Out of the all nominees spread across the 26 categories at the 2018 Tony Awards, 18 of them stand out as particularly noteworthy items of trivia.
Three of this year’s acting nominees have now been nominated for every single appearance they’ve made on Broadway to date: Glenda Jackson (“Three Tall Women”) with five; Diana Rigg (“My Fair Lady”) with four; and Andrew Garfield (“Angels in America”) with two.
Three of the four nominees for Best Lead Actress in a Play represent the only recognition for their productions: Condola Rashad (“Saint Joan”); Lauren Ridloff (“Children of a Lesser God”); and Amy Schumer (“Meteor Shower”).
Three of last year’s acting nominees are back in the running this year: Laurie Metcalf, who won Lead Actress in a Play last year for “A Doll’s House, Part 2” is nominated for Featured Actress in a Play this year for “Three Tall Women”. One of Metcalf’s nominated featured co-stars in “A Doll’s House, Part 2”, Condola Rashad, earned her first nomination as lead this year for “Saint Joan”. And Nathan Lane, who was nominated for Featured Actor in a Play last year for “The Front Page,” is back in that same category this year for “Angels in America”.
The revival of Tony Kushner’s “Angels in America” received 11 nominations, which is the most for any play in Tony history. It is also the first Broadway production of a play to have been nominated for Best Original Score since “One Man, Two Guvnors” and “Peter & the Starcatcher” were both recognized in 2012.
This marks the first time that Lane’s role in “Angels in America,” Roy Cohn, has been deemed to be featurerd. Ron Leibman won as a Lead Actor for his performance in the original production back in 1993 while Al Pacino also won in lead at the Emmys for the 2003 miniseries.
Conversely, Hailey Kilgore landed a lead nomination for playing Ti Moune in “Once on This Island.” LaChanze was nominated in featured for the role in the original 1991 production. LaChanze is also nominated as a Lead Actress this year for her performance in “Summer: The Donna Summer Musical”.
Lauren Ambrose is the first actress nominated for the role of Eliza Doolittle in “My Fair Lady” since Julie Andrews for the original production back in 1956. Rigg is the first actress nominated for the role of Mrs. Higgins in the five productions to play on Broadway (Gladys Cooper did receive a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination for her performance in the 1964 film adaptation.)
While the original production of “Carousel” predates the Tonys, only the most recent of the three revivals in 1994 reaped an acting nomination (that was the first win for Audra McDonald, who appeared in the supporting role of Carrie Pipperidge). Lindsay Mendez reaped a bid for that same role in this production while four performers became the first to be Tony-nominated for these roles: Joshua Henry (Billy Bigelow), Jessie Mueller (Julie Jordan), Alexander Gemignani (Enoch Snow) and Renée Fleming (Nettie Flower).
Of the three productions nominated for Best Revival of a Musical, “Carousel” leads the way with 11 nominations. Unlike its two rival nominees for that top prize, “My Fair Lady” and “Once on This Island”, it was snubbed for direction.
This is the second time John Leguizamo has received a Best Play nomination for a solo show which he wrote and performed. In 1998, he was nominated for “Freak”. 20 years later, he’s in contention with “Latin History for Morons”.
Three of the five nominees for Best Direction of a Play share a connection: Marianne Elliott is nominated for her staging of “Angels in America” while Joe Mantello (“Three Tall Women”) appeared in the original production directed by George C. Wolfe (“The Iceman Cometh”).
Three of the four nominees for Best Musical (“The Band’s Visit”, “Frozen”, and “Mean Girls”) are based on movies.
“Frozen” is the first Best Musical contender from Disney that didn’t earn a single acting nomination. The company’s five previous contenders (“Beauty & the Beast”, 1994; “The Lion King”, 1998; “Mary Poppins”, 2007; “Newsies”, 2012; “Aladdin”, 2014) all numbered at least one bid for a performance.
The fourth Best Musical nominee (“SpongeBob SquarePants”) is based on a cartoon series.
“SpongeBob SquarePants” is the first score written with contributions from a wide variety of people to reap a bid since “Urban Cowboy” did so back in 2003.
For the second year in a row, all four of the nominees for Best Book of a Musical are making their Broadway debuts: Itamar Moses (“The Band’s Visit”), Jennifer Lee (“Frozen”), Tina Fey (“Mean Girls”), and Kyle Jarrow (“SpongeBob SquarePants”). Two of those nominees, Fey and Lee, adapted their screenplays for the stage.
Seven people reaped double bids:
Director/choreographer Casey Nicholaw (“Mean Girls”);
Choreographer Christopher Gattelli (“My Fair Lady”; “SpongeBob SquarePants”);
Costume designer Ann Roth (“Carousel”; “The Iceman Cometh”; “Three Tall Women”)
Set/costume designer Jonathan Fensom (“Farinelli & the King”);
Set/costume designer David Zinn (“SpongeBob SquarePants”)
Lighting designers Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer (“The Iceman Cometh”; “Once on This Island”);and
Set designer Scott Pask (“The Band’s Visit”; “Mean Girls”);
Gattelli, who won in 2012 for “Newsies”, is the first double nominee for Best Choreography since Jerry Mitchell in 2005 for “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” and “La Cage aux Folles” (he won for the latter).
Be sure to make your Tony Awards 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 winners are announced on June 10. And join in the fun debate over the 2018 Tonys taking place right now in our theater forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.