The fever of awards season has officially taken over Broadway! Between Broadway.com Audience Choice Award nominations, Tony nominations, snub discussions and fabulous show features galore, we sure have learned a lot. From discovering Whoopi Goldberg’s golden Tony touch to hearing Raul Esparza’s unexpected (and hilarious) dream role, it’s been a jam-packed seven days on the Great White Way. Read on below to learn these lessons and more.
Whoopi Goldberg Roles Are Tony Bait
This can’t be a coincidence. Ghost star Da’Vine Joy Randolph is the third actress to get a Tony nod for a role originally played on film by Whoopi Goldberg. Patina Miller was nominated in 2011 for Sister Act, and LaChanze won a Tony for 2006’s The Color Purple. All right ladies, who wants to star in Corinna, Corinna the musical? The line starts to the left.
Hello, Raul! Esparza Wants to Be a Leading Lady
When Raúl Esparza was asked to pick a dream show to do with his Pushing Daisies co-star Kristin Chenoweth, his answer of Hello, Dolly! seemed a sensible choice. But Esparza doesn't stop there! In this dream version, Esparza would play brassy matchmaker Dolly Levi and Cheno would play the rich, grumpy Horace Vandergelder. If you can be a disco ball for Jesus in Leap of Faith, you can be anything.
Audra McDonald Feels Like a Natural Woman
We’ve all wondered “who would play me in a movie?” but legendary singer Aretha Franklin knows exactly who that actress will be: Tony magnet Audra McDonald. Franklin saw McDonald's (Tony-nominated, duh) performance as Bess in Porgy and Bess recently and told the press she wanted McDonald to play her in a biopic. We’re going to say a little prayer this movie happens soon.
Lady Gaga and Rihanna's Looks Appear in Jesus Christ Superstar
If you get the feeling you’re at a rock concert while watching Broadway rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar, the costumes might have something to do with it. Costume designer Paul Tazewell recently revealed his sartorial inspirations to Broadway.com, and on that list were pop superstars Elton John, Rihanna, Lady Gaga and Madonna. What? No meat dress?
Kelli O’Hara Reveals her True Tomboy Identity
To look at Kelli O’Hara’s most famous roles—South Pacific, The Pajama Game, The Light in the Piazza—you’d never guess that the leading lady has a tough side. “I’m actually a tomboy—I joke that I’m not really a girl, but I play one on stage,” the Nice Work If You Can Get It star recently told Broadway.com. Hey Kelli, you might want to talk to Raul Esparza. We hear he's casting against type.
What Jason Robert Brown Wants, Jason Robert Brown Gets
When the Outstanding Orchestrations category was removed from the 2012 Drama Desk Awards, Tony-winning composer Jason Robert Brown took to his website to protest—and won! “Every New York theater musician I know is offended and confused by the decision,” Brown wrote. The theater community rallied, and three days later the award was reinstated. Jason, were you involved with the return of Arrested Development? If so, thank you.
Wicked Made Jackie Burns Even Louder
Wicked star Jackie Burns is anything but shy, but the actress owes some of that trait to playing Elphaba, who doesn't always think before she speaks. “My fiancé [John Selya] tells me I do that even more since I’ve become Elphaba,” Burns told Broadway.com. “There’s that scene where Fiyero says, ‘Do you ever let anybody else talk?’ and he says that to me almost every day.” Is he wearing Fiyero-esque tight white pants when he says that? Just curious.
Linda Lavin Can Spot Award-Worthy Roles
Linda Lavin’s Tony-nominated role in The Lyons is the latest in a string of fabulous roles she’s recently played. How do you know they’re fabulous? All of them have earned Tony nominations. Judith Light is nominated for the role originated by Lavin in Other Desert Cities, as is Jayne Houdyshell for the Follies role Lavin played at the Kennedy Center last summer. Way to share the love, Linda.
Broadway.com Readers Rally Behind Hugh Dancy
On Tony nomination day the snubs are discussed as much as the honors, but Broadway.com readers were very clear about whom they thought had been overlooked. Venus in Fur star Hugh Dancy walked away with a whopping 42% of the votes when we asked fans to weigh in on the biggest snub. The people have spoken! Or Claire Danes had a very busy evening at her computer.
J. Pierrepont Finch is Always a Fan Favorite
It turns out that the secret to Broadway popularity is playing How to Succeed’s ambitious leading man, J. Pierrepont Finch. Daniel Radcliffe won a 2011 Broadway.com Audience Choice Award for the role, and now both of his successors—Darren Criss and Nick Jonas—are nominated for favorite replacement, and Tony-winning former Finch Matthew Broderick is nominated for Favorite Actor in a Musical. Is the Brotherhood of Man behind this?