Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Some Thoughts on the Tony Nominations

Angela Lansbury
Photo: Robert J. Saferstein

This year's Tony nominations make one thing perfectly clear: it was a strong year for Broadway, particularly for play revivals, and it could have been even stronger (e.g., if Desire Under the Elms was actually good, if All My Sons had been directed by someone who respected the play, if Hedda Gabler had been cast with people remotely appropriate for their roles). I, like many other people, was surprised that Bill Irwin and John Goodman were not nominated for Waiting for Godot, but it was a competitive year for actors in plays, and it's wonderful news that John Glover was nominated. And I was astonished that the Godot set did not get a nom--I certainly would have chosen it over the sets for Exit the King and The Norman Conquests. Perhaps the biggest disappointment is the lack of a nom for Carey Mulligan, who was the only Seagull Nina I've ever seen make sense of the role. I have to wonder if James Barbour (Tale of Two Cities) would have been nominated instead of Constantine Maroulis (Rock of Ages) if he hadn't served jail time for "endangering the welfare of a minor," but perhaps not. And while I am glad that Ruined didn't come to Broadway--it belongs in a small theatre--it's too bad that it's not eligible for the Best Play Tony it surely would have won. I have a sense of what predictions I'll make among friends the day of the Tonys, but being a coward (and not having seen all the nominees), I'm only putting one prediction in print: Angela Lansbury will win for Featured Actress in Play.

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