‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’ dominated the 2017 Olivier Awards, with wins in nine categories.
The two-part play – a follow-up to J.K. Rowling’s ‘Harry Potter’ series of books – won in nine of the 11 categories it was nominated in at the ceremony at London’s Royal Albert Hall.
‘Cursed Child’ won Best New Play, Best Actor (Jamie Parker), Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Anthony Boyle), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Noma Dumezweni) and Best Director (John Tiffany).
It also won in the Best Lighting Design, Best Costume Design, Best Sound Design and Best Set Design categories.
Kenneth Branagh won the Special Award, for his outstanding contribution to British theatre and gave an inspiring speech in which he encouraged people to “keep dreaming”.
He said: “People sometimes ask me how I do it, and here’s the answer – we do it. I was inspired to dream and my advice to everyone is: dream big. There are no mistakes only lessons.
“We can help to change the world just a little bit. I’ve seen the evidence. Shakespeare was right: we are such stuff that dreams are made of. Keep making stuff keep dreaming.”
Dame Judi Dench praised Kenneth saying: “I am so glad you are getting this award. And please employ me again”, while Mark Rylance introduced the actor and director with the words: “He makes it seem as easy. I know he has grave doubts, full of fears like any of us, and yet he turns up.”
Other winners included Billie Piper for Best Actress for her role in ‘Yerma’, which also won Best Revival.
‘Groundhog Day’ won Best New Musical and Best Actor in a Musical for Andy Karl while Glee’ actress Amber Riley won Best Actress in a Musical for ‘Dreamgirls’.
Presenters at the ceremony included Lin-Manuel Miranda, John Boyega, Nathan Lane, Denise Gough, Andrew Garfield and Maureen Lipman.
Olivier Awards Winners 2017
Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical: Adam J Bernard ‘Dreamgirls’
Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical: Rebecca Trehearn for ‘Show Boat’
Outstanding Achievement in Music: ‘School Of Rock The Musical’
Best New Dance Production: ‘Betroffenheit’ by Crystal Pite and Jonathon Young
Outstanding Achievement in Dance: English National Ballet
Best Entertainment and Family: ‘The Red Shoes’
Best Theatre Choreographer: Matthew Bourne for ‘The Red Shoes’
Magic Radio Best Musical Revival: ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’
Best Actor in a Musical: Andy Karl ‘Groundhog Day’
Best Actress in a Musical: Amber Riley for ‘Dreamgirls’
Best Revival: ‘Yerma’
Best New Comedy: ‘Our Ladies Of Perpetual Succour’
Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre: ‘Rotterdam’
White Light Award for Best Lighting Design: Neil Austin ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Best Sound Design: Gareth Fry ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Best Costume Design: Katrina Lindsay ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Blue-i Theatre Technology Award for Best Set Design: Christine Jones ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Anthony Boyle ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Noma Dumezweni ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Best New Opera Production: ‘Akhnaten’
Outstanding Achievement in Opera: Mark Wigglesworth for his conducting of ‘Don Giovanni and Lulu’
Best Actor: Jamie Parker ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Best Actress: Billie Piper ‘Yerma’
Best Director: John Tiffany ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Virgin Atlantic Best New Play: ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child’
Mastercard Best New Musical: ‘Groundhog Day’
Special Award: Kenneth Branagh