Stars of the stage basked in the sunshine as they arrived at the Royal Albert Hall in Kensington, London, for the Olivier Awards, which saw a staggering nine gongs go to Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - a new record.

Game of Thrones stars Rose Leslie and Kit Harrington led the A-list arrivals as they took to the red carpet for the star-studded celebration of British theatre today (Sunday 9 April).

As the celebrities brought their fashion A game to the event, Bafta-winning actress Lee made a style statement in a bold sheer red gown with floor-skimming skirt that revealed her Christian Dior girl boxer shorts and balcony bra.

Best Actress nominee Billie Piper, 34 exuded sophistication in a stylish black feathered gown while Amanda Holden, 46, sizzled in sunshine yellow.

Let It Shine co-host and nominee for Best Actress in a Musical, Amber Riley brought a touch of Hollywood glamour in a sequin-encrusted floor-length gown.

And while Piper was already winner in the fashion stakes, the mother-of-two was elated as she walked away with the top award of the night for her performance in Yerma.

A frontrunner for the coveted Olivier was Harry Potter and the Cursed Child which, with 11 nominations, had the accolade of becoming the most nominated new play in the Olivier Awards' 41-year history.

Kenneth Branagh Olivier Awards
Kenneth Branagh: Honoured at the Olivier Awards 2017 in London Eamonn M. McCormack / Getty

Tipped for a clean sweep, the five-hour, two-part stage play, penned by Jack Thorne and spawned from the global movie franchise, scored nods for Best Director, Best New Play, Outstanding Achievement in Music, Best Supporting Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Actor and Best Actress.

Winning nine honours, including Best Actor for Jamie Parker, who plays the adult Harry, the play set a new standard for the Oliviers with its record-breaking haul.

Groundhog Day which garnered eight nominations was named best new musical while Jesus Christ Superstar took the award for best musical revival.

With Dreamgirls in contention in five categories Riley bagged Best Actress in a Musical while her co-star Adam J Bernard won Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical.

Stalwarts of the theatre world Sir Kenneth Branagh and Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber were acknowledged for their accomplishments in the arts.

Lloyd-Webber walked away with accolades for his award-winning musical scores as School of Rock was recognised for outstanding achievement in music and Jesus Christ Superstar was named best musical revival.

Receiving a special award for his contribution to theatre, Branagh fittingly quoted the Bard: "Shakespeare was right: we are such stuff that dreams are made of. Keep making stuff, keep dreaming."

The star-studded evening featured performances by Gary Barlow and Tim Firth with the company of The Girls and the Women's Institute Choir; and Riley, who performed And I Am telling You from DreamGirls.

The ceremony, hosted by Jason Manford, will be broadcast on ITV on Tuesday 11 April at 8pm.

Olivier Awards 2017 - Winners

Best actor in a supporting role in a musical
Ian Bartholomew for Half a Sixpence at Noël Coward theatre
Adam J Bernard for Dreamgirls at Savoy theatre - WINNER
Ben Hunter for The Girls at Phoenix theatre
Andrew Langtree for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic

Best actress in a supporting role in a musical
Haydn Gwynne for The Threepenny Opera at National Theatre – Olivier
Victoria Hamilton-Barritt for Murder Ballad at Arts theatre
Rebecca Trehearn for Show Boat at New London theatre - WINNER
Emma Williams for Half a Sixpence at Noël Coward theatre

Outstanding achievement in music
Dreamgirls – music by Henry Krieger at Savoy theatre
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – composer and arranger: Imogen Heap at Palace theatre
Jesus Christ Superstar – the band and company creating the gig-like rock vibe of the original concept album of Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent's Park Open Air theatre
School of Rock the Musical – three child bands who play instruments live every night at New London theatre- WINNER

Best new dance production
Betroffenheit by Crystal Pite and Jonathon Young at Sadler's Wells - WINNER
Blak Whyte Gray by Boy Blue Entertainment at Barbican theatre
Giselle by Akram Khan and English National Ballet at Sadler's Wells
My Mother, My Dog and CLOWNS! by Michael Clark at Barbican theatre
Outstanding achievement in dance
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater for their London season at Sadler's Wells
Luke Ahmet for The Creation by Rambert at Sadler's Wells
English National Ballet for expanding the variety of their repertoire with Giselle and She Said at Sadler's Wells - WINNER

Best entertainment and family
Cinderella at London Palladium
David Baddiel – My Family: Not the Sitcom at Vaudeville theatre
Peter Pan at National Theatre – Olivier
The Red Shoes at Sadler's Wells - WINNER

