2019 Tony Nominations

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby FilmFan720 » Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:30 pm

For what it is worth, the Michael Jackson musical was supposed to try out in Chicago this summer, but was already pulled a few months ago and replaced with the Britney Spears show.
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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Reza » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:28 pm

dws1982 wrote:I think Tea at Five would be considered a revival; it's mostly played in regional productions. At any rate, it's a one-woman show, starring Faye Dunaway as Katharine Hepburn.


Now for this I might seriously consider making a trip to New York.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby dws1982 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:45 am

If you were thinking that Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus would be the first post-Tonys casualty, you were right. It was supposed to close soon anyway, but they're going ahead and closing on Sunday.

My non-comprehensive rundown of what's coming up this season:
The Audra McDonald/Michael Shannon revival of Frankie and Johnny at the Clair de Lune; it seems to have gotten good reviews, but it has not done well at the box-office so far. It was a limited run through August, but if the box-office stays low, it may even close before then. Another revival that will be closed long before next season is The Rose Tattoo starring Marisa Tomei--opens in October, closes in December. Take Me Out has also been announced for a fall revival. The oft-revived Glengarry Glen Ross will probably be opening this fall, with an all-female cast, directed by Amy Morton. I don't think casting has been announced but Patti LuPone has indicated that she's involved. (Meryl Streep has also teased a Broadway return in some interviews over the past several months, and some are speculating that she'll be a part of this, but I would expect her to return in more of a star turn, rather than an ensemble piece.) Also oft-revived, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? seems set for another go on Broadway next spring, with Laurie Metcalf and Eddie Izzard(!?!?) in the March and George roles. This will actually be the third time that Glengarry and Woolf have been revived in the same season. I think Tea at Five would be considered a revival; it's mostly played in regional productions. At any rate, it's a one-woman show, starring Faye Dunaway as Katharine Hepburn. There's an acclaimed production of Death of Salesman playing in London with an all-black cast. But I'm not sure if it can transfer--I believe Scott Rudin has the rights to produce it on Broadway, hoping to do a revival with Laurie Metcalf and Nathan Lane. (Come to think of it, Lane might make an interesting George in Virginia Woolf if Izzard doesn't work out.) There's a show called Blue that I've seen mentioned--I'm guessing this is the Charles Randolph-Wright play that played, I think, off-Broadway around 2001.

Original Plays: The Inheritance seems to be one of the big ones; it's been compared to Angels in America, both due to theme and length--it plays in two parts, three hours each. No word on whether or not the cast from London will do it on Broadway--much of the cast is American so it shouldn't be an issue with Equity. But after several months of doing it in London, it's possible that they're simply exhausted. Also from London and also on the long side, The Lehman Trilogy will almost definitely be on Broadway soon. It tells the history of American capitalism through the story of the Lehman family. Also from England is The Height of the Storm starring Eileen Atkins and Jonathan Pryce. The summary on Wikipedia ("a couple looking back at 50 years of marriage, and realising their relationship may not be as perfect as they expected"), along with Pryce's presence, give major flashbacks to The Wife, but Atkins did get an Olivier nomination for her performance, so it might be worth a look. Although, for a play that isn't driven by star power, and would seem to be dependent on awards recognition to drive box-office success, opening in September seems like an error. Mary-Louise Parker will be returning to Broadway in the lead role in The Sound Inside--opens in the fall at Studio 54, so will most likely be gone by spring and something else will be in there. Seawall/A Life is Jake Gyllenhaal's return to Broadway--I think this is a double bill of two short solo plays (Jake Gyllenhaal stars in one, Tom Sturridge stars in one).

Musical Revivals: West Side Story starts previews in December. It's directed by Ivo Van Hove, so I'm sure we can expect something different. Company's highly-regarded London production is supposedly going to transfer as well--this, like the Glengarry revival, has some gender-flipped casting including in the Bobby role, and in the Amy role (and possibly others). Titanic is reportedly going to be revived as well--I think it may be one of those cases where the show has been significantly re-imagined from the original production which, despite several Tony wins, still kind of had the aura of disappointment. Scott Rudin is wanting to produce a revival of The Music Man with Hugh Jackman, but the timing will obviously depend on Jackman's film schedule. The Dreamgirls revival seems to have been expected every season for the last five. Maybe this is the year for it. The Secret Garden is another that seems to have been "coming this season" for several seasons now.

Original Musicals: Of course, the jukebox musical is still alive and strong. This season has Tina, about Tina Turner, and Don't Stop Til You Get Enough, about Michael Jackson--somehow I doubt that one ends up happening. I just don't think that people are going to be interested in a bio-musical endorsed by the Jackson estate, given the controversy around him. There are a few looking to come to Broadway that are not jukebox musicals, but their scores are almost entirely pre-existing music: Jagged Little Pill and Moulin Rouge are definites for this season, and Girl From the North Country is a possibility. And also, God help us, Once Upon a One More Time, scored to the music of Britney Spears. As far as original scores go: Diana, a bio-musical of Princess Diana, which is reportedly not good, but will probably be looking to come to Broadway; The Secret Life of Bees opens tonight off-Broadway, and would probably transfer if it goes well enough. There's SIX, which I think has an original score, which tells the story of the six wives of Henry VIII, albeit presented as a modern pop revue, which each of the wives taking turns singing songs about how horrible Henry was to them. There's a stage adaptation of Magic Mike kicking around as well--not sure if it uses original music or not. Marie is something to do with Paris ballet, and has already played an out-of-town tryout. There's a Some Like It Hot musical expected on Broadway at some point in the near future, not sure if it's this season or not. The Devil Wears Prada is another that could show up, or could be awhile.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby OscarGuy » Mon Jun 10, 2019 6:10 pm

I didn't come in until late as I forgot it was on. As such, I missed most of the show. I saw the numbers from Choir Boy (it's a play?), Hadestown, Cher, and Kiss Me Kate. The Kiss Me Kate number was dreadful. I was fascinated by the one from Hadestown. The Choir Boy wasn't bad and the Cher one was off and I wonder if the show actually has all three actresses out for a final number, because that number itself did not work at all.
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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby dws1982 » Mon Jun 10, 2019 6:07 pm

Except for the 2008 Tonys, where I had been to New York and seen two of the plays, I always watch from a position of extreme ignorance.

Not a great show. The jokes seem recycled from every other Tony's I've seen: Everyone who's watching is gay--hilarious! Broadway tickets are expensive! "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" was a very WTF choice for an in memoriam segment. ("Circle of Life" wouldn't have been appropriate, exactly, but would've made more sense.) Did not at all care for Cynthia Erivo's performance of it either--it was full of meaningless vocal runs and high notes, like an eager-to-impress American Idol contestant.

Based on the production numbers, Hadestown and Oklahoma looked like the most interesting of the musicals. BroadwayWorld tells me that Ain't Too Proud is playing at 99.8% capacity, and the average ticket price last week was $136. Does it do something really unique with the Temptations songs that has people flocking to see it? (If so, the number last night didn't showcase it.) I just can't imagine paying out that kind of money to see a story I could read on Wikipedia, and a soundtrack I can get off of Apple Music. If it uses the songs as part of a different story, that might be another matter.

Gotta say, I'm kind of ready for Bryan Cranston's moment to pass. I was a fan of Breaking Bad in real time, but I'm about ready to rate its cultural influence as a net negative: Not only do we have tons of other shows trying to rip it off, we're also subjected to what has amounted to a half-decade victory lap for Cranston. I haven't seen his stage work, but I have seen him in several movies, and I think he always does a lot of acting without doing anything particularly interesting--a boring ham. Maybe he's brilliant in Network, I don't know, but based on his speech, I feel like maybe their approach to the material would not be for me.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Mister Tee » Mon Jun 10, 2019 2:08 pm

Weird stat I stumbled across:

It struck me as atypical that both the winning play and musical also won the corresponding directing prizes. So, I went looking to see the last time it had happened, and found...well, it was just last year.

But I went further, and found my instinct wasn't entirely wrong: the directing prize on each side of the ledger has gone to something other than the best production about 50% of the time over the past few decades.

In fact...here's the weird stat: this is the first time play/director-musical/director have coincided two consecutive years since 1987/88. So, it's a pretty unusual occurrence, and especially unlikely given how low-key a favorite Band's Visit was last year and how competitive this year's best musical field was.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Big Magilla » Mon Jun 10, 2019 3:30 am

I found the opening number instantly forgettable and the comedic filler crass and unnecessary with the belabored scene in the men's room and the nonsense with Corden's father on his cell phone the worst. And why does Tina Fey have to be the first presenter at every awards show from the Emmys to the Oscars to the Tonys? Has she even been funny since she stopped impersonating Sarah Palin?

On the other hand, I actually liked Bryan Cranston's acceptance speech. I thought he, Andre De Shields, Elaine May and Mart Crowley gave the best of the evening, though it might have been nice to have seen more of the acceptance speeches of lifetime achievement winners Rosemary Harris, Terrence McNally and Harold Wheeler. Bertie Carvel was also good, quick and to the point. Santino Fontana, Stephanie J. Block, Celia Keenan-Bolger and Ali Stroker were fine but they all had the air of "I always wanted to be somebody, and now I am" about them.

Jez Butterworth may be a great playwright, and The Ferryman a great play, but was it necessary to say "I'm going to ignore what's on the teleprompter and talk about my wife" instead of just ignoring the teleprompter and talking about his wife?

As to the production numbers, Hadestown looked great. Tootsie looked like fun. Oklahoma! looked better than I expected it to.

On the other hand, Beetlejiuce started out great with "Day-O' but the original music and the very annoying Alex Brightman were big turn-offs for me. The extended scene from Ain't Too Proud hardly got to the meat of the production. The best thing about The Prom is Beth Leavel and we saw none of her in the two scenes they showed. "Too Darn Hot" is far from the best song Cole Porter wrote for Kiss Me, Kate, and should have been retired from exhibition after Ann Miller did the definitive version in the 1953 film.

I must have dozed off during the number from The Cher Show because I have no recollection of seeing it, though I do recall seeing Bob Mackie winning for his costumes, but was that live or a clip from an earlier presentation?

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Mister Tee » Sun Jun 09, 2019 11:22 pm

I feel like if I dropped a penny in here I'd hear echoes for an hour. This board is a ghost town.

Since most of my predictions from the other day turned out spot on, I guess you'd have to call this a hugely predictable year. But, maybe because I'd (for once) seen shows and emotionally invested in them, I remained a bit more in suspense, especially on the musical side. Hadestown was clearly on a run from the early going, and its 8 ultimate wins are a very strong showing (diminished only by proximity to The Band's Visit's freakish 10 last year). But, having lived through the Two Gentlemen of Verona upset (after Follies had amassed 7 prizes), I wasn't fully confident of the final outcome till the name was read out. A great win and, alongside The Ferryman's equally deserving victory, as strong a Tony pair as I can remember.

My only disappointment on the night was yet another Bryan Cranston win; his shtik has long since got old for me. Elaine May, on the other hand, was a warming choice, and she didn't disappoint, giving a wonderful and totally off-beat speech. (It remained me of how Pauline Kael once described the jokes in May's movies as "wobbly cannonballs".) The musical top-line winners had been widely predicted, so I suppose they were deserved -- though I saw little evidence of that in the excerpted numbers. (The Cher Show number seemed actively bad -- even worse than I'd imagined the show would be.) But Stephanie J. Block's speech, in particular, was very likable.

By the way, I heard the creators of The Cher Show have explained they gave the show the title they did because, no matter what they called it, people would be asking, have you seen the Cher show?, so they might as well leave it at that.

Andre De Shields was my favorite winner of the night, and his roaring ovation indicated many, like me, saw it as career tribute. Great speech from him, too. Ali Stroker also gave a fine speech, though I have to admit part of me felt the audience outpouring for her had a tinge of affirmative action to it. (I might have felt different had her number wowed me, but it stuck me as a fairly standard I Cain't Say No. In fact, though I have it on good authority from trustworthy friends that this Oklahoma! daringly reinvents the gestalt of the show, there was nothing in what they showed on-air to make that apparent.)

On the subject of musical numbers in general: I thought the Beetlejuice number did the best job of selling its show. (The always-wonderful Catherine O'Hara's intro helped a bit, too.)... The number from Hadestown is an absolute highlight of the show, and offered glimpses of the stagecraft that so excited me, but I wonder if it came off weird to those unfamiliar with the context... The Tootsie number made me wonder what it is that made critics flip for the show, because this song was generic and dull. (I'm told the book is the show's real strength, all the moreso because its jokes aren't just recycled from the film.)... The Prom looked pretty much like what I expected; if you like that sort of thing, it's the sort of thing you'll like... I know Ain't Too Proud is supposed to be a cut above the routine jukebox musical, but there was no hint of that in the Vegas-style number they showcased... And I might as well admit, from the time I first heard Too Darn Hot, back in grade school, I just never much liked the song, so its showcasing didn't sell me on Kiss Me, Kate.

Choreography, by the way, was one of my few big misses in the prediction lane. Along with thinking costumes were what The Ferryman would miss, when I clearly meant to say lighting. Also, Hadestown somewhat overperformed by taking set design over Beetlejuice. I was right, though, in sticking with Bertie Carvel.

As for the show beyond that: Corden is ingratiating enough, but he did maybe too many musical numbers, and was hit and miss with his jokes -- some were quite funny, but others fell flat. Not a bad evening, but nothing to write home about.
Last edited by Mister Tee on Mon Jun 10, 2019 11:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Okri » Sun Jun 09, 2019 11:05 pm

Hadestown, Dear Evan Hansen and The Band's Visit were all nominated against each other at the 2017 Lortel Awards. Kinda nuts.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Mister Tee » Fri Jun 07, 2019 1:57 pm

So, 50 hours or so from now, the awards will be given out.

I have no reason to waver on my prediction of The Ferryman, easily the best play in several seasons. I think the show's heft will carry along Sam Mendes as director, but there's a possibility affection for To Kill a Mockingbird could give the prize to Bart Sher.

Since the nominations, I've had the pleasure of seeing Hadestown, a show I found about 85% sensational (with my usual persnickety reservations). It's got a great, memorable score, the staging is simply world-class, and the cast is terrific. All this was enough to make me go "Wow" at the final curtain, despite my long-expressed aversion to reworkings of already-done material (i.e., the oft-rendered Orpheus myth). I think Rachel Chavkin should be unbeatable for best director, but there's always the chance something breezier or more audience-pleasing could take best musical. The fact that opinion is split -- between Tootsie and The Prom -- over just which audience-favorite that would be, no doubt helps Hadestown, which I hope wins it all.

The top-line musical Tonys seem about certain to go to Santino Fontana and Stephanie J. Block. Elaine May seems a equal certainty for actress in a play, but lead actor is the one up-in-the-air contest of the group. Former winner Cranston could definitely triumph, but I'm thinking never-won Jeff Daniels could top in this battle of the Oscar roles. (Paddy Considine is a small possibility, but his leaving the show months ago hurts his chances.)

Supporting contests are more fluid. I hope long-time Broadway vet Andre De Shields wins for his wonderful master of ceremonies in Hadestown, but he has competition from his deep-voiced co-star Patrick Page and Andy Grotelueschen, who has the Bill Murray part it Tootsie. Supporting actress in a musical could go to Amber Gray of Hadestown, Sarah Stiles of Tootsie, or Ali Stroker in Oklahoma. The latter has, in addition to a much-praised Ado Annie performance, the attention-getting fact of being the first wheelchair-bound Tony nominee, which might put her over the top.

On the play side, Celia Keenan-Bolger seems the near-universal choice for supporting female, but supporting male is unsettled. I'll stick with my initial instinct of Bertie Carvel, but wonder about Benjamin Walker.

The Oklahoma! revival is very divisive, but should probably win over a pale-pastel Kiss Me, Kate. Among play revivals, The Waverly Gallery and The Boys in the Band were the most praised, but there's always a question if closed shows can compete with those still running, given that some Tony voters only see the shows post-nominations. If that's a factor, All My Sons or Burn This might have a shot.

Tootsie should win book of a musical, Hadestown score. Beetleuice might eke out set design, The Cher Show costumes, Hadestown lighting. I don't really have much instinct on the straight-play side, but when in doubt (except for costumes) think Ferryman. Kiss Me, Kate is thought to have the edge for choreography, but maybe not.

Hopefully James Corden makes the evening a lively one.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Big Magilla » Tue May 14, 2019 4:25 pm

The only one of the nominated plays that I have any interest in seeing is The Ferryman.

As usual, I'm more familiar with the musicals thanks to their cast recordings, though few from the current season have yet to be released.

