EVITA (Produced by: Hal Luftig, Scott Sanders Productions, Roy Furman, Yasuhiro Kawana, Allan S. Gordon/Adam S. Gordon, James L. Nederlander, Terry Allen Kramer, Gutterman Fuld Chernoff/Pittsburgh CLO, Thousand Stars Productions, Adam Blanshay, Adam Zotovich, Robert Ahrens, Stephanie P. McClelland, Carole L. Haber, Ricardo Hornos, Carol R. Fineman, Brian Smith and Warren & Jâlé Trepp)
FOLLIES (Produced by: The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (David Rubenstein, Chairman; Michael M. Kaiser, President; Max A. Woodward, Vice President), Nederlander Presentations, Inc., Adrienne Arsht and HRH Foundation)
THE GERSHWINS' PORGY AND BESS (Produced by: Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel, Rebecca Gold, Howard Kagan, Cheryl Wiesenfeld/Brunish Trinchero/Lucio Simons TBC, Joseph & Matthew Deitch, Mark S. Golub & David S. Golub, Terry Schnuck, Freitag Productions/Koenigsberg Filerman, The Leonore S. Gershwin 1987 Trust, Universal Pictures Stage Productions, Ken Mahoney, Judith Resnick, Tulchin/Bartner/ATG, Paper Boy Productions, Christopher Hart, Alden Badway, Broadway Across America, Irene Gandy and Will Trice)
JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR (Produced by: Dodger Properties, Really Useful Group, Latitude Link, Tamara and Kevin Kinsella, Pelican Group, Waxman-Dokton, Joe Corcoran, Detsky/Sokolowski/Kassie, Florin-Blanshay-Fan/Broadway Across America, Rich/Caudwell, Shin/Coleman and TheatreDreams North America, LLC)
A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE (Produced by: Stephen C. Byrd, Alia M. Jones, Anthony Lacavera, BET Networks, Henry G. Jarecki, Simon Says Entertainment and Dancap Productions, Inc.)
DEATH OF A SALESMAN (Produced by: Scott Rudin, Stuart Thompson, Jon B. Platt, Columbia Pictures, Jean Doumanian, Merritt Forrest Baer, Roger Berlind, Scott M. Delman, Sonia Friedman Productions, Ruth Hendel, Carl Moellenberg, Scott and Brian Zeilinger and Eli Bush)
GORE VIDAL'S THE BEST MAN (Proudced by: Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel, INFINITY Stages, Universal Pictures Stage Productions, Barbara Manocherian/Michael Palitz, Ken Mahoney/The Broadway Consortium, Kathleen K. Johnson, Andy Sandberg, Fifty Church Street Productions, Larry Hirschhorn/Bennu Productions, Patty Baker, Paul Boskind and Martian Entertainment, Wendy Federman, Mark S. Golub & David S. Golub, Cricket Hooper Jiranek, Stewart F. Lane and Bonnie Comley, Carl Moellenberg, Harold Thau and Will Trice)
WIT (Produced by: Manhattan Theatre Club (Lynne Meadow, Artistic Director; Barry Grove, Executive Producer))
Last Year's Winner: Tim Chappel & Lizzy Gardiner, "Priscella, Queen of the Desert"
The award for costume design does not always go to the biggest and brightest design for example I have given this award to productions like 2005's "The Light in the Piazza" or 2007's "Grey Gardens". This year the nominees ranged from classic designs up to modern superhero costumes. In the end it came down to a close match of two productions costumes. In the end my runner up was Martin Pakledinaz's work in the new Gershwin musical "Nice Work If You Can Get It", these classic pieces worked well with the free style andmovement of the cast, the best costume in my mind was the well made man suit worn by ("An Irish Boy" Stage Award nominee for best actress in a musical this year) Kelli O'Hara, it was sweet and went well with her character and made it even more fun to watch her.
