“A Christmas Carol” has won the 2021 Tony Award for Best Original Score, marking the first time in Tony Awards history that a non-musical play has claimed this category. A historic moment here was guaranteed, as all five of this year’s nominees were scores from plays. “A Christmas Carol” overcame “The Inheritance,” “The Rose Tattoo,” “Slave Play,” and “The Sound Inside” for the win.
It is composer Christopher Nightingale’s first Tony win. “A Christmas Carol” proved quite popular with Tony voters this year. It absolutely dominated the below-the-line awards, winning all five of its nominations. Quite impressive considering the show was left out of the Best Play and Best Director (Play) categories.
The makeup of this year’s Score nominees was drastically affected by the Broadway shutdown in March 2019. At the time of the shutdown, the only musical with an original score was the stage adaptation of “The Lightning Thief.” But Tony voters turned their noses up at this kids show, and snubbed Rob Rokicki’s music and lyrics. Most of the musicals with original scores had planned their opening nights for the spring. This includes the likes of “Diana,” “Flying Over Sunset,” “Mrs. Doubtfire,” and “SIX,” which will all premiere as part of the current 2021-2022 Broadway Season.
This year’s five contenders balloons the number of plays nominated for Best Original Score at the Tonys to 15. The other plays which contended for the prize are “To Kill a Mockingbird,” “Angels in America (2018), “Peter and the Starcatcher,” “One Man, Two Guvnors,” “Fences” (2010), “Enron,” “Twelfth Night” (1999), “The Song of Jacob Zulu,” “The Good Doctor,” and “Much Ado About Nothing” (1973).
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