Olivier Awards nominations led by ‘Curious Incident’ and ‘Top Hat’

Nominees for the 37th annual Olivier Awards were announced in London Tuesday. These top British theater kudos are named for Laurence Olivier, the celebrated English actor who enjoyed success in Hollywood as well, winning the Best Actor Oscar for “Hamlet” (1948) and contending another nine times. (See full list of nominations here.)

Leading with eight bids including Best Play is “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time,” Simon Stephen‘s adaptation of Mark Haddon‘s bestselling mystery about a boy with Aspergers who sets out to discover who killed his dog. 

The legit version of the 1935 Astaire-Rogers “Top Hat” reaped seven bids, including Best Musical,  while a revival of Stephen Sondheim’s “Sweeney Tood” contends for six awards.

Up for five apiece are the revival of Cole Porter’s “Kiss Me, Kate” and Peter Morgan’s new play “The Audience,” in which Helen Mirren reprises her Oscar-winning role as Elizabeth II from “The Queen.”   Mirren, who lost her three previous Olivier races, is the frontrunner for Best Actress in a Play. 

“The Audience” also vies for Best Play as do Nick Payne‘s multiverse “Constellations” and James Graham‘s political drama “This House.”

“Top Hat” faces off against the adaptation of the 1992 film “The Bodyguard” as well as “Loserville” and “Soul Sister” for Best Muscial.  

“Kiss Me, Kate” and “Sweeney Todd” contend for Best Musical Revival as do “Cabaret” and “A Chorus Line.” 

The kudos will be doled out at the Royal Opera House on April 28 with “Downton Abbey” star Hugh Bonneville co-hosting with two-time Olivier winner Sheridan Smith. Unlike the Tony Awards, which are showcased live on CBS, the Oliviers get a clips package on ITV later that evening with the only live feed on BBC Radio 2.  

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