Best Direction of a Musical (2011)

Steve Wilson

Phamaly is truly an amazing family of performers, all with varying physical disabilities — and director Steve Wilson knows how to work around, and with, every one of them. Wilson doesn't just accommodate these handicaps; he makes them a positive force in the action. When he and the company took on Beauty and the Beast, a tired, sentimental old musical, they made it new and vibrant. Jenna Bainbridge and Leonard Barrett were magnificent in the leads, and there were many pleasures in the smaller roles: Every one of the enchanted objects in the Beast's castle had its own charm and personality, for instance. The big numbers were done with a professionalism that any major Broadway production would have trouble matching — and with far more heart.