Best theatre choreographer
Matthew Bourne for The Red Shoes at Sadler's Wells - WINNER
Peter Darling and Ellen Kane for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic
Steven Hoggett for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre
Drew McOnie for Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent's Park Open Air theatre

Magic Radio best musical revival
Funny Girl at Savoy theatre
Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent's Park Open Air theatre - WINNER
Show Boat at New London theatre
Sunset Boulevard at London Coliseum

Best actor in a musical
David Fynn for School of Rock the Musical at New London theatre
Tyrone Huntley for Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent's Park Open Air theatre
Andy Karl for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic - WINNER
Charlie Stemp for Half a Sixpence at Noël Coward theatre

Best actress in a musical
Glenn Close for Sunset Boulevard at London Coliseum
"The Girls" – Debbie Chazen, Sophie-Louise Dann, Michele Dotrice, Claire Machin, Claire Moore and Joanna Riding – for The Girls at Phoenix theatre
Amber Riley for Dreamgirls at Savoy theatre - WINNER
Sheridan Smith for Funny Girl at Savoy theatre

Best revival
The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York's theatre
This House at Garrick theatre
Travesties at Apollo theatre
Yerma at Young Vic - WINNER

Blue-i Theatre Technology award for best set design
Bob Crowley for Disney's Aladdin at Prince Edward theatre
Bob Crowley for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York's theatre
Rob Howell for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic
Christine Jones for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre - WINNER

Best actor in a supporting role
Anthony Boyle for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre - WINNER
Freddie Fox for Travesties at Apollo theatre
Brian J Smith for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York's theatre
Rafe Spall for Hedda Gabler at National Theatre – Lyttelton

Best actress in a supporting role
Melissa Allan, Caroline Deyga, Kirsty Findlay, Karen Fishwick, Kirsty MacLaren, Frances Mayli McCann, Joanne McGuinness and Dawn Sievewright for Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour at National Theatre – Dorfman
Noma Dumezweni for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre - WINNER
Clare Foster for Travesties at Apollo theatre
Kate O'Flynn for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York's theatre

Best new comedy
The Comedy About a Bank Robbery at Criterion theatre
Nice Fish at Harold Pinter theatre
Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour at National Theatre – Dorfman - WINNER
The Truth at Wyndham's theatre
Best new opera production
4.48 Psychosis at Lyric Hammersmith
Akhnaten at London Coliseum - WINNER
Così Fan Tutte at Royal Opera House
Lulu at London Coliseum

Outstanding achievement in opera
Renée Fleming for her performance in Der Rosenkavalier at Royal Opera House
Stuart Skelton for his performance in Tristan and Isolde at London Coliseum
Mark Wigglesworth for his conducting of Don Giovanni and Lulu at London Coliseum - WINNER
Best actor
Ed Harris for Buried Child at Trafalgar Studios 1
Tom Hollander for Travesties at Apollo theatre
Ian McKellen for No Man's Land at Wyndham's theatre
Jamie Parker for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre -WINNER

Best actress
Glenda Jackson for King Lear at the Old Vic
Cherry Jones for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York's theatre
Billie Piper for Yerma at Young Vic - WINNER
Ruth Wilson for Hedda Gabler at National Theatre – Lyttelton

Best sound design
Paul Arditti for Amadeus at National Theatre – Olivier
Adam Cork for Travesties at Apollo theatre
Gareth Fry for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre - WINNER
Nick Lidster for Autograph for Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent's Park Open Air theatre

Best costume design
Gregg Barnes for Dreamgirls at Savoy theatre
Hugh Durrant for Cinderella at London Palladium
Rob Howell for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic
Katrina Lindsay for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre - WINNER

Outstanding achievement in an affiliate theatre
Cuttin' It at the Maria, Young Vic
The Government Inspector at Theatre Royal Stratford East
The Invisible Hand at Tricycle theatre
It Is Easy to Be Dead at Trafalgar Studios 2
Rotterdam at Trafalgar Studios 2 - WINNER

White Light award for best lighting design
Neil Austin for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre - WINNER
Lee Curran for Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent's Park Open Air theatre
Natasha Katz for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York's theatre
Hugh Vanstone for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic

Best director
Simon Stone for Yerma at Young Vic
John Tiffany for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre -WINNER
John Tiffany for The Glass Menagerie at Duke of York's theatre
Matthew Warchus for Groundhog Day at the Old Vic

Virgin Atlantic best new play
Elegy at Donmar Warehouse
The Flick at National Theatre – Dorfman
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at Palace theatre - WINNER
One Night in Miami at Donmar Warehouse

Mastercard best new musical
Dreamgirls at Savoy theatre
The Girls at Phoenix theatre
Groundhog Day at the Old Vic - WINNER
School of Rock the Musical at New London theatre