HuffPost UK Culture was on the star-studded red carpet of the 58th London Evening Standard Theatre Awards on Sunday night, talking to the finest theatre talent the capital has to offer.
Held at The Savoy Hotel, the awards evening included recognition for the theatrical achievements seen at the London 2012 Olympics.
Team GB gold medalist Victoria Pendleton presented Danny Boyle with the Beyond Theatre award for his breathtaking creative vision of the Olympic Games opening ceremony.
Boyle's theatrical extravaganza Isles of Wonder was praised by judges for taking theatre outside of the traditional stage. The ceremony saw Britain's green countryside recreated in the Olympic stadium, along with a troop of flying Mary Poppins, luminescent cyclists and giant flaming Olympic rings.
National treasure Dame Judi Dench was honoured for her contribution to world theatre with the Moscow Art Theatre's Golden Seagull award, presented by Sir Ian McKellen. The oscar-winning actress said she was "overwhelmed" and added that theatre was her first love.
The awards had a sprinkle of extra Hollywood glamour with a Best Actress nomination for Cate Blanchett. The star, who was not able to attend the event, lost out to Hattie Morahan who won for her moving interpretation of trapped housewife Nora in A Doll's House at the Young Vic theatre.
Before picking up her award, Morahan told HuffPost UK: "Being nominated alongside Cate is really surreal!
"If someone said to me 'who is your favourite actress', I would say Cate Blanchett - so I'm quite gobsmacked and convinced I'm going to wake up and find it's all a dream."
National Theatre director Sir Nicholas Hytner picked up two awards, telling the audience "I'm very lucky to have a theatre that is properly funded...[it is] ridiculous to cut that funding now."
29-year-old playwright Nick Payne became the youngest ever winner in the Best Play category for metaphysical love story Constellations starring Sally Hawkins and Rafe Spall.
London Evening Standard editor Sarah Sands said: "The Evening Standard winners show the extraordinary creative talent in London theatre. Big moral questions are being tackled with imagination and wit.
"The success of the Evening Standard depends on the greatness of this city and it was on glorious display at the Savoy last night."
Full List of Winners at the Evening Standard Theatre AwardsBest play - Constellations by Nick Payne Best director - Sir Nicholas Hytner for Timon of Athens Best actor - Simon Russell Beale for Collaborators Natasha Richardson award for best actress - Hattie Morahan for A Doll's House Ned Sherrin award for best musical - Sweeney Todd Best design - Soutra Gilmour for Inadmissible Evidence and Antigone Charles Wintour award for most promising playwright - Lolita Chakrabarti for Red Velvet Milton Shulman award for outstanding newcomer - Matthew Tennyson for Making Noise Quietly Lebedev special award - Sir Nicholas Hytner for his dynamic directorship of the National Theatre Editor's award - David Hare for his contribution to theatre Beyond theatre - Danny Boyle and his team for the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics Burberry award for emerging director - Simon Godwin Moscow Art Theatre's Golden Seagull - Dame Judi Dench
Watch the highlights from the Evening Standard's Theatre Awards, in association with Burberry, at the Savoy Hotel: