Thursday, May 28, 2015

Tony Nominations 2015

Hey guys, guess what?! IT'S TONY TIME!!!! I know everybody's got a busy summer so I'll spare you the long introductions.  Here's my thoughts on this Year's nominations!

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

Annaleigh Ashford - You Can't Take it With You
Patricia Clarkson - The Elephant Man
Lydia Leonard - Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Sarah Stiles - Hand to God
Julia White - Airline Highway 

At the risk of sounding petty, I feel like this category is going to come down to battle between the young and the old.  Annaleigh Ashford and Sarah stiles both bring a light, comedic, and bubbly charm to their childlike characters, where Patricia Clarkson and Julia White have a more aged, regal flair to their characters.  Lydia Leonard is the only one to bridge the gap, playing a relatively young Anne Bolynn, who still has the sternness and bitterness of her older compatriots.  I'm afraid many of the reviews/videos I've seen don't give me much to see of most of these actresses so it's hard to really know whose performance was the best.  Personally, I kind of hope either Sarah or Annaleigh will win because I enjoyed their performances more, but I feel like Supporting Actress of a Play almost always goes to the more serious older women.  I'm tentatively saying Lydia Leonard because her show is still running (unlike Patricia Clarkson) and she was given more of a spotlight as opposed to Julia White who was in more of an ensemble show.

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

Matthew Beard - Skylight
K. Todd Freeman - Airline Highway
Richard McCabe - The Audience
Alessandro Nivola - The Elephant Man
Nathaniel Parker - Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Micah Stock - It's Only a Play

I'm afraid the Broadway gods have it out for me because I can't for the life of me find much material on any of these guy's performances.  Many of them are skipped over by the big names in their respective plays or just kind of lost in the shuffle so while I'm certain that they're all immensely talented and gave stunning performances...I am not getting to see any of them.   So I just kind of checked the internet and most of them thought that Matthew Beard and Micah Stock have next to no chance at winning (which I kind of agree with) and K. Todd Freeman isn't fairing much better.  So it's between the other three boys and the folks on the web (if they can be believed) seem to think that Nathaniel Parker (who won an Olivier for the role in London) is the favorite, so he's going to get my vote too.  If nothing else, I think they're going to want to give Wolf Hall something, and I don't necessarily see it winning much else.

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

Christian Borle - Something Rotten!
Andy Karl - On the Twentieth Century
Brad Oscar - Something Rotten!
Brandon Uranowitz - An American in Paris
Max von Essen - An American in Paris

This is always a tough category.  In my opinion, perhaps the most talented people on Broadway are the supporting actors in musicals, so there's always a ton of good people here.  However, I feel like I have to say Christian Borle both because the man is brilliant (I've loved everything he's ever done) and because he has the best role for it.  Much like last year's winner (James Monroe Igglehart - AKA the Genie in Aladdin), Christian has received just as much, if not more, publicity than the leads in his show and he certainly seems to be a big part of what carries the show.  It's a perfect role for him and he's charming everybody.  It's possible Max von Essen will steal it from him if the Tony committee is feeling particularly "classy" (Something Rotten! is admittedly a bit crude), but I think it's most likely Christian Borle will take it.

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

Victoria Clark - Gigi
Judy Kuhn - Fun Home
Sydney Lucas - Fun Home
Ruthie Ann Miles - The King and I
Emily Skeggs - Fun Home

Ok, I'm gonna say with relative certainty that the actress playing Allison Bechdel should win this award.  I'm sure Victoria Clark was good, but none of the videos or reviews I can find from the show talk about her much, and she's the only nominee in a show that really didn't do so well, so I don't think she'll win.  Ruthie Ann Miles was surely excellent, but her role (the King of Siam's "main" wife) just wasn't that big, and didn't by any means carry the show.  This just leaves the Fun Home girls, Judy Kuhn (Helen Bechdel), Sydney Lucas (Small Allison) and Emily Skeggs (Medium Allison).  Judy Kuhn is a talented Broadway veteran who certainly gave a good performance, but in my opinion all three Allisons (Emily, Sydney, and Beth Malone, who plays the main "Allison") are the reason to see the show.  Choosing between Emily and Sydney is a really tough choice.  If it were up to me, I think I'd like to see Emily win, she had a more complex role and had such a beautifully natural way of acting through all of her songs.  However, Sydney Lucas is the little girl that surprised everyone, gets some of the best numbers in the show, and probably makes a bigger impression on most viewers, so I think she's the most likely to get the award.

