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Clarence Derwent Award winners

23 November 2012

Clarence Derwent 2012 winnersThis year’s winners of the Clarence Derwent Awards are Vinette Robinson for her portrayal of Ophelia in Hamlet at the Young Vic and Danny Webb for his performance as Harry Kahn in Chicken Soup with Barley at the Royal Court.

The Awards were presented on Friday 23 November at the Duke of York’s Theatre, St Martin's Lane, London.

The judges were critic Michael Billington (The Guardian), actor Peter Barnes, director Richard Digby Day, producer Thelma Holt, critic Kate Bassett (Independent) and Equity President Malcolm Sinclair.

Michael Billngton said: "Vinette Robinson’s Ophelia was astonishing for its transition from sunny openness to a madness that was never exaggerated and suggested simply through emotional withdrawal and a stiffening of the limbs. Danny Webb was stunning as Harry Kahn in Chicken Soup, seeming to shrink before our eyes as, over the decades, he suffered the ravages of time and physical debility. These were two tremendous performances.”

At the ceremony, Equity will also present the 2012 Young Member and Student Bursaries. The Young Member award is open to full Equity members aged 26 years and younger who require some practical help to further develop their professional career. The 2012 winners are set and costume designer Rebecca Brower and actor Lewis Osborne. The Student Member bursary is created by Equity inviting training institutions to put forward nominations. Nominees must be Equity student members in their final year and judged by their school to be deserving of the award.

The 2012 winners are Christopher Barclay, final year of Acting BA Hons at Rose Bruford and Ria Lopez , final year of Musical Theatre Diploma at CPA Studios. Both the bursary schemes, which total £2000 per year, are funded by donations from Equity Life Members wishing to help support younger members in establishing their professional career.

The Clarence Derwent Awards date back to 1948 and have an illustrious history of rewarding some of the most respected names in British theatre – including familiar names such as Sir Ian McKellen, Timothy West and Dame Judi Dench – but also many other actors whose contributions to British theatre is most highly prized by their peers.

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