June 10, 2017

Tony Talk Podcast Episode 11: Final Predictions

After enduring 40 days of awards lunches, newspaper ads, TV appearances, magazine interviews and all kinds of social media interactions, the Broadway community (fans included) will finally get to see who'll win the 2016-2017 Tonys on Sunday.

Unlike last year, when it was clear that Hamilton was going to run away with everything, there are no sure bets—other than Bette Midler (her terrific performance as the title character in Hello, Dolly! is certain to earn her the award for Best Actress in a Musical). So watching the Tonys should be great fun but predicting the winners is more difficult (click here for some expert speculation).

For much of the season, the frontrunner for Best Musical has been Dear Evan Hansen, the show about a boy who attempts to become popular by pretending to have been the best friend of a classmate who committed suicide. But a survey of Tony voters the New York Times published Friday suggests that Come From Away, the show about the small Canadian town that welcomed thousands of travelers marooned when planes were grounded after the Sept. 11 attacks, has been closing in.

Similarly, Oslo, J.T. Roger's play about the secret negotiations that lead to the 1993 peace treaty between the Israelis and the Palestinians, has won the top prize from all of the other theater groups, except for the Pulitzer Prize committee, which chose Sweat, Lynn Nottage's look at the effect of the deindustrialization of America on one Pennsylvania mill town.

But it's another contender that's been gaining ground on Oslo. Over the past couple of weeks, A Doll's House, Part 2, Lucas Hnath's cheeky sequel to the Ibsen classic about a woman who walks out on her husband and children, has launched a big promotional push that has more than tripled its ticket sales and increased its already favorable word-of-mouth with regular theatergoers and voters. 

A special midnight performance of Doll's House when out-of-town producers and theater owners were in town for their annual conference is reported to have played particularly well with those road voters. So the Best Play award now seems up for grabs. And there are down-to-the-wire contests in other categories too. 

In this week's episode, my pals Patrick Pacheco, Bill Tynan and I talk about the nominees each of us is rooting for. Click the orange button below to hear what we have to say or check out all the Tony Talk podcasts on SoundCloud by clicking here

And if you want even more help in making your Tony choices, you can check out the dozens of articles about this year's contest that I've collected in the Tony Talk magazine on Flipboard, which you can find here. 

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