Hytner makes the case against funding cuts at Evening Standard theatre awards
Monday 26 November 2012
The director of the National Theatre, Nicholas Hytner, led a rally to protect public funding of the arts following a double win at the 58th London Evening Standard Theatre Awards.
Hytner made a passionate plea for the Government to consider the economic and cultural riches that theatre offers when accepting the Lebedev Special award for his dynamic directorship of the South Bank powerhouse.
Before a star-studded audience that included Judi Dench, Ian McKellen, Tinie Tempah, Gemma Arterton, Ruth Wilson, Cara Delevingne, Adrian Lester and Colin Firth, he said: "I have been lucky in that for the length of my directorship of the National, it has been by and large properly funded. I know that a lot of other London theatres don't have it so good and theatres outside London have it even worse.
"Now we are being told to expect less funding and this is completely nuts. It makes no economic sense whatsoever. You only have to look at the South Bank and remember what it was like 20 or 30 years ago. These days there is such a creative buzz. Look at the businesses that have sprung up in the neighbouring areas; look at the money pouring in."
Judi Dench, who was honoured with the Moscow Art Theatre's Golden Seagull award for her contribution to world theatre, and Danny Boyle, who picked up the Beyond Theatre award for the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony, both also spoke of the need for greater funding for the arts.
Nick Payne, just 29, became the youngest person to win the Best Play award for his witty drama Constellations. Simon Russell Beale was named best actor for his portrayal of Stalin in Collaborators, the blackly comic drama at the National's Cottesloe.
Damian Lewis presented Hattie Morahan with the Natasha Richardson award for best actress for her interpretation of trapped housewife Nora in A Doll's House at the Young Vic. The event, sponsored by Burberry and which took place at the Savoy Hotel, was presented by the actor James Corden and co-hosted by London Evening Standard chairman and owner Evgeny Lebedev, Burberry chief creative officer Christopher Bailey and American Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour.
Books And it is whizzpopping!
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Video of Irish 'professional boxer' fighting Istanbul neighbourhood goes viral in Turkey
- 2 Novel Scarlett Johansson tried to ban, Grégoire Delacourt’s The First Thing You See, to be published in UK
- 3 Toby Sheldon: Justin Bieber lookalike found dead in motel room
- 4 Russia 'accidentally reveals' number of its soldiers killed in eastern Ukraine
- 5 Pregnant teenager Neysi Perez 'wakes up in coffin' a day after her funeral
Strictly Come Dancing contestants 2015: Helen George to join line-up
Friends fan comes up with horribly dark alternative ending to sitcom
Dismaland: The artists doing cooler things than Banksy at his 'bemusement park'
Novel Scarlett Johansson tried to ban, Grégoire Delacourt’s The First Thing You See, to be published in UK
Edinburgh Fringe: 25 funniest jokes of all-time
Dresden riots: Protesters in Germany attack refugee buses shouting 'foreigners out'
France train shooting: US soldiers speak of the moment they stopped gunman and 'beat him until he was unconscious'
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn accused of 'deluding' young supporters with 'claptrap'
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith calls for urgent ESA overhaul as part of drive to cut down welfare costs