Tony nominees honor Broadway’s best before pandemic gutted the industry

WTOP's Jason Fraley reports the Tony nominees (Part 1)

Broadway is dark tonight, but we know the nominees for the best of last season.

The 74th annual Tony Awards revealed its nominees Thursday on YouTube.

Best Musical will be a battle between “Jagged Little Pill,” “Moulin Rouge: The Musical” and “Tina: The Tina Turner Musical.”

Best Actress in a Musical includes Karen Olivo (“Moulin Rouge”), Elizabeth Stanley (“Jagged Little Pill”) and Adrienne Warren (“Tina: The Tina Turner Musical”).

Best Actor in a Musical will be Aaron Tveit (“Moulin Rouge”) as he is the only nominee.

Best Play will be a battle between “Grand Horizons,” “The Inheritance,” “Sea Wall: A Life,” “Slave Play” and “The Sound Inside.”

Best Actor in a Play includes Ian Barford (“Linda Vista”), Andrew Burnap (“The Inheritance”), Jake Gyllenhaal (“Sea Wall/A Life”), Tom Hiddleston (“Betrayal”), Tom Sturridge (“Sea Wall: A Life”) and Blair Underwood (“A Soldier’s Play”).

Best Actress in a Play includes Joaquina Kalukango (“Slave Play”), Laura Linney (“My Name is Lucy Barton”), Audra McDonald (“Frankie & Johnny in the Clair de Lune”) and Mary-Louise Parker (“The Sound Inside”).

The ceremony was originally slated for June 7 at Radio City Music Hall in New York.

Instead, the Tonys will be presented virtually on CBS sometime later this fall.

To qualify, productions must have opened on or before Feb. 19, 2020.

That means such major shows as “West Side Story” (Feb. 20) and “Girl from the North Country” (March 5) are ineligible because the nominating committee didn’t have time to see them before the COVID-19 pandemic shut down Broadway on March 12.

At that point, 16 additional shows were still planning to open during the 2019–2020 season ending April 23, but half of those shows had not even begun previews.

Last season, 34 shows were eligible for Tony consideration. This year, the list was reduced to just 18, including 10 new plays, four new musicals and four play revivals.

There were zero eligible shows in the category for Best Musical Revival.

The shutdown has decimated an industry at the heart of New York City culture. Broadway grossed $1.8 billion last season and attracted a record 15 million people.

Broadway isn’t expected to reopen until next summer, as producers are already offering refunds and exchanges for tickets purchased for shows through May 30, 2021.

WTOP's Jason Fraley reports on the Tony nominees (Part 2)

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