2018 Tony Award nominations: Reactions to major surprises and snubs in musical categories [WATCH]

Shortly after the nominations for the 72nd Tony Awards were announced on May 1, Gold Derby contributing writers Sam Eckmann and David Buchanan chatted via webcam about their first impressions of the Musical categories (Watch our analysis above).

Mean Girls” and “SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical” both earned a whopping 12 nominations each, and while Sam thinks both of those shows will see a competitive boost from their nomination tallies, he and David still think “The Band’s Visit” is the frontrunner despite falling one nomination short of its two main competitors. Even if “Mean Girls” doesn’t win the top trophy of the evening, Sam and David both think Tina Fey could take home the award for Best Book, though David warns that “just because it’s chock full of jokes does not a Best Book make.”

SEE 2018 Tony Awards nominations: Full list in all 26 categories

The Best Musical Revival category is a nail-biter. Sam currently predicts “Once On This Island,” which nabbed 8 nominations, to win, while David chooses “My Fair Lady,” which has 10 bids. Neither thinks “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel” will earn the top trophy even though it has the most nominations of the trio with 11.

On Lead Actress, Sam and David see a close race between Katrina Lenk (“The Band’s Visit”) and Lauren Ambrose (“My Fair Lady”). With neither of the “Frozen” actresses Patti Murin and Casey Levi getting nominated, Sam quips, “both of the women got left out in the cold.” Lead Actor will be equally competitive with all four nominees a feasible winner. Sam pegs Ethan Slater (“SpongeBob”) as the frontrunner for the award, while David predicts Joshua Henry (“Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel”) to prevail.

SEE Tony Awards nominations: ‘Mean Girls,’ ‘SpongeBob SquarePants’ lead with 12, ‘Harry Potter’ has 10

In the Featured Acting races, Sam thinks Lindsay Mendez (“Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel”) could take home her first Tony, though Ashley Park (“Mean Girls”) could be competitive. Sam and David both throw their support behind Norbert Leo Butz (“My Fair Lady”) to win his third career Tony.

To wrap up, Sam and David discuss their biggest Musical snubs. David laments the missed opportunity of nominating more Featured Actors from “The Band’s Visit,” including Etai Benson, John Cariani, Adam Kantor, and Andrew Polk. Sam similarly bemoans the many deserving members of “Once On This Island” who missed out on bids, including Alex Newell, Merle Dandridge, Kenita R. Miller, Lea Salonga.

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Be sure to make your Tony predictions today so that Broadway insiders can see how their shows and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions as often as you like until just before nominees are announced on June 10. And join in the fun debate over the 2018 Tonys taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our theater forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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