Tuesday, May 05, 2009

And The 2008-09 Tony Nominations Go To...

And The 2008-09 Tony Nominlations Go To...

Early today, the nominations for the American Theatre Wing’s 63rd annual Tony Awards ceremonies were announced by Cynthia Nixon and Lin-Manuel Miranda.

British import and box office champ Billy Elliot - The Musical earned a whopping 15 nominations and is heavily favored to win the coveted Best Musical Tony. But Off-Broadway-cum-Great White Way tuner next to normal isn't far behind with 11 nods.

Among new plays, another British import God Of Carnage appears to be the early favorite for Best Play with 6 nominations.

The big surprise may be the complete lack of nominations for the revivals of All My Sons and The Seagull -- critical darlings from last fall (I didn't care much for either) -- and the meager nods for late last year's much talked about revival of Equus.

My own personal favorite for Best Revival of a Play would have been Speed-The-Plow, but alas, it was overlooked, as were [title of show] and 13 in the category of Best Musical.

Here are the 2008-09 Tony Nominees:

Best Play
Dividing The Estate - Horton Foote, Author
God Of Carnage - Yasmine Reza, Author
reasons to be pretty - Neil LaBute, Author
33 Variations - Moises Kaufman, Author

Best Musical
Billy Elliot - The Musical
next to normal
Rock Of Ages
Shrek The Musical

Best Book of a Musical
Billy Elliot - The Musical - Lee Hall
next to normal - Brian Yorkey
Shrek The Musical - David Lindsay-Abaire
[title of show] - Hunter Bell

Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre
Billy Elliot - The Musical - Music: Elton John, Lyrics: Lee Hall
next to normal - Music: Tom Kitt, Lyrics: Brian Yorkey
9 To 5 -The Musical - Music & Lyrics: Dolly Parton
Shrek The Musical - Music: Jeanine Tesori, Lyrics: David Lindsay-Abaire

Best Revival of a Play
Joe Turner's Come And Gone
Mary Stuart
The Norman Conquests
Waiting For Godot

Best Revival of a Musical
Guys And Dolls
Pal Joey
West Side Story

Best Special Theatrical Event
Liza's At The Palace
Slava's Snowshow
Soul Of Shaolin
You're Welcome America. A Final Night With George W Bush

Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play
Jeff Daniels - God Of Carnage
Raúl Esparza - Speed-The-Plow
James Gandolfini - God Of Carnage
Geoffrey Rush - Exit The King
Thomas Sadoski - reasons to be pretty

Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play
Hope Davis - God Of Carnage
Jane Fonda - 33 Variations
Marcia Gay Harden - God Of Carnage
Janet McTeer - Mary Stuart
Harriet Walter - Mary Stuart

Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical
David Alvarez, Trent Kowalik, and Kiril Kulish - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Gavin Creel - Hair
Brian d'Arcy James - Shrek The Musical
Constantine Maroulis - Rock Of Ages
J. Robert Spencer - next to normal

Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical
Stockard Channing - Pal Joey
Sutton Foster - Shrek The Musical
Allison Janney - 9 To 5 - The Musical
Alice Ripley - next to normal
Josefina Scaglione - West Side Story

Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play
John Glover - Waiting For Godot
Zach Grenier - 33 Variations
Stephen Mangan - The Norman Conquests
Paul Ritter - The Norman Conquests
Roger Robinson - Joe Turner's Come And Gone

Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play
Hallie Foote - Dividing The Estate
Jessica Hynes - The Norman Conquests
Marin Ireland - reasons to be pretty
Angela Lansbury - Blithe Spirit
Amanda Root - The Norman Conquests

Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical
David Bologna - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Gregory Jbara - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Marc Kudisch - 9 To 5 - The Musical
Christopher Sieber - Shrek The Musical
Will Swenson - Hair

Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical
Jennifer Damiano - next to normal
Haydn Gwynne - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Karen Olivo - West Side Story
Martha Plimpton- Pal Joey
Carole Shelley - Billy Elliot - The Musical

Best Scenic Design of a Musical
Robert Brill - Guys And Dolls
Ian MacNeil - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Scott Pask - Pal Joey
Mark Wendland - next to normal

Best Scenic Design of a Play
Dale Ferguson - Exit The King
Rob Howell - The Norman Conquests
Derek McLane - 33 Variations
Michael Yeargan - Joe Turner's Come And Gone

Best Costume Design of a Play
Dale Ferguson - Exit The King
Jane Greenwood - Waiting For Godot
Martin Pakledinaz - Blithe Spirit
Anthony Ward - Mary Stuart

Best Costume Design of a Musical
Gregory Gale - Rock Of Ages
Nicky Gillibrand - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Tim Hatley - Shrek The Musical
Michael McDonald - Hair

Best Lighting Design of a Play
David Hersey - Equus
David Lander - 33 Variations
Brian MacDevitt - Joe Turner's Come And Gone
Hugh Vanstone - Mary Stuart

Best Lighting Design of a Musical
Kevin Adams - Hair
Kevin Adams - next to normal
Howell Binkley - West Side Story
Rick Fisher - Billy Elliot - The Musical

Best Sound Design of a Play
Paul Arditti - Mary Stuart
Gregory Clarke - Equus
Russell Goldsmith - Exit The King
Scott Lehrer and Leon Rothenberg - Joe Turner's Come And Gone

Best Sound Design of a Musical
Acme Sound Partners - Hair
Paul Arditti - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Peter Hylenski - Rock Of Ages
Brian Ronan - next to normal

Best Direction of a Play
Phyllida Lloyd - Mary Stuart
Bartlett Sher - Joe Turner's Come And Gone
Matthew Warchus - God Of Carnage
Matthew Warchus - The Norman Conquests

Best Direction of a Musical
Stephen Daldry - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Michael Greif - next to normal
Kristin Hanggi - Rock Of Ages
Diane Paulus - Hair

Best Choreography
Karole Armitage - Hair
Andy Blankenbuehler - 9 To 5 - The Musical
Peter Darling - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Randy Skinner - Irving Berlin's White Christmas

Best Orchestrations
Larry Blank- Irving Berlin's White Christmas
Martin Koch - Billy Elliot - The Musical
Michael Starobin and Tom Kitt - next to normal
Danny Troob and John Clancy - Shrek The Musical

To be honest, there are too many nominated shows I have yet to see that the nods have left me a bit bewildered. Although there are plenty of stagings I've already seen that to date may have gone unreviewed, there are others that I will at least see prior to the Tonys, thankfully. But there are those -- including Tony-nominated efforts -- I'm not likely to see prior to the Tony Awards, if at all.

Unlike last year when I saw every nominated Broadway production, my plans to keep up during the 2008-09 Theatrical Season were foiled by three significant factors:
    (1) The bad economy, meaning I simply was not willing to pay to see every single musical or play (yes, I pay my own way);
    (2) Too many shows opening at the end of the season in a proverbial clusterf***, well, you know what I mean; and
    (3) A very difficult year of working overtime ensuring that my day job was secure -- in this economy, we have to protect our livelihoods, right?!
    So, dear readers, what do you think of the nominations?

    This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).

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    At 05 May, 2009, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hey mate we need to debrief on the state of play in the arts more generally and in broadway in particular. It's a really rocky road here with things up and down across the board. The Oz production of Billie Elliot is doing well but on the flipside, they are discounting Wicked tix here massively. Jersey Boys is opening in a couple of weeks and I understand it's also doing well.

    Hope life is treating you good and let's catch up soon.

    Wayne (from Oz)

    At 05 May, 2009, Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

    Hope you're planning to see August: Osage County as produced by the Melbourne Theatre Company. Catch you son, mate!

    At 05 May, 2009, Anonymous Chris Caggiano said...

    "A very difficult year of working overtime ensuring that my day job was secure..."

    I hear ya, honey. Oh, *LORD* do I hear ya...

    Thanks again for organizing Esther's birthday event. It meant so much to her, and you are a very sweet man for putting it all together.

    Much love,


    At 06 May, 2009, Blogger Esther said...

    Hey Steve,

    I think the cast changes probably sunk Speed-the-Plow. Although I'm very happy Raul Esparza got a nomination. I really thought Daniel Radcliffe and Anna Camp might have gotten nods for Equus, too. They were both terrific.

    I was happy to see Hallie Foote and Haydn Gwynne recognized, too. Along with Raul Esparza, they were definitely three of my favorite performances out of everything I saw last fall.

    I'm also disappointed that 13 was shut out. I really had a great time at that one. I liked Jason Robert Brown's score, Christopher Gattelli's choreography. I thought the story was funny and sweet.


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