Saw "Nice Work.." last night. I have to say I liked it a lot. Definitely will be nominated for a lot of Tonys, but it won't get between Newsies and Once for the Best Musical. Broderick, O'Hara, and Kaye will be nominated and I think Kaye is the frontrunner for Featured Actress; She really steals the show. Forget about Estelle Parsons being nominated. Her part is so small and towards the end that I can't imagine her getting any recognition. It's defiintely no where near shows like Book of Mormon or Lion King, but all in all I found it very enjoyable.
The Pulitzer really doesn't have any effect on the Tony. Pulitzer nominations are decided by a small committee and then awarded by a somewhat larger board of directors; most of the time, they can only read the plays submitted for consideration as there is no production playing in New York, which is of course not what theater is really about.
I also really detest the idea of a prize that may go unawarded if nothing is judged to have met the nebulous standards of those giving it away.
"Peter and the Starcatcher" opened to great reviews includes an amazing rave from Ben Brantley of the NY Times. It looks like it will be nominated, but doesn't have a chance against "Other Desert Cities" or "Clybourne Park."
I'll say it again, the Play categories this year are going to be the ones to watch out for.. I can't even remember the last time Broadway didn't produce much excitement in the Musical side. The only one I've liked (so far) was Follies!
American Idiot was a lot of fun and I suspect is a representation of how a younger generation feels. I unapologetically LOVED Fela! I didn't dislike Memphis though, especially Montego Glover, though Chad Kimball's acting was distractingly hammy. There was just nothing to get truly excited about. In a year that had some other interesting musicals, they went for money over art.
American Idiot for me was nothing more than a Green Day concert - and I like Green Day, and enjoyed hearing the music, but whatever was going on up there was not a musical. There are people who thought this show was the most daring thing ever on Broadway.
I couldn't find any new musical to get behind that year, but it was a very good year for revivals; La Cage, Finian's, Ragtime Redux, even A Little Night Music, which I liked much more than I expected to.
The race will be between James Corden and Phillip Seymore Hoffman. Ultimately, James Corden will win. Read every single critic's review. Corden has gotten much more praise than Hoffman has in his role.