“School of Rock” reaped four Tony Awards nominations, including a bid for Best Musical. Based on the smash 2003 film, this charming tuner follows the misadventures of Dewey Finn (Alex Brightman), a struggling musician who gets a gig as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school. He puts together a rag-tag team of fifth-graders to enter a Battle of the Bands contest.
This contemporary material marks a departure for the two titled Brits who brought this to Broadway — composer Andrew Lloyd Webber and book writer Julian Fellowes. These two Lords earned Tony nominations for their efforts as did Brightman, who contended in Best Actor.
On Sunday’s Tony Awards telecast, he led his merry band of students in a raucous version of “You’re in the Band,” performing, as Webber noted in his introduction, “100% live.”
“School of Rock” did not win any of its four races. However, all but one of the new musicals in contention was shut out as well. “Hamilton,” claimed a near-record 11 Tony Awards, missing the mark set by “The Producers” in 2011. The only races it lost that it contended in were Best Actress — that went to Cynthia Erivo, star of “The Color Purple,” which also won Best Revival — and Scenic Design, which was won by David Rockwell for the revival of “She Loves Me.”