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Busy spring means a crowded Tony nomination field

 In this theater publicity image released by Barlow Hartman Public Relations, David Alvarez stars as Billy Elliot and Haydn Gwynne stars as Mrs. Wilki...
 FILE -  In this March 5, 2009 file photo, actor Gavin Creel performs during the "Hair" dress rehearsal at the Al Hirschfeld Theater, in New York.  (A...
 This theater publicity photo released by Boneau/Bryan-Brown Public Relations shows, from left,  Marcia Gay Harden, Hope Davis, Jeff Daniels,  and Jam...
 In this theater publicity image released by Barlow Hartman Public Relations, Marc Kudisch and Megan Hilty are shown in a scene from the musical, "9 t...
 In this image released by Dreamworks Theatricals, Brian d'Arcy James portrays Shrek in the theater production of "Shrek The Musical." (AP Photo/Dream...

Theater Tony Nominations

In this theater publicity image released by Barlow Hartman Public Relations, David Alvarez stars as Billy Elliot and Haydn Gwynne stars as Mrs. Wilki...

Theater Tony Nominations

FILE - In this March 5, 2009 file photo, actor Gavin Creel performs during the "Hair" dress rehearsal at the Al Hirschfeld Theater, in New York. (A...

Theater Tony Nominations

This theater publicity photo released by Boneau/Bryan-Brown Public Relations shows, from left, Marcia Gay Harden, Hope Davis, Jeff Daniels, and Jam...

Theater Tony Nominations

In this theater publicity image released by Barlow Hartman Public Relations, Marc Kudisch and Megan Hilty are shown in a scene from the musical, "9 t...

Theater Tony Nominations

In this image released by Dreamworks Theatricals, Brian d'Arcy James portrays Shrek in the theater production of "Shrek The Musical." (AP Photo/Dream...

A busy, surprisingly high-quality and starry spring means a crowded field for 2009 Tony Award nominations. A few actors _ not to mention shows _ are bound to be left out in the competition for the best of the Broadway season.
Destined for multiple nominations, which will be announced Tuesday, are such box-office winners as "Billy Elliot," the revivals of "Hair and "West Side Story," and "God of Carnage." Broadway usually doesn't turn its back on success.
Among the actors likely to get serious consideration are names such as Jane Fonda, Daniel Radcliffe, Angela Lansbury, James Gandolfini, Kristin Scott Thomas, Geoffrey Rush, Marcia Gay Harden, Nathan Lane, Janet McTeer, Jeff Daniels, Hope Davis, Bill Irwin and John Goodman.
Let's start, though, with the musical nominations, which are among the most coveted, since they give the finalists valuable airtime on the three-hour telecast on June 7 from Radio City Music Hall.
"Billy Elliot" is a natural for a best-musical slot. Big British hit. Heartwarming story of a coal miner's son who dreams to dance. Marquee composer (Elton John). And three boys sharing the title role and the possibility of getting a joint triple nomination.
Its most likely competition: "Next to Normal," a serious-minded musical chronicling one woman's mental problems and their effect on her family. The other two spots most likely will be fought over by Dolly Parton's "9 to 5," based on the popular 1980 movie that co-starred Parton, Fonda and Lily Tomlin; DreamWorks' "Shrek," based on its hit animated movie; and even that 1980s homage, "Rock of Ages" (stranger things have happened).
The musical revival tussle will involve "Hair" and "West Side Story," with "Pal Joey" and "Guys and Dolls" filling the other two slots.
Critics were effusive in their praise of a parade of play revivals, which will make the four choices difficult. "The Norman Conquests," "Joe Turner's Come and Gone," "Waiting for Godot," "Exit the King," "The Seagull," "Mary Stuart," "Desire Under the Elms," "Equus" and "All My Sons" are among the possibilities.
New play choices are slimmer with Yasmina Reza's "God of Carnage" considered the favorite to win even before the nominations come out. The production parlayed good reviews and the savvy casting of Gandolfini, Harden, Daniels and Davis into the spring's hottest ticket. No other star-driven play, including "33 Variations" (which stars Fonda) or "Exit the King" (which headlines Rush and Susan Sarandon), approached its success.
Some stars couldn't overcome lackluster notices. The widely panned "Impressionism," which features Jeremy Irons and Joan Allen, announced last week that it would close May 10 after an abbreviated run.
Among the other likely best-play candidates are "reasons to be pretty" by Neil LaBute, Horton Foote's "Dividing the Estate" and maybe even Richard Greenberg's "The American Plan," which played off-Broadway in 1990.


Updated : 2021-05-17 00:48 GMT+08:00