Sunday, June 07, 2009
Tonys for Billy(s)
By this time of the year theater watchers are prostrate with award-itis, but the Tonys get us to rally. Despite the best efforts of the sound and cameramen to sabotage the evening on TV the show looked pretty good from my sofa, which this year I was on and off running various errands during the show. (Life with children.) It had to be OK, given the utter predictability of the winners. Except maybe for the Next to Normal writers beating the Billy Elliot juggernaut (which included the showbizzy win for all three performers playing Billy, one of whom is pictured), everything was pretty much in lockstep with expectations. It was fun seeing Elton and Liza rock out with the cast of the Hair revival at the top of the show, and host Neil Patrick Harris cap it with a delightful 11 o'clock number. The one bit of excitement, a Normal/Billy tie for orchestrations, happened in the phantom zone where the design awards and best book of a musical were exiled.
The memories of Broadway 2008-2009 will have to last a little longer than usual this year; there are no summer openings for the first time in some time, so the 2009-2010 season doesn't kick off until October. The acclaimed West End revival of La Cage Aux Folles, from newly minted Tony Lifetime Achievement winner Jerry Herman, caused the only real stir of the evening (backstage) when Harvey Fierstein mentioned the possibility of a Broadway transfer, so (relatively) soon after the show's Tony- and Drama Desk-winning revival in the 2004-2005 season. If it's the best of times, look for it to be making the awards rounds next spring.