Arts & Entertainment
1 min

Queers make a sweep at Dora Awards

Gavin Crawford, Sky Gilbert, Brendan Healy among award-winners

Haley McGee, Gavin Crawford and Gil Garratt in The Situationists. Credit: David Hawe
Queer theatre artists and shows cleaned up at the 32nd annual Dora Mavor Moore Awards, held Monday night at the St Lawrence Centre. The awards honour outstanding work in Toronto theatre.
 
The big winner of the night was Buddies in Bad Times Theatre for its production of Sarah Kane’s Blasted, about violence and sexual depravity in war. The show took home five trophies in the general theatre division, including outstanding production, sound design, set design and lighting design, and Brendan Healy took the award for outstanding direction.
 
It was a great cap to the first season Healy has programmed as Buddies’ artistic director. Blasted opened the season to great acclaim in September and was extended because of popular demand.
 
The other big queer win was Sky Gilbert’s The Situationists, about a trio of political agitators who seek social reform through art and sex. The play received two trophies in the independent theatre category. Gilbert received the award for outstanding new play, and Gavin Crawford took the award for outstanding performance by a male in a principal role. Andy Moro was also nominated for set design.
 
In the musical theatre division, Canadian singer-songwriter Rufus Wainright’s debut opera Prima Donna took home the Dora for Outstanding New Musical/Opera. Tony Sheldon won for best performance by a male in a principal role, for playing Bernadette in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Sheldon spoke to Xtra in October about what the play means to him as a gay man. Priscilla also won for costume design.
 
Billy Elliot, the musical adaptation of the film about a fey young boy in a rough-and-tumble English mining town, also won a pair of statues in the musical theatre category. Kate Hennig won for outstanding performance by a female in a principal role and Peter Darling took the award for choreography. David Furnish talked to Xtra about Billy Elliot in January.