The Tony Awards are always the most anticipated theatre event of the year, and we always love discovering if there are any nominees that have connections to Chicago to share in their excitement. This year we have quite a few to celebrate!
One of these connections involve Laurie Metcalf, a veteran Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble member, who was nominated for her portrayal of Nora Helmer in A Doll’s House, Part 2. The show, currently nominated for 8 Tony Awards, is playwright Lucas Hnath’s take on what happened to Nora Helmer, 20 years later from where Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House left off.
The musical War Paint, which premiered here in Chicago at the Goodman Theatre last July 2016, is also being showcased in the Tony Award nominations. Patti LuPone and Christine Ebersole, who originated the roles of Helena Rubinstein and Elizabeth Arden, are both nominated for Best Leading Actress in a Musical. The show also features several Chicago actors in supporting roles, including Mary Ernster and David Girolmo.
Ben Platt, who is currently leading the company of Dear Evan Hansen, was nominated for Best Leading Actor in a Musical. He’s no stranger to the Chicago theatre scene since you may remember him as Elder Cunningham in the First National Tour of the hit musical The Book of Mormon from December 2012 – October 2013 at the Bank of America Theatre (now known as The PrivateBank Theatre).
Kate Baldwin, a Northwestern University graduate who was last seen in Chicago as Sandra Bloom in the Chicago premiere of Big Fish at the Oriental Theatre April – May 2013, will be competing for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her portrayal of Irene Molloy in Hello, Dolly.
Stephanie J. Block, who is also nominated for Best Featured Actress in a musical for her work in Falsettos, has spent a good amount of time in Chicago herself. She played Elphaba in the Chicago premiere of Wicked at the Oriental Theatre back in June 2005, which ended up running until January 2009. She also played Grace O’Malley in The Pirate Queen at the Cadillac Palace Theatre October – November 2006.
Lynn Nottage, the playwright of Sweat, which is now nominated for Best Play, has also recently received this year’s Pulitzer Prize for Drama. You may recognize her work from the play Ruined, which premiered at the Goodman Theater in 2007. Nottage won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2009 for Ruined, making her the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama twice!
Come From Away, the new musical which has landed 7 Tony Award nominations, has nominees for Best Director of a Musical Christopher Ashley and Best Choreography Kelly Devine, who will also be a part of the Escape To Margaritaville creative team set to premiere here in Chicago at the Oriental Theatre beginning November 9, 2017!
Make sure to tune in to the 71st annual Tony Awards hosted by CBS on Sunday, June 11, 2017 beginning at 7 p.m. CT!