Veterans nominated for UK theatre awards

Clockwise from top left: Sir Alan Ayckbourn, Jonathan Miller, Sian Phillips, Edward Petherbridge Ayckbourn, Miller, Petherbridge and Phillips have a combined age of 310

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Actor Edward Petherbridge, director Sir Jonathan Miller and playwright Sir Alan Ayckbourn are among the stage veterans up for this year's UK Theatre Awards.

Petherbridge, 77, is nominated for best performance in a play for My Perfect Mind, a show inspired by the strokes that prevented him playing King Lear.

Sir Alan, 74, is up for best new play, while Sir Jonathan, 79, vies for best director for Rutherford and Son.

Actress Sian Phillips, 80, also gets a nod for best supporting performance.

The Welsh stalwart is shortlisted for This Is My Family, one of five nominations for Sheffield Theatres.

Sheffield's theatre complex, named the UK's best outside London by The Stage newspaper earlier this year, is also cited in the touring production category for its musical version of The Full Monty.

Its artistic director Daniel Evans, meanwhile, gets two mentions in the best musical production category, for My Fair Lady and the aforementioned This Is My Family.

Sir Alan Ayckbourn's nomination comes for his 76th play Surprises, a romantic comedy set in the near-future involving robots that look like humans.

Andy Rush, Vivienne Gibbs and Jamie Samuel from Jumpers for Goalposts Jumpers for Goalposts had its premiere at Hull Truck Theatre in August 2012

His competition comes from Jumpers for Goalposts, Tom Wells' comedy about gay and lesbian five-a-side footballers, and Bull, Mike Bartlett's play about competition in the workplace.

Petherbridge competes against Cush Jumbo, shortlisted for her role as Nora in Ibsen's A Doll's House at Manchester's Royal Exchange, and Simon Scardifield, cited for The Double at Theatre Royal Bath.

Phillips faces competition from Jessica Bastick-Vines, shortlisted for playing a severely disabled young woman in A Day in the Death of Joe Egg at the Liverpool Playhouse, and Sally Reid, nominated for her work in Time and the Conways at the Royal Lyceum in Edinburgh.

Frances Ruffelle and Janie Dee go head-to-head in the best performance in a musical category, where they are recognised for Piaf and Hello, Dolly!, respectively - both seen at the Curve in Leicester.

Alex Bourne is also shortlisted for his performance as the devilish Darryl Van Horne in The Witches of Eastwick at the Watermill Theatre in Newbury.

The UK Theatre Awards recognise stage productions presented throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

This year's awards, presented by the Theatrical Management Association (TMA), will be held at London's Guildhall on 20 October.

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