Understudies Celebrated at the Stage Awards 2022

Ben attended The Stage Awards 2022 as one of five representatives collecting the ‘Unsung Hero’ Award for all Understudies and Covers who have saved shows from closure due to Covid.

The awards were held in the newly refurbished Theatre Royal Drury Lane in London on 31st January 2022, and are held each year to celebrate achievements in West End, Regional and fringe theatre in the UK and beyond, with the Lyric Theatre, Belfast being nominated for Theatre of the Year.
Ben, who was performing in the Millennium Forum Pantomime, ‘Sleeping Beauty’ had to step in for various principal roles throughout the productions run when fellow cast members had to isolate due to Covid-19. Millennium Forum were one of few theatres who completed their run without any cancellations, while many other productions faced early closures or missed performances due to numbers of cast and crew members having to isolate.
In their acceptance speech, the representatives noted the “invisible” role understudies and covers play, but said without them the “world of theatre could not exist”.
(Image from left to right: Ben McDaid, Claire Darcy, Harveen Mann, Natasha Leaver and Sam Lupton. Photo by Alex Brenner)