Comedian and actor Jason Manford will reveal the 2020 Olivier Award winners in a pre-recorded ceremony to be broadcast on ITV in October.
The Society of London Theatre (SOLT) – the awarding body – have said the new format will be “innovative” and would celebrate the UK’s “globally renowned artists, both on stage and behind the scenes”.
Filmed at the London Palladium, the ceremony will contain a mixture of the awards themselves, performances, interviews and “some very special moments”, according to SOLT.
The 2020 Olivier Awards were due to take place at the Royal Albert Hall on 5 April 2020, but like most events were postponed due to covid.
The main show will be broadcast on ITV on 25 October 2020, with additional awards being shown in a pre-show broadcast the same evening on Official London Theatre’s YouTube channel. Winners and key moments will also be broadcast on Magic Radio from 8pm until 10pm on October 26.
SOLT chief executive and executive producer of the awards Julian Bird said: “We are excited to be able to honour this year’s nominees and winners during a very difficult time for our industry, and demonstrate the outstanding talent we have in our theatre sector in the UK.”
He added: “Coming together to celebrate their achievements feels more poignant now than ever before as we all fight collectively to save our theatre industry. I hope that everyone working in, or simply missing the theatre, will join us on October 25 to celebrate last year’s achievements and remain hopeful for our future.”
SOLT said that due to the “minimal amount of new productions that have been able to open this year”, it anticipated the next Olivier Awards ceremony taking place in April 2022. It will announce plans to celebrate the theatre industry in 2021 at a later date.
In an exceptional year for UK theatre, nominees for Best Actor in a Play include Toby Jones (Uncle Vanya), James McAvoy (Cyrano De Bergerac), Wendell Pierce (Death Of A Salesman) and Andrew Scott (Present Laughter) with Hayley Atwell (Rosmersholm), Sharon D. Clarke (Death Of A Salesman), Juliet Stevenson (The Doctor ) and Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag) receiving nods for best actress.
& Juliet received nine nominations including Best New Musical, Best Actress for Miriam-Teek Lee, Best Supporting actor for David Bedella, and noms for score, choreography, lighting set & costume.
Dear Evan Hansen picked up six nominations including best actor for Sam Tutty and Best New Musical.
Best director nominations went to Marianne Elliott and Miranda Cromwell (Death Of A Salesman), Jamie Lloyd (Cyrano De Bergerac), Trevor Nunn (Fiddler On The Roof) and Ian Rickson (Uncle Vanya)