The Prom is a delight whenever the old pros, Beth Leavel, Brooks Ashmanskas and Christopher Sieber are on, the younger performers less so, but it's better than most of the recent shows that have been recorded.

Hadestown sounds like a winner. Looking forward to the release of that one on CD, maybe even seeing it at some point.

I'm generally not a fan of juke box musicals, but Ain't Too Proud has a lot of substance, most of it provided by Derrick Baskin who not only plays Otis Williams, but narrates as well.

The Cher Show is a more typical juke box musical with one redeeming performance, that of Stephanie J. Block who plays the older Cher with warmth and emotion that is lacking in the other performers.

What I've seen of the current revival of Oklahoma! looks hideous. Kiss Me, Kate with Kelli O'Hara and Will Chase would seem to be more my taste, but how many revivals of Kiss Me, Kate do we need and when is Kelli O'Hara going to do something worthwhile that is new?

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Reza » Wed May 01, 2019 12:39 am

Mister Tee wrote:
Reza wrote:I don't recognise the names of at least 90% of the actors in the four supporting categories.

Well, featured actress/play doesn't deserve that kind of dismissal. Ruth Wilson has been everywhere in recent years, notably in Luther and The Affair; Fionnula Flangan should be familiar from The Others and Lost; Julie White is a Tony winner for The Little Dog Laughed; Kristine Nielsen was terrific in Vanya and Sonya and Masha and Spike (and dated my old roommate in college); and Celia Keenan-Bolger was Laura in the Cherry Jones Glass Menagerie.

As for the others: Bertie Carvel won great acclaim for Matilda (and is probably the favorite here, partially as a result), and Benjamin Walker scored personal successes as the male leads in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and the Scarlett Johansson Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

The musical categories I'll grant you are more obscure...though Andre de Shields and Mary Testa are long-standing New York favorites.


Unfortunately only familiar with Ruth White and Fionnula Flanagan.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Mister Tee » Tue Apr 30, 2019 2:39 pm

Reza wrote:I don't recognise the names of at least 90% of the actors in the four supporting categories.

Well, featured actress/play doesn't deserve that kind of dismissal. Ruth Wilson has been everywhere in recent years, notably in Luther and The Affair; Fionnula Flangan should be familiar from The Others and Lost; Julie White is a Tony winner for The Little Dog Laughed; Kristine Nielsen was terrific in Vanya and Sonya and Masha and Spike (and dated my old roommate in college); and Celia Keenan-Bolger was Laura in the Cherry Jones Glass Menagerie.

As for the others: Bertie Carvel won great acclaim for Matilda (and is probably the favorite here, partially as a result), and Benjamin Walker scored personal successes as the male leads in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and the Scarlett Johansson Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

The musical categories I'll grant you are more obscure...though Andre de Shields and Mary Testa are long-standing New York favorites.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 30, 2019 2:22 pm

I don't recognise the names of at least 90% of the actors in the four supporting categories.

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Re: 2019 Tony Nominations

Postby Mister Tee » Tue Apr 30, 2019 12:36 pm

Thoughts on first glance:

The Ferryman is a wonderful play -- best thing I've seen in several years -- and should be a easy winner for play and director. (Mendes' non-Broadway production of The Lehman Trilogy will provide extra credit points.)

The nominating committee evidently decided Network and To Kill a Mockingbird weren't REALLY new plays -- citing elements, but not the overall production.

The overall negative response to King Lear blocked out Glenda Jackson despite personal raves. Ruth Wilson, hot off her PBS grandmother chronicle, was the only nominee from the production.

Best actress is a super-strong category even without Jackson. Elaine May is presumably the sentimental (as well as critical) choice, but in many a year, Heidi Shreck would be a shoo-in.

Best actor in a play seems a real toss-up.

I'd spent much of the season thinking The Prom would be the comfort-food choice for best musical, but Tootsie shocked me by getting very strong reviews. (A friendh ad seen it during its Chicago tryout and thought nothing of it.) The face-off with Hadestown seems a classic art show vs. audience show, and, given recent tendencies (Fun Home over An American in Paris and Something Rotten, Dear Evan Hansen over Come from Away, The Band's Visit uber alles), I wouldn't bet against Hadestown.

Santino Fonana, however, seems the clear favorite for lead actor in a musical. And someone will win best actress.


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