Best Direction of a Play

Stephen Daldry - Skylight
Marianne Elliott - The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Scott Ellis - You Can't Take It with You
Jeremy Herrin - Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Moritz von Stuelpnagel - Hand to God

This one isn't really that close.  It seems almost like cheating, because Marianne already won for directing this show in England and now she's going to get another award for doing (basically) the same thing, but she honestly deserves it.  "Curious Incident" is one of the best examples I've ever seen on the stage of fine direction, between getting complex reactions out of actors, unifying an ensemble, integrating tech, and creating an atmosphere to envelop the show and the just doesn't get better than this.  If Marianne doesn't win, I'll be pretty shocked.

 Best Direction of a Musical

Sam Gold - Fun Home
Casey Nicholaw - Something Rotten!
John Rando - On the Town
Bartlett Sher - The King and I
Christopher Wheeldon - An American in Paris

I firmly believe that Sam Gold should win, and I think it's likely he will.  Fun Home has some complex storytelling (it's not a linear storyline and we jump the timeline pretty regularly) and is performed in the round which makes it perhaps the most challenging musical to direct this year, and still he made the story beautiful and touching without being confusing.  However, all the directors here were pretty great.  John Rando and Bartlett Sher both did a great job of taking old musicals that shouldn't really feel applicable in today's society and made them current.  Christopher Wheeldon and Casey Nicholaw both choreographed their own shows and might've won if their dance work could be included in this category, but splitting their work between two different categories kind of weakens their chances in my opinion.

Best Choreography

Joshua Bergasse - On the Town
Christopher Gattelli - The King and I
Scott Graham & Steven Hoggett - The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Casey Nicholaw - Something Rotten!
Christopher Wheeldon - An American in Paris

I'd bet the farm that this is either going to go to An American in Paris or On the TownThe King and I and Something Rotten!  Both had good choreography, but they're not really "dance shows."  This means that the choreography was exactly what it ought to be, but nothing too incredible.  Now it's really interesting that the "Curious Incident" guys got nominated.  I see why they were because there is a lot of very precise movement (much of which is set to music) in this show, but it can't match the technical difficulty of the ACTUAL dancing in the musicals, so I don't expect this to win.  Between On the Town and An American in Paris, it's kind of a tough call because it seems to me to be very different dancing.  The lighthearted tapping of On the Town is fun, but the beautiful ballet of An American in Paris feels more like what the artsy Tony Voters would go for, so I think it has the edge.

Best Orchestrations

Christopher Austin, Don Sebesky, & Bill Elliott - An American in Paris
John Clancy - Fun Home
Larry Hochman - Something Rotten!
Rob Mathes - The Last Ship

Orchestrations is always a tough one for me because I have trouble distinguishing between best score and best orchestrations.  I can say that I liked most of the orchestrations in The Last Ship, but I think that score was kind of weak, so I don't think it'll win.  While I enjoyed the Fun Home score, I didn't find it particularly "melodic" which I feel will hurt it in this category.  This makes it a toss up between An American in Paris and Something Rotten!.  I'll go with An American in Paris for a lack of a better idea.

Best Scenic Design of a Play

Bunny Christie & Finn Ross - The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Bob Crowley - Skylight
Christopher Oram - Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
David Rockwell - You Can't Take it With You

I'd be utterly shocked if Skylight or Wolf Hall won this one, it'll be between "Curious Incident" and You Can't Take it With You"Curious Incident" is tough because it was a weird blend of simple and complicated.  The set itself wasn't all that much, but what they did with it was super cool.  The problem is, I can't really tell if what they did with it counts as lighting, set, or projections.  I'm pretty sure there were LED lights in the set...does that count as lighting or no?  So that feels like a weird one to judge and it really just depends on how the Tony Voters think about the category.  However, the good old fashioned solid set of You Can't Take it With You full of clutter, fireworks, skulls, xylophones and brilliance is a safe bet.  I think it's more likely to win.

