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« Doc Corner: 'The River and the Wall' | Main | April. It's a Wrap »
Tuesday
Apr302019

73rd Tony Awards: "Hadestown" and "The Ferryman" lead the nominations

by Nathaniel R

Tony nominee Brandon Victor Dixon and Tony winner Bebe Neuwirth announced the nominations this morning for Broadway's top honor. "Hadestown" led the nominations for musicals with 14 (wow) while "The Ferryman" and Aaron Sorkin's adaptation of "To Kill a Mockingbird" led the plays with 9 nominations each. In a surprise twist though, "To Kill a Mockingbird" was NOT nominated for Best Play despite such a wealth of nominations across the board; it's even nominated for Original Score (a category usually reserved for musicals only).

 A full list of nominations with trivia and commentary is after the jump...

THE 73RD ANNUAL TONY NOMINATIONS
If a show has already closed it has an asterisk by its name. 

BEST MUSICAL:

  • “Aint Too Proud”
  • "Beetlejuice"
  • “Hadestown”
  • “The Prom”
  • “Tootsie”

There were 11 original musicals on the board this season, only 2 of which have already closed. The eligible shows that were passed over were: Be More Chill (which was thought to have a good chance at the nod), The Cher Show, Getting the Band Back Together*, Head Over Heels*, King Kong, and Pretty Woman

BEST REVIVAL OF A MUSICAL

  • “Kiss Me Kate" (4th time on Broadway)
  • "Oklahoma!” (6th time on Broadway)

These were the only eligible revivals (strange since revivals are often quite common), so this double nomination was a done deal. The polarizing Oklahoma! is expected to win for its daring take on the material, whereas Kiss Me Kate is largely viewed as the fun but inessential musical comedy fare.

Oklahoma! has actually never won the Tony for Best Musical (the original production in 1943 pre-dated the Tony Awards) or Best Musical Revival. The most recent previous revival in 2002 was nominated but lost. In contrast Kiss Me Kate has won the statues for both Musical (1949) and Revival of a Musical (2000) previously.

BEST PLAY:

  • "Choir Boy"*
  • “The Ferryman” (closes July 7th)
  • "Gary A Sequel to Titus Andronicus" (closes August 4th)
  • “Ink” (closes June 23rd)
  • “What the Constitution Means to Me” (closes July 21st)

There were 14 eligible productions this year, half of which are still running. The 9 eligible shows that were passed over were: American Son*, Bernhardt/Hamlet*, Hillary and Clinton, The Lifespan of a Fact*, The Nap*, Network, The New One*, Straight White Men*, and To Kill a Mockingbird. The biggest surprise is surely the absence of Mockingbird which has been a big hit and the Tony nominating committee obviously loved it given the high nomination count.

 

BEST REVIVAL OF A PLAY:

  • “All My Sons” (4th time on Broadway) closes June 23rd
  • "The Boys in the Band"* (1st time on Broadway)
  • "Burn This" (2nd time on Broadway) closes July 14th
  • “Torch Song”* (2nd time on Broadway) 
  • “The Waverly Gallery”* (1st time on Broadway)

The really cool thing about this category is due to a new ruling (that was long in coming) if a play was deemed sufficient reworked or had never been on Broadway before, than the author of the play is now a nominee, too. Which means Harvey Fierstein, Matt Crowley, and Kenneth Lonergan are all nominees this year. The only one of those three who was previously Tony-honored for these plays was Fierstein, but he rewrote Torch Song (cutting out a third of its length to make it a two-act -- it was originally called Torch Song Trilogy)

This race was less competitive than last year with only 7 eligible productions. The two eligible shows that were passed over were True West (2nd time on Broadway) and King Lear. Lear has been on Broadway six times since the Tony Awards began in 1947 but only the most recent previous revival in 2004 was Tony nominated)

 

BEST ACTRESS IN A PLAY:

  • Annette Bening, “All My Sons” (2nd nom)
  • Laura Donnelly, "The Ferryman" (1st nom)
  • Elaine May, “The Waverly Gallery”* (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Janet McTeer, "Bernhard/Hamlet"* (3rd nom / 1 win)
  • Laurie Metcalf, "Hillary and Clinton" (6th nom / 2 wins)
  • Heidi Schreck, “What the Constitution Means to Me” (FIRST NOMINATION)

In a shocker this morning despite an expanded category of six, Glenda Jackson was shut out. She's a five time nominee who won just last year for "Three Tall Women" and was on the boards again with an acclaimed performance as the title character in "King Lear". Trivia of note: Heidi Schreck is not the first woman to write herself to a Tony nomination (Claudia Shear also did that for "Dirty Blonde" in 2000) but if she wins she'll be the first to win for a role she wrote for herself.

BEST ACTOR IN A PLAY:

Can Paddy Considine win a Tony for "The Ferryman"?

  • Paddy Considine, "The Ferryman" (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Bryan Cranston, "Network" (2nd nom, 1 win)
  • Jeff Daniels, "To Kill a Mockingbird" (3rd nom)
  • Adam Driver, "Burn This" (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Jeremy Pope, "Choir Boy"* (FIRST NOMINATION) 

We knew this category would be star-filled but it's a bit of a surprise to see Tony favourites like Tracy Letts for "All My Sons", John Lithgow for "Hillary and Clinton", and Nathan Lane for "Gary" all shut out. It's actually possible to imagine ANY of these five nominees winning which makes it exciting (though starpower and high nomination tallies suggests this is a fight between Daniels and Considine)

BEST ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL:

  • Stephanie J Block, “The Cher Show” (3rd nom)
  • Caitlin Kinnunen, "The Prom" (FIRST NOMINATION!)
  • Beth Leavel, “The Prom” (3rd nom, 1 win)
  • Eva Noblezada, "Hadestown" (2nd nom)
  • Kelli O'Hara, "Kiss Me Kate" (7th nom, 1 win)

The surprise this morning, while not a true shocker, is the absence of Rebecca Naomi Jones from "Oklahoma!". We're not sure who will win this other than it won't be O'Hara, who some feel was miscast but she is to the Tony Awards what Amy Adams is to the Oscars, always nominated regardless. 

BEST ACTOR IN A MUSICAL:

  • Brooks Ashmanskas, “The Prom” (2nd nom)
  • Derrick Baskin, "Aint Too Proud" (1st nom)
  • Alex Brightman, “Beetlejuice” (2nd nom)
  • Damon Daunno, “Oklahoma!” (1st nom)
  • Santino Fontana, "Tootsie" (2nd nom)

 

Santino Fontana looks like the man to beat for playing the woman that made him a better man in the musical comedy adaptation of Tootsie (1982). Eligible performers that failed to make the cut include Reeve Carney for "Hadestown" and Will Chase for "Kiss Me Kate" 

BEST FEATURED ACTRESS IN A PLAY:

  • Fionnula Flanagan, "The Ferryman" (2nd nom)
  • Celia Keenan-Bolger, "To Kill a Mockingbird" (4th nom)
  • Kristine Nielsen, "Gary" (2nd nom)
  • Julie White, "Gary" (3rd nom, 1 win)
  • Ruth Wilson, "King Lear" (2nd nom)

 

The big exclusions here are Joan Allen and Mercedes Ruehl (both previous Tony winners) for "The Waverly Gallery" and "Torch Song" but what a category. All of these women are so talented. 

BEST FEATURED ACTOR IN A PLAY:

Benjamin Walker in "All My Sons"

  • Bertie Carvel, "Ink" (2nd nom)
  • Robin De Jesús, "The Boys in the Band" *(3rd nom)
  • Gideon Glick, "To Kill a Mockingbird" (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Brandon Uranowitz, "Burn This" (3rd nom)
  • Benjamin Walker, "All My Sons" (FIRST NOMINATION)

 

This was an extremely competitive category for nominations but some notable absences are John Clay III from "Choir Boy," Hampton Fluker from "All My Sons" and Tom Glynn-Carney for "The Ferryman". It's nice to see Benjamin Walker nominated since Tony did him so wrong by passing him over previously for his awesome performance in "American Psycho"

BEST FEATURED ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL:

  • Lilli Cooper, "Tootsie" (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Amber Gray, "Hadestown" (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Sarah Stiles, "Tootsie" (2nd nom)
  • Ali Stroker, "Oklahoma!"  (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Mary Testa, "Oklahoma!" (3rd nom) 

Several ouch snubs here. Stephanie Hsu in "Be More Chill," Leslie Kritzer in "Beetlejuice" and Bonnie Milligan in "Head Over Heels" (three totally hilarious ladies) were all honored by precursors but shut-out here. I was a bit surprised to see Lilli Cooper honored in their place. She plays the Jessica Lange role in Tootsie but Sarah Stiles totally steals this version in the Terri Garr role. 

None of these women have ever won so it will be an exciting moment when the envelope is opened.

BEST FEATURED ACTOR IN A MUSICAL:

Ephraim Sykes (nominated), Jeremy Pope (nominated), Jawan M Jackson, James Harkness, and Derrick Baskin (nominated) in "Aint Too Proud"

  • Andre de Shields, "Hadestown" (3rd nom)
  • Andy Grotelueschen, "Tootsie" (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Patrick Page, "Hadestown" (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • Jeremy Pope, "Aint Too Proud" (DOUBLE-NOMINATED THIS YEAR!)
  • Ephraim Sykes, "Aint Too Proud"  (FIRST NOMINATION)

Jeremy Pope accomplishes the rare feat of a double nomination at the Tonys. That's less common than at the Oscars since it's really difficult to star in two Broadway shows in one season given that you can only do one show a night. But his performance in "Choir Boy" early in the season was remembered well enough to get him a lead nomination there and he left that show a bit early for a supporting role in this one. For what it's worth Grotelueschen has the Bill Murray role in the adaptation of Tootsie. 

It's a pity that John Behlmann was shut out for his totally hilarious performance as a dim social media hunk turned actor "Tootsie"  (taking the plot place of the old lecherous soap actor in the movie). Other notable omissions were Patrick Vaill for "Oklahoma!", Corbin Bleu from "Kiss Me Kate" and George Salazar who slays "Be More Chill"'s best song and received precursor nominations.

BEST DIRECTION OF A PLAY

  • “The Ferryman” - Sam Mendes (2nd nom in directing, 3 Tonys in other categories) 
  • "Gary A Sequel to Titus Andronicus" - George C Wolfe (10th nom and 2 previous wins for directing. Has Tonys in other categories, too) 
  • “Ink” - Rupert Goold (2nd nom)
  • "Network" - Ivo van Hove (2nd nom, 1 win)
  • To Kill a Mockingbird” - Bartlett Sher (9th nom, 2 wins)

 

BEST DIRECTION OF A MUSICAL

  • “Aint Too Proud” - Des McAnuff (4 noms and 2 wins for directing. Also has Tonys in other categories)
  • “Hadestown” - Rachel Chavkin (2nd nom)
  • "Oklahoma!" - Daniel Fish (FIRST NOMINATION, BROADWAY DEBUT)
  • “The Prom” - Casey Nicholaw (5th nom and 1 win for directing. More nominations in other categories)
  • “Tootsie” - Scott Ellis (9th nomination for directing)

Is it finally Scott Ellis's time to win or will Rachel Chavkin take it with the show with the most nominations?

 

BEST BOOK OF A MUSICAL:

  • “Aint Too Proud” -Dominique Morisseau
  • "Beetlejuice" - Scott Brown & Anthony King
  • “Hadestown” - Anaïs Mitchell
  • “The Prom” - Bob Martin & Chad Beguelin
  • “Tootsie” - Robert Horn

 

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE:

  • "Be More Chill" - Joe Iconis (FIRST NOMINATION, BROADWAY DEBUT)
  • "Beetlejuice" - Eddie Perfect (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • “Hadestown” - Anaïs Mitchell (FIRST NOMINATION, BROADWAY DEBUT)
  • “The Prom” - Chad Beguelin (3rd nom in this category)
  • "To Kill a Mockingbird" - Adam Guettel (2nd nom and 1 win in this category)
  • “Tootsie” - David Yazbek (5th nom, 1 win in this category)

A lot of fresh blood this time. Eddie Perfect also made his Broadway debut this season with TWO shows, the earlier production being "King Kong".

BEST SCENIC DESIGN OF A PLAY:

  • “The Ferryman” -Rob Howell (5 noms and 1 win for scenic design)
  • "Gary A Sequel to Titus Andronicus" -Santo Loquasto (16 noms and 1 win for scenic design)
  • “Ink” - Bunny Christie (2nd nom, 1 win)
  • "Network" -Jan Versweyveld (2nd nom for scenic design)
  • “To Kill a Mockingbird” - Miriam Buether (2nd nom)

You'll know Santo Loquasto from his film work. The 74 year old does costume and set design for Broadway and mostly production design for the movies. He's been nominated for 3 Oscars (2 for production design and 1 for costume design -- all for Woody Allen pictures)

 

BEST SCENIC DESIGN OF A MUSICAL:

  • “Aint Too Proud” - Robert Brill & Peter Nigrini
  • "Beetlejuice" - David Korns
  • “Hadestown” - Rachel Hauck
  • "King Kong" - Peter England
  • "Oklahoma!" - Laura Jellinek 

BEST COSTUME DESIGN OF A PLAY:

Gary: A Sequel to Titus Adronicus

  • "Bernhardt/Hamlet" - Toni-Leslie James (3rd nom)
  • “The Ferryman” - Rob Howell (3rd nom for costume design. Has a Tony for Set Design)
  • "Gary A Sequel to Titus Andronicus" -Ann Roth (11 noms, 1 win)
  • “To Kill a Mockingbird” -Ann Roth (11 noms, 1 win)
  • "Torch Song" * - Clint Ramos (3rd nom, 1 win)

A DOUBLE NOMINATION for 87 year old Ann Roth who you'll know as Meryl Streep's preferred costume designer. Roth most recently gave Streep that glorious gold caftan in The Post. She won her Oscar for The English Patient (1996) and her Tony for The Nance (2013) starring Gary Lane. She's also been Emmy nominated but never won there.

BEST COSTUME DESIGN OF A MUSICAL:

  • “Aint Too Proud” -Paul Tazewell (7th nom, 1 win)
  • "Beetlejuice" -William Ivey Long (17 noms, 6 wins)
  • "The Cher Show" -Bob Mackie (FIRST NOMINATION)
  • “Hadestown” - Michael Krass (4th nom)
  • “Tootsie” - William Ivey Long (17 noms, 6 wins)

Sad to see "Head Over Heels" miss here but it's SO fun that Bob Mackie gets a nomination for a musical in which an actor (Michael Beresse) actually plays him! That has to be a first for a costume designer. 

BEST LIGHTING DESIGN OF A PLAY:

  • “The Ferryman”- Peter Mumford
  • "Gary A Sequel to Titus Andronicus" - Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer
  • “Ink”-Neil Austin
  • "Network" - Jan Versweyveld & Tal Yarden
  • “To Kill a Mockingbird” - Jennifer Tipton 

BEST LIGHTING DESIGN OF A MUSICAL:

  • “Aint Too Proud” - Howell Binkley
  • "Beetlejuice" - Kenneth Posner & Peter Nigrini
  • "The Cher Show" -Kevin Adams
  • “Hadestown” -Bradley King
  • "King Kong" - Peter Mumford

BEST SOUND DESIGN OF A PLAY:

 Ink

  • "Choir Boy" - Fitz Patton
  • "The Ferryman" - Nick Powell
  • "Ink" - Adam Cork
  • "Network" - Eric Sleichim
  • "To Kill a Mockingbird" - Scott Lehrer 

BEST SOUND DESIGN OF A MUSICAL

  • "Aint Too Proud" - Steve Canyon Kennedy
  • "Beetlejuice" -Peter Hylenski
  • "Hadestown" - Nevin Steinberg & Jessica Paz
  • "King Kong" - Peter Hylenski
  • "Oklahoma!" - Drew Levy

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY:

Choir Boy, a rare play to get a "Choreography" nomination

  • “Aint Too Proud” - Sergio Trujillo (2nd nom)
  • "Choir Boy" - Camille A Brown (1st nom)
  • “Hadestown” - David Neuman (1st nom)
  • "Kiss Me Kate"-Warren Carlyle (2nd nom and 1 win in this category)
  • “Tootsie” - Denis Jones (2nd nom)

Disappointed that "Head Over Heels" missed here. And no "The Cher Show" either? "Tootsie" and "Choir Boy" feel a little surprising here as one is not a dance musical and the other is a play (albeit a play with some musical numbers).

BEST ORCHESTRATIONS:

  • “Aint Too Proud” - Harold Wheeler
  • “Hadestown” - Michael Chorney & Todd Sickafoose
  • "Kiss Me Kate" - Larry Hochman
  • "Oklahoma!" - Daniel Kluger
  • “Tootsie” - Simon Hale

 

NON COMPETITIVE CATEGORIES

Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre:

Rosemary Harris, actress
Terence McNally
, playwright
Harold Wheeler 

Special Tony Award

Marin Mazzie (posthumous honor for her advocacy and leadership within the theatre community for women's health issues and organizations)
Sonny Tilders & Creature Technology Company (puppetry of King Kong
Jason Michael Webb (for his vocal arrangements for Choir Boy

Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award:
Judith Light

Regional Theatre Tony Award
TheatreWorks Silicon Valley

Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre:
Broadway Inspirational Voices - Michael McElroy, Founder
Peter Entin
FDNY Engine 54, Ladder 4, Battalion 9
Joseph Blakely Forbes 

 

three painful notes-to-go...

OUCH THAT HURTS
Plays Hillary and Clinton and King Lear, and the musical Be More Chill each received only one nomination and had reason to hope for at least a couple of more. 

COMPLETE SHUTOUTS!
The eligible Broadway productions among musicals that received not a single nominatio this year were Getting the Band Back Together, Head Over Heels, and Pretty Woman. Head Over Heels surely deserved a few nods so we're quite unhappy about that one. As for the plays, True West (starring Ethan Hawke),  American Son (starring Kerry Washington), The Lifespan of a Fact (starring Cherry Jones and Daniel Radcliffe), The Nap, Mike Birbiglia's The New One, and Straight White Men all came up completely empty. 

WHAT WILL ANNOUNCE A CLOSING NOTICE FIRST?
Generally after the Tony nominations shows that didn't do well start dropping like flies but this year most of the shows that were completely shut out have already closed, so what will fall first? Most of the plays already have summer closing dates so they're immune to this question. Care to place a bet? Perhaps the lukewarm Tony response will be most damaging to Be More Chill and The Cher Show

 

 

The 73rd annual Tony Awards will be broadcast on CBS on Sunday June 9th, 2019. Tony winner James Corden returns to hosting duties this year. He previously hosted in 2016.

 

 

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Reader Comments (23)

The Mockingbird snub in Best Play was surely an intentional slight to Scott Rudin, who earned a great deal of ire for his decision to have his lawyers intimidate dozens of community theaters around the country into cancelling their productions of the *other* play adaptation of Mockingbird. It was a bad look and a rare occasion in which Rudin lost his tight control of the press for one of his shows.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterAustin

Surprised that Glenda Jackson didn't get a nomination in a category that accommodated 6 nominees. I think Elaine May will get this award. Pleasantly surprised to see one of my favorites Janet McTeer whose theatre appearances I always make sure to watch, even in the rather insipid adaptation of Les Liaisons Dangereuses a couple years back. She's amazing in Bernhardt/Hamlet but the play itself was little dull. And Laurie Metcalf is also in the mix, so that's always great in our household. Miscast or not, I love Kelli O'Hara -- so in love with you am I (it's also on youtube).

Wow, I'm surprised at the lack of nods for Be More Chill. It's quite a mixed bag but the ones that worked onstage, worked for me.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterOwl

Snubbing Glenda Jackson is so disrespectful. Shame.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

If I were Glenda Jackson I would leave this country tonight.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterReagan

BOB MACKIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMe

No Joan Allen or Mercedes Ruehl? No dice.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew Carden

Adam Driver following up an Oscar nom with a Tony nom and maybe, possibly getting another Oscar nom? He's on a roll! Now if only he'd start winning these awards instead of just getting nominated...

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I hope she pits on the Tony comitee on her way out!

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

"...it's really difficult to star in two Broadway shows in one season given that you can only do one show a night." Tell that to Cynthia Nixon, who famously shuttled between Broadway theaters to perform in Hurlyburly and The Real Thing, night after night. ;-)

Shocked about Glenda Jackson, as well as that Annette Bening made the cut, but not Tracy Letts. Wow.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMareko

I think Anna Deavere Smith wrote herself to a nomination at the 92-93 awards.

Sad for Glenda Jackson, happy for Terrell Alvin McCraney!

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterStephenM

Glenda missing is not a shock considering her production was destroyed by critics. May will win, but I hope Shreck pulls it off. Jeremy Pope deserves this moment. He's been bubbling under for a while; he'll only go up from here. "Choir Boy" must have improved considerably for it to receive all this love. Adam Driver needs to vary his performances in style before I start handing him awards. For all his talent, he can play same notes too often and just louder.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterHoneybee

They did Glenda so dirty!!! Damn.

Miss Rudin fully earned that reprimand. It was as big a "statement" the nominating committee has ever made.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterDorian

Do you think maybe Glenda didn't get nominated because King Lear is an insufferable play that has been overdone? I mean, the entire second half is just awful. I love me some Glenda. And goodness knows she was good. But the play is sooooo boring. Not even Glenda could elevate the material.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterCharlieG

I can't speak to this production, but "King Lear" is a singular masterpiece and nothing "boring" about it whatsoever.

I'm assuming Ruth Wilson played Cordelia?

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterLesley

@ Lesley: Ruth has a double role as Cordelia and the Fool, hence the nomination I suspect. She definitely goes big for the Fool parts, but nonetheless I am VERY surprised to see her make it in here over Jane Houdyshell.

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJ.B.

What Stephen M said - Deveare Smith did it for Twilight: Los Angeles 1992. Lynn Redgrave also did it the year prior - wrote herself a Tony nominated role - but wasn't nominated for best play

Benjamin Walker finally gets nominated for a Tony!

April 30, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterArkaan

No matter how Hollywood Broadway has become, the fact Elaine May is the frontrunner for Best Actress thrills me. The film industry would never.

May 1, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterPhilip H.

Glenda Jackson would be a great Violet Weston in August:Osage County and she would get a second Tony. Not that she would care.

May 1, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJames T

It's disappointing that Glenda wasn't nominated but I don't think accolades mean that much to her. From hearing her speak it's the work that matters.

May 1, 2019 | Unregistered Commenterjoel6

I feel like the person who wakes up on Oscar nominations morning and realizes that he hasn't seen any of the Best Picture nominees...

May 1, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

Evan -- right? There have definitely been years even living here in NYC where that's happened to me. I've never had a year where I've seen all the major nominees, mostly because it's too expensive to do that.

May 1, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Last time no Oscar winner in the performance categories: 2008!

May 1, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMatty

Matty -- whoa. interesting trivia but i see it. Nobody here has won an Oscar except Glenda Jackson who was (surprise) shut out so nobody here.

May 1, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

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