In the end the winner I choose was the stunning craftsmanship by Gregg Barnes who had the difficult job of recreating those follies style outfits in the broadway revival of "Follies", yes it may have been the an easy choose because of how obvious the design was but I choose it as my winner because the costumes really tell the story of follies, from the suits of the men all the way back to flashback costumes of the ghosts of the theatre, my favourite outfit was the golden gown worn by ("An Irish Boy" Stage Award nominee for best actress in a musical this year) Jan Maxwell, this costume was elegant with impecable tayloring with great style especiall how uncostume like they looked but like something you would see a hollywood star wear when walking down the red carpet.
Like the award for costume design this award is given to a set (or many sets) that helps tell the story through emotions and shapes the set protrays. I have given this award to productions such as 2009's Next to Normal" and 2006's "The Drowsy Chaperone", I gave the award these to these two musicals because they found new ways to make a set help tell a story even better. Even though the winner for this award this year was an easy choice for me I will still talk about the runner up. The work done by Derek McLane in the new Gershwin musical "Nice Work If You Can Get It" is the runner up for reasons i'm going to say now. It is the runner up because the work done in this musical was done with the top workers in the business because the work they did on the main set of a 20's style house was so great it made the less than great production better, it also had some great side street sets like a place were they hold there liqour. In the end I choose George Tsypin's work in comic book turned musical "Spider Man: Turn Off the Dark", was some of the best and biggest I've seen in years. they recreated the high towers and low life sewars, it is a big place for Spider Man and all the colourful supporting cast to go around swinging over crowds and the stage. Also the set design emboided the comic book fare as well as hanging sets from the celling and that is whay george has won.
Last Year's Winner: Edie Falco, The House of Blue Leaves
The first major award is this award for the supporting women in a play. This award has gone to broadway legends such as Angela Lansbury (nominated again in this category) and broadways debuts such as Scarlett Johansson. This years two top contenders are two great actress's with great roles to play. The runner up is Linda Emond playing Linda in "Death of a Salesman", this role has been played so many times it's hard to make it your own but Emond managed to do that and in the play she held her own againist the more emotional and flashy character such as Willy (Hoffman) and Biff (Garfield).
In the end my choice was Judith Light (nominated last year in Lead Actress in a Play) for her version of Silda in new play "Other Desert Cities", this role was done off-broadway by Linda Lavin who left the play for a starring role in The Lyons, so it was up to Light to take the role and do her version as to not be forgotten, she really was the humor to this play and her reactions some would call over the top I call genius because from her smoking to her eyes roles to heaven this was a great performance worthy of any award handed out this year.
Last Year's Winner: Laura Benanti, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown
Now it's the musical women's time to be rewarded in a supporting role. I have given this award to scene stealers such as Katie Finneran and classic roles performed in new ways such as Karen Olivo. The top two women in this category both are the complete comic relief from their musicals but I believe one of them was better at it. The runner up is the broadway legend Judy Kaye for her hilarious work in the new gershwin musical "Nice Work If You Can Get It", she has some great musical numbers bringing down to crowd to tears from, laughing so much as well as hanging from a Chandeler, she works well with her main co-star Michael McGrath (pending nominee this year for supporting actor in a musical) and that's why she does such great work.
In the end by the string of a hair my winning choice was Da'Vine Joy Randolph for making the part of Oda Mae Brown (the role that won Whoopi Goldberg an oscar) her own in the musical version of "Ghost: The Musical", she had her own way of tackling the role because nobobdy want's to be compared to Goldberg, she had her own sass and in her two main songs making me crack up all the time she was on the stage, and that's why she has won on her first nomination from me.
Last Year's Winner: Robert Lopez, Trey Parker & Matt Stone, The Book of Mormon
Back to the technical awards now pronbably the most important award for new musicals with original material because the score is what people are humming when the show ends as they leave or say what did we just listen to. Outof the four nominees there was one musical's score that I truly lkoved because even two months after I saw the show I can't stop singing a couple of these songs. Even so I will still talk about the runner up which is Frank Wildhorn & Don Black for making real life people into the musical "Bonnie & Clyde", even though some people hated this musical causing it to close early I loved it so much (Best Musical nominee) and the score was important, in my opnion these two men are doing their best work ever and some of the most memorable songs are "Dyin' Ain't So Bad" and "This World Will Remeber Us", these songs bring to life the steamy love off the two people as well how they came to and end in such a horrible and in human way.