Best Scenic Design of a Musical

Bob Crowley & 59 Productions - An American in Paris
David Rockwell - On the Twentieth Century
 Michael Yeargan - The King and I
 David Zinn - Fun Home

I'm not going to lie, I want almost every show that plays in the Circle in the Square theater to win for best set.  I just think "in-the-round" sets are so fascinating and so inventive and Fun Home specifically does so many cool things with stuff rising and falling and spinning and it's just so cool!  However, Fun Home is an "intimate" show, and those are sometimes overlooked for the big spectacles (which all of the other nominees are).  Of the other nominees, I think The King and I is probably the most likely to win because it's the most "spectacle-y" but any of the three of them could honestly take it.

Best Costume Design of a Play

Bob Crowley - The Audience
Jane Greenwood - You Can't Take It with You
Christopher Oram - Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
 David Zinn - Airline Highway

First I want to take a moment to note the vast difference between all the costumes in these shows.  From modern queens to grand duchesses, to medieval kings, to drag queens (actually, maybe there are similarities) these shows span quite a range.  I'm going to tentatively give my vote to Airline Highway because it seems to have the funnest costumes with lots of color and glitz.  All of the shows had nice costumes, and I wouldn't be shocked to see any of them win, but Airline Highway had my personal favorite costumes.

Best Costume Design of a Musical

Greg Barnes - Something Rotten!
Bob Crowley - An American in Paris
William Ivey Long - On the Twentieth Century
Catherine Zuber - The King and I

 The costumes for musicals that were nominated were a little boring this year, nothing super revolutionary (why Side Show was skipped over is beyond me).  The King and I seemed to have the most intricate and prettiest costumes.  That being said, I thought Something Rotten! had some really fun ones and I wouldn't hate it if they won.  The other two didn't really seem like anything special, and I think they were kind of just kind of nominated for lack of a better idea.

Best Lighting Design of a Play

Paule Constable - The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Paule Constable & David Plater - Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Natasha Katz - Skylight
Japhy Weideman - Airline Highway

If what I think was lighting was in fact lighting, then "Curious Incident" is a lock, no question.  Seriously, if you haven't yet, go watch a montage video or look at some pictures or something, they do some pretty stellar stuff with the lights in that show!!!  If somehow I'm wrong and that isn't lighting, then probably Airline HighwaySkylight might have some good stuff, but I can't find any good pictures/videos so to be honest, I don't know where these technical nominations are coming from.  And Wolf Hall had a cool candle effect, but that's about the extent of their lighting accomplishments.

Best Lighting Design of a Musical

Donald Holder - The King and I
Natasha Katz - An American in Paris
Ben Stanton - Fun Home
Japhy Weideman - The Visit

Now this is actually kind of a tough one.  I've seen just enough videos and such of these shows to know that they all had cool lighting, but not enough to know which one was the best.  From what I can tell, Fun Home and The Visit used their lights to help tell the story while The King and I and An American in Paris mostly used theirs to make the already gorgeous costumes/sets/dancers even more beautiful.  I'm going to go out on a limb and guess Fun Home, but I really wouldn't be disappointed (or surprised) if any of these shows win.

Best Sound Design of a Play/Musical


Ok, so I know lots of people in the Broadway community were kind of upset about this category being removed from the Tony Awards (ala #TonyCanYouHearMe), but I for one think it's a good call.  In fact, I want to point out the power I seem to have over the internet, I mean, I asked them to remove it as a category (not just twice, but three times) and they did.  Coincidence?  I THINK NOT!

Look, I don't mean to diminish the work sound designers do in the theater, but it seems to me like it's more about function than about creativity.  If Sound Design is a category, then why not Prop Design?  Or Stage Management?  These roles are equally important in creating a show and shouldn't be diminished, but, on the average show, it isn't really a form of creative expression in the way that the other design categories seem to be, so for that reason, I'm actually kind of glad that the category has been nixed.  However, I'd love it if another category took it's place.  Perhaps Best Ensemble, Best Performance of a Song, or Best Book of a Play?

Best Book of a Musical

Craig Lucas - An American in Paris
 Lisa Kron - Fun Home
 Karey Kirkpatrick & John O'Farrell - Something Rotten!
 Tarrence McNally - The Visit

This one seems easy to me.  Fun Home has a simply brilliant book.  Equal parts funny, touching, though provoking, and charming.  It is simply beautiful.  That being said, there are some really good nominees here.  The Visit has a super interesting story and while they haven't released much about it so I don't know just how good the book is, it looks like a fascinating play and I'd love to read a script.  Something Rotten! is just a really fun, clever show and I'm not surprised that its puns, references, and cheeky humor won it a nomination.  And as for An American in Paris, I mean, who can resist a good love story?

Best Original Score Written for the Theater

Jeanine Tesori & Lisa Kron - Fun Home
Sting - The Last Ship
Wayne Kirkpatrick & Karey Kirkpatrick - Something Rotten!
John Kander & Fred Ebb - The Visit

This set of nominations really surprised me.  You might have heard how lots of big shows (particularly major musicals like Finding Neverland, Doctor Zhivago, Side Show, and It Shoulda Been You) were completely snubbed this year and received no nominations, I think that especially surprised me in this category.  From what I've heard (which is admittedly not much) I probably would've picked the Finding Neverland score as my favorite to win, so I'm pretty shocked it wasn't nominated.  As for the other nominees, I haven't heard much of The Visit (they haven't made a soundtrack yet) so I can't really say one way or the other.  I own the Fun Home soundtrack and it has some really amazing songs (the lyrics are simply stellar) and does a good job of weaving the music into the script, but to me the score as a whole isn't the show's strong point.  I've also listened through the soundtrack of The Last Ship and, while I do love a good angsty, dissonant ballad, there's just too many of them in that show and they all run together.  Which leaves Something Rotten! which, while perhaps not groundbreaking, seems to be really fun and pretty clever, so I think it's my choice for Best Score.

Best Revival of a Play

The Elephant Man
This is Our Youth
You Can't Take It with You

By playing the numbers, Skylight kind of makes the most sense (it's the only one with actors, actresses, directors, and designers nominated, which implies that it is perhaps the most well rounded of the revivals).  While I can't find out as much as I'd like to about Skylight (but I did hear that the London version was filmed and played in select theaters, so fingers crossed for a DVD release), it sounds like it's a nicely complex script with stellar performances and smart directing, so it seems to make the most sense to win Revival (It also doesn't hurt that it's the only nominee still running).  That being said, I heard some stellar things about The Elephant Man and You Can't Take it With You, so I'm definitely very glad they were nominated.  As for This is Our Youth...I really don't understand why it was nominated (its nomination should've gone to It's Only A Play), and I don't think it has much of a chance.

Best Revival of a Musical

The King and I
On the Town
On the Twentieth Century

I honestly am not particularly excited by any of these.  I acknowledge that they are strong productions but, as a matter of taste, the source material just doesn't do anything for me (Again, where's Side Show?!).  That being said, they're all good choices of shows to revive (classics that we've kind of forgotten about) and each show did a very good job of connecting modern day audiences to somewhat outdated content.  Since I wasn't particularly struck by any of them, I'm saying The King and I because that's what most of the "expert opinions" I read picked.  I've heard it does a really good job of bringing new life to songs we've heard thousands of times and it's been known to sway people who weren't previously fans of the show.  That being said, I've heard similar things about the other two shows as well (particularly On the Town) so it's kind of a toss up.  All of them are well done shows and they could each win.

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

Steven Boyer - Hand to God
Bradley Cooper - The Elephant Man
Ben Miles - Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Bill Nighy - Skylight
Alex Sharp - The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

