Your trusty Theatre Is Easy writers sure are opinionated! So it shouldn't be a surprise that we have a lot to say about the year in theatre, namely who should win Broadway's biggest prize, the coveted Tony Award. Let's get right down to it.
Why Mary McCormack should win Best Supporting Actress in a Play (but won't).
This a really heavy-hitting group. We've got Sinead Cusack with here dual roles in Rock 'n' Roll, Mary McCormack as the hysterical German flight attendant in Boeing Boeing, Laurie Metcalf in David Mamet's November, Martha Plimpton also doing double duty in Topgirls, and Rondi Reed as the steadfast sister to a tyrant in August: Osage County. This is a really tough race. Now who I think will actually win is Martha Plimpton. She's a stage darling and was robbed by not winning for The Coast of Utopia. Now who should win, there is no doubt in my mind. Mary McCormack is off the charts wonderful in Boeing Boeing. She got exit applause for her first three exits the night I saw the show and she earned every minute of that. Comedy is rarely awarded when it comes to awards, but she certainly deserves this Tony.
Why August: Osage County should win Best Play (and probably will).
August: Osage County is darn good. Tony good. If you asked me what how I'd describe it I'd call it Six Feet Under on stage. Of course a comparison to that incredible HBO series should be taken as a complement. As any production of quality, every element in the play is excellent, starting with Tracy Letts' intriguingly layered story to the outstanding ensemble work by the Steppenwolf Theater Company to the direction and stage design that fully encompasses the theater and connects with every audience. A Tony is the only thing missing from this stellar production of American Theater.
Why the race for Best Musical is a big ol' crapshoot.
The race for Best Musical is also pretty tricky. There really isn't a front-runner for the title. We've got Cry-baby, Passing Strange, In the Heights, and Xanadu. Cry-baby: sorry, not a chance. Passing Strange might be a little too out-there for Tony voters. So that means it really comes down to In the Heights and Xanadu. In the Heights is great and really pushes the boundaries of musical theatre. The music is great and will probably win Best Score. Xanadu is pure camp at its finest and should win Best Book. So, my thought is that with 13 nominations, In the Heights will take home the top prize, but I wouldn't be surprised at all if Xanadu sneaks in there and takes it. It's a really great show and is the most critically praised show of the nominees. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.