This year’s Awards night promises to be one of the most glamorous in years, with a host of well known stage and music stars coming together at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane in London to celebrate the best of the West End.

HOST

This year’s awards will be hosted by Michael Ball and Imelda Staunton. Past hosts of the awards include Kevin Spacey, Clive Anderson, Angela Lansbury, Barry Norman, Anthony Hopkins, Sue Lawley, Diana Rigg, Edward Fox, Jane Asher and Angela Rippon.

PRESENTERS

Confirmed presenters for this year’s awards include:

  • Lost star Matthew Fox, star of In A Forest, Dark and Deep at the Vaudeville Theatre
  • Olivia Williams, Matthew’s co-star in In A Forest, Dark and Deep
  • Alfie Boe, opera and musicals leading man, who will play Jean Valjean in the West End production of Les Miserables this summer
  • Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller, current stars on Frankenstein
  • Anne-Marie Duff, star of the Old Vic’s Cause Celebre
  • Elisabeth Moss (Peggy from Mad Men), currently appearing in The Children’s Hour at the Comedy Theatre
  • Actor Rupert Everett
  • The League of Gentlemen and the National’s Season’s Greetings star Mark Gatiss
  • Amanda Holden from Shrek The Musical
  • Elaine Paige
  • Tamara Rojo, Royal Ballet star
  • Star of The Wizard of Oz, Danielle Hope
  • Wicked’s Rachel Tucker
  • Actor Patrick Stewart
  • More presenters to be announced shortly

MUSICAL NUMBERS

Barry Manilow will perform a number alongside West End star Kerry Ellis (Wicked, Oliver!). More musical numbers to be announced.

TIMELINE

7 February 2011: Olivier Award nominees announced
In a launch event at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, the 2011 nominees were announced. See the full list here.

22 February 2011: Nominees’ Lunch at the Haymarket Hotel
The Nominees’ Lunch to celebrate all performers and practitioners who have received nominations for the awards.

27 February 2011: BBC Radio 2 Audience Award shortlist announced:
The shortlist for the BBC Radio 2 Audience Award is announced on Elaine Paige’s Sunday morning Radio 2 show. This shortlist is based on the first round of public voting (vote for your favourite show here). Then a second round of public voting will take place, before the winner is announced on 13 March.

Late February: Public tickets to the Olivier Awards go one sale
For the first time in the Olivier Award’s history, theatregoers will be able to attend the Olivier Awards ceremony at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane on 13 March. Details of how to get tickets will be announced by The Society of London Theatre in late February.

Early March: Olivier Award Special Award winner announced
Each year the Society of London Theatre presents a Special Award to a theatre practitioner who has made an invaluable contribution to the stage arts in London. Previous winners include Laurence Olivier, Ralph Richardson, John Gielgud, Alec Guinness, Peggy Ashcroft, Harold Pinter, Peter Hall, Judi Dench, Alan Bennett, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Alan Ayckbourn. Last year Dame Maggie Smith was honoured with the award.

13 March 2011: The Awards ceremony at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane

WATCH & LISTEN

This year’s awards will be broadcast via the BBC’s red button service (digital, cable or satellite viewers only), and also Paul Gambaccini will host Radio 2’s live coverage of the night, along with Jodie Prenger who will cover the Red Carpet arrivals. Plus BBC News will have special live coverage of the red carpet arrivals, and a post-awards reaction programme presented by Jane Hill and BBC Arts Editor Will Gompertz. Also highlights of the awards will be available on BBC iplayer the following week.