Olivier Awards Predictions 2024

By Alex Kingston

Thursday 4th April 2024

It’s officially April, and you know what that means… it’s award season! In mid-March, the Olivier Award nominations were announced, celebrating the outstanding achievements seen in West End shows from the preceding year.

The recent revival of Sunset Boulevard emerged victorious from the announcement, earning itself 11 nominations. This included a nomination for Best Musical Revival, as well as a nod for its leading lady Nicole Scherzinger. Guys and Dolls was not far behind, having secured 9 nominations. This innovative production has made waves for its unique immersive staging and continues to delight audiences at the Bridge Theatre.

Ahead of the big ceremony on 14th April, here are our predictions for the winners!

Best New Play



  • Dear England by James Graham
  • The Hills of California by Jez Butterworth
  • The Motive and the Cue by Jack Thorne
  • Till the Stars Come Down by Beth Steel

Prediction: Dear England by James Graham

This year’s race for Best New Play is a two-horse race between Dear England and The Motive and the Cue; two productions that both had their start at the National Theatre. On the one hand, Dear England was one of London’s most successful plays for quite some time, receiving widespread recognition for its ability to draw in audiences who don’t typically attend theatre. It has competition from The Motive and the Cue however, which has already won Best New Play at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards. Either play would make for a worthy winner, though it seems that voters will ultimately side with Dear England. The play had a significant impact on the theatre world, and it is probable that voters will want to reward its cultural significance.

Best New Musical



  • The Little Big Things by Joe White, Nick Butcher, and Tom Ling
  • Next to Normal by Brian Yorkley and Tom Kitt
  • Operation Mincemeat by David Cumming, Felix Hagan, Natasha Hodgson and Zoë Roberts
  • A Strange Loop by Michael R. Jackson

Prediction: Operation Mincemeat by David Cumming, Felix Hagan, Natasha Hodgson and Zoë Roberts

This was a competitive year for new musicals, with an impressive number of shows with original scores making their West End debuts. Nevertheless, only one of them can emerge triumphant, and I believe that winner will be Operation Mincemeat. This show took London by storm when it first opened in March 2023, receiving 64 five-star reviews. The hit musical is unanimously adored, and it will likely receive the top prize. The other main contender is Next to Normal, the Pulitzer Prize-winning rock musical. Next to Normal played a sold-out run at the Domnar Warehouse in Summer 2023 and will be returning to London by popular demand later this year. While the production was very well-received, it’s hard to compete with a show that received 64 five-star reviews, meaning that Operation Mincemeat remains the likeliest victor.

Best Revival



  • The Effect by Lucy Prebble
  • Macbeth by William Shakespeare
  • Shirley Valentine by Willy Russell
  • Vanya by Anton Chekov, adapted by Simon Stephens


Prediction: Vanya

Leading the pack for best revival of a play is Vanya, a reimagined version of the classic Chekhov play. In this iteration of the show, all of the characters were performed by just one actor, with that actor being BAFTA winner Andrew Scott. Adapting Uncle Vanya into a one-man play was certainly ambitious, and it seems that the Oliviers will want to reward this impressive feat. The second likeliest winner is Macbeth, which featured David Tennant in the titular role. While this production was similarly acclaimed, it may be that voters are more inclined to give the prize to Vanya due to its unique reimagining of the original source material.

Best Revival of a Musical




  • Groundhog Day
  • Guys and Dolls
  • Hadestown
  • Sunset Boulevard

Prediction: Sunset Boulevard


Sunset Boulevard is the undisputed frontrunner in this category. This version of the show was unlike anything that came before it; using unconventional casting for the lead role and utilising video projections to enhance the production, the changes made were transformative. As previously mentioned, it was also the most nominated show of the season. Through a combination of these factors, it seems unlikely that any musical will rival Sunset Boulevard’s claim to the award.

In terms of the nominees, it was a surprise not to see La Cage aux Folles among the contenders for Best Revival. While the show earned widespread acclaim, it was ultimately snubbed from the Olivier Award shortlist, leaving many in the theatre industry taken aback.

Best Entertainment or Comedy Play




  • Accidental Death of an Anarchist by Dario Fo & Franca Rame, adapted by Tom Basden
  • Stephen Sondheim’s Old Friends by Stephen Sondheim
  • Stranger Things: The First Shadow by Kate Trefy
  • Vardy V Rooney: The Wagatha Christie Trial by Liv Hennessy

Prediction: Stranger Things: The First Shadow

This category is a mix of different genres, featuring two comedies, one musical revue, and one drama. Consequently, it’s a little challenging to compare these very different productions. Having said that, it is probable that Stranger Things will take home the crown. This play has dazzled audiences, earning praise for its outstanding creativity. On the other hand, if the Oliviers would prefer to reward a comedy in this category, then there is a chance that Accidental Death of an Anarchist could pull off an upset victory. It will be hard to overcome the powerhouse that is Stranger Things however, making them the favourites to win.

Acting Categories – Dramas



Predictions: Sarah Snook (The Picture of Dorian Gray), Andrew Scott (Vanya), Haydn Gwynn (When Winston Went to War with the Wireless), and Giles Terera (Clyde)


For Best Leading Actress, Sarah Snook is the likeliest winner for her spectacular performance in the one-woman play The Picture of Dorian Gray. She has some competition from Sarah Jessica Parker in Plaza Suite though, whose immense star power could sway some voters in her favour. For the male equivalent of this award, Andrew Scott is almost certain to win for his performance in the one-man Vanya. It seems that one-person shows are all the rage this season!

For Best Supporting Actress, the race is a toss-up between Haydn Gwynn, posthumously nominated for When Winston Went to War with the Wireless, and Gina McKee for Dear England. I would hedge my bets on Gwynn being selected, in what would be a touching tribute to her extensive career onstage following her untimely passing late last year. As for Best Supporting Actor, Giles Terera could be on course to receive his second Olivier for his performance in Clyde. Terera’s frontrunner status is challenged by Will Close however, whose life-like portrayal of Harry Kane in Dear England earned rave reviews.

Acting Categories – Musicals


Predictions: Nicole Scherzinger (Sunset Boulevard), Tom Francis (Sunset Boulevard), Amy Trigg (The Little Big Things), and David Thaxton (Sunset Boulevard)


When it was first announced that Nicole Scherzinger had been cast as Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard, the news certainly raised a few eyebrows. Her performance ultimately defied all expectations, and she is now the acknowledged favourite to win Best Leading Actress. She is likely to be joined by her co-star Tom Francis, who delivered a standout performance as Joe Gillis. Francis has some stiff competition from Charlie Stemp though, who earned acclaim for his energetic performance in Crazy for You. In spite of this, the momentum enjoyed by Sunset Boulevard seems like it could carry Francis to victory.

The race for Best Supporting Actress is closely contested, with Amy Trigg’s comedic performance in The Little Big Things vying against Grade Hodgett Young’s impressive debut in Sunset Boulevard. A victory for Trigg would be a great way to reward a phenomenal show which may otherwise go unrecognised. Having said that, both would be worthy winners. Finishing the pack, David Thaxton’s sinister performance in Sunset Boulevard is likely to add another award to the show’s already impressive list of accolades.