The ballots have been returned and the winners are set to be revealed. The South Sound Critics 2014/15 theater season awards were released late Friday evening. The awards, six in total, cover the stage works from seven different theater operations on five South Puget Sound (loosely geographically defined) stages.
Tacoma Little Theater received the lion's share of the acting award nominations, having put together perhaps the most outstanding season in total. TLT was followed in the acting award nominee category by Tacoma Musical Playhouse.
"Children's Theater" is a term often used to describe theater somehow sub-par. Those who don't know better assume children's theater is, as the expression goes, "mailed in." Those doubters couldn't be more mistaken when it comes to the stages of the South Sound. TMP Family Theater (through Tacoma Musical Playhouse) and Lakewood Institute of Theater (out of Lakewood Playhouse) received well-deserved nominations in the field of youth-oriented theater.
The newest theater under the South Sound Critics umbrella scored two nominations this year. Bainbridge Performing Arts showed its stuff and turned out to be a competitive theater when awards season came around.
Acting award winners, though wildly varied in style, had one thing in common. Namely, the ability to transcend their own role and make everyone around them better on a given night. The Best Play award winners, both youth-oriented and general audience, gave the theater-goer more than can be expected from community theater. In other words, a transcendent experience of actor/theater-goer synergy of excellence.
South Sound theater is in good hands going forward. Many of the award winners took home the hardware by an exceedingly close margin of votes. The critics are rightfully excited about the season to come. Magic is afoot every time the lights go down.
The 2014/15 winners have set the bar. The 2015/16 season can be expected to do at least as well. And the winners are...