As usual, this is probably the hardest category.  These roles are all so different and so nuanced and their performers so precise and talented.  We have comedy, drama, physically demanding roles, difficult text, deep subject matter, there's just so much!  Each and every nominee deserves all the respect and I would be entirely fine with any of them winning.  That being said, we have to pick somebody.  Bradley Cooper was positively stunning in his role, but the show did close a while ago so I expect he won't be on the top of most voter's lists.  Ben Miles was also brilliant and his show(s) definitely got a lot of love from then nominators, but, to me, his character seemed somewhat simpler than some of his fellow nominees' so I think that makes his performance less impressive and therefore makes him less likely to win.  Steven Boyer incorporated a genius duality in his role and displayed a focus and depth that I found utterly incredible.  However, his performance was a bit on the comedic side, which usually isn't appreciated by nominators.  Bill Nighy had a wonderful natural feeling to his performance and had the added responsibility of carrying a huge part of the show (as one of only three actors), but I think the victory has to go to Alex Sharp.  Not only does this kid have a really cool story (Just graduated from Julliard, first professional show, etc.), he's also in one of the hottest plays on Broadway and playing the role of a lifetime.  There is an absolute transformation that has to take place to embody Christopher and Alex dives into it headfirst.  So while absolutely all of these nominees gave spectacular performances, I think Alex will go home with the Tony.

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

Geneva Carr - Hand to God
Helen Mirren - The Audience
Elisabeth Moss - The Heidi Chronicles
Carey Mulligan - Skylight
Ruth Wilson - Constellations

This really isn't a super impressive category in my opinion.  Of course, I'm sure all of these women were marvelous, but none of them struck me as particularly memorable/breathtaking in what little I've been able to see of them.  It should be noted that Elisabeth Moss and Ruth Wilson have the distinguished honor of being the only ones nominated from their respective shows.  While this is a great honor for them and something they should be very proud of, it doesn't really fare well for their chances of winning, as I don't remember ever seeing single-nominated shows winning that one category (I'm sure it has, but it's not that common).  As for Ms. Carr, I might just not be a fan because I was so captivated by her co-stars Steven Boyer and Sarah Stiles, but to be honest her performance didn't seem that special to me, so I don't really see her winning.  So now it comes down to Helen Mirren and Carey Mulligan.  My gut is kind of telling me that Helen Mirren might win based (in part) on her star power and the weight this role carried (after all, Carey Mulligan only carried half of her show, but almost all of The Audience rested on "Her Majesty").  That being said, I feel like I've been burned a couple of times thinking the famous Old lady from an under-appreciated show would win when in fact it's the angsty youngster from the highly nominated show who takes the statue, so that's my guess.  Now, I don't mean to demote Ms. Mulligan's performance, from what I saw it was pretty incredible, she had a realism and quiet subtlety that I would love to see more of...maybe in a Tony acceptance speech.

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

Michael Cerveris - Fun Home
Robert Fairchild - An American in Paris
Brian d'Arcy James - Something Rotten!
Ken Watanabe - The King and I
Tony Yazbeck - On the Town

Actually, this isn't as tough a category as the plays (in my opinion).  Perhaps it's because musicals are less likely to place the dramatic weight of the show on a leading actor, or perhaps it's because plays are more character driven whereas musicals tend to be more spectacle based.  Of course, these fellas are all freakishly talented, but I feel like the race is really just between a couple of them.  Ken Watanabe was a good King of Siam, but in my opinion, his character a bit too one dimensional.  Tony Yazbeck also did a good job (or so I hear, it's hard to find clips of just him), but On the Town was a show built for an ensemble, so there really isn't room for one star to stand out that much.  I have the greatest respect for Robert Fairchild.  To go from the New York City Ballet company to earning a Tony nomination for your Broadway debut in a big musical is a massive accomplishment!  That being said, in all the videos I saw, he never got to be much more than a sexy man who could dance...there wasn't a whole lot of depth of character.  This leaves us with Brian D'Arcy James and Michael Cerveris in the classic battle between comedy and drama and I predict the award will go (as it often does) to the dramatic.  I honestly think this is the right call, Michael's performance was heartbreaking and layered and perhaps the most emotional performance in a musical this year.  I know he's done a lot of stuff and has a massive ibdb page, but to me this is his performance of a lifetime.

