Helpmann Awards

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Helpmann Awards
13th Helpmann Awards
Awarded for "distinguished artistic achievement and excellence in the many disciplines of Australia's vibrant live performance sectors"
Country Australia
Presented by Live Performance Australia (LPA)
First awarded 2001
Official website www.helpmannawards.com.au
Television/Radio coverage
Network Ovation (2004-2005)
Fox8 (2006)
Bio. (2007–2009)
Studio (2010-2012)
Arena (2013-present)

The Helpmann Award is an accolade presented by Live Performance Australia (LPA) (the trade name for the Australian Entertainment Industry Association (AEIA)), an employers' organisation which serves as the peak body in the live entertainment and performing arts industries in Australia. It is named in honour of famed ballet star Sir Robert Helpmann (9 April 1909 - 28 September 1986), an Australian actor, choreographer, dancer and theatre director. Established in 2001, the award is handed out for achievements in the disciplines of musical theatre, contemporary music, comedy, opera, classical music, theatre, dance and physical theatre.[1]

As of 2013, a total of forty-one competitive awards are given to individuals for their work in performance, direction, choreography, lighting, sound, music, costume and scenic design and production. Non-competitive awards are also presented, including: the JC Williamson Award, Brian Stacey Award and Best Special Event.

Winners in each category are announced at the annual ceremony and are presented with a trophy designed by silversmith Hendrik Forster. The show has been broadcast on national television in Australia on various networks, the current one being Arena.

Background[edit]

The awards are named after Sir Robert Helpmann (pictured).

The Helpmann Awards were established in 2001 by the Australian Entertainment Industry Association (AEIA) (currently known by its trade name, Live Performance Australia (LPA)), in honour of Australian actor, choreographer, dancer and theatre director, Sir Robert Helpmann (9 April 1909 - 28 September 1986).[2][3] They are given to productions regardless of the Australian state they were originally staged in. The accolade was created to be the Australian equivalent of the Tony Awards, for Broadway theatre in the United States, and the Laurence Olivier Awards for West End theatre in the United Kingdom.[3] The aim of the awards is to promote Australia's live entertainment industry, both locally and internationally, by: recognising artistic achievements; administering the awards with integrity; ensuring the awards are celebrated by the industry and Australian community; and ensuring the ceremony is the most prestigious awards in the local industry and the highlight of each season.[4]

At the inaugural Helpmann Awards, twenty six accolades were handed out for achievements in performance, direction, choreography, lighting, sound, music, costume and scenic design and production, in the disciplines of musical theatre, contemporary music, comedy, opera, classical music, theatre, dance and physical theatre.[5] Over the years the categories have expanded and now, as of 2013, include forty-one honours.[1] Special non-competitive prizes are also bestowed upon individuals: the JC Williamson Award (named after theatre manager James Cassius Williamson), for ones life's work in Australia's live entertainment industry, is the highest honour presented by Live Performance Australia; and the Brian Stacey Memorial Award (presented by the Brian Stacey Memorial Trust), for emerging Australian conductors, which also includes an $8000 reward.[6][7]

Eligibility and voting[edit]

Live Performance Australia (LPA) appoints members for the Helpmann Awards Administration Committee (HAAC). As well as administering the awards, the committee also has the responsibility of: ensuring the awards are run in accordance with the rules, determining entry eligibility, sponsorship, marketing and appointing the executive producer.[8]

To be eligible for a Helpmann Award nomination, the production must: have its first performance in Australia during the eligibility period; be produced by a Live Performance Australia (LPA) member; or if professionally produced by a non-member, have had the industry service fee transferred directly to an LPA member or LPA member venue; fall within the artistic or industry award categories; in the case of the Best Regional Touring Production Award, must have its first Australian tour during the eligibility period.[9] If, however, the LPA member or non-member cannot meet this criteria, a committee consisting of the LPA president, chief executive and chair of the Helpmann Awards Association Committee have the authority to grant an exemption from the aforementioned rules.[9]

Ten nominating panels determine the nominees for their respective fields.[10] These are: cabaret, children's presentation, comedy, contemporary music, dance and physical theatre, industry awards, musicals, opera and classical music and theatre.[10] The nominating panels comprises artists, creatives, arts administrators, writers, journalists, producers, promoters, venue managers and educators.[10] The HAAC selects the chair of each panel, who in turn choses the members of their respective fields.[10] The nominations are then determined by each of them, who choose four per category.[10] The winners are determined by the voters who are: employees of LPA members, panelists and previous winners and nominees of the Helpmann Awards.[11] The votes are audited by accounting firm BDO.[12]

Award categories[edit]

As of 2013, forty one accolades are presented to individuals at the annual Helpmann Awards ceremony. They are:

Ceremony[edit]

