The Production Company’s home-grown hit steals the limelight from OA’s South Pacific.

In something of a coup, The Production Company’s staging of the musical Chesspicked up seven wins at Melbourne’s Green Room Awards. The annual ceremony, now in its 30th year, is held to honour excellence in professional performing arts in Melbourne.

Among others, Chesstook the awards for Outstanding Musical Production, Best Actress (Silvie Paladino) and Best Choreography (Tony Bartuccio). The result must have come as a blow for Opera Australia’s fancied Broadway import of South Pacific,which only won for best musical direction. Other musical theatre winners included Wayne Scott-Kermond for another Production Company show: The Producersand Hugh Sheridan for as Best Supporting Actor for   A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.

Melbourne Theatre Company’s production of Carol Churchill’s Top Girlswas the major winner in the theatre category taking Best Production while Eryn Jean Norvill won Best Female Actor. Colin Friels was voted Best Actor for his performance as Mark Rothko in MTC’s Red.

In the opera category there were major wins for Victorian Opera who took the New Australian Opera Award as well as Best Director for Nicki Wendt’s world premiere production...