Olivier Awards: 'Harry Potter and the Cursed Child' Breaks Record With 11 Nominations

Manuel Harlan
'Harry Potter and the Cursed Child'

The acclaimed spinoff of J.K. Rowling's book series scored the most nominations for the U.K.'s top stage awards.

This year's Olivier Awards look set to be a very Harry Potter-dominated affair. 

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the acclaimed spinoff of J.K. Rowling's book series that opened in London's West End in July last year, has come away with a record 11 nominations for the U.K.'s biggest stage awards, making it the most-nominated play in the event's history. Among its nominations are those for best new play, best actor for Jamie Parker, best supporting actress for Noma Dumezweni, best supporting actor for Anthony Boyle, best director for John Tiffany (also nominated for his well-represented production of The Glass Menagerie) and outstanding achievement in music for composer Imogen Heap.

Elsewhere, the musical adaptation of Groundhog Day, which launches on Broadway later this month, picked up eight nominations, including one for lead actor Andy Karl, who will reprise his role in New York. Andrew Lloyd Webber's Jesus Christ Superstar received six nominations, including best musical revival; and Dreamgirls landed five. While the latter show premiered on Broadway in 1981, it had never before been staged in London, making it eligible in the Oliviers alongside new musicals.

After a 25-year absence from the stage, Glenda Jackson earned her first nominations since 1984 as King Lear in the play of the same nameIan McKellen picked up his 10th nomination for best actor for No Man's Land, reprising a role he previously played on Broadway. Other notable names in the acting categories include Glenn Close, Ed Harris, Cherry Jones, Ruth Wilson, Rafe Spall, Tom Hollander, and Glee discovery Amber Riley for her powerhouse turn in Dreamgirls.

"In a year of global change, the nominees for this year's awards demonstrate London theater's ability to challenge our perceptions, stir our emotions, and entertain us," said Julian Bird, chief executive of the Society of London Theater, which produces the Olivier Awards.

The awards ceremony will take place at the Royal Albert Hall on Sunday, April 9.

Here are the top categories: 

Best new play

Elegy at Donmar Warehouse
The Flick at National Theatre
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace Theatre

One Night in Miami at Donmar Warehouse

Best actress

Glenda Jackson for King Lear at the Old Vic
Cherry Jones for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York’s Theatre
Billie Piper for Yerma at Young Vic
Ruth Wilson for Hedda Gabler at National Theatre

Best actor

Ed Harris for Buried Child at Trafalgar Studios 1
Tom Hollander for Travesties at Apollo Theatre
Ian McKellen for No Man’s Land at Wyndham’s Theatre
Jamie Parker for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace Theatre

Best actress in a supporting role

Melissa Allan, Caroline Deyga, Kirsty Findlay, Karen Fishwick, Kirsty MacLaren, Frances Mayli McCann, Joanne McGuinness and Dawn Sievewright for Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour at National Theatre
Noma Dumezweni for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace Theatre
Clare Foster for Travesties at Apollo Theatre
Kate O’Flynn for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York’s Theatre

Best actor in a supporting role

Anthony Boyle for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace Theatre
Freddie Fox for Travesties at Apollo Theatre
Brian J Smith for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York’s Theatre
Rafe Spall for Hedda Gabler at National Theatre – Lyttelton

Best new comedy

The Comedy About a Bank Robbery at Criterion Theatre
Nice Fish at Harold Pinter Theatre
Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour at National Theatre

The Truth at Wyndham’s Theatre

Best revival

The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York’s Theatre
This House at Garrick Theatre
Travesties at Apollo Theatre

Yerma at Young Vic

Best new musical

Dreamgirls at Savoy Theatre
The Girls at Phoenix Theatre
Groundhog Day at The Old Vic
School of Rock: The Musical at New London Theatre

Best actress in a musical

Glenn Close for Sunset Boulevard at London Coliseum
Debbie Chazen, Sophie-Louise Dann, Michele Dotrice, Claire Machin, Claire Moore and Joanna Riding – for The Girls at Phoenix Theatre
Amber Riley for Dreamgirls at Savoy Theatre

Sheridan Smith for Funny Girl at Savoy Theatre

Best actor in a musical

David Fynn for School of Rock the Musical at New London Theatre
Tyrone Huntley for Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre
Andy Karl for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic
Charlie Stemp for Half a Sixpence at Noel Coward Theatre

Best actress in a supporting role in a musical

Haydn Gwynne for The Threepenny Opera at National Theatre
Victoria Hamilton-Barritt for Murder Ballad at Arts Theatre
Rebecca Trehearn for Show Boat at New London Theatre
Emma Williams for Half a Sixpence at Noel Coward Theatre

Best actor in a supporting role in a musical

Ian Bartholomew for Half a Sixpence at Noel Coward Theatre
Adam J Bernard for Dreamgirls at Savoy Theatre
Ben Hunter for The Girls at Phoenix Theatre
Andrew Langtree for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic

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