Julie Tomaino, Crazy for You, Gateway Theatre, Outstanding Choreography

Small Theatre

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Lead Role
Scott Bellis, After Me (Après Moi), Ruby Slippers Theatre

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Lead Role
Jennifer Lines , After Me (Après Moi), Ruby Slippers Theatre

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Peter Carlone, Hunter Gatherers, Staircase Theatre

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Lindsey Angell, Iceland, Dirt Road Productions

Outstanding Lighting Design
Jeff Harrison, Blasted, Pi Theatre

Outstanding Set Design
Drew Facey, Blasted, Pi Theatre

Outstanding Costume Design
Mara Gottler, The Duchess a.k.a. Wallis Simpson, Ruby Slippers Theatre

Outstanding Sound Design or Original Composition
Mishelle Cuttler, STATIONARY, Delinquent Theatre

Outstanding Direction
Richard Wolfe, Blasted, Pi Theatre

Outstanding Production Musical
STATIONARY: a recession-era musical, Delinquent Theatre

Outstanding Production
Our Town, Osimous Theatre

Significant Artistic Achievement
Bob Frazer, Craig Erickson, Quelemia Stacey Sparrow, Jessica Ross-Howkins, John Shaw, Dawn Petten, Lauren Jackson Chris Cope, Varya Rubin, Our Town, Osimous Theatre, Outstanding Ensemble Performance

Theatre for Young Audiences


Outstanding Performance: Julie Trépanier, Siona Gareau-Brennan, Vincent Leblanc-Beaudoin, Selfie Théâtre la Seiziéme.

Outstanding Design: Dusty Hagerud and Tara Travis, The Little Prince, Monster Theatre.

Outstanding Artistic Creation: Rachel Peake, Selfie, Théâtre la Seiziéme.

Outstanding Production: Celestial Being, Green Thumb Theatre.

Significant Artistic Achievement: Drew Facey, Outstanding Body of Work.

Special awards

Outstanding Original Script: Hiro Kanagawa, Indian Arm, Rumble Theatre.

Georgia Straight Critics’ Choice Innovation Award: Foreign Radical Theatre Conspiracy

Ray Michal Prize for Most Promising New Director: Cameron Mackenzie

Patron of the Arts Award:  Stan Hamilton

Mary Phillips Prize for Behind-the-Scenes Achievement:  Scott Ashton Swan

Sam Payne Award for the Most Promising Newcomer: Sarah Mobberly

John Moffat and Larry Lillo Prize: Jill Daum

Career Achievement Award:  Jerry Wasserman

Sydney Risk Prize: Christine Quintana

Colin Campbell Award for Excellence in Technical Theatre: Lorraine West

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