British actress Judi Dench picks up record eighth Olivier Award

Sun Apr 3, 2016 7:15pm EDT
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By Marie-Louise Gumuchian and Edward Baran

LONDON (Reuters) - Veteran film, television and stage actress Judi Dench picked up her eight Olivier Award on Sunday, a record tally at Britain's biggest night for theater.

The 81-year-old scooped the Olivier for best actress in a supporting role for "The Winter's Tale".

"Ladies and gentlemen, I am absolutely livid as I had a bet with my grandson, which I've now lost and I'm never going to be allowed to forget it," Dench said in her acceptance speech.

"I know everybody says what a wonderful time they had doing something, I can truly say this time that in 'The Winter's Tale', it was an absolutely memorable time for me."

Asked backstage if she had any plans to slow her workload down, Dench told Reuters: "Who wants to slow down? No, I want to be employed. It's putting the car in the garage that. You will never get it started."

"Gypsy" picked up four prizes, the most awards for a single production on the night, including best musical revival and best actress in a musical for Imelda Staunton, who opened the glitzy London ceremony in character as Momma Rose.

"Gypsy" also picked up awards for best actress in a supporting role in a musical for Lara Pulver and best lighting design.

"Kinky Boots" picked up three awards, including best new musical, best actor in a musical for Matt Henry and best costume design. Pop singer Cyndi Lauper, who collaborated with playwright Harvey Fierstein on bringing the 2005 film first to the Broadway stage before London, also performed on the night.   Continued...

British actress Judi Dench poses for photographers as she arrives at the Olivier Awards at the Royal Opera House in London, Britain April 3, 2016. REUTERS/Neil Hall