Westchester-related names popped up all over the Tony Awards, which were given out on Sunday.
In fact, this year, the awards were a battle of the Westchester Broadway Theatre All-Stars. In many of the categories, two WBT alums, who got their starts at the local dinner theater, went head-to-head: Susan Stroman and Kathleen Marshall. Stroman’s entry to the awards this year was the well-reviewed, but quickly shuttered, The Scottsboro Boys, while Marshall was there for her Anything Goes, which opened in April. The two were nominated against each other loads of times: for Direction of a Musical, Choreography, Lighting Design of a Musical, Sound Design of a Musical, Scenic Design of a Musical, and Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical. So, who won more statues in these contests? The real answer is actually The Book of Mormon, which won in almost all of those categories (with the exception of Choreography and Actor, which went to Catch Me If You Can‘s Norbert Leo Butz). But Marshall won the Choreography award over Mormon and Stroman, giving her the decisive local victory.
In fact, The Scottsboro Boys didn’t win anything, even though it was nominated for 12 awards (in addition to the ones listed above, it was nominated for Musical, Book of a Musical, Original Score, Featured Actor in a Musical for two different actors, and Orchestrations). Anything Goes was nominated for only nine awards, but it actually won three, including Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical for Sutton Foster and Best Revival of a Musical—though How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying was the only other musical nominated there, so it had a 50/50 shot.
What other local names popped up last night? Northern Westchester’s Alan Menken and his Sister Act lost the Best Original Score award to—you guessed it—The Book of Mormon, while Sarah Lawrence College graduate David Lindsay-Abaire and his Good People lost the Best Play award to the equine puppets of War Horse. What can I say? We have a lot of talent here in Westchester, but we just can’t compete with horses and Mormons.
If you were watching the awards presentation, you also may have seen White Plains native Jennifer Damiano sing a duet as the red-haired Mary Jane from Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. But, since the awards took place at the Beacon Theatre and Spider-Man‘s biggest numbers are not so transportable—they’re problematic enough where they are—it wasn’t much to really see. Instead, you’d be better off watching Neil Patrick Harris’s opening number, about how Broadway is “not just for gays anymore.”
So, tell, me—I haven’t seen Book of Mormon yet. Is it really that good? Let me know in the comments.