Western Australia’s top performers and artists were crowned in the 2020 Performing Arts WA, in a virtual awards ceremony held on Saturday May 2.
The 2020 Performing Arts WA Awards are the local theatre and dance industry’s peak professional awards, and have celebrated the achievements of the arts sector for 20 years.
This year’s awards were presented by Artist Relief Fund WA, and recognised outstanding achievements by actors, directors, theatre and dance-makers, designers and production companies, with 21 awards presented out of 98 nominations.
Winners in theatre included On Our Beach by Spare Parts Puppet Theatre for Best Mainstage Production and See You Next Tuesday by The Blue Room Theatre & Static Drive Co. for Best Independent Production.
Fully Sikh, a co-production between Barking Gecko Theatre and Black Swan State Theatre Company, received three awards, including Best Newcomer for Sukhjit Kaur Khalsa.
Charlotte Otton was awarded Best Actor (Female) and Humphrey Bower won Best Actor (Male).
Winners in dance included Alice (in wonderland) by West Australian Ballet for Best Production, while Scott Elstermann won Best Performer (Male) and Chihiro Nomura won Best Performer (Female). Rachel Arianne Ogle was awarded Best Choreographer for her work precipice.
The Artist Relief Fund’s secretary Nick Maclaine congratulated all of the nominees and winners, as well as everyone who contributed to making live theatre or dance last year.
“These are extraordinary times for our sector. We felt it was more necessary than ever for WA’s arts workers to be acknowledged, rewarded and celebrated. It was a joy to come together online and celebrate the people who enrich our state.”
Winners of the affectionately known ‘PAWA Awards’ received cash prizes on the night, with five WAAPA students receiving newly established Student Endowments from The Artist Relief Fund (sponsored by Minderoo Foundation). The endowments reward high achieving WAAPA students to help support them in the pursuit of their studies in the performing arts.