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Craig Noel Awards Honor San Diego Theater

A 2017 photo from Moonlight Amphitheatre's production of

Photo by John Howard

Above: A 2017 photo from Moonlight Amphitheatre's production of "In the Heights."

Craig Noel Awards Honor San Diego Theater

GUEST:

Nina Garin, arts editor/producer, KPBS News

Transcript

On Monday night, the Craig Noel Awards honored the best plays and musicals performed on San Diego stages. Selected by the San Diego Theatre Critics, the ceremony celebrated productions from the 2017 season.

Top honors went to Moonlight Stage Productions’ "In the Heights," the musical by Lin Manuel Miranda about the lives of Latin characters in New York’s Washington Heights. The San Diego production won four awards, including Outstanding Resident Musical.

On the dramatic side, the awards were split for two plays that tackle racism and civil rights. Ion Theatre’s "The Battle of Emmett Till," about a crime that sparked the civil rights movement won best play, best direction and best ensemble. Intrepid Theatre’s Civil War epic "Father Comes Home from the Wars, Parts 1, 2 & 3" also took home an award for best direction, plus outstanding featured performance by Tom Stephenson.

The San Diego Theatre Critics singled out special awards during the two-hour ceremony. Actor of the Year went to Cortez L. Johnson ("Ballad of Emmett Till," "Blue Door") and Jennifer Paredes ("Twelfth Night," "Ballast"). Chula Vista's volunteer-run OnStage Playhouse won for Outstanding Work by a Small Theatre Company.

Bodhi Tree Concert's "8 Songs For a Mad King," won Outstanding Special Event and Scotty Atienza won Outstanding Young Artist for his work in Ion Theatre's "Cabaret."

Here's a look at the complete list of winners:

Outstanding New Musical

"Tarrytown," Backyard Renaissance Theatre Company

Outstanding Musical Direction

Elan McMahan for "In the Heights," Moonlight Stage Productions

Photo by Daren Scott

A 2017 photo of Cygnet Theatre's "Shockheaded Peter."

Outstanding Costume Design

Shirley Pierson for "Shockheaded Peter," Cygnet Theatre

Outstanding Sound Design

Joanna Lynne Staub for "Wild Goose Dreams," La Jolla Playhouse

Outstanding Featured Performance in a Musical, Male

Randall Hickman for "The Little Mermaid," Moonlight Stage Productions

Outstanding Featured Performance in a Musical, Female

Cashae Monya for "Cabaret," ion theatre

Outstanding New Play

"Ballast," by Georgette Kelly, Diversionary Theatre

Photo credit: Matthew Murphy

A 2017 photo from the touring production of "An American in Paris."

Outstanding Touring Production

"An American in Paris," Broadway San Diego

Outstanding Lighting Design

Conor Mulligan for "The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds," Cygnet Theatre

Outstanding Featured Performance in a Play, Female

Annie Hinton for "Well," Diversionary Theatre

Outstanding Featured Performance in a Play, Male

Tom Stephenson for "Father Comes Home from the Wars, Parts 1, 2 & 3," Intrepid Theatre Company

Outstanding Choreography

Carlos Mendoza for "In the Heights," Moonlight State Productions

Outstanding Ensemble

"The Ballad of Emmett Till," ion theatre

Outstanding Scenic Design

Sean Fanning for "On the 20th Century," Cygnet Theatre

Outstanding Lead Performance in a Play, Male

Caleb Foote for "Hand to God," San Diego Repertory Theatre

Outstanding Lead Performance in a Play, Female

DeAnna Driscoll for "The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds," Cygnet Theatre

Outstanding Projection Design

Michael McKeaon for "Silent Sky," Lamb's Players Theatre

Outstanding Direction of a Play

TIE

Yolanda Marie Franklin and Claudio Raygoza for "The Ballad of Emmett Till," ion theatre

and

Christy Yael-Cox for "Father Comes Home from the Wars, Parts 1, 2 and 3," Intrepid Theatre

Photo credit: Courtesy of San Diego Rep

A 2017 photo of San Diego Repertory Theatre's "Black Pearl Sings!"

Outstanding Lead Performance in a Musical, Female

Minka Wiltz for "Black Pearl Sings!" San Diego Repertory Theatre

Outstanding Lead Performance in a Musical, Male

Richard Bermudez, "Kiss of the Spider Woman," Welk Resort Theatre

Outstanding Direction of a Musical

James Vasquez for "In the Heights," Moonlight Stage Productions

Outstanding Solo Performance

TIE

James Lecesne for "The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey," The Old Globe

and

Shana Wride for "2.5 Mile Ride," Diversionary Theatre

Outstanding Resident Musical

"In the Heights," Moonlight Stage Productions

Photo by Daren Scott

A 2017 photo from Intrepid Theatre's "The Battle of Emmett Till."

Outstanding Dramatic Production

"The Ballad of Emmett Till," ion theatre

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