In the end the winning score was done by Dave Stewart, Glen Ballard& Bruce Joel Rubin for their magical original score to "Ghost the Musical", this score was some thing special because I felt the emotion the characters were feeling because of the lyrics for a main thing. Some of the best songs include "Suspend My Dis Believe/I Had A Life", "Rain/Hold On" and "With You", these songs all come one after each other (two in act one and the other in act 2), these songs were so great and all the singers made the show way better than I thought it could ever be.
Last Year's Winner: This is the first time I've given out the award
Yes this is the first time I've given an award for dance and I don't know why I never have before. These nominees include two revivals and two new musicals. The runner up was Kathleen Marshall's work on the new musical "Nice Work If You Can Get It", yes she also directed it but I nominated her for her choreography because like most of the work she does the dancing is some of the best I always see each season she puts on a musical.
In the end I choose Christopher Gattelli's work making a musical about boys into a dance marathon, yes the winner choreography came from movie turned musical "Newsies: The Musical", the work done on this musical was some of the best I've ever seen because the high jumps mixed so well with the musica making it more than just a show about singing newspaper guys.
Last Year's Winner: Marianne Elliott & Tom Morris, War Horse
Here is another big award after both of the acting awards I gave out the other day. This award is given to a person or team who make the play even better whether an original or a revival of a play. I think that this two original plays and two revival are four very strong productions I've seen in years and they all would be worthy winners. In second place is the legendary Mike Nicholas doing his own production of the legendary Arthur Miller play "Death of a Salesman", yes some would say he is better but I believe there is another one who did it better, his work with the actorswere all great and doing it all on the original productions notes was a genius decision for anyone to make and Nicholas for me did his best stage directing in years.
In the end the best direction of the year for me was previous winner of this category Joe Mantello for his fantastic work in original play "Other Desert Cities", his work on this play is some of the best I've seen and that is why he has won this award. His work with the actors was so great (four of it's actors were nominated, one has already won), then there is every other technical aspect making the play even better than probably anybody thought it could.
Last Year's Winner: Trey Parker & Casey Nicholaw, The Book of Mormon
Again this direction prize is worth alot more in my opnion because musicals are harder to direct then plays because you all the music elements to think of. This award has gone to broadway legends such as Arthur Laurents (R.I.P.) and newbies such as last years winners (mentioned in bold above). The nominees this year include three original musicals and one revival. The runner up in this category is Matthew Warchus' direction in movie turned musical "Ghost: The Musical", yes this director had a tuff job of making the special effects work so well with the music also handling the clashing singing during some of the songs and I think that he has done such masterful work.
In the end the winning director made his debut, he is John Tiffany for his recreation of turning the movie into a stage musical, that musical is "Once", his work involved making people with instruments not just play them but at the same time they had to dance, also his work involved producing a musical as a whole and he did it so great that all of his cast members made a great impression on me just like this little musical that could. (HAPPY JOHN WON THE TONY ON SUNDAY)
Last Year's Winner: John Benjamin Hickey, The Normal Heart
Now we are back to some of the main acting awards with the supporting male acting awards. This award I have given out to men such as broadway favourites Brian F. O'Byrne and newbies like Eddie Redmayne. This year it came down to two men one fure a truly creative comedy performance and the other a trilling dramatic performance. The runner up in this category is the comedic performance given by Smash star Christian Borle who created the original Black Stache in "Peter and the Starcatcher", it was truly a gem of comedy because he plays the evil so well never going over the top (this is Borle's second nomination he has one previous nomination for supporting actor in a musical for Legally Blonde: The Musical)
In the end the winner for me was Andrew Garfield for his version of Billy in the revival of "Death of a Salesman", this part has been done so may times I try not to compare him to any of the past men. Garfield's broadway debut was so strong because he held his own againist the legendary Phillip Seymour Hoffman and he did it so great, near the end of the play when billy as a character breaks down Garfield gives his best performance and I felt it so much that tears started to come from me eyes.