Olivier Nomination Predictions – Acting Categories

With only less than a month to go before the Olivier Awards announcement, I felt it was time for me to publish my thoughts on who I think will be nominated on the 6th March. This was a goal I unconsciously set for myself at the start of 2017, to try and catch as many Olivier Award qualifying shows as possible during the 2017/2018 window. This is part one of my series, mainly focusing on the acting categories. Expect another post soon with the big production based awards as well as my winner predictions when the official list is released. I have included a small list of potential nominees too as there can be up to 5 nominees in a category. Or I just simply couldn’t pick.


Bold – likely to win
Italics – Second most likely to win.

Best Actor In A Play

  • Andrew Garfield (Angels in America)
  • Andrew Scott (Hamlet)
  • Bryan Cranston (Network)
  • Bertie Carvel (Ink)


  • Paddy Considine (The Ferryman)
  • John Boyega (Woyzeck)
  • David Tennant (Don Juan In Soho)

I think this will be the hardest category to predict as there were so many incredible performances over the last year. But I do think, Andrew Garfield’s performance as Prior Walter was just exceptional and completely blew critics and audiences’ expectations out of the water. I do believe though that Bryan Cranston as Howard Beale in Network does have the potential to take it. His performance was absolutely incredible, but I think he has the advantage of being a fantastic screen actor and this play definitely played to that strength.

Best Actress In A Play

  • Juliet Stevenson/Lia Williams (Mary Stuart)
  • Laura Donnelly (The Ferryman)
  • Shirley Henderson (Girl From The North Country)
  • Tamsin Greig (Labour of Love)


  • Natalie Dormer (Venus In Fur)
  • Sienna Miller (Cat On A Hot Tin Roof)
  • Anne Marie Duff (Heisenberg)
  • Lesley Manville (Long Day’s Journey Into Night)

If it was up to me, Tamsin Greig would be my outright winner. She stepped into Labour of Love only a few weeks before the play was due to open, taking the role over from another actress and smashing it out of the park. Her incredible stage presence, comedic talents and her chemistry with Martin Freeman would be enough for me to hand over the award to her.

That being said, Laura Donnelly brought such emotional depth and for me, she pretty much carried the entirety of The Ferryman and her performance was one of the stand out moments in the play. Not only from her incredible talents but her personal experience with the context of the play too.

Best Supporting Actor In A Play

  • Nathan Lane (Angels In America)
  • Douglas Henshaw (Network)
  • Ciaran Hinds (Girl From The North Country)
  • James McArdle (Angels In America)

This is the one category I’m mostly confident on. Nathan Lane’s performance as Roy Cohn is a sure winner. His gripping performance was electrifying but I must note, he wasn’t the only best supporting actor in Angels In America. If it was me deciding, I would give James McArdle the nod but Nathan Stewart-Jarett and Russell Tovey are just as worthy.

Best Supporting Actress In A Play

  • Denise Gough (Angels In America)
  • Sheila Atim (Girl From The North Country)
  • Hayley Squires (Cat On A Hot Tin Roof)
  • Imogen Poots (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?)


  • Michelle Dockery (Network)

I really feel it’s neck and neck between Denise Gough and Sheila Atim for their strong and powerful performances. To be frank, I think they’re just as likely to win but I’m uncertain if Girl From The North Country is likely to be considered as a musical or a play. I’ve seen more people refer to it as the latter, which is why I have placed Sheila Atim’s name in this category.

Leading Actor In A Musical

  • Jamael Westman (Hamilton)
  • Giles Terrara (Hamilton)
  • John McCrea (Everybody’s Talking About Jamie)
  • Hadley Fraser (Young Frankenstein)


  • Louis Maskell (The Grinning Man)

Leading Actress In A Musical

  • Audra MacDonald (Lady Day)
  • Rachelle Ann Go (Hamilton)
  • Josie Walker (Everybody’s Talking About Jamie)
  • Imelda Staunton (Follies)


  • Clare Halse (42nd Street) – although she could be considered as Supporting?
  • Leanne Cope (An American In Paris)

Supporting Actress In A Musical

  • Janie Dee (Follies)
  • Clare Halse (42nd Street)
  • Lucie Shorthouse (Everybody’s Talking About Jamie)
  • Rachel John (Hamilton)

Supporting Actor In A Musical

  • Jason Pennycooke (Hamilton)
  • Michael Jibson (Hamilton)
  • Ross Noble (Young Frankenstein)
  • Julian Bleach (The Grinning Man)

I don’t have a lot to say regarding the musical categories, we all know Hamilton is going to sweep a lot of the awards. It is a truly brilliant piece, but, part of me does hope that Everybody’s Talking About Jamie wins a couple too. It’d be nice to see a new, British musical excel in the eyes of the critics. While I didn’t particularly enjoy Young Frankenstein, I do think the show will get a couple of nods as it was truly well received when the show opened.

What are your predictions in the acting categories? Although I tried to catch every show eligible, I know I missed a few so let me know what you think.

Until next time,





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