Best of Philadelphia Theater, 2010-2011

The Barrymore Awards ceremony is tonight, and I’m not there, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have my own opinions about the best actors and productions of last season. I didn’t see a bulk of the Barrymore nominees (for one thing, I didn’t go to the much-nominated Wilma; for another, I rarely go to musicals), but I did make it to over 50 shows last season, many of them short runs, staged readings, or other productions not eligible for the awards. Here are my picks from those I saw and remember:

Best Play: El Conquistador, (Lucidity Suitcase Intercontinental)
Honorable mention: Blasted (Luna Theater Company); Lydia (Amaryllis Theatre Company); A Moon for the Misbegotten (Arden Theatre Company)

Best Actor: John Jezior, Blasted (Luna)
Honorable mention: Leonard C. Haas, Vigil (Lantern Theatre Company); Thaddeus Phillip, El Conquistador, (Lucidity Suitcase Intercontinental); Eric Scotolati, Great Expectations (Curio Theatre)

Best Actress: Grace Gonglewski, A Moon for the Misbegotten (Arden)
Honorable mention: Mary Tuomanen, Hamlet (Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre), Anna Deavere Smith, Let Me Down Easy (Philadelphia Theatre Company)

Best Supporting Actor: Jerry Rudasil, Titus Andronicus (Plays and Players Theatre)
Honorable mention: Brian McCann, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead (Curio)

Best Supporting Actress: Johanna Carden, Lydia (Amaryllis)
Honorable mention: Ceal Phelan, Vigil (Lantern),

Best Director: Matt Pfeiffer, The Lieutenant of Inishmore (Exile)
Honorable mention: Matt Pfeiffer, A Moon for the Misbegotten (Arden); Allen Radway, The Cryptogram (Simpatico Theatre Project)

Best Original Script: John Rosenberg, California Redemption Value (Hellafresh Theater)
Honorable mention: David Stratten White, Simulations (Plays and Players); Catherine Rush, Main Line (BCKSEET Productions [reading]); David Robson and John Stanton, Playing Leni (Madhouse Theater Company); John Rosenberg, Queen of All Weapons (Hellafresh Theater); Josh McIlvain, Carter’s Play (SmokeyScout Productions [reading])

Best Ensemble: Lieutenant of Inishmore (Exile)
Honorable mention: Dublin by Lamplight (Inis Nua), Lydia (Amaryllis)

Best Set Design: Daniel Krause, Losing the Shore (BCKSEET)
Honorable mention: Kevin Depinet, Superior Donuts (Arden)

Best Lighting Design: Thom Weaver, A Moon for the Misbegotten (Arden)
Honorable mention: Dan Ozminkowski, Let Me Down Easy (PTC)

Best Sound: John Moletrass, The Crucible (Tri-PAC and Village Productions)
Honorable mention: Ryan Rumery, Let Me Down Easy (PTC)

Best Costumes: Alisa Sickora, Carrie (BRAT Productions)
Honorable mention: Richard St. Clair, Wanamaker’s Pursuit (Arden)

It was fun to think back on all the shows, thanks to all the performers and production artists who entertained me over the year. See also: my picks from the 2009-10 season

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About the author

Christopher Munden

Your faithful correspondent and publisher Christopher Munden has written and edited for many publications, websites, and cultural institutions. He was an editor/publisher of the Philly Fiction book series, collections of short stories written by local writers and set in Philadelphia. He's also a soccer coach and a pretty good skier.