‘Once’ leads with 11 Tony Awards nominations

Once,” the stage adaptation of the 2007 Oscar-winning film about an Irish composer and his Czech muse, has a leading 11 Tony Awards nominations including Best Musical and bids by co-stars Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti. (See full list of nominations here.)

The Gershwin trunk tuner “Nice Work If You Can Get It” reaped 10 nods, including Best Musical and for leading lady Kelli O’Hara but her co-star, two-time Tony champ Matthew Broderick, was snubbed.

Newsies,” the Disney musical about the newsboy strike of 1899, earned eight nominations including Best Musical and for breakout star Jeremy Jordan.

The stage adaptation of the 1992 film “Leap of Faith” was shut out but for one bid; however, it was the biggie — Best Musical. Many pundits had expected the costly “Spider-man: Turn Off the Dark” to slip into this last slot but it was limited to two tech nods. 

Among the new plays on Broadway, the fanciful “Peter and the Starcatcher” leads with nine nods, including Best Play and for the featured performances of Christian Borle and Celia Keenan-Bolger

2011 Pultizer champ “Clybourne Park” received four nominations including Best Play while one of this year’s Pulitzer finalists, “Other Desert Cities,” has five nods including Best Play and for both Stockard Channing and Judith Light.

Light took over the featured role from Linda Lavin who left to star in “The Lyons” for which she will contend against Channing in Best Actress (Play). Their chief competition is two-time Olivier champ Tracie Bennett who plays Judy Garland in “End of the Rainbow.” This English import also earned a nod for featured player Michael Cumpsty.   

The other play in contention for the top prize is “Venus in Fur” which also earned Nina Arianda her second consecutive lead actress nomination. 

With only four slots, there was no room in the top race for “One Man Two Guvnors,” the English farce which earned seven nominations including one for Broadway newcomer James Corden. He is pitted in the Best Actor (Play) race against Oscar champ Philip Seymour Hoffman who headlines the revival of Arthur Miller‘s “Death of a Salesman.” That show also landed seven bids, including Best Play Revival and one for EGOT-winning director Mike Nichols

Gore Vidal‘s political drama “The Best Man” also contends for Best Play Revival while two-time Tony champ James Earl Jones earned a Best Actor (Play) bid. Two other Tony winners Frank Langella (“Man and Boy”) and John Lithgow (“The Columnist”) round out that race. The other restagings in the running are “Master Class” and “Wit” which also earned a lead actress bid for Tony winner Cynthia Nixon

Among the remountings of tuners, “Porgy and Bess” leads with 10 nominations including Best Musical Revival. Audra McDonald is heavily favored in Best Actress (Musical) for her role in this controversial revision of the 1935 Gershwin opera. Should she prevail the four-time Tony winner will be tied with Julie Harris and Angela Lansbury

Her strongest rival may be Jan Maxwell who reaped a bid for “Follies.” That Sondheim tuner also contends for the revival prize and numbers among its eight nods dueling lead bids by Danny Burstein and Ron Raines. Their co-star, two-time Tony champ Bernadette Peters, was snubbed. 

Also denied a bid was Elena Rogers, who headlines the first rialto revival of 1980 Tony champ “Evita. The show contends as does featured player Michael Cerveris, but not Ricky Martin in the role that won Mandy Patinkin a Tony. 

The final revival in the race is “Jesus Christ Superstar” which also reaped a bid for featured player Josh Young

Nominees were determined by 22 theater professionals appointed by the Tony Awards Administration Committee. Winners of the 26 competitive races will decided by by 851 members of the theatrical community. The 66th annual awardsfest will be broadcast live from the Beacon Theatre on CBS on Sunday June 10, beginning at 8:00 pm ET.

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