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Drama League Nominations

by Nathaniel R

Tracy Letts & Annette Bening are both nominated for the Broadway revival of "All My Sons"

The Drama League has announced the nominees for their five categories. Yours truly had the privilege of serving on their nominating committee this season. The nominating committee changes each year and is composed of industry professionals, producers, artists, audiences and critics. You're sent to random shows to evaluate (you don't get to pick which) and productions and performances that reach a certain threshold of collective enthusiasm are then nominated (that's why the category sizes differ so much. The awards will be giving out on May 17th. 

The Lucille Lortel Award nominations (which are strictly for Off Broadway Shows) were also announced. Full list of nominees is after the jump...


One final note: The Drama League Awards cover Broadway and Off Broadway shows so everything that's eligible for the Tony Awards is also eligible here (with the exception of Boys in the Band which did not invite the Drama League this year due to their very limited rund.)


Special Recognition Awards (non competitive)


  • Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theater: Kelli O'Hara (Kiss Me Kate)
  • The Founder Award for Excellence in Directing: Alex Timbers (Beetlejuice, Moulin Rouge!)
  • Unique Contribution to Theater: Taylor Mac (Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus)

Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Play

  • Collective Rage: A Play in Five Betties
  • Dance Nation
  • Fairview
  • The Ferryman *WINNER*
  • Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus
  • The House That Will Not Stand
  • The Jungle
  • The Lehman Trilogy
  • Network
  • Paradise Blue
  • Teenage Dick
  • To Kill a Mockingbird
  • What the Constitution Means to Me

A delightful list though I've personally seen only three. Liked Teenage Dick, loved Collective Rage but I thought it was way too aggressive to make it to a nomination (very divisive / very lesbian POV) and found The House That Will Not Stand was also wonderfully evocative and mythic feeling. 

Outstanding Revival of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Play

  • All My Sons
  • Boesman and Lena
  • Burn This
  • By the Way, Meet Vera Stark
  • Choir Boy
  • King Lear
  • Torch Song
  • Twelfth Night
  • The Waverly Gallery *WINNER*

Choir Boy, Torch Song and The Waverly Gallery are not surprising but I'm personally stunned to see Shakespeare in the Park's Twelfth Night from last summer here which was messy, however noble its intentions. The show included multiple different community groups from the five boroughs but the amateur non-actor nature of several elements was glaring when juxtaposed with Broadway calibre people like Nikki James.)

Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical

Outstanding Revival of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical

Loved Carmen Jones (which was reviewed here) and we wish had transferred to Broadway with a sensational Anika Noni Rose leading it. The Yiddish production of Fiddler on the Roof directed by Joel Grey was also very special. 

Nominees for the Distinguished Performance Award
(Despite the breadth of the category each year, only one winner is selected. You can only win this once, after which you are ineligible)

  • Brooks Ashmanskas, The Prom
  • Annette Bening, All My Sons
  • Quincy Tyler Bernstine, Our Lady of 121st Street
  • Stephanie J. Block, The Cher Show
  • Eboni Booth, Dance Nation
  • Alex Brightman, Beetlejuice
  • Josh Charles, Straight White Men
  • Paddy Considine, The Ferryman
  • Jordan E. Cooper, Ain't No Mo'
  • Bryan Cranston, Network *WINNER* 
  • Jeff Daniels, To Kill a Mockingbird
  • Jessica Frances Dukes, By the Way, Meet Vera Stark
  • André De Shields, Hadestown
  • Adam Driver, Burn This
  • Edie Falco, The True
  • Santino Fontana, Tootsie
  • Harriett D. Foy, The House That Will Not Stand
  • Lynda Gravatt, (three performances) The House That Will Not Stand, The Revolving Cycles Truly, Steadily Roll'd
  • Amber Gray, Hadestown
  • Jake Gyllenhaal, Sea Wall/A Life
  • Ammar Haj Ahmad, The Jungle
  • Ethan Hawke, True West
  • Marin Ireland, (two performances) Blue Ridge, Summer and Smoke
  • Zainab Jah, Boesman and Lena
  • Nikki M. James, Twelfth Night
  • Celia Keenan-Bolger, To Kill a Mockingbird
  • Leslie Kritzer, Beetlejuice
  • Beth Leavel, The Prom
  • Tracy Letts, All My Sons
  • Elaine May, The Waverly Gallery
  • Janet McTeer, Bernhardt/Hamlet
  • Laurie Metcalf, Hillary and Clinton
  • Bonnie Milligan, Head Over Heels
  • Gregg Mozgala, Teenage Dick
  • Kelli O'Hara, Kiss Me Kate
  • Jeremy Pope, (two performances) Ain't Too Proud, Choir Boy
  • Carey Mulligan, Girls and Boys
  • Anika Noni Rose, Carmen Jones
  • Debra Jo Rupp, The Cake
  • Stacey Sargeant, Rags Parkland Sings the Songs of the Future 
  • Heidi Schreck, What the Constitution Means to Me
  • Steven Skybell, Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish 
  • Keith Randolph Smith, Paradise Blue
  • Ali Stroker, Oklahoma!
  • Michael Stuhlbarg, Socrates
  • Ephraim Sykes, Ain't Too Proud
  • Ben Turner, The Jungle
  • Ana Villafañe, Collective Rage: A Play in Five Betties
  • Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Fleabag
  • Kerry Washington, American Son
  • Julie White, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus 
  • Ruth Wilson, King Lear
  • BD Wong, The Great Leap 

