Helpmann Awards 2015: Les Miserables, Paul Kelly and Kip Williams win top prizes

Simon Gleeson at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Long time musical theatre favourite Les Miserables took home Best Musical last night at the annual Helpmann Awards at Sydney’s Capitol Theatre.

Kerrie Anne Greenland at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Celebrating the best in Australian stage, musicals, dance, cabaret, comedy, opera and concerts, Les Miserables, which is currently showing in Sydney, won the prestigious top award, as well as Best Actor in a Musical for Simon Gleeson for his turn as Jean Valjean, and Best Supporting Actress in a Musical for Kerrie Anne Greenland who made her professional stage debut as Eponine.

Margaret Pomeranz and Graeme Blundell at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Australian music star Paul Kelly was the recipient of the JC Williamson Award, honouring his contribution to the Australian music industry for the past 35 years. Singer Clare Bowditch and the Paul Kelly Band performed to the crowd with Kelly’s famous “Deeper Water” to a standing ovation.

Andrew Upton at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Young director Kip Williams surprised audience members by winning Best Director of a Play for Sydney Theatre Company’s Suddenly Last Summer. Williams, 29, beat out his own mentor Andrew Upton, as well as Clare Watson and Sarah Goodes to claim the prize.

Pamela Rabe at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Veteran stage performer Caroline O’Connor won Best Actress in a Musical for her turn in Anything Goes, whilst TV’s Wentworth star Pamela Rabe won Best Actress in a Play for her performance in the Glass Menagerie, which won Best Play. Hugo Weaving also took out the gong for Best Actor in a Play, but wasn’t available to accept the award on stage.

Kate Miller-Heidke at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Brisbane production of Faramondo picked up five awards despite it’s short four-performance run. Pop singer/songwriter Kate Miller-Heidke’s first ever opera, The Rabbits, written with composer Iain Grandage and librettist LallyKatz, won four awards, including Best New Australian Work.

Todd McKenny at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

This year’s host Todd McKenny put on an incredible performance of “I Am What I Am”, his nominated role in La Cage Aux Follies. Performances from Once, Sweeney Todd and Les Miserables completed the musical numbers during the broadcast. Presenters included Cate Blanchett, Danielle Cormack, Peter Garrett and Adam Garcia, among other stage veterans and newbies.

Cate Blanchett at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Danielle Cormack at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Adam Garcia at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Consentino at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Nazeem Hussain and Matt Okine at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Marta Dusseldorp at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Richard Wilkins at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

David Campbell at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Simon Burke at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

Eden Caceda at the 2015 Helpmann Awards, Capitol Theatre, Sydney - Photographed by Whitney Duan

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