We attended the 2016 West End Wilma Awards at Leicester Square’s Hippodrome Casino – an afternoon of music, merriment, and mirth.
Presided over by glamorous host Tim McArthur – heroically ploughing on despite being brutally mugged mere days before – this is pretty much the perfect awards ceremony: short, sweet, and with properly hilarious entertainment.
Comic quartet Four Femmes on the Thames – nominated for Best Comedy – delighted the audience with a musical rumination on why vaginas are tougher than testicles, Sooz Kempner performed a side-splitting song about the realities of auditions, and Kieran Brown gave a preview of the Wilma Awards 2016 charity single in aid of the National Autistic Society – No Awards For You – which can be downloaded from Amazon Music, iTunes, and Google Play.
Titanic at the Charing Cross Theatre was the dominant piece of the afternoon, winning Best Off-West End Production, as well as earning Claire Machin the Best Actor/Actress In An Off-West End Show award, and a Rising Star nomination for Victoria Serra.
Deserving winner of Best West End Musical was Kinky Boots, and Best West End Play went to ‘People, Places & Things’. ‘Rocky Horror Show’ beat both Annie and Chicago to win Best Touring Production, and Best Comedy was claimed by ventriloquist extraordinaire Nina Conti.
With guest appearances from The Fawlty Towers Dining Experience, X-Factor winner Sam Bailey, and, of course, Wilma herself, this was as much a full-on show as an awards ceremony. Our favourite moment was a triumphant Mazz Murray, openly admitting to still being drunk from the night before, celebrating her Best Actress In A Musical award – for her role in Mamma Mia – with a filthy version of My Favourite Things from The Sound of Music. Glorious.
The full list of nominees and winners can be found here.