So the Antoinette Perry Awards were last night – better known as the Tony’s.
Den and I had talked last week about them – that they were later this year, that we didn’t know much about what was nominated, etc. About 8 o’clock we were channel surfing and got in on them just before a number from South Pacific – “geez” I thought “that old warhorse.”
Ummm…when did Paulo Szot get to this country and why wasn’t I notified. Have you heard this Brazilian baritone? Have you seen him? He’s won every award you can win this season on Broadway for his portrayal of Emil De Becque.
Well, I was hooked for the rest of the show –
I loved that Deanna Dunagan won Best Actress [Play] - an older, Texan girl; that Patti Lupone won for Best Actress [Musical] since she hadn’t gotten a Tony since EVITA; that Liza Minnelli…(side note – spell check just told me that I needed to correct Minnelli – OK – that’s amazing that THAT is included in the dictionary) presented and was of this earth. I enjoyed that Mel Brook’s latest project didn’t win anything (I know that is ungracious, but I was in the building when he won all those for The Producers, and he was a real jack ass)
I’d heard the hype about “In the Heights” but hadn’t really done any homework on it, so the number on the telecast was the first I’d seen. I’m not a huge fan of rap – simply because most of the artists I’ve heard use lyrics that are base and violent and…well, you get the picture. So imagine my surprise when Lin - Manuel Miranda rapped his entire acceptance speech complete with references to lyrics from Sondheim, and during the number rhymed braggadocio with Pinocchio. Den and I are both working on research projects that deal with actors in NYC during the huge influx of immigrants in the middle 1800’s. Everything I’d been reading was right there on that stage, only the faces have changed. I think it is about time that we have an incredible piece of theatre that examines the current immigrants or first generation Americans that are living there now.
So now I have some new soundtracks to purchase and new (and old standards) to sing in the convertible again. Gotta get on Drama Book’s website and order some new plays. This year the Tony’s made me feel good about the present state of the American Theatre. It also made me hungry for a grilled cheese from the The Red Flame Deli next to the Algonquin! And a piece of Key Lime Pie from the Greek deli - what is the name of that place...
Yo! I’m walkin’ here….