Not really surprised by the winners:
NY Drama Critics’ Circle Chooses Tribes, Sons of the Prophet, Once as 2011-12 Season’s Best
The New York Drama Critics’ Circle named Stephen Karam’s Sons of the Prophet the Best Play of the 2011-12 season following a meeting of its members on May 7. The 77th annual awards also recognized Nina Raine’s Tribes as Best Foreign Play and Once as Best Musical.
Special citations were given to Off-Broadway’s Signature Theatre Company and (for contribution to the theatre) director Mike Nichols.
Karam’s Sons of the Prophet received its New York City premiere in a fall 2011 production by Roundabout Theatre Company that was glowingly reviewed. The comedy-drama about a two gay brothers in a tragedy-touched Lebanese-American family in Pennsylvania (they have distant ties to the writer Kahlil Gibran, who penned “The Prophet”) was also finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. There has been some buzz that the play may eventually get a Broadway production. Karam’s earlier Speech & Debate was also acclaimed; its success at Roundabout’s 62-seat Underground space led to the production of Sons of the Prophet.
On May 6, Sons of the Prophet and Once also won Lucille Lortel productions in the categories of Outstanding Play and Musical, respectively.
Tribes, Raine’s British drama about an insular, bohemian London family and their tug-of-war with a deaf member of the brood, who is uneasily finding his own community, is currently playing at the Barrow Street Theatre in Greenwich Village. David Cromer (Our Town) directs the well-reviewed play, presented in-the-round. Read the Playbill.com feature about Russell Harvard, who plays the son and brother at odds with his family.
Once, based on the hit indie film, spreads Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova’s pop-folk score (including the Oscar-winning “Falling Slowly”) across two acts in which a dozen actor-musicians play multiple roles surrounding a Guy and Girl in Dublin. It played developmental engagements at A.R.T. in Cambridge, MA, and New York Theatre Workshop before moving to the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre on Broadway, where it continues. It was nominated for 11 Tony Awards on May 1. Read the Playbill.com interviews with stars Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti.
Mike Nichols is the famed stage and film director currently represented on Broadway with a revival of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman.
Off-Broadway’s Signature Theatre Company, previously devoted to only one resident playwright per season, has greatly expanded its mission in the past year. Earlier this year, it opened a new three-venue complex, The Pershing Square Signature Center.
Could Once be this years Avenue Q? I actually think it could.
It’s a good win for Once, another feather in its cap after a week of good press – the most Tony nods, a tour announced. Strengthens its perception as the frontrunner. These critics frequently can’t agree on a winner for Best Musical so this is a sign of support.