“Band’s Visit” and “Harry Potter” Crush Tony Awards

“The Band’s Visit” Leads with Ten Wins; “Harry Potter” Earns Six

the band's visitThis evening, June 10, 2018, the 72nd annual Tony Awards took place at Radio City Music Hall.  Hosted by Sara Bareilles and Josh Groban, the awards were contentious with no clear winner for the biggest award entering into the ceremony.  As it turned out, the winner of Best Musical was The Band’s Visit, which also took home by far the most wins with 10 awards.  Next in line was Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two, which earned 6 Tony Awards, including that for Best Play.  Furthermore, Angels in America earned 3 awards, Harry Potter and the cursed child on Broadwayincluding Best Revival of a Play, and both the awards for Best Performance by a Leading, and by a Featured, Actor in a Play – for Andrew Garfield and Nathan Lane, respectively.  Furthermore, Three Tall Women earned two awards for both Best Performance by a Leading, and by a Featured, Actress in a Play – for Glenda Jackson and Laurie Metcalf, respectively.  The only other show to win more than one award was Carousel, which won the award for Best Performance by a Featured Actress, given to Lindsay Mendez for her performance as Carrie Pipperidge.  This is the same role that Audra McDonald played when she earned her first Tony.  In addition, Carousel won the award for Best Choreography, given to Justin Peck.  Finally, three shows earned one award each: SpongeBob SquarePants, though nominated for an impressive 12 awards including Best Musical, won just one award: that for Best Scenic Design in a Musical for David Zinn.  My Fair Lady earned one award as well, that ofr Best Costume Design in a Musical for Catherine Zuber, winning her seventh Tony.  In addition, Once on this Island surprised some by winning the award for Best Revival of a Musical, beating out both My Fair Lady and Carousel for that top honor.

Championing the Smaller Story, Not the Brand Pizzazzthe band's visit

In winning the Tony Award for Best Musical, The Band’s Visit greatly enhanced its chances for longevity.  This is a musical that does not have the brand power of Frozen, Mean Girls, or SpongeBob SquarePants, which were its competitors for the coveted top award.  While The Band’s Visit is also based on a film, in this case, a 2007 Israeli film, that film is by no means as well known as the others.  That film was Israel’s intended submission for the Foreign Language Academy Award that year, but was rejected as it contained over 50% English dialogue; while it went on to win eight Ophir Prizes, Israel’s top film honor, it was not a particularly well-known title in the States.  Nevertheless, when the decision was made to adapt it into an English-language stage musical, the creative team poured their all into making it as artful and compelling as could be.  Their hard work paid off, as the show took home by far the most Tony Awards of any show this season.  In addition to Best Musical, The Band’s Visit won three acting honors: the award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical for Tony Shalhoub as Tewfiq Zakaria, the award for Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical for Katrina Lenk as Dina, and the award for Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical for Ari’el Stachel as Haled.  Furthermore, Itamar Moses won for Best Book of a Musical, and David Yazbek won for Best Original Score.  In a very competitive category, the show also won the award for Best Direction of a Musical, given to David Cromer.  In addition, the show was honored in the design categories of Best Lighting Design in a Musical for Tyler Micoleau, and Best Sound Design of a Musical for Kai Harada.  To top it off, Jamshied Sharifi was honored with the award for Best Orchestrations for The Band’s Visit.

“Mean Girls” Among The Shows Going Home Empty-Handed

When the Tony nominations were announced, the headlines were that Mean Girls and SpongeBob SquarePants tied with the most nominations: 12.  While SpongeBob only won one award, that for Best Scenic Design of a Musical for David Zinn, Tina Fey and her Mean Girls team were slighted even more, going home without a single award.  In almost every category for which Mean Girls was nominated, the award went to The Band’s Visit.  In addition, The Iceman Cometh was nominated for eight awards but earned zero, with its fellow two-part plays – Harry Potter and Angels in America – faring much better.  Farinelli and the King earned five nominations but no awards, with Andrew Garfield beating out Mark Rylance for the highly competitive award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play.  Travesties also earned none of the four awards for which it was nominated, and Frozen went home with nothing, after its measly three nominations, though one of them was Best Musical.  As for Lobby Hero, that show also went home empty-handed despite the acting nods in the nominations, and Best Play nominees The Children and Junk earned neither of the two awards for which each was nominated.  The other shows that were nominated but failed to earn any awards were Summer: The Donna Summer Musical, Children of a Lesser God, Latin History for Morons, Meteor Shower, 1984, and Saint Joan.

Below is the full list of nominees, with the winners bolded up top:

Best Musical
The Band’s Visit
Frozen
Mean Girls
SpongeBob SquarePants: The Broadway Musical

Best Play
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
The Children
Farinelli and the King
Junk
Latin History for Morons

Best Revival of a Musical
Once on This Island
Carousel
My Fair Lady

Best Revival of a Play
Angels in America
Lobby Hero
Three Tall Women
The Iceman Cometh
Travesties

Best Book of a Musical
The Band’s Visit, Itamar Moses
Frozen, Jennifer Lee
Mean Girls, Tina Fey
SpongeBob SquarePants, Kyle Jarrow

Best Original Score
The Band’s Visit, Music and Lyrics: David Yazbek
Angels in America, Adrian Sutton
Frozen, Music and Lyrics: Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
Mean Girls, Music: Jeff Richmond; Lyrics: Nell Benjamin
SpongeBob SquarePants, Various contributors

