This year’s celebration of the best of the American stage is not big on originality or high-profile productions from NYC
Tony awards nominees a little off broadway
There seemed a distinct lack of genuinely original content among the musical nominees for this year’s Tony Awards, which celebrate the best in Broadway theatre, when nominations were announced on Tuesday evening.
The two-most nominated shows, Mean Girls, based on the Tina Fey-penned 2004 movie that starred Lindsey Lohan, Rachel McAdams and Fey herself, and SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, from the long-running animated TV show, earned a dozen nominations each, including Best Musical.
The Best Musical category itself, meanwhile, didn’t feature a single entirely original idea, with the other nominees being Frozen, adapted from the much-loved Disney animation, and The Band’s Visit, based on Eran Kolirin’s 2007 movie, which was refused as Israel’s entry to the Best Foreign Language Film nomination on account of being mostly in English.
Best Play fared better for original content – all the nominated plays were original, rather than adaptations of existing works, including Harry Potter and The Cursed Child, a new, two-part work co-written by J K Rowling. What was a little surprising in this category this year, however, was that not a single nominee premiered on Broadway, or even off-Broadway, with three of this year’s nominees (The Children, Farinelli and the King and Harry Potter...) debuting in London, and the other two (Junk and Latin History for Morons) in California. Is there a lack of high quality work from the hotbed of US theatre?
Elsewhere, there were nominations of revivals of Eugene O’Neill’s classic The Iceman Cometh and Lerner and Loewe’s My Fair Lady, and nods for Hollywood favourites taking to the stage including Mark Rylance (Farinelli and the King), Denzel Washington (The Iceman Cometh), Andrew Garfield (Angels of America), Glenda Jackson (Three Tall Women) and Amy Schumer (Meteor Shower).
One man who won’t be taking home a competitive award this year is Bruce Springsteen. The songwriter didn’t invite the Tony judges to his “once-in-a-lifetime” one-man show on Broadway last year, but he will be presented with a Special Achievement Award for his efforts. This year’s awards take place on June 10.
Farinelli and The King
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Latin History for Morons
The Band’s Visit
SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical
Best Revival of a Play
Angels in America
Three Tall Women
The Iceman Cometh
Best Revival of a Musical
My Fair Lady
Once On This Island
Best Actor (Play)
Andrew Garfield, Angels in America
Tom Hollander, Travesties
Jamie Parker, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,
Mark Rylance, Farinelli and The King
Denzel Washington, The Iceman Cometh
Best Actress (Play)
Glenda Jackson, Three Tall Women
Condola Rashad, Saint Joan
Lauren Ridloff, Children of a Lesser God
Amy Schumer, Meteor
Best Actor (Musical)
Harry Hadden-Paton, My Fair Lady
Joshua Henry, Carousel
Tony Shalhoub, The Band’s Visit
Ethan Slater, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical
Best Actress (Musical)
Lauren Ambrose, My Fair Lady
Hailey Kilgore, Once On This Island
LaChanze, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical
Katrina Lenk, The Band’s Visit
Taylor Louderman, Mean Girls
Jessie Mueller, Carousel
Best Design of a Play
Miriam Beuther, Three Tall Women
Jonathan Fenson, Farinelli and the King