As the Tony Awards approach in June, we thought we’d start with bit of trivia that’s probably little-known outside the theater community. The “Tony” in Tony Awards is actually short for “Antoinette.” The proper name of the awards ceremony is the Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theater.
It may be a fun tidbit of information to share with friends, with the popularity of Broadway making a big comeback this year, thanks in part to the wildly-popular hit Hamilton. Hamilton is up for several Tonys, including Best Musical and Best Original Score. Viewers will be able to tune in on June 12 and watch the ceremony via CBS at 8/7 Central. And if you want to check any of the shows out in person, theater tickets are currently available.
It’