Every June, the Broadway community waits with bated breath for the announcement of the annual Tony Awards, the prizes widely considered the highest honors awarded in American theatre. This year, the awards are highly competitive, featuring British imports, off-Broadway transfers, movie and book adaptations and original material all vying for the prestigious honor. Below are my predictions for a select few of the categories:
The British imported play The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, adapted from the Mark Haddon novel of the same name, is the early favorite. The play also features an exemplary performance from Alex Sharp as the fifteen-year-old autistic protagonist. This moving story’s only competition is from another British import adapted from a book: Wolf Hall: Parts 1 & 2. Although this monumental production has received glowing reviews both in New York and London, Curious Incident is still likely to walk away with the prize.
Fun Home, which made its world premiere at the Public Theatre last year and was nominated for last year’s Pulitzer Prize, is the frontrunner in this category. The musical, based on the graphic novel by Alison Bechdel, has drawn critical praise for its inventive storytelling and humanizing performances, particularly Michael Cerveris as Bechdel’s closeted gay father. The only possible spoiler would be Something Rotten!, an original musical that tells the fictional story of the creation of the first musical by the Bottom brothers, Shakespeare’s rivals, in Elizabethan England. This musical is pure, unadulterated excitement and enthusiasm and its hilarious book and score are likely to draw good notices.
Best Revival of a Play
This race is kind of a toss-up. Three productions, The Elephant Man, Skylight and You Can’t Take It With You, all have a chance of walking away with the prize. Right now, Skylight has the edge because Elephant and Can’t Take It both have already closed. Bill Nighy’s and Carey Mulligan’s performances in Skylight were highly acclaimed, and these two might be enough to propel the show all the way to the Tony.
Best Revival of a Musical
This category is a battle between two leading ladies: Kelli O’Hara as Anna in The King and I and Kristin Chenoweth as Lily Garland in On the Twentieth Century. Each gives a star turn in their respective shows, but after seeing both, I would give the edge to King. Director Bartlett Sher’s lavish Lincoln Center production, along with O’Hara’s phenomenal performance, is likely to catapult The King and I into the winner’s circle come Tony time.
Tony Award nominations will be announced the morning of April 28, with the awards themselves to air live on CBS on Sunday, June 7, at 8 p.m.