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Sondheim and Stiles and Drew Awards

Imelda Staunton as Vera Drake

Theatre news

THE STEPHEN Sondheim Society Student Performer of the Year Competition and The Stiles and Drewe Best New Song Prize will take place at the Garrick Theatre on Sunday, May 19, 2013.

The Stephen Sondheim Society Student Performer of the Year Competition (SSSSPOTY), now in its seventh year, was created to give musical theatre students a platform to showcase their work before graduation.

Students from the UK’s leading drama schools compete for the prize, with a value of £1,000. The students sing a song by Sondheim and a new song written by members of Mercury Musical Developments, an organisation dedicated to the craft of writing book, music and lyrics for musical theatre.

Stephen Sondheim, who is a patron of both The Stephen Sondheim Society and MMD, was keen to incorporate a prize for new writing in musical theatre within the event and with support from UK writers George Stiles and Anthony Drewe there will be a presentation of the sixth Stiles and Drewe Best Song Prize, which also has a prize value of £1,000 for the best new song of the evening.

Following heats held a few weeks before the competition, the twelve finalists will be judged by Michael Grandage, Imelda Staunton, Musical Director Mike Haslam, Matthew Scott (Head Of Music at The National), and Bert Fink (Rodgers and Hammerstein Theatricals Europe).

The chairman of the judges will be journalist Edward Seckerson, and the prize will be presented by Julia McKenzie and a representative from Overtures: The Bunnett-Muir Musical Theatre Archive Trust.

The event is being hosted by Jenna Russell, who will also be performing during the afternoon, with musical direction by Mark Etherington.

The Best New Song Prize will be judged by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe (Honk, Mary Poppins, Betty Blue Eyes Peter Pan, Soho Cinders), Adam Cork (London Road) and Reece Shearsmith (Betty Blue Eyes, The Producers).

Tickets: £13 – £26 – available from the box office on 0844 482 9673.

Time: 3pm.

The Garrick Theatre is currently home to Rock of Ages.