Sweeney Todd was the clear champ at the more prestigious than they sound Whatonstage.com Awards in London at the weekend, with the much-loved play taking five wins, including best musical revival, best actor (for Michael Ball), best actress (Imelda Staunton), best director and best lighting.
The awards are voted for by theatre goers, so although the more traditional ceremony critics might sniff their nose at them, they often mean a good deal more to the recipients, given that it’s the public vote that’s meant they’ve achieved the win. For instance take Stephen Fry, who won a best supporting actor award for his performance as Malvolio in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. “ I am simply astonished” he said, according to Sky. “Seventeen years ago, I left this country in disgrace having run out of a play and I thought I might never return to the stage again. But thanks to the Globe ... I have been back on stage in a wonderful play and had the privilege of playing with one of the best casts that has ever been assembled."
Fry’s comments came in relation to a bad review he got for a performance in the play Cell Mates, something that caused the star – who suffers from manic depression - to skip the country. Elsewhere, Will Young won a newcomer of the year award for his West End debut in Cabaret.