Small Pond the Big Fish
Caitlin Murphy's "O" Show & Fruits Unheard Of snatch up five of eighteen theatre awards at theatre ceremony

January 31st - In a classic example of quality over quantity, Small Pond theatre company's two shows for 2004 dominated the field in the third annual Brickenden Awards for Theatrical Excellence, held at the Central Library's Wolf Performance Hall this evening.

The "O" Show, a hit at the London Fringe Festival, and Fruits Unheard Of, a biography on cult photographer Diane Arbus, garnered the lion's share of awards at the third annual Brickenden Awards for Theatrical Excellence in London. "O" Show was the hands-down winner for best comedy while Fruits garnered Caitlin Murphy awards for best original script, production and direction (along with co-director Kaila Jarmain). Fruits' male lead, Jordan Morris, won for best supporting actor.

Theatre Soup's acclaimed production of The Miracle Worker earned Anne-Marie Caicco a best actress award for her portrayal of Annie Sullivan while Marcus Lundgren copped best actor for his comic performance in Art. Laura Morland took home the best supporting actress for her work as the doomed Virginia Rappe in the biographical drama, Roscoe's Ghost, about silent film comedian Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle.

Jason Rip's cross-dressing cabaret, Miss Wisconsin, was selected as the year's bravest production. In the youth category, Central Secondary School's original musical Socks earned a Brickenden as did the Grand Theatre's high school production of Fiddler on the Roof.

In the evening's most emotional moment, actor, director and mentor Don Fleckser was selected as the first recipient of the Curtain Riser award for a half-century of service to London theatre. One of those who paid tribute was Alias star Victor Garber, who began his acting career in London's children theatre under Fleckser's guidance.

"It was through knowing Don, that I felt empowered to pursue my dream of acting on Broadway. He never showed a hint of doubt. He allowed me to know that anything was possible," said Garber through a letter written for the occasion. "It was as invaluable period in my life and Don Fleckser encouraged and applauded me all the way. He is to be treasured in the London community and I send all my love and gratitude to you this evening Don."

The master of ceremonies was former Grand Theatre artistic director Bernard Hopkins. For a complete list of 2004 Brickenden Award winners click here.

For Luke Mattar's photographs of the ceremonies, click here.

The Brickenden Committee would like to thank the following sponsors for making the 2004 awards possible:

The Greenway Family

The London Fringe Festival

Intermix.ca

Click here if you would like to become a sponsor