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

Kristen Chenoweth - On the Twentieth Century
Leanne Cope - An American in Paris
Beth Malone - Fun Home
Kelli O'Hara - The King and I
Chita Rivera - The Visit

All of these women are remarkably talented and, to be honest, I don't think I could chose who I want to win this category, but I know the one I think will win, and that's Kelli O'Hara.  To be fair, her reputation precedes her and most people were predicting she'd win even before The King and I opened.  That being said, they have a good reason for picking her, she is one of the most talented actresses on Broadway (especially in old style shows like Nice Work if You Can Get It and South Pacific) and yet she's still never won a Tony.  I would not be surprised to hear that they decided to revived The King and I just to give her this star vehicle (the same way I'm convinced that they revived Anything Goes just to give Sutton Foster a chance to shine...and win a Tony).  Not only does she have a sterling reputation, she really did give a stellar performance.  She has such a great way of making an audience connect to music that can often sound outdated or grating.  She definitely deserves a Tony eventually, and I think this is one of her best roles, so I'll be happy if she wins this year.  That being said, there is some good competition.  Chita Rivera is a legend and she's been given a really rich character to work with.  Beth Malone was stellar, but I think she gave the kind of understated performance that makes a show but doesn't win awards.  Leanne Cope gets a chance to show off her dancing here, but I'm afraid she'll be swallowed by her ensemble.  Kristen Chenoweth probably poses the biggest threat to Ms. O'Hara, she too is in a star vehicle that seems like it was made for her, but she's won a Tony before and her show didn't do as well, so I think she'll have to take second this year to Kelli.

Best Play

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Hand to God
Wolf Hall Parts One & Two

First of all, I'm surprised Disgraced was nominated and I don't think it has much of a shot at all.  To be honest I (like many) am surprised it got the nomination above other plays like A Fish in the Dark, Airline Highway, and The Audience.  As for Wolf Hall, I don't even know, I don't think it's that impressive but obviously the nominators did 'cause it got a lot of nominations.  I don't really think it should win and if it does I'll probably flip a table.  Which leaves us with "Curious Incident" and Hand to God.  Again, I almost feel like it's cheating giving "Curious Incident" Best Play because it already won in London and because Hand to God is SO ORIGINAL!  However, Hand to God is wonderful mostly because of its strong performances and brilliant script, whereas "Curious Incident" has it all.  I can't stress enough how much this play is the perfect synergy of what theatre is supposed to be.  The only show I can think of that has had a similarly revolutionary effect is Warhorse (which featured much of the same original team) and we all know how well that did.  While I sincerely hope Hand to God gets a long life on and off Broadway (and perhaps wins a Pulitzer itself), I think we can be pretty certain that the winner this year will be The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Best Musical

An American in Paris
Fun Home
Something Rotten!
The Visit

First of all, I want to point out that I read an article last fall that talked about the Best Musical race for this year was definitely going to come down to Doctor Zhivago and Finding Neverland (which both received exactly 0 nominations), and no other shows really had much of a chance...hehe.

So anyway, as for the shows actually nominated it's not an easy call.  They're all pretty different but, in my opinion An American in Paris is a spectacle show, Fun Home and The Visit are smart shows, and Something Rotten! is both of those combined AND is just a ton of fun.  For that reason, even though it might not be the most well written or have the biggest star presence or change the way we look at theatre, it's just a fun show from beginning to end and it seems to be doing really well with critics and audiences alike.  It, like "Curious Incident," is a great example of all the pieces of a show coming together in some beautiful synergy that draws huge audiences and, I predict, Tony Awards.

Best Ensemble of a Musical
An American in Paris
Finding Neverland
Fun Home
Something Rotten!

So, in case you're new to my blog, you should know that this isn't a real category.  But I've often thought that there ought to be a way to recognize a cast as a whole, so I "created" the Best Ensemble awards, hopefully they'll catch on.

This year had plenty of strong ensembles.  Some were mostly a strong bunch of individuals (Fun Home), others had an ensemble that was stronger than its leads (Finding Neverland) or a strong ensemble of leads (Something Rotten!) but I'm giving it to An American in Paris because they had the ensemble that literally did something that nobody else could.

Best Ensemble of a Play
Airline Highway
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
It's Only a Play
You Can't Take it With You

This year had some REALLY great "ensemble plays."  These shows  did a great job of taking a bunch of individuals and putting them together to make a strong unit that works as one.  In fact, I think most of these plays (particularly You Can't Take it With You) could've won in another year, but it's hard to get more "ensemble-y" than "Curious incident."  I mean, they were nominated for choreography for goodness sake, this ensemble of people playing a multitude of roles bouncing in, out, and around Christopher's life work together with pinpoint accuracy to create some incredible effects, and that's what makes them my pick for Best Ensemble of a Play.


