Movies were all over the Tony Awards this year. “Once,” based on the Fox Searchlight Sundance sleeper, took home eight Tonys including Best Musical and Best Actor, and Disney film-flop-turned-Broadway-musical “Newsies” won best score.
Crooner Ricky Martin hit the stage for the revival of “Evita,” followed by the original Che and Evita, Mandy Patinkin and Patti LuPone, who sang their presentation. As expected, a teary Audra MacDonald took home her fifth Tony, her first for Best Actress, for the streamlined 21st-century musical model of “Porgy and Bess.”
It was a good night for Hollywood’s Scott Rudin, who produced Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s 2011 best musical “Book of Mormon,” and this year produced the Tony-winning revival of “Death of a Salesman,” for which Mike Nichols also won Best Director of a play. “It’s the rarest thing in a play,” the 80-year-old Nichols said of “Salesman.” “It gets truer as time goes by.”
For the third time, Philip Seymour Hoffman lost Best Actor, this time to British first-time nominee James Corden for slapstick comedy “One Man, Two Guvnors.”
It was an emotional night, as two actors mentioned recently lost parents and two others cited about-to-be-married fiances. And for the third year, light in the loafers Neil Patrick Harris did his usual stunt musical numbers (see opener below), and gamely hung upside down like “Spider-Man” to provide distraction during some dull bits of American Theater Wing business. I’ll sign that let-Harris-host-the-Oscars petition.