Late Season Broadway & Tony Potential
The 2018 season on Broadway hasn’t come to an end just yet, and in fact there are some exciting openings and previews this month. However, with the date set for the 2019 Tony Awards, which will recognize achievements in the 2017-18 season, it’s not too early to talk about award potential, particularly for some of the more recent shows.
At this early stage, there is a strong speculative aspect to any discussion like this. You can find other articles looking at “way-too-early” favorites of course, and you may even be able to find some premature betting odds. More and more, bookmaking sites carry listings for things like entertainment shows, and you can compare the latest odds at any point wherever there is a Tony Awards category, right up until the show. Again though, it’s slightly early for this right now. But there’s no harm in speculating, so here are a few words on some of the later shows of the season.
American Son previewed in October for a November opening and received generally positive reviews. It’s a new play from Christopher Demos-Brown meant to speak to a very current moment regarding racial tension and police violence. It doesn’t seem as if it will be a likely heavyweight for the Tonys, though Emmy-nominated actress Kerry Washington has earned raves and could be in line for a Lead Actress (Play) nomination. A Best Play nomination is perhaps possible as well.
Harvey Fierstein’s Torch Song first played in 1982 but was brought back early this winter. A play long viewed as being important for LGBT culture, it is about a drag performer in search of love and connection. This latest version of the play was well-received by critics but has not performed well at the box office, and as a result is set to close prematurely in early January. This was a fine performance by most accounts, but it seems unlikely to garner much award attention at this point.
The Prom started a few years ago in Georgia but made its Broadway debut in mid-November, fast becoming one of the more fun shows on the circuit. It’s a bit of a celebration of Broadway itself, with a musical plot about Broadway performers descending on and livening up a conservative town in the Midwest (clearly with a bit of a Footloose/Dirty Dancing vibe). A Best Musical nomination seems very likely for this rising star of a show, and Casey Nicholaw could be in line for directing honors as well.
To Kill A Mockingbird
To Kill A Mockingbird is becoming the headline event of the year on Broadway, and it’s no wonder why. It’s an adaptation of a novel that 10 years ago was voted to be the best of all time, and it’s being presented on stage by a powerhouse group comprised of producer Scott Rudin, director Bartlett Sher, and writer Aaron Sorkin – not to mention Jeff Daniels in the lead role. Any show can disappoint, but a booking at the Shubert conveys confidence and the buzz around this adaptation is significant. It’s reasonable to expect nominations in relevant categories for Sher, Sorkin, and Daniels, as well as a Best Play nomination for the show itself.
Be sure to check back with TheatreBloom once the Tony Award Nominations have gone live, more fun speculative news articles and opinion weigh-ins are sure to pop up!