The Lyceum is thrilled to have been awarded Best Ensemble and Best Production, both for Waiting for Godot, at the fourteenth annual Critics’ Awards for Theatre in Scotland (CATS), on Sunday.
The awards underline the superb work of Mark Thomson, director on both The Iliad, which was nominated for one award (Best Female Performance; Emmanuella Cole) and Waiting for Godot, which was nominated for four (further including Best Design for Michael Taylor and Mark Doubleday, and Best Director for Mark Thomson). Having recently stepped down as Artistic Director after 13 years at the helm, Mark’s tenure ended with an extraordinary 50th anniversary season which welcomed audiences of over 105,000 across the year, with Waiting for Godot alone welcoming over 14,000, at least 2500 of whom had never before visited The Lyceum.
Speaking of the awards won, Mark Thomson said: “I am delighted that the 50th anniversary season of the Royal Lyceum Theatre Company has been celebrated by the CATS panel. It’s been an exciting and rewarding year for us, and recognition of the quality of our work is affirming for the company. I'm particularly happy that our production of Waiting for Godot has won the accolades of Best Ensemble and Best Production, firmly acknowledging the spectacular work of the cast – four actors that have meant so much to the history of The Lyceum -, the creative team, and everyone involved with the production. We are all very proud.”
Waiting for Godot (18 September – 10 October 2015), which launched the record-breaking season, starred celebrated stage and screen actors Brian Cox, Bill Paterson, John Bett, and Benny Young, and two members of the Lyceum Youth Theatre Zak McCullough and Jack Dickson, and was described by Guardian critic and CATS panellist Mark Fisher as ‘electrifying’ and ‘a full-blooded ensemble performance’.
A surrealist story by Samuel Beckett, the play follows two old friends, Vladimir (Brian Cox) and Estragon (Bill Paterson), as they wait in vain for the arrival of the unspecified Godot. The production marked the first time the venerable Scottish actors had ever been on stage together; an experience Bill Paterson described as an “absolute joy”.
Bill further stated that it was one of his most enjoyable roles since performing in the original production of The Cheviot, The Stag and the Black, Black Oil, a production which will be reprised for The Lyceum’s first season under David Greig, later this year.
David, whose acclaimed play Lanark: A Life in Three Acts received three CATS awards, begins his inaugural season, which includes eleven main house productions, with Wind Resistance (4 – 21 August 2016) by folk musician Karine Polwart; a Lyceum production in association with Edinburgh International Festival. CATS Award winners Zinnie Harris (Best New Play for This Restless House) and Dominic Hill (Best Director for This Restless House) will also be featured in David Greig’s 1617 Season as directors of A Number and Hay Fever respectively. The whole season is now available to book by contacting Box Office on 0131 248 4848 or by visiting www.lyceum.org.uk.
Download the full Press Release here.