2019 Tony Awards Trends and Tallies: Playbill Breaks Down the Nominations
Playbill’s edit team analyzes the Tony Award nominations—from the slew of double nominees to the nine shows completely shut out.
The countdown is on to the 2019 Tony Awards on June 9. Leading the list of nominees this year is Hadestown, with a total of 14 nominations including nods to creators composer and librettist Anaïs Mitchell and director Rachel Chavkin—both of whom are the only women nominated in their respective categories. (Dominique Morisseau was nominated alongside Mitchell in the Book of Musical category; her Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations racked up the second-most nominations of the season with 12.)
READ: 2019 Tony Award Nominations: Hadestown and Ain't Too Proud Lead the Pack
The five Best Musical nominees (Ain’t Too Proud, Beetlejuice, Hadestown, The Prom, and Tootsie) were also the five nominated shows for Best Book of a Musical. The four Best Musical nominees eligible for Best Original Score (all but Ain’t Too Proud) received nods in that category, with the additions of Joe Iconis for Be More Chill and Adam Guettel for the play To Kill a Mockingbird. Also of note: All five Best Direction of a Musical nominees saw their shows nominated in the Best Musical or Best Revival of a Musical category; meanwhile, only three of the five Best Direction of a Play nominees saw their shows nominated in the Best Play or Best Revival of a Play category.
In total, 34 productions were eligible. Below, Playbill breaks down more notable facts and figures from the 2018–2019 season:
First Timers and Debuts
Out of 118 nominated artists, 28 are first-time nominees. Of that 28, 17 are making their Broadway debuts this season
Those 17 Tony-nominated artists new to the Main Stem are: playwrights Tarell Alvin McCraney (Choir Boy), Taylor Mac (Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus) and Heidi Schreck (What the Constitution Means to Me); book writers Dominique Morisseau (Ain’t Too Proud), Scott Brown and Anthony King (Beetlejuice), and Anaïs Mitchell (Hadestown); composers Joe Iconis (Be More Chill), Eddie Perfect (Beetlejuice), and Mitchell; director Daniel Fish (Oklahoma!); David Neumann (Hadestown) making his choreographic debut; scenic designer Peter England (King Kong); orchestrators Michael Chorney and Todd Sickafoose (Hadestown); sound designer Eric Sleichim (Network); and actors Paddy Considine (The Ferryman), Schreck, and Jeremy Pope (Ain’t Too Proud and Choir Boy).
While nine artists are double nominees (receiving two 2019 Tony Award nominations) Jeremy Pope
is this year’s sole performer
nominated twice. He is nominated in two different acting categories,
for his featured role in Ain’t Too Proud
and his leading role in Choir Boy.
(He is the only actor of color nominated for a Leading Role in a Play across both the female and male categories, though there are actors of color included in five of the six other acting categories.)
Heidi Schreck, making her Broadway debut, is nominated for Best Play as the playwright of What the Constitution Means to Me as well as her leading performance in the work. Hadestown creator Anaïs Mitchell was nominated in two categories: Best Book of a Musical and Best Original Score.
Peter Mumford was nominated for Lighting Design of King Kong
and The Ferryman
(musical and play categories). Rob Howell is nominated in two separate design categories: Scenic Design of a Play and Costume Design of a Play (both for The Ferryman
Jan Versweyveld is similarly nominated in two separate design categories for his work on Network:
Lighting Design (shared with Tal Yarden) and Scenic Design.
Costume designers Ann Roth and William Ivey Long are both nominated against themselves in the same category. Long earned nods in the Costume Design of a Musical category for his work on Beetlejuice and Tootsie; Roth received nominations for the plays To Kill a Mockingbird and Gary. Sound designer Peter Hylenski is nominated against himself in the Sound Design of a Musical category for Beetlejuice and King Kong.
Nominated Against Each Other
As can often happen, a number of performers from the same show are nominated against one another in the same category. This year sees: Caitlin Kinnunen and Beth Leavel both nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical for their performances in The Prom;
along with Gary
co-stars Kristine Nielsen and Julie White, who are both nominated for Best Actress in a Featured Role in a Play.
André De Shields and Patrick Page, both from Hadestown, were both nominated for Best Actor in Featured Role in a Musical alongside Pope and Ephraim Sykes, both from Ain’t Too Proud, in that category. Similarly, Tootsie stars Lilli Cooper and Sarah Stiles are both nominated for Best Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical alongside Oklahoma!’s Ali Stroker and Mary Testa.
Play Revival Writers
Per a new ruling
from The Tony Awards Administration Committee announced earlier this month, living writers and composers of shows new to Broadway but considered revivals are now included as part of the nomination (along with the producers). This new eligibility ruling meant Mart Crowley would be eligible for The Boys in the Band
, Kenneth Lonergan would be eligible for The Waverly Gallery
, and Harvey Fierstein would be eligible for his reworked Torch Song
All three of the those plays—and now, therefore, their playwrights—were indeed nominated. None of those plays are currently still running; the two other plays rounding out the category category—Arthur Miller’s All My Sons and Lanford Wilson’s Burn This—are.
READ: Bringing Back Mart Crowley’s The Boys in the Band
Left Off The List
Of Broadway’s 34 productions eligible for Tony Awards this year, nine were fully overlooked in the nominations. Only one, however, still lights up the boards: Pretty Woman
continues its run at the Nederlander Theatre. The remaining eight shows were either limited engagements or had already posted closing notices: Head Over Heels, American Son, Gettin’ The Band Back Together, Straight White Men, The Lifespan of a Fact, The Nap, The New One,
and True West.
All of these shows had fall/winter opening dates—before Broadway had entered the throes of awards season.
Check back on Playbill.com for our full breakdown of overlooked artists and more.
The 73rd annual Tony Awards will take place June 9 at Radio City Music Hall.