2015 Tony Nominations

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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby Big Magilla » Sat Jun 06, 2015 12:05 am

Auto complete be damned. Ruthie, not Rutherford.
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby Big Magilla » Sat Jun 06, 2015 12:01 am

I'm traveling so no long dissertation from me, but I will say that the categories to watch are actor in a play and actress in a musical.

Bradley Cooper could be the rare Hollywood star to win a Tony based on the interest he's generated in The Elephant Man and the show's continuing success in London.

Chenoweth and O'Hara are the closest to a horse race as I can remember in their category.

Both musical supporting categories are cliffhangers but Rutherford Ann Miles seems to have momentum.
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby Mister Tee » Fri Jun 05, 2015 7:21 pm

Actually, BJ, if you're looking at the 2004 Best Musical race as harbinger, I'd argue that Caroline: or Change was the Fun Home in that race, with Wicked analogized to An American in Paris and Avenue Q the Something Rotten! of the group. I'd remind everyone that Kevin McCollum was behind the Avenue Q stunner, and he's the producer of Something Rotten! as well.

To back up: the amazement of the past month for me has been the ascendance of American in Paris and the reduction of Something Rotten! in most eyes to also-ran. I commented earlier in this thread that we probably shouldn't count out American, and no one stepped in to say, Damn right, it's the front-runner; at the time, Something Rotten! felt a lot more in the vein of recent Best Musical winners. I guess turning into a sell-out hit changes Tony fortunes.

If it is mostly a face-off between American in Paris and Fun Home, I'd not only find it hard to pick a winner, I'd be uncertain how to divide up best musical and best director. American (unseen by me, as is everything this year) seems likely to be more flamboyantly "staged", which has sometimes led to a best director win (like Bring In Da Noise, Bring in Da Funk over Rent). But sometimes the "serious"/edgy show can win the directing award, as Urinetown did even though Thoroughly Modern Millie took the top prize. In this way, the match-up reminds me of film/director this year between Boyhood and Birdman -- there were good arguments for a split either way, or a straight ticket.

Following the winners at the Drama Desk last weekend, I was reminded tangentially of why I hate all the televised Oscar precursors. I already suspected Alex Sharp would win best actor in a play, but watching him take this frequent-predictor made it just a bit more obvious -- the same way even the more likely Oscar winners, like Arquette or Simmons, become numbingly obvious after you watch them parade through the SAGS, Globes and BAFTA.

Anyway, I agree with BJ that the straight-play side is mostly wrapped up, except for supporting actor -- the lean there seems toward Nathaniel Parker in Wolf Hall, which surprises me, because I've never cared for him as an actor -- and revival. Times critics and most of the Theater Talk panel think Skylight is a shoo-in, but I question that for several reasons: 1) I don't think the play is all that much (based on the earlier Michael Gambon production) and 2) The Elephant Man did win the Drama Desk, and was a high-profile production. (Which could offset Skylight's major advantage, that it's still running,)

I agree with flipp that Ashford is terrific on Masters of Sex, but still I'm surprised to see her such a favorite for this role, which has never struck me as an especially prominent one.

Earlier on, actress in a musical was thought to be a three-way race, including Chita Rivera, but all talk now seems to be down to the two BJ cites, and all handicapping treats the race precisely the way BJ does: it's either a prize for years of service, or one for the best-loved performance. Cerveris might have a slight edge in leading actor, based on Fairchild's new-kid status, but it's close. Both supporting musical races could be affected by multiple-nominations. Supporting actor features two pairs of well-reviewed guys from the same show, who might divide support and enable single-nominee Andy Karl to win. Or not -- I'm rooting for your friend, flipp. And on the ladies' side, most think the triple-split won't hurt (both productions of Nine overcame that handicap), and Judy Kuhn will get an award for BOTH individual performance and years of service. But, if not, Ruthie Ann Miles got pretty wonderful reviews for The King and I.

Even below the line, races seem interesting -- will The King and I or An American in Paris be seen as the prettier show? Of course, maddeningly, these will all happen off the air, so we'll be lucky to even hear about them Sunday.

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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby Greg » Fri Jun 05, 2015 2:49 pm

flipp525 wrote:Some good discussion and predictions here in Theater Talk


Isn't Theater Talk a PBS show? I think I saw a few minutes of it once on my local station.
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby flipp525 » Fri Jun 05, 2015 2:31 pm

Some good discussion and predictions here in Theater Talk:

http://theatertalk.org/tony-award-predictions/
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby flipp525 » Fri Jun 05, 2015 1:43 pm

The Original BJ wrote:Featured Actor probably anyone's guess. Judy Kuhn in Featured Actress seems the strongest acting frontrunner on the musical side.

Bizarrely, I had a dream that Brad Oscar won the Best Featured Actor in a Musical Tony so I let him and his husband know about that the next morning. I've had prescient dreams in the past (I dreamt Judi Dench's win for Shakespeare in Love, not that several of us weren't already predicting her at the time, but after the dream I was 100% sure it would happen). Agreed, though BJ, it's definitely one of the categories most up in the air at this point.

I was a huge fan of Annaleigh Ashford's hilarious and heartbreaking work in Masters of Sex and have heard great things about her performance in (and the entire production of) You Can't Take It With You. Patricia Clarkson's humane work in The Elephant Man is certainly a plausible runner-up.

Also, I wouldn't count out a Sydney Lucas surprise in Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her juvenile performance as the young Alison in Fun Home. The Chess fan in me would love for Judy Kuhn to finally win a Tony though.
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby The Original BJ » Fri Jun 05, 2015 1:06 pm

Some last-minute thoughts before this weekend...

The frontrunners in the top play categories seem to have really pulled ahead -- Curious Incident seems heavily poised to take Best Play, Director, and Actor, and it's tough to imagine awards magnet Helen Mirren missing either. Annaleigh Ashford seems to be the betting favorite in Featured Actress. Revival of a Play and Featured Actor seem to be the two really up-in-the-air categories on this side.

On the musical side, there seem to be a lot of races that should be really suspenseful. Best Actress seems to have narrowed down to a nail-biter between Kelli O'Hara, looking for a Julianne Moore-style "FINALLY!" win after so many nominations, and host Kristin Chenoweth, in apparently the role of her life. As with this year's Directing Oscar race, you'd have to imagine a lucky few votes will separate the person on stage and the loser in the audience, and unfortunately that's just how awards go sometimes. (There's almost something rewarding about my pal Beth Malone simply getting to enjoy the ride of her life over the past month as a nominee without any set-up for disappointment.) The male acting categories seem similarly tight, with Michael Cerveris and Robert Fairchild in a bit of a dead heat for Actor, and Featured Actor probably anyone's guess. Judy Kuhn in Featured Actress seems the strongest acting frontrunner on the musical side.

Musical Revival seems highly likely to go to The King and I, but the Best Musical prize will likely be up in the air until the final envelope is opened. I see a lot of people are betting on Fun Home, mainly due to the overwhelming acclaim it's received, and I agree that Best Score and Best Book seem pretty much sewn up for that show. But Fun Home is EXACTLY the kind of dramatic art musical -- like Next to Normal and Parade -- that wins some major prizes, but comes up short in Best Musical to something more crowd-pleasing.* The one factor that COULD conceivably allow Fun Home to pull through is the fact that it's up against not one but TWO perfectly viable roadshow hit options -- Something Rotten and An American in Paris -- and, not to bring up the dreaded vote splitting discussion, but if Fun Home might have fallen short to one of them, perhaps there's the chance it can fend off two.

Precedent, though, would suggest An American in Paris is the likelier victor, and if it wins the Director prize (along with a certain Choreography victory), perhaps that could be a tip-off to success in the final envelope.

*Just about the only recent precedent for the reverse happening would be Passion over Beauty and the Beast. I guess you could make an argument for Avenue Q over Wicked and Gentleman's Guide over Beautiful last year, but given that both of those victors were still pretty crowd-pleasing musical comedies, I'm not sure they're totally analogous to Fun Home.

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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby flipp525 » Fri Jun 05, 2015 9:39 am

Presuming that frontrunner Helen Mirren takes the Best Actress in a Play Tony on Sunday for The Audience, would this be the first time a performer wins a lead Tony in a role/for a character for which they've already won an Oscar? The only other similar case I can think of (off the top of my head) would be when Lila Kedrova winning the Tony for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for Zorba the Greek as Mme Hortense after winning the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for the same role in the film twenty years before.
Last edited by flipp525 on Fri Jun 05, 2015 1:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby flipp525 » Wed Apr 29, 2015 11:22 am

You guys are good. There's one more: Anna Sokolow was nominated for Best Choreography for "Red Roses for Me" in 1956.
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby FilmFan720 » Wed Apr 29, 2015 11:14 am

Bill Irwin for Largely New York.
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby dws1982 » Wed Apr 29, 2015 10:59 am

I know Dancing At Lughnasa back in the 1990's was another.

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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby FilmFan720 » Wed Apr 29, 2015 10:43 am

The only one I know is the NY Shakespeare Festival version of Much Ado About Nothing in the 1970s...which I only know because I directed a production last year and found that tidbit during a long process of researching other productions.

I didn't realize it had happened that much! I know of the several plays nominated for Best Score in the past few years...
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby flipp525 » Wed Apr 29, 2015 10:11 am

A bit of trivia:

With "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time" receiving a Best Choreography nomination this year, can anyone cite the four other times that a play has received this particular Tony nomination?
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby flipp525 » Wed Apr 29, 2015 8:51 am

Congrats to your friend, too, BJ. What a story! That's really awesome for her. I wonder if there's any scenario in which she could actually win the Tony. I'm almost sure there is given how kind of shape-shifty that category seems this year. I haven't seen Fun Home, but I have read the graphic novel and it really was a unique literary experience.
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Re: 2015 Tony Nominations

Postby Okri » Tue Apr 28, 2015 6:57 pm

a) I actually think play is a bit of a barn-burner this year with all four (even Disgraced, boo) in it. I am a little surprised Airline Highway couldn't make it in as I think D'Amour's the exact type of playwright who the Tonys honour as quickly as they can (largely Regional/Off-Broadway who makes it to Broadway acclaim), but oh well.

b) Most reviews have raised issues with Watanabe's performance (particularly his diction), so his nomination over Morrison is somewhat surprising (a Broadway that went through David Merrick having issues with Harvey Weinstein, perhaps?)

c) I read the nomination for orchestrations as "Billy Elliot, An American in Paris"

d) Skylight gets its entire cast nominated.

e) I think best actor/play is also a barn-burner.


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