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Tony Award Predictions: Mr. Mickey and Whitney Pick the Winners

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As the reigning Broadway queens here at Paper Publishing HQ, we took it upon ourselves to weigh in on this year's Tony Award nominees. The actual winners will be announced this Sunday on the annual telecast hosted for the umpteenth time by Neil Patrick Harris. We can't wait to see what rap this triple-threat spits out this year, but we do have one observation about this year's nominees that he should consider for his monologue: There were almost as many snubbed starlets as there were boys in underpants. Just something to think about NPH...

Best Play nominees:

The Assembled Parties by Richard Greenburg  

Lucky Guy by Nora Ephron

The Testament of Mary by Colm Tóibín 

Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike by Christopher Durang

Our pick:Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. Christopher Durang wrote an amazing script, we LOL'd non-stop. And Billy Magnussen ran around in his underpants. It was an easy sell.

Snub: I'll Eat You Last: A Chat With Sue Mengers. This one-woman show starring Bette Midler is special event theater that has sold millions of tickets. And remember The Performers? That hilarious show featuring Cheyenne Jackson in a leather jockstrap was taken from us too soon. We can go off-Broadway to see experimental, avant-garde plays that challenge religious paradigms.

Best Musical nominees:


Bring It On: The Musical

A Christmas Story, The Musical

Kinky Boots

Matilda The Musical


Our pick: It's a bad sign when we've only cared to see half of the musicals in this category and three of them need "The Musical" in their title. That said, Matilda is London musical theater at its best.

Snub: Motown: The Musical. Anything that gets Diana Ross and Mary Wilson on the same stage, even if it's just for an opening night curtain call, deserves a nomination.   

Best Book of a Musical:

A Christmas Story, The Musical by Joseph Robinette

Kinky Boots by Harvey Fierstein

Matilda The Musical by Dennis Kelly

Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella by Douglas Carter Beane

Our pick: Kinky Boots, if only to hear Harvey Fierstein croak his acceptance speech.

Snub: Not a banner year for book writing.  

Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre:

A Christmas Story, The Musical, Music and Lyrics: Benj Pasek and Justin Paul

Hands on a Hardbody, Music: Trey Anastasio and Amanda Green  Lyrics: Amanda Green

Kinky Boots, Music & Lyrics: Cyndi Lauper

Matilda The Musical, Music & Lyrics: Tim Minchin

Our pick: Cyndi Lauper. This '80s icon would be the first woman to ever win this category. And we're sure she'll give some cuckoo-bananas, Queens goil speech to go with her cuckoo-bananas outfit.

Snub: It was a stretch to get four. We're just happy Bring It On The Musical got edged out. 

Best Revival of a Play:

Golden Boy

Orphans

The Trip to Bountiful

Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?


Our pick: The Trip to Bountiful. Cicely Tyson singing hymns in the second act was the deciding factor for us.

Snub: The Heiress and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof are both noticeably missing here. They seem to be casualties of the celebrity backlash this season.  

Best Revival of a Musical:

Annie

The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Pippin

Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella


Our pick: Pippin. A fabulous show made even better by muscle boys doing circus acts.  "Ohhhh, it's time to start givin... Tony's to Pippin!"

Snub: We're satisfied as long as Pippin wins. 

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play:

Tom Hanks, Lucky Guy

Nathan Lane, The Nance

Tracy Letts, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

David Hyde Pierce, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Tom Sturridge, Orphans

Our pick: Tracy Letts was the best thing about one of our favorite plays, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, but Tom Hanks was pretty good in Lucky Guy and if he wins that would give him a chance to give a proper tribute to Nora Ephron. Have the Kleenex handy. 

Snub: Was Paul Rudd eligible for this award for his role in Grace? He was thrown up on for the sake of theater! Now he'll probably never be back. And what kind of world are we living in where Ben Walker spends half a play in a towel and can't get nominated? Not one we want to know.   

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play:

Laurie Metcalf, The Other Place

Amy Morton, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Kristine Nielsen, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Holland Taylor, Ann

Cicely Tyson, The Trip to Bountiful

Our pick: Cicely Tyson is the favorite, but our die-hard theater queen hearts are pulling for Kristine Nielsen. She's like the Jan Maxwell of this year. If you get that joke than call us.

Snub: Bette Midler, duh. We would have made room for the Divine Miss M.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical:

Stephanie J. Block, The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Carolee Carmello, Scandalous

Valisia LeKae, Motown The Musical

Patina Miller, Pippin

Laura Osnes, Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella

Our pick: Patina Miller. The best thing to happen to Broadway since Jan Maxwell. See previous pick.

Snub: If Scandalous, Kathie Lee Gifford's huge flop of a show is represented here, that means absolutely no one got overlooked.

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical:

Bertie Carvel, Matilda The Musical

Santino Fontana, Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella

Rob McClure, Chaplin

Billy Porter, Kinky Boots

Stark Sands, Kinky Boots

Our pick: Everyone's saying Bertie Carvel is a shoe-in but Billy Porter was great too. Either way it'll go to a guy in drag, so we're happy.

Snub: Matthew James Thomas is very game as Pippin and Chaplin closed in a month.   

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play

Danny Burstein, Golden Boy

Richard Kind, The Big Knife

Billy Magnussen, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Tony Shalhoub, Golden Boy

Courtney B. Vance, Lucky Guy

Our pick: Billy Magnussen. He went really method for this role, which required him to spend a significant amount of time in his underpants. We applaud his dedication.

Snub: We're getting tired of thinking of people who probably aren't going to attend.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play:

Carrie Coon, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Shalita Grant, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Judith Ivey, The Heiress

Judith Light, The Assembled Parties

Condola Rashad, The Trip to Bountiful

Our pick: Judith Light keeps knocking 'em dead on Broadway.

Snub: Can we say Bette Midler again?


Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical:

Charl Brown, Motown The Musical

Keith Carradine, Hands on a Hardbody

Will Chase, The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Gabriel Ebert, Matilda The Musical

Terrence Mann, Pippin

Our pick: Though we love us a Terrence Mann moment, Charl Brown was very good as Smokey Robinson and we need to throw Motown a bone.

Snub: All the actors in Motown did great impersonations of our favorite Motown stars.  

 
Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical:

Annaleigh Ashford, Kinky Boots

Victoria Clark, Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella

Andrea Martin, Pippin

Keala Settle, Hands on a Hardbody

Lauren Ward, Matilda The Musical

Our pick: Annaleigh Ashford was so fun in Kinky Boots. But we'd be happy with Andrea Martin too.

Snub: Patti Lupone. Oh wait, we just wish The Anarchist had been a musical.

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