Airline Highway:
Luke praised Airline Highway's colorful designs and strong ensemble, but didn't care much for its individual actors.  4 Nominations (5 Counting Ensemble). 1 Luke's Choice.

An American in Paris:
Luke praised many of the design elements of An American in Paris and called it the "classy" choice, but mentioned not expecting many wins from the actors.  12 Nominations (13 Counting Ensemble).  2 Luke's Choice.

The Audience:
The audience was often a runner up in it's respective categories, but Luke didn't think it'd win any of it's nominations.  3 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.

Luke said that Ruth should be "very proud" of her nomination, but noted that single-nomination shows rarely win.  1 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time:
Luke raved about this play and even called it "the perfect synergy of what theatre is supposed to be."  6 Nominations (7 Counting Ensemble).  4 Luke's Choice (5 Counting Ensemble).

Luke did not have kind things to say about Disgraced, "I'm surprised Disgraced was nominated and I don't think it has much of a shot at all."  1 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.

The Elephant Man:
The Elephant man was a strong contender in most of it's nominations, but was dismissed every time on account of being closed.  4 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.

Fun Home:
Luke praised Fun Home's "simply brilliant" book and stellar cast, but called the score "unmelodic" and wasn't sure if it was "fun" enough to win best musical.  12 Nominations (13 Counting Ensemble).  6 Luke's Choice.

While Luke was "sure Victoria Clark was good," she was outshone by the women of Fun Home. 1 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.

Hand to God:
While Luke thought Hand to God had "strong performances and [a] brilliant script,"  and hoped it would earn a Pulitzer prize, it was consistently beaten out by "Curious Incident" 5 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.
The Heidi Chronicles:
*See Note on Constellations*.  1 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.

It's Only a Play:
While Luke praised it's ensemble and wished it'd been nominated for Best Revival of a Play, he didn't think Michah Stock would win the show's only nomination.  1 Nominations (2 Counting Ensemble).  0 Luke's Choice.
The King and I:
Luke had no strong feelings about this show, but heard that it did a "really good job of bringing new life to songs we've heard thousands of times."  9 Nominations.  3 Luke's Choice.
The Last Ship:
The last ship was only nominated for its music which Luke found too repetitive.  2 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.
On the Town:
 Luke liked this show and it was a runner up multiple times, but it couldn't quite beat the more recent/nominated shows like The King and I and An American in Paris.  4 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.
On the Twentieth Century:
Luke thought this was a cute show and praised Kristen Chenoweth, but didn't think it would win anything.  5 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice. 
Luke didn't think Skylight deserved it's design nominators, but praised the performances and the show as a whole.  7 Nominations.  2 Luke's Choice.
Something Rotten!:
Luke praised the show's cast and writing and called it "a great example of all the pieces of a show coming together in some beautiful synergy." 10 Nominations (11 Counting Ensemble).  3 Luke's Choice.
This is Our Youth:
Luke didn't understand why This is Our Youth was nominated and didn't predict it would win its only nomination.  1 Nominations.  0 Luke's Choice.

The Visit:
Luke had trouble finding information about The Visit, and therefore had next to nothing to say about it.  5 Nominations.   0 Luke's Choice.
Wolf Hall Parts One & Two:
Luke had good things to say about the supporting cast, but otherwise didn't care for the show.  8 Nominations.  2 Luke's Choice.

You Can't Take it With You:
Luke enjoyed You Can't Take it with You, but it was beat out by currently running shows like "Curious Incident" in each category. 5 Nominations (6 including Ensemble).  1 Luke's Choice.


Well, There you have it!  These are all my guesses and I'm sure more than half of them are wrong, but it's always fun to try!  If you would like to hear more of my thoughts, you can check out the video blog I'm a part of on Facebook or Youtube.  Be sure to comment below about what you think about the Tony's and tune in on June 7th to watch the fun for yourself!

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