PlayShakespeare.com is pleased to announce the nominees and winners for the annual Falstaff Awards for 2013. With PlayShakespeare.com's international reach, reviewers worldwide have come together to honor the best in Shakespeare for the year of 2013. The Falstaff Awards recognize extraordinary achievement in the areas of Best Play, Best Director, Best Performance by a Male or Female Actor, among other performance and technical categories.
Garnering the most awards with 3 wins and 6 nominations this year was Kenneth Branagh’s Macbeth at the Manchester International Festival (and being shown in theatres around the U.S. as part of the National Theatre Live series). Branagh’s collaboration with Rob Ashford brought a solid concept with excellent performances by the entire cast and especially Alex Kingston as Lady Macbeth. Best Sound Design (Patrick Doyle) and Best Lighting Design (Neil Austin) were also nominated.
This year's winners also include Bill Rauch for his acclaimed staging of King Lear at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Armando Durán won for Best Supporting Performance, Male in the same performance as the Earl of Kent. The American Shakespeare Center also received 5 nominations for several of its productions and Allison Glenzer won Best Supporting Performance, Female for her portrayal of Speed in The Two Gentlemen of Verona.
The award for Best Script Adaptation/Dramaturgy goes to Joss Whedon for his film adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing. Whedon, creator of hit series such as Buffy, the Vampire Slayer and Firefly, took the directorial helm with a stylish flair and shot the entire movie over twelve days at his house in Santa Monica, CA. He gave Beatrice and Benedick a backstory and took great liberties with the interpretation, which made the play fresh for young audiences.
The Falstaff Awards honor the release of William Shakespeare and Others: Collaborative Plays by Jonathan Bate and Eric Rasmussen as the Best Book, Publication, or Recording of 2013. This book pulls together ten apocrypha rarely seen in a single tome. Bate and Rasmussen won the same award in 2007 for their previous collaboration RSC Complete Works for the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Of note is the Lear Award for Lifetime Achievement was awarded to Judi Dench in recognition of her lifelong contribution to Shakespeare performance. Dench, now 79, reprised her role in the the James Bond film Skyfall, and just received her seventh Academy Award nomination for her work in the title role of Philomena (she won an Oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her performance as Queen Elizabeth in Shakespeare in Love back in 1998).
"Global Shakespeare productions continued to demonstrate the Bard still appeals to us today," said Christopher Adams, Editor-in-Chief of PlayShakespeare.com. "Directors and theatre companies are still finding new, fresh approaches to Shakespeare. Strong productions from regional theatres and new companies also showed that Shakespeare isn't only for big-named institutions."
The complete list of nominees and winners can be found at: