So the Tony Awards were Sunday, and though I never did get to put up my preview before the ceremony, there were several surprises this year as the Hollywood stars came in and pretty much picked up everything (though, to be fair, it was a weak season on Broadway from what I understand). Below, my breakdown:
- I wasn't too surprised that Memphis won Best Musical, since it was the most traditional musical of the bunch (and the only one with a completely original score). I, however, was kind of rooting for a Million Dollar Quartet upset, just for funsies.
- Best Play went to Red by John Logan who, after losing the Oscar races for his Gladiator and The Aviator screenplays, finally picked up a major writing award. I was surprised that Red ended up being the biggest winner of the night, though, since I thought that Best Play Revival winner Fences would clean up (the latter did win Best Actor in a Play for Denzel Washington, who's halfway to EGOT, and Best Actress in a Play for Viola Davis, who should be halfway to EGOT for her performace in Doubt two years ago). In fact, the only category Red was nominated for but didn't win was Best Actor in a Play, in which Alfred Molina was nominated. Which makes me sad, because once again Molina got ignored in favor of someone who emerged late in the race (think back to last year's Oscars, when Molina was a front-runner for Best Actor for An Education until Jeff Bridges showed up). Maybe one of these days his talent will finally be recognized.
- Speaking of revivals, did you notice how revivals fared much better than originals this year? In the acting categories (plays and musicals), 22 of the 40 nominations came from revivals, and of the acting winners, only two were from an original show: Levi Kreis (Million Dollar Quartet) won Featured Actor in a Musical and Eddie Redmayne (Red) won Featured Actor in a Play. Like I said before, it was a down year.
- Also speaking of revivals, I was shocked by how little La Cage Aux Folles picked up. Despite 11 nominations, it only won three Tonys: Best Revival of a Musical, Best Actor in a Musical (Douglas Hodge), and Best Director of a Musical (Terry Johnson). I was certain it would own the night, but I guess not.
- Wasn't Sean Hayes a great host? It was kind of tacky to have him be a host when he was also a nominee, but he was so good I'm willing to forgive. He should do this more often.
- Jay-Z and Will Smith, producers of Fela!, were obviously uncomfortable throughout the whole ceremony. As much as I like them both, Broadway is not their arena.
What did you think of the broadcast? Did any of the wins surprise you? And, since I don't live in New York, can anyone vouch for any of these shows? My former roommate Josh says that Ragtime was amazing, but that's the only one that I have a first-hand account of.