Dora Mavor Moore Awards get Blasted
The Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA) present the Doras as a celebration of the wealth of talent on Toronto stages. The awards are named in honour of Dora Mavor Moore, a Toronto Theatre legend who founded the New Play Society at the University of Toronto. Her efforts helped launch the careers of Lorne Green, Don Harron, and John Drainie.
Blasted took home the five awards in the general theatre category: Outstanding Production, Outstanding Direction of a Play/Musical (Brendan Healy), Outstanding Sound Design/Composition (Richard Feren), Outstanding Lighting Design (Kimberly Purtell), and Outstanding Set Design (Julie Fox).
Also in the general theatre division, Anusree Roy's Brothel #9 was awarded the Dora for Best New Play. Joseph Ziegler (Death of a Salesman, Soulpepper) and Yanna McIntosh (Ruined, Obsidian Theatre) received Doras for Outstanding Performance.
Canadian singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright received the Dora for Outstanding New Musical/Opera for his show Prima Donna. Billy Elliot, the musical about the little dancer that could from the coal mine town of Everington, received two awards for Outstanding Choreography (Peter Darling) and Outstanding Performance by a Female (Kate Hennig). A Year With Frog and Toad, from the Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People, won for Outstanding Production in the Musical Theatre division.
In the independent theatre division, Buddies In Bad Times took home Doras for Outstanding New Play or New Musical (Sky Gilbert, The Situationists) and Outstanding Performance by a Male in a Principal Role (Gavin Crawford, The Situationists). Cahoots Theatre's paperSERIES received two Doras for Outstanding Direction (Nina Lee Aquino) and Outstanding Sound Design/Composition (Richard Lee), and Sandy Duarte won Outstanding Performance by a Female in a Principal Role for Blood. The Company Theatre's Through the Leaves was awarded Outstanding Production.
Also honoured was Out of Context - for Pina as Outstanding Production in the Dance division and in Opera, the COC's Orfeo ed Euridice was named Outstanding Production. The Railway Children received the NOW Magazine and Yonge-Dundas Square Audience Choice Award.
This year, the Dora Awards honoured Projection, Set, and Sound Designer Ben Chaisson with the Pauline McGibbon Award and playwright Michael Hollingsworth with the Silver Ticket Award.
The highlight of the night was a guest appearance from Canadian legend Gordon Pinsent who gave dramatic readings from some of the city's theatre critics. It's rare for the Toronto theatre community to pat itself on the back, but the Dora Awards are a fitting celebration of the rich array of performance on offer in the City of Toronto.
For a complete list of winners, visit the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts.
Lead photo of Blasted by Omer Yukseker / second photo of Sky Gilbert from the The Situationists by Tanja-Tiziana