The Helpmann Awards ceremony is usually held between May and September, to celebrate productions staged in Australia during the eligibility period. They are always presented in Sydney, New South Wales, though in 2002 an attempt was made to host it in Melbourne, Victoria, but due to a lack of sponsorship this plan was abandoned.[13] Australian actor Simon Burke has presided over the event seven times, the most of any other person from 2001-2006, and again in 2012. Star City has provided venues for seven ceremonies, at the Lyric Theatre and Star City Show Room, but from 2009 they have stayed at the Sydney Opera House. Through its association with cable television provider Foxtel, the awards have been broadcast on various networks, the current one being Arena.[14]

Simon Burke has hosted the awards seven times, more than any other person.
Date[A] Host Network Venue City State Ref.
25 March 2001 Simon Burke N/A Lyric Theatre Sydney New South Wales [15]
6 May 2002 Star City Show Room [13]
19 May 2003 [16]
9 August 2004 Ovation Lyric Theatre [17]
8 August 2005 [18]
31 July 2006 Fox8 [19]
6 August 2007 Jonathan Biggins Bio. Capitol Theatre [20]
28 July 2008 Jonathan Biggins and Julia Zemiro Lyric Theatre [21]
27 July 2009 Sydney Opera House [22]
6 September 2010 David Campbell Studio [23]
1 August 2011 Jonathan Biggins [24]
24 September 2012 Simon Burke [25]
29 July 2013 Eddie Perfect and Christie Whelan-Browne Arena [26]
18 August 2014 Jonathan Biggins Capitol Theatre [27]

^[A] Each year is linked to the full list of winners and nominees from that year.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Helpmann Awards - About". Helpmann Awards (Live Performance Australia (LPA)). Retrieved 31 December 2012. 
  2. ^ Sexton, Christopher. "Helpmann, Sir Robert Murray (1909–1986)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Australian National University (ANU). Retrieved 29 August 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Introducing... (The Helpmann Awards)". Australian Entertainment Industry Association (AEIA). Pandora Archive. Retrieved 29 August 2013. 
  4. ^ "Helpmann Awards". Live Performance Australia (LPA). Retrieved 29 August 2013. 
  5. ^ "Pandora Archive 2001 Helpmann Awards Winners". Australian Entertainment Industry Association (AEIA). Pandora Archive. Retrieved 29 August 2013. 
  6. ^ "Katharine Brisbane awarded Helpmann's highest honour". ABC Radio National. Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). Retrieved 31 December 2012. 
  7. ^ "Brian Stacey Memorial Trust - The Brian Stacey Award". Brian Stacey Memorial Trust. Retrieved 29 August 2013. 
  8. ^ "Helpmann Awards - Organising Committee". Helpmannawards.com.au (Live Performance Australia (LPA)). Retrieved 2 September 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "Helpmann Awards - Eligibilty". Helpmannawards.com.au (Live Performance Australia (LPA)). Retrieved 2 September 2013. 
  10. ^ a b c d e "Helpmann Awards - Nominating Panels". Helpmannawards.com.au (Live Performance Australia (LPA)). Retrieved 2 September 2013. 
  11. ^ "Helpmann Awards - Voting". Helpmannawards.com.au (Live Performance Australia (LPA)). Retrieved 2 September 2013. 
  12. ^ "Local advertising, sponsorships and events - BDO Australia". BDO Australia Ltd. Retrieved 2 September 2013. 
  13. ^ a b Bryce Hallet (16 April 2002). "Categorically, Bobby needs a makeover". The Age. The Age Company Ltd. (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  14. ^ Staff (7 June 2013). "Date Announced and Foxtel's Arena TV confirmed as broadcast partner". Live Performance Australia. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  15. ^ "APRA Newsletter – March 2001". Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA). Retrieved 15 February 2012. 
  16. ^ "2003 Presentation (The Helpmann Awards)". Australian Entertainment Industry Association (AEIA). Pandora Archive. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  17. ^ "Past productions - Helpmann Awards". New Theatricals. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  18. ^ Roberts, Jo (12 July 2005). "Springtime for Helpmann". The Age (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  19. ^ Staff (31 July 2006). "Night shines a light on lean times". The Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  20. ^ Knox, David (9 July 2007). "Helpmann Awards live on Bio". TV Tonight. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  21. ^ Piening, Simon (2 July 2008). "Nominations for 2008 Helpmann Awards announced". Australian Stage Online. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  22. ^ Knox, David (8 July 2009). "Airdate: 2009 Helpmann Awards". TV Tonight. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  23. ^ Boland, Michaela (7 September 2010). "Upstart iOTA trumps opera at Helpmann Awards". The Australian (News Corp Australia (News Corp)). Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  24. ^ Knox, David (5 July 2011). "Airdate: Helpmann Awards 2011". TV Tonight. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  25. ^ Knox, David (12 September 2012). "STUDIO free for one week for all Foxtel subscribers". TV Tonight. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  26. ^ Epstein, Jackie (13 June 2013). "Helpmann Awards find perfect hosts". PerthNow (The Sunday Times (News Corp Australia)). Retrieved 1 July 2013. 
  27. ^ "Helpmann Awards - Performances and Host announced for 2014 Helpmann Awards". Helpmannawards.com.au (Live Performance Australia (LPA)). 1 July 2014. Retrieved 14 July 2014. 

External links[edit]