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CRT wins two
Connecticut Critics Circle awards
June 22, 1998
Connecticut Repertory Theatre, the professional performance arm of the Department of Dramatic Arts, has received two 1998 Connecticut Critics Circle Awards, presented at a ceremony in Stratford on June 15.
CRT's 1997 Nutmeg Summer Series production of Man of La Mancha, directed by CRT artistic director Gary M. English, was named the season's Outstanding Production of a Musical.
And Tony Andrea, a 1998 graduate of the University of Connecticut's MFA program in design, received the Outstanding Set Design Award for his work on The Miser.
The Critics' Circle presented 14 awards to eight theatres, deeming CRT the state's third-most lauded theatre this season, following Long Wharf Theater (four awards) and Goodspeed Opera House (three awards). The award winners were selected from among 64 eligible productions at the state's 13 professional theaters.
CRT operates under a year-round professional contract with Actors' Equity Association, employing guest directors, choreographers and designers from across the country, alongside the faculty, staff and advanced students from the Department of Dramatic Arts.
CRT was founded in 1993 as an extension and outgrowth of the (formerly named) Nutmeg Theatre. In accepting the award, English said, "It has been quite a journey these last five years, bringing Connecticut Repertory Theatre to the point where our work is being honored along with the great theatres in Connecticut that make this state arguably one of the richest, most varied and extraordinary theatre regions in North America."
Andrea thanked The Miser director (and faculty member) Robert McDonald "for his relentless enthusiasm and positive energy." Andrea's previous credits included two CRT Studio Works productions; The Miser marked his first professional mainstage design assignment.
CRT received a total of four Connecticut Critics Circle Award nominations this year, including Outstanding Production of a Play for Eric Hill's imaginative reworking of King Lear, and Outstanding Director of a Musical for English for Man of La Mancha.
"The reocgnition for CRT is remarkable," said Robert Wildman, managing director of CRT, "In light of the fact that the Critics Circle first deemed CRT eligible for these awards only a year ago."
The 18 members of the Connecticut Critics Circle represent more than 30 newspapers, magazines, radio stations and other media outlets throughout the state.