The long-running performing arts industry awards recognise the best local productions, from musicals to opera, dance and theatre. The 37th annual awards ceremony was held online this year, with the winners announced on YouTube.
Kate Miller-Heidke and Keir Nuttall took home the award for Best Original Australian Writing (music and lyrics) for their hit musical adaptation of Muriel’s Wedding.
“Keir and I busted our guts writing these songs for more than two years, and we are so proud of how the show has turned out,” Kate said.
The real-life couple studied at the Queensland Conservatorium together, previously collaborated on an opera and co-wrote last year’s hit Eurovision anthem Zero Gravity.
A star on the rise
Musical theatre graduate Georgina Hopson won Best Lead Role for the show Ragtime, sharing the award with Australian musical theatre icon Anthony Warlow.
“I am so incredibly humbled by this recognition,” she said.
“My time at the Con felt like an amazing introduction to the industry, but I don’t believe that you ever stop learning.”
Georgina said her voice teacher at the Queensland Conservatorium had helped her craft the winning performance.
“John Peek is my voice guru and my mentor – I called him a week before rehearsals for Ragtime with severe laryngitis, and he coached me through it.”
Since graduating from the Bachelor of Musical Theatre in 2014, Georgie has become one of the breakout stars of the Australian musical theatre scene.
She was handpicked by Dame Julie Andrews to understudy the lead role in Opera Australia’s My Fair Lady, received a Matilda Theatre Award for Best Emerging Artist and won the prestigious Rob Guest Endowment. Georgina will take a lead role in Opera Australia’s production of The Secret Garden later this year.
A remarkable achievement
Acting Queensland Conservatorium Director Professor Gemma Carey said the results were a “remarkable achievement”.
“It was fantastic to see so many of our alumni nominated at this year’s awards, across opera, musicals and independent theatre productions,” she said.
“The success of our alumni reflects the calibre of teaching and learning happening at the Conservatorium — our students are given a world-class education and are prepared to make their mark in the industry when they graduate.”