Best Leading Actor in a Play
Andrew Garfield, Angels in America
Tom Hollander, Travesties
Jamie Parker, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Mark Rylance, Farinelli and the King
Denzel Washington, The Iceman Cometh

Best Leading Actress in a Play
Glenda Jackson, Three Tall Women
Condola Rashad, Saint Joan
Lauren Ridloff, Children of a Lesser God
Amy Schumer, Meteor Shower

Best Leading Actor in a Musical
Tony Shalhoub, The Band’s Visit
Harry Hadden-Paton, My Fair Lady
Joshua Henry, Carousel
Ethan Slater, SpongeBob SquarePants

Best Leading Actress in a Musical
Katrina Lenk, The Band’s Visit
Lauren Ambrose, My Fair Lady
Hailey Kilgore, Once on This Island
LaChanze, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical
Taylor Louderman, Mean Girls
Jessie Mueller, Carousel

Best Featured Actor in a Play
Nathan Lane, Angels in America
Anthony Boyle, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Michael Cera, Lobby Hero
Brian Tyree Henry, Lobby Hero
David Morse, The Iceman Cometh

Best Featured Actress in a Play
Laurie Metcalf, Three Tall Women
Susan Brown, Angels in America
Noma Dumezweni, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Deborah Findlay, The Children
Denise Gough, Angels in America

Best Featured Actor in a Musical
Ari’el Stachel, The Band’s Visit
Norbert Leo Butz, My Fair Lady
Alexander Gemignani, Carousel
Grey Henson, Mean Girls
Gavin Lee, SpongeBob SquarePants

Best Featured Actress in a Musical
Lindsay Mendez, Carousel
Ariana DeBose, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical
Renée Fleming, Carousel
Ashley Park, Mean Girls
Diana Rigg, My Fair Lady

Best Scenic Design of a Play
Christine Jones, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Miriam Buether, Three Tall Women
Jonathan Fensom, Farinelli and the King
Santo Loquasto, The Iceman Cometh
Ian MacNeil and Edward Pierce, Angels in America

Best Scenic Design of a Musical
David Zinn, SpongeBob SquarePants
Dane Laffrey, Once on this Island
Scott Pask, The Band’s Visit
Scott Pask, Finn Ross and Adam Young, Mean Girls
Michael Yeargan, My Fair Lady

Best Costume Design of a Play
Katrina Lindsay, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Jonathan Fensom, Farinelli and the King
Nicky Gillibrand, Angels in America
Ann Roth, Three Tall Women
Ann Roth, The Iceman Cometh

Best Costume Design of a Musical
Catherine Zuber, My Fair Lady
Gregg Barnes, Mean Girls
Clint Ramos, Once on This Island
Ann Roth, Carousel
David Zinn, SpongeBob SquarePants

Best Lighting Design of a Play
Neil Austin, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Paule Constable, Angels in America
Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer, The Iceman Cometh
Paul Russell, Farinelli and the King
Ben Stanton, Junk

Best Lighting Design of a Musical
Tyler Micoleau, The Band’s Visit
Kevin Adams, SpongeBob SquarePants
Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer, Once on This Island
Donald Holder, My Fair Lady
Brian MacDevitt, Carousel

Best Direction of a Play
John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Marianne Elliott, Angels in America
Joe Mantello, Three Tall Women
Patrick Marber, Travesties
George C. Wolfe, The Iceman Cometh

Best Direction of a Musical
David Cromer, The Band’s Visit
Michael Arden, Once on This Island
Tina Landau, SpongeBob SquarePants
Casey Nicholaw, Mean Girls
Bartlett Sher, My Fair Lady

Best Choreography
Justin Peck, Carousel
Christopher Gattelli, My Fair Lady
Christopher Gattelli, SpongeBob SquarePants
Steven Hoggett, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Casey Nicholaw, Mean Girls

Best Orchestrations
Jamshied Sharifi, The Band’s Visit
John Clancy, Mean Girls
Tom Kitt, SpongeBob SquarePants
AnnMarie Milazzo and Michael Starobin, Once on This Island
Jonathan Tunick, Carousel

Sound Design in a Play
Gareth Fry, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Adam Cork, Travesties
Ian Dickinson for Autograph, Angels in America
Tom Gibbons, 1984
Dan Moses Schreier, The Iceman Cometh

Sound Design in a Musical
Kai Harada, The Band’s Visit
Peter Hylenski, Once on This Island
Scott Lehrer, Carousel
Brian Ronan, Mean Girls
Walter Trarbach and Mike Dobson, SpongeBob SquarePants

And the non-competitive awards, as previously announced:

Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theater
Chita Rivera
Andrew Lloyd Webber

Special Tony Award
John Leguizamo
Bruce Springsteen

Regional Theater Tony Award
La MaMa E.T.C.

Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award
Nick Scandalios

Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theater
Sara Krulwich
Bessie Nelson
Ernest Winzer Cleaners

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Pawdesh Salawi

Broadway Theatre Writer at New York Show Tickets Inc.
Pawdesh has been writing about Broadway ever since seeing her first show on the great white way in 2001. Now she sees over one hundred Broadway (and off-Broadway) shows a year. She is also a member of the Drama Desk and would love to vote on the Tony's one day. The Office Voted Her Most Likely To: Marry rich and divorce young
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