- Published on Monday, June 11 2012
- Written by Sarah Osman
Last night, Broadway’s biggest and most dazzling stars came out for the 66th Annual Tony Awards, hosted by the always delightful Neil Patrick Harris. Once again, it was proven that Broadway musicals are beginning to diversify from their traditional spectacles as the darling Irish folk-rock hit, Once, won in eight different categories, including the award of Best New Musical. Fan favorite, Newsies, did not go home empty-handed, as Disney composer extraordinaire Alan Menken, alongside lyricist Jack Feldman, took home the prize for Best Original Score. Choreographer Christopher Gattelli also took home the award for Best Choreography, a nice nod to Newsies's energized dance moves.
Bruce Norris’s sly satire, Clybourne Park, took home Best New Play, while Mike Nichols’s critically-acclaimed revival of the Arthur Miller classic, Death of a Salesman, walked away with two Tonys (one for Direction, the other for Producing). The revival of Follies, Stephen Sondheim and James Goldwin's masterpiece about what could have been, was expected to take home the prize for Musical Revival, but that honor instead went to the underdog, The Gershwins’s Porgy and Bess. The tragic opera also took home the honor of winning Lead Actress in a Musical, which went to Audra McDonald as the drug-addled Bess.
Other acting honors went to newcomer Nina Arianda for her turn as an fiery figure who pops up for an audition in David Ives’s scandalous play, Venus in Fur. James Corden won the award for Lead Actor as his hilarious turn as a ringmaster in the comedy One Man, Two Guvnors, an award that had been rumored to go to Phillip Seymour Hoffman for his tragic turn as Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman. The comedians continued to beat out the stars of Death of a Salesman as Christian Borle beat out Andrew Garfield for his turn as Black Stache, the pirate who would go on to become Captain Hook in the re-imagined origin story of Peter Pan, Peter and the Starcatcher. In fact, the whole night was a success for Peter and the Starcatcher, which went on to win four Design awards.
Judith Light was acknowledged for her haunting turn in Jon Robin Batz’s play, Other Desert Cities, and took home the prize for Best Featured Actress. Nice Work If You Can Get It took home the prizes for Featured Actress and Actor in a Musical, which went to Judy Kaye and Michael McGrath. Overall, Once was the champion in the Musical category. In addition to taking home the prize for Best Musical, Once also won the honor of Best Book, a number of Design awards, Best Actor in a Musical, and for Direction of a Musical.
Hosting the ceremony for the third time, Harris kept the night lively with his opening number “What if Life Were More Like Theater”, which featured a number of stars, including an overly eager Jesse Tyler Ferguson as his understudy, and by musing about the idea of musical-movie mashups (my personal favorite was “My Left Footloose").
The night was a success for live theater, and a delight for audiences to watch. Let us all hope that Harris one day hosts the Oscars!
What was your favorite moment of the Tony Awards?
- Sarah Osman, YH Staff