Maxine Peake is to be honoured at the 2018 UK Theatre Awards for her Outstanding Contribution to British Theatre.
The Bolton-born actor and writer will receive the award in recognition of her reputation as a champion of regional theatre and a trailblazer for female and working-class voices, as well as her contribution to the cultural life of her home region – especially through her long relationship with Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre, where she is an Associate Artist.
The award will be presented by the Royal Exchange Theatre’s Artistic Director Sarah Frankcom, and award-winning Producer Conrad Lynch, at the UK Theatre Awards, held at The Guildhall in London on Sunday 14 October.
Ahead of accepting the award, Maxine Peake said:
‘I feel very honoured to be recognised by the UK Theatre Awards. As a huge fanatic of regional theatre, especially in the North, I see this award as a great platform to make some noise about the value of British theatre in all its forms, especially outside of the capital, and the importance of keeping it alive and thriving. I wouldn’t be where I am today without early involvement in wonderful theatres like the Bolton Octagon, West Yorkshire Playhouse and obviously, the Royal Exchange Manchester. We need to make sure young people, wherever they reside in the UK, can still gain access to these theatres and the vital opportunities they provide.’
Maxine Peake has enjoyed a prolific career as a theatre, television and film actor. In theatre, her work includes many critically acclaimed productions at the Royal Exchange in collaboration with director Sarah Frankcom, including A Streetcar Named Desire, The Skriker, The Masque Of Anarchy, Miss Julie, The Children’s Hour, Hamlet and Happy Days.
As a writer, Maxine’s acclaimed play Beryl, based on the life of professional cyclist Beryl Burton, was adapted for radio and the stage and is being developed into a film. Her play Queens Of The Coal Age premiered this year at the Royal Exchange and will be adapted for television.
Past recipients of UK Theatre’s Outstanding Contribution to British Theatre Award include critic Lyn Gardner, actor Ian McKellen and choreographer Matthew Bourne.
The full list of nominations for this year’s UK Theatre Awards can be viewed here.