08 May, 2006

Let the games begin . . .

    Well, this year's Drama Desk nominations are out and I’m pleased to report that Sutton Foster's latest endeavor, The Drowsy Chaperone, leads the pack with 14 nominations, including Outstanding Actor and Actress in a Musical (Bob Martin and Sutton Foster, respectively) and Outstanding Musical.  Grey Gardens is on its heels with 12 nominations and See What I Wanna See and Sweeney Todd are a close third with 9 nominations each.  Michael John LaChiusa (composer/lyricist, See What I Wanna See) is also nominated for both Outstanding Music and Outstanding Lyrics -- if he doesn't win, there is something dreadfully wrong with this world.  Likewise, Outstanding Book of a Musical better go to Bob Martin & Don McKeller's Drowsy Chaperone lest the voters be struck down by lightning from heaven.  Unfortunately, Drowsy is pitted against both See What I Wanna See and Sweeney Todd for Outstanding Musical and Sutton is pitted against both Patti Lu-Freaking-Pone (Sweeney Todd) and Idina Menzel (See What I Wanna See) for Outstanding Actress.  Patti is . . . well, Patti, Idina gave a performance for the ages in See What I Wanna See, and Sutton Foster is positively electric in her newest role, so this category is going to be a close call.
    Thankfully, come Tony Time, I won't have to be torn between Sutton and Idina or Drowsy and See What I Wanna See, since Off-Broadway shows are not eligible for Tony Awards.  It's interesting to note that Sutton is considered a leading actress by the Drama Desk folks when Drowsy is such an ensemble show.  If the American Theatre Wing calls her a lead, it may hurt her chances for a Tony (I mean, come on!  Patti LuPone?!?  She's pretty much a theatre-queen goddess the world over!).  Hopefully ATW will classify her role as a featured one so that she might grab herself another Tony.
    The Drama Desk Awards are given out on Sunday, May 21st -- five days after the Tony Award Nominations on May 16th -- and the Broadway winners of Drama Desk Awards are quite solid indicators of who will win the year’s Tony Awards.
    Let Tony season begin!

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