Acclaimed Irish actor Paul Mescal has been nominated for best actor at the 2023 Olivier Awards.
Mescal received his nomination for his portrayal of Stanley Kowalski in Tennessee Williams’s classic play A Streetcar Named Desire.
It is the latest nomination of many in a successful year for Mescal, which has seen him gain awards recognition for his acting on screen as well.
Tennessee Williams’s masterpiece – A Streetcar Named Desire
Mescal received his Olivier nomination for his rendering of Stanley Kowalski in Tennessee Williams’s A Streetcar Named Desire.
In the play, Stanley Kowalski is the husband of Stella DuBois and the brother-in-law of the central character Blanche DuBois.
The plot follows Blanche as she moves in with Stanley and Stella in the aftermath of a series of personal losses. A tumultuous relationship based on mutual mistrust develops between Stanley and Blanche.
Mescal has received critical acclaim for his portrayal of Stanley. The Times wrote that he “makes the latent violence of Stanley Kowalski into something easy, tangible, vibrant yet unactorly”.
Director Rebecca Frecknall is no stranger to Olivier recognition, having won the best director category three times. Her most recent win came in 2022 for her revival of Cabaret.
The Olivier Awards – a prestigious honour
Under Frecknall’s masterful direction, Mescal stars alongside Patsy Ferran (Blanche) and Anjana Vasan (Stella). Both of Mescal’s co-stars have also been nominated at the Olivier Awards for their performances.
The awards ceremony takes place in London and dates back to 1976, when the awards were known as the Society of West End Theatre Awards. They were renamed in honour of esteemed British thespian Laurence Olivier in 1984.
Irish actors have achieved success at the Olivier Awards in recent history. County Kerry’s Jessie Buckley won the award for Best Actress in a Musical for her role as Sally Bowles in Frecknall’s revival of Cabaret.
Paul Mescal’s awards season – deserved recognition
Mescal, from County Kildare, first came to prominence in the BBC adaptation of Sally Rooney’s Normal People. His performance as Connell Waldron saw Mescal receive numerous nominations.
The Olivier Award is the latest in a number of nominations for Mescal in 2023. He has been nominated for the Academy Award for his performance in Aftersun. He also received a BAFTA nomination but was pipped by Austin Butler’s performance in Elvis.
A Streetcar Named Desire is Mescal’s favourite play, and he has loved being able “to share it with a wider audience” along with the production’s “formidable cast and creative team”.
The production will move from the Almeida Theatre to the Phoenix Theatre for a run from 20 March to 29 April. The Olivier Awards ceremony will take place on Sunday, 2 April.