The following performers were ineligible because they'd already won once before and you can only win the Distinguished Performance Award once in your career.

  • Stockard Channing, Apologia
  • Glenn Close, Mother of the Maid
  • Glenda Jackson, King Lear
  • Cherry Jones, The Lifespan of a Fact
  • Nathan Lane, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus
  • John Lithgow, Hillary and Clinton
  • Stephen Rea, Cyprus Avenue


The Lucille Lortel Awards are Off Broadway only. This season Carmen Jones and Rags Parkland Sings the Songs of the Future led with six nominations each. And two Broadway shows Be More Chill and What the Constitution Means to Me were nominated for their Off Broadway runs (shortly before the Broadway show). And our beloved Superhero (which most people seem to not have loved the way we did) even received a few nominations. You can see a full list of nominations here


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Reader Comments (11)

I absolutely love the fact that you can only win once.

April 17, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

It sure seems like Anika Noni Rose, despite being a Tony winner, is *still* waiting for her superstar breakout. So, so very talented. And poor Keri Russell. Under appreciated and usurped by her (male) co-star yet again.

Can you please refresh, to those of us who don’t live in NYC, what exactly constitutes “Broadway” vs. off?

April 17, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMareko

Mareko -- yes, i should denote that going forward. Broadway indicates theaters in Manhattan with more than 500 seats. You don't actually have to be located in Times Square or on Broadway. For instance the Lincoln Center Theater counts as Broadway but it's on the upper west side. But almost all of the B'way sized houses are in Times Square. I don't remember the designation for size but Off Broadway is a certain number of seats too before you get to Off Off Broadway which are the tiny spaces.

April 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Nathaniel, how was Tootsie?

April 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMichael R

Has Tracy Letts ever NOT been nominated for a role? He is fantastic.

Is Anika Noni Rose the American version of Sharon D. Clark? Both sublime.

April 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterPam

I would think it's Daniels or May for the win, probs with the latter ultimately triumphing. (If she doesn't, it's a sign the show's early closing could haunt her the rest of awards season.)

April 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew Carden

I so wish that that production of Carmen Jones would have transferred to Broadway, at least for a limited run, to give Rose a shot at another Tony because she truly was remarkable. I'm glad that she's had steady work in all three media since her breakthrough in Caroline, or Change, but I would love to see her headline more projects worthy of her considerable talents.

It's clear that Hollywood doesn't quite know what to do with her (as with most black actresses who can't be put in easily definable boxes), but someone should start trying. Where is her "Amazing Amy" or Rabbit Hole?

April 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterTroy H.

Elaine May gave the performance of the year!

April 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJim

Nathaniel--have you seen All My Sons? I know you adore The Bening. What are your thoughts on this production?

April 18, 2019 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

I have ticket to All My Sons and cannot wait. I * think* it's in previews? It hasn't been reviewed yet ...

April 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJJM

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