On Sunday night, the 69th annual Tony Awards aired on CBS to celebrate Broadway’s best.
It was a big night (If you don’t want to read our commentary on how the evening went, we’ve listed some the big winners below).
It looks like Tony voters went for some more modern and creative shows this year, with more traditional ones appearing mostly in the “Best Revival” categories. However, we can’t say we’re disappointed with the winners.
The award for Best Musical (as well as four other Tonys) went to the beautifully poignant Fun Home based on Alison Bechdel’s graphic novel about her own coming-of-age as a lesbian in a home with her secretly gay father.
In fact, Fun Home’s performance “Ring of Keys,” featuring the young Sydney Lucas, showed such an incredible emotional vulnerability that we couldn’t see the Tony going to any other show.
Other notable performances included the nostalgic (and adorable) medley of songs from the revival of The King And I, Vanessa Hudgen’s sugary sweet and innocent persona during the performance of “The Night They Invented Champagne” from Gigi, and Matthew Morrison’s surprisingly powerful vocal during the song “Strong” from Finding Neverland.
Plus, special recognition goes to Lisa Howard, because her performance of “Jenny’s Blues” from It Shoulda Been You had more than a little “Somethin’ somethin’,’” and we loved it.
The Tony for Best Play was awarded to The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, a play that attempts to show the point of view of a 15-year-old boy with Asperger’s Syndrome, who must solve a mystery when he is accused of killing his neighbor’s dog.
The young Alex Sharp, a recent Julliard graduate, gave a touching acceptance speech after winning the award for his lead role as Christopher in “The Curious Incident.” He dedicated his award to “any young person who feels misunderstood and feels different” addressing the end of the show, which asks the question ‘Does that mean I can do anything?’ to which Sharp answered in his speech, “Yes. Yes it does.”
This year was full of some very notable first-time winners, including Helen Mirren for her role as Queen Elizabeth II (which brought us back to the Oscars for a moment), Ruthie Ann Miles for her role as Lady Thiang in The King and I, and the perky Annaleigh Ashford for her role in the play You Can’t Take it With You.
However, one of our favorite moments was when Kelli O’Hara finally won her first Tony Award on her sixth nomination. She picked up the Tony for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical” for The King and I, and danced her way off stage.
This year’s Tony Awards included big wins for females in male-dominated categories, including best score and best book (both going to the team of Fun Home), plus best director Marianne Elliot for “The Curious Incident.” It also was a big night for many British theater greats who took their talents to The Big Apple. This includes Elliot herself, and the rest of the team who created “The Curious Incident.”
Finally, a word about this year’s charming hosts: Kristen Chenoweth and Alan Cumming had some of the best chemistry on the Tony stage Sunday night. Although there were some weird moments (most notably, Chenoweth in an E.T. costume after she mistook Fun Home for “phone home”), we thought they were fantastic together.
We hope to see more of them next year, even if they’re just presenting an award like Tony-Host-Extraordinaire Neil Patrick Harris did this year.
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Best Revival of a Musical
The King and I
Best Revival of a Play
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play
Helen Mirren, The Audience
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play
Alex Sharp, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play
Annaleigh Ashford, You Can’t Take It with You
Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play
Richard McCabe, The Audience
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical
Kelli O’Hara, The King and I
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical
Michael Cerveris, Fun Home
Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical
Ruthie Ann Miles, The King and I
Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical
Christian Borle, Something Rotten!