2015-2016 Tony Awards

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FilmFan720
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Re: 2015-2016 Tony Awards

Postby FilmFan720 » Fri May 13, 2016 10:52 am

Question for those of you who know better than I: At nine minutes of stage time, is Jonathan Groff the shortest Tony-nominated performance ever? Or close to it?
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Re: 2015-2016 Tony Awards

Postby Mister Tee » Wed May 04, 2016 7:56 pm

There have been many many African-American Tony nominees over the years, largely because, starting back in the 70s, there was a conscious effort by NY producers to cultivate a black middle-class theatre-going audience -- starting with musicals like Your Arms Too Short to Box with God or Bubbling Brown Sugar, and even the occasional straight play like For Colored Girls... And because, as OscarGuy says, the pool of candidates under, say, best musical, oftentimes was fairly shallow, many of these virtually-forgotten shows yielded multiple nominations for cast members.

There's also been a significant effort, begun off-Broadway and at Joe Papp's Public Theatre, to encourage non-traditional casting -- a concept that perhaps reaches its apex in Hamilton. I'd argue that this is a far easier thing to bring off in a theatre piece, where artifice is part and parcel of the event, as opposed to in a film, where we expect a level of realism/verisimilitude that would make a black man playing a founding father jarring.

I've seen only two of this year's nominated efforts -- King Charles II and Eclipsed -- so I'm watching most of this year's race from afar.

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Re: 2015-2016 Tony Awards

Postby OscarGuy » Tue May 03, 2016 10:02 pm

Let's also be fair that there are significantly fewer eligible achievements for the Tony Awards and a much higher proportion of them are diverse achievements. The Academy has a much larger pool to choose from and they aren't very diverse selections. This whole OscarsSoWhite thing is idiotic. The issue isn't the Academy, but the studios who produce the stuff they have available to consider. If there isn't a lot of high quality diverse projects to recognize, how are they supposed to without making it feel like charity?
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Re: 2015-2016 Tony Awards

Postby The Original BJ » Tue May 03, 2016 8:07 pm

Okri wrote:
The Original BJ wrote:The second major story is that, following a year in which the Oscars faced major cultural backlash for lack of diversity, the Tonys seem to have lucked into perhaps the most racially diverse set of nominees in their history, buoyed by nominations for Hamilton, Shuffle Along, The Color Purple, and Eclipsed, and a color-blind cast The Crucible. (The Deaf West production of Spring Awakening probably also deserves citation for diversity of a different kind.) In fact, on the Musical side, there's the possibility that Hamilton director Thomas Kail might be the ONLY major white victor, given Miranda's certain victories in Book and Score, and the possibility of an all-black acting slate with Odom, Erivo, Diggs or Jackson, and Goldsberry or Brooks, all of whom are considered highly competitive in their races.


Is it really luck, though? I don't think it is, to be frank.


I debated using that word, actually, but I would say it's luck in a cosmic sense -- last year's Tony slate was FAR more white, with really only The King and I providing much color. There's certainly a sense of good timing that allowed this year's crop of Broadway shows to really make Hollywood movies look bad by comparison.

But, of course, a lot of it is not luck, but a more concerted effort by the theatrical community to embrace a more diverse set of artists and stories, so that even when performers as high-profile as Audra McDonald and Jennifer Hudson DON'T get nominated (and shows like Allegiance get blanked completely) it's tough for anyone to legitimately make the argument that racism kept them out, given the exciting number of black, Hispanic, and Asian actors who were cited.

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Re: 2015-2016 Tony Awards

Postby Okri » Tue May 03, 2016 7:17 pm

The Original BJ wrote:The second major story is that, following a year in which the Oscars faced major cultural backlash for lack of diversity, the Tonys seem to have lucked into perhaps the most racially diverse set of nominees in their history, buoyed by nominations for Hamilton, Shuffle Along, The Color Purple, and Eclipsed, and a color-blind cast The Crucible. (The Deaf West production of Spring Awakening probably also deserves citation for diversity of a different kind.) In fact, on the Musical side, there's the possibility that Hamilton director Thomas Kail might be the ONLY major white victor, given Miranda's certain victories in Book and Score, and the possibility of an all-black acting slate with Odom, Erivo, Diggs or Jackson, and Goldsberry or Brooks, all of whom are considered highly competitive in their races.


Is it really luck, though? I don't think it is, to be frank.

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Re: 2015-2016 Tony Awards

Postby Greg » Tue May 03, 2016 3:27 pm

The Original BJ wrote:And then, one last personal reaction... Many years ago I worked with a budding musical theater actress whose resume was quite small at the time, but whose talent definitely was not. Almost immediately, I thought, this girl is going to be a BIG Broadway star one day. That she also happened to be one of the most delightful and generous performers I had ever worked with was icing on the cake. Her name was Megan Hilty, and today she got her first Tony nomination!


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Re: 2015-2016 Tony Awards

Postby The Original BJ » Tue May 03, 2016 2:00 pm

There are two big stories this year, somewhat related.

The first, of course, is that Hamilton broke the record for most nominations for a single show with 16, adding yet another feather in this show's cap which includes phenomenal reviews and grosses, a MacArthur Genius grant for its creator, the Pulitzer Prize, even the preservation of Alexander Hamilton on the American ten-dollar bill! I'm not quite as bursting with euphoria as some are with respect to the show -- dazzling as the lyrics certainly are, it's still just not my kind of music -- but for a show this wildly ambitious and inventive to become this level of a cultural phenomenon is a great victory for its creators, and anyone who values a popular culture where quality and imagination trump crass commercialism.

Of course, such a behemoth in the race will make the musical side of Tony night a pretty predictable affair, though it will be interesting to see just how far the Hamilton sweep goes. I imagine it won't be able to break the record held by The Producers (with 12) for most Tony wins -- Best Actress most certainly is out of the cards for Hamilton, given that Phillipa Soo's role is very small by lead standards. But even tying that record might be tough -- Savion Glover will likely put up a strong fight in Choreography for the dance-heavy Shuffle Along, and Hamilton's minimalist Set Design seems the kind of thing that usually falls to something flashier (though what that might be, I'm not sure).

And then there's the Best Actor/Musical race, which I imagine will be a neck-in-neck competition between Fiddler on the Roof's Danny Burstein, on his sixth nomination without a win for one of the great leading men roles in musical theater, and Hamilton's Leslie Odom, Jr., the most dominant performer in the year's juggernaut. Despite being the face of Hamilton, I think this is one category where Lin-Manuel Miranda stays in his seat -- by even his own admission, he gave the strongest numbers he wrote to his co-star, especially "The Room Where It Happens," probably the biggest crowd-pleaser in the show. (Also, kudos to the Tonys for properly slotting Aaron Burr as a lead role, despite him being the second lead, not the title character, and played by a much less famous actor. We all know how the Oscars would treat that situation.)

The second major story is that, following a year in which the Oscars faced major cultural backlash for lack of diversity, the Tonys seem to have lucked into perhaps the most racially diverse set of nominees in their history, buoyed by nominations for Hamilton, Shuffle Along, The Color Purple, and Eclipsed, and a color-blind cast The Crucible. (The Deaf West production of Spring Awakening probably also deserves citation for diversity of a different kind.) In fact, on the Musical side, there's the possibility that Hamilton director Thomas Kail might be the ONLY major white victor, given Miranda's certain victories in Book and Score, and the possibility of an all-black acting slate with Odom, Erivo, Diggs or Jackson, and Goldsberry or Brooks, all of whom are considered highly competitive in their races.

Given that the nominees for Best Original Score include Steve Martin, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Sara Bareilles, and Lin Manuel-Miranda, Tony producers will decide to have that presented on-air this year, right?

I saw the nominated production of Spring Awakening in its LA incarnation, and found it quite worthy. I'm not a rabid fan of the material -- I've seen the show numerous times (including the original Broadway production), and every time my reaction is similar. I think it's a show full of moments of great power, with ideas that still feel surprisingly relevant given its century-old origins, but with a score that never compels me as much as I wish it would, and a book that isn't always as focused as it could be. This production, though, was probably the best staging of it I've seen, with the added deaf element enhancing the central subject matter about the troubles children and their parents have communicating with each other. Michael Arden -- already a promising musical theater performer -- is definitely a director to watch.

And then, one last personal reaction... Many years ago I worked with a budding musical theater actress whose resume was quite small at the time, but whose talent definitely was not. Almost immediately, I thought, this girl is going to be a BIG Broadway star one day. That she also happened to be one of the most delightful and generous performers I had ever worked with was icing on the cake. Her name was Megan Hilty, and today she got her first Tony nomination!

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2015-2016 Tony Awards

Postby anonymous1980 » Tue May 03, 2016 8:19 am

The nominations:

Best Play

Eclipsed
The Father
The Humans
King Charles III

Best Musical

Hamilton
Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed
Waitress
School of Rock - The Musical
Bright Star

Best Revival of a Play

Arthur Miller's The Crucible
Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge
Blackbird
Long Day's Journey Into Night
Noises Off

Best Revival of a Musical

The Color Purple
Fiddler on the Roof
She Loves Me
Spring Awakening
Dames at Sea

Best Book of a Musical

Bright Star, Steve Martin
Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda
School of Rock—The Musical, Julian Fellowes
Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed, George C. Wolfe

Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre

Bright Star
Music: Steve Martin and Edie Brickell
Lyrics: Edie Brickell

Hamilton
Music & Lyrics: Lin-Manuel Miranda

School of Rock—The Musical
Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber
Lyrics: Glenn Slater

Waitress
Music & Lyrics: Sara Bareilles

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play

Gabriel Byrne, Long Day's Journey Into Night
Jeff Daniels, Blackbird
Frank Langella, The Father
Tim Pigott-Smith, King Charles III
Mark Strong, Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play

Jessica Lange, Long Day's Journey Into Night
Laurie Metcalf, Misery
Lupita Nyong'o, Eclipsed
Sophie Okonedo, Arthur Miller's The Crucible
Michelle Williams, Blackbird

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical

Alex Brightman, School of Rock—The Musical
Danny Burstein, Fiddler on the Roof
Zachary Levi, She Loves Me
Lin-Manuel Miranda, Hamilton
Leslie Odom, Jr., Hamilton

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical

Laura Benanti, She Loves Me
Carmen Cusack, Bright Star
Cynthia Erivo, The Color Purple
Jessie Mueller, Waitress
Phillipa Soo, Hamilton

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play

Reed Birney, The Humans
Bill Camp, Arthur Miller's The Crucible
David Furr, Noises Off
Richard Goulding, King Charles III
Michael Shannon, Long Day's Journey Into Night

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play

Pascale Armand, Eclipsed
Megan Hilty, Noises Off
Jayne Houdyshell, The Humans
Andrea Martin, Noises Off
Saycon Sengbloh, Eclipsed

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical

Daveed Diggs, Hamilton
Brandon Victor Dixon, Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed
Christopher Fitzgerald, Waitress
Jonathan Groff, Hamilton
Christopher Jackson, Hamilton

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical

Danielle Brooks, The Color Purple
Renée Elise Goldsberry, Hamilton
Jane Krakowski, She Loves Me
Jennifer Simard, Disaster!
Adrienne Warren, Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed

Best Scenic Design of a Play

Beowulf Boritt, Thérèse Raquin
Christopher Oram, Hughie
Jan Versweyveld, Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge
David Zinn, The Humans

Best Scenic Design of a Musical

Es Devlin & Finn Ross, American Psycho
David Korins, Hamilton
Santo Loquasto, Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed
David Rockwell, She Loves Me

Best Costume Design of a Play

Jane Greenwood, Long Day's Journey Into Night
Michael Krass, Noises Off
Clint Ramos, Eclipsed
Tom Scutt, King Charles III

Best Costume Design of a Musical

Gregg Barnes, Tuck Everlasting
Jeff Mahshie, She Loves Me
Ann Roth, Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed
Paul Tazewell, Hamilton

Best Lighting Design of a Play

Natasha Katz, Long Day's Journey Into Night
Justin Townsend, The Humans
Jan Versweyveld, Arthur Miller's The Crucible
Jan Versweyveld, Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge

Best Lighting Design of a Musical

Howell Binkley, Hamilton
Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer, Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed
Ben Stanton, Spring Awakening
Justin Townsend, American Psycho

Best Direction of a Play

Rupert Goold, King Charles III
Jonathan Kent, Long Day's Journey Into Night
Joe Mantello, The Humans
Liesl Tommy, Eclipsed
Ivo Van Hove, Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge

Best Direction of a Musical

Michael Arden, Spring Awakening
John Doyle, The Color Purple
Scott Ellis, She Loves Me
Thomas Kail, Hamilton
George C. Wolfe, Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed

Best Choreography

Andy Blankenbuehler, Hamilton
Savion Glover, Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed
Hofesh Shechter, Fiddler on the Roof
Randy Skinner, Dames at Sea
Sergio Trujillo, On Your Feet! The Story of Emilio and Gloria Estefan

Best Orchestrations

August Eriksmoen, Bright Star
Larry Hochman, She Loves Me
Alex Lacamoire, Hamilton
Daryl Waters, Shuffle Along, Or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed

Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre

Sheldon Harnick
Marshall W. Mason

Special Tony Award

National Endowment for the Arts
Miles Wilkin

Regional Theatre Tony Award

Paper Mill Playhouse; Millburn, NJ

Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award

Brian Stokes Mitchell

Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre

Seth Gelblum
Joan Lader
Sally Ann Parsons


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