By Joseph Hurley Sligo-born actress Pauline Flanagan, long a resident of New Jersey and a frequent performer in New York’s Broadway and off-Broadway playhouses, including the Irish Repertory Theatre, this past week was named the winner of the coveted Laurence Olivier Award for 2000, in the Best Supporting Actress category for her work as Rima, the family matriarch of Frank McGuinness’ "Dolly West’s Kitchen." The Oliviers, given out annually by the Society of London Theatre, are the equivalent of Broadway’s Tony Awards. They were awarded last Friday, Feb. 23, in a festivity at the city’s Lyceum Theatre, starting with a champagne reception after which the winners were named in a ceremony hosted by Clive Anderson. A celebratory luncheon at the Royal Opera House’s Vilar Floral Hall followed. The event, a special celebration of London theater in the year 2000, was filmed by the British Broadcasting Corporation for inclusion in the programming on BBC2 for the following day, Feb. 24. "Dolly West’s Kitchen" was first produced in the fall of 1999 at the Abbey Theatre as part of that season’s Dublin Theatre Festival, at which time Flanagan won the year’s Samuel Beckett Award for the best performance given by an actress on the Dublin stage in 1999. McGuinness’s new play, which deals with relations between a family living just below the border with the North and American soldiers stationed near Belfast. Flanagan played the mother of characters portrayed by actresses Donna Dent and Catherine Byrne. The production, directed by Abbey Artistic Director Patrick Mason as his last official act before turning the reigns of the beloved old theater to Ben Barnes, transferred, with its original cast intact, to London’s Old Vic Theatre, where it played through the spring and summer of 2000, finally closing on July 30, after a 12-week run. Flanagan was one of four actresses named on Jan. 17 in the Best Supporting Actress category. The others were Gillian Barge, nominated for "Passion Play" at the Donmar Warehouse, Catherine McCormack, for "All My Sons" at the Cottesloe, and Marcia Warren, for "In Flame" at the New Ambassadors. The actress, who makes her home in Glen Rock, flew to London for the ceremony.