Hit the lights, turn up the volume, cue the actors -- anddddd perfect.
This year, “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder” led the Tony Award nominations, collecting 10 nods, including best musical. Joining Robert L. Freedman and Steven Lutvak’s death-happy comedy are Carole King’s “Beautiful,” Disney juggernaut “Aladdin” and the Harlem-era hit “After Midnight.”
The Times’ theater critic Charles McNulty predicts that “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder” will win best musical, though there’s a likelihood that “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical” could pull off the upset.
On the best play side of things, McNulty says the safe money is on Robert Schenkkan’s political drama “All the Way,” starring Bryan Cranston as dynamic President Lyndon B. Johnson. The other nominees in the category are “Act One,” the Moss Heart memoir starring Tony Shalhoub; the glitzy cross-dressing comedy “Casa Valentina”; the social drama “Mothers and Sons”; and the romantic-comedy “Outside Mullingar,” starring Debra Messing.
Is it feeling a bit Hollywood in here, or is it just us? It may be just us. Consult our Hollywood stars on stage photo gallery for a look-see. And remember, we haven’t even mentioned Neil Patrick Harris of the gender-bending rock musical “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” or Denzel Washington of Lorraine Hansberry’s “A Raisin in the Sun.”
Speaking of Washington, “Raisin” was not nominated for a best play Tony, because as a revival it is ineligble for that category. (It was nominated for best revival, of course.) But if The Times’ McNulty had his way, “Raisin” would be his winner for best play. Similarly, in recounting his Tony Award nomination snubs and surprises, The Times’ Steven Zeitchik writes that while Washington was also deserving of a nod for lead actor in “Raisin,” his name was nowhere to be found nomination day.
All this uncertainty making you nervous? If there’s one certainty, it’s the evening’s host. Tony Award winner Hugh Jackman will be at the helm, his fourth time as emcee. Add to that Bradley Cooper, Kevin Bacon and Maggie Gyllenhaal among others as presenters of the night.
A pack of performers will also take the stage. Only fitting, right? The lineup includes Harris and the cast of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” Sutton Foster and the cast of “Violet” and Idina Menzel of “If/Then.”
Of course, that’s not it. The bill will also see a 10th anniversary celebration of “Wicked,” a trio performance of Patti LaBelle, Gladys Knight and Fantasia with the cast of “After Midnight,” and an act by Sting from his upcoming musical “The Last Ship.”
We’ll be updating the list and photo gallery with all the winners as the night unfolds. In addition, we’ll bring you the red carpet arrivals, show highlights and analysis of what it all means with a text chat on Monday at 10 a.m. with The Times’ McNulty.