by Joe Straw
The Last Straw awards are given to those actors who gave outstanding performances for the year of 2009. This award goes to the outstanding actors that made theatre great in Los Angeles!
If its possible to picture a camel with sacks of straw on its back, straining, struggling and locking its knees, looking up to see someone holding one piece of straw and praying that piece does not reach the basket. That is the image of the award.
In any case, each of these actors made profound statements in their craft. Taking the weight on their shoulders, locking their knees and giving us everything in their performance. Fighting, scratching and kicking and making intentions clear is not easy and sometimes thankless task.
All of the actors below gave performances that made us laugh, were thought provoking, or sent us into a state of nervous exhaustion.
The reviews are still posted if you care to reference the actors with the show they were in (except those noted with asterisks). It's been a great year!
These are the actors who gave their best for the 2009 year.
Mina Olivera - LOL Latina On The Loose - Los Angeles Theatre Center *
Margaret Avery and Alex Morris - The River Niger - Los Angeles Theatre Center *
Howard Ferguson-Woitzman – Looking for Normal – Malibu Theatre
Julia Stiles and Bill Pullman – Oleanna - Mark Taper Forum
Drew Fitzsimmons – Drive – Westchester Playhouse
Gadi Erel and Jeremy Radin – A Hatful of Rain – Skylight Theatre
Alan Blumenfeld and Melora Marshall – The Miser – Theatricum Botanicum
Daniel Leslie – The Manor – Theatre 40
Stephan Wolfert – Carbon Black – Autrey Museum
Sal Lopez – Solitude - Los Angeles Center Theatre Group
Stogie Kenyatta – The World is My Home – The Story of Paul Robeson – Santa Monica Playhouse
Debra Ehrhardt – Jamaica Farewell – Santa Monica Playhouse
Ronald Hunter – Three Sisters – Odyssey Theatre
Silver Shreck – A Little Night Music – Westchester Playhouse
James Roday, Michael Weston, Amanda Detmer and Stefanie E. Frame – Extinction – The Elephant Space
Benjamin Burdick, Tim Banning and Peter James Smith – The Last Testament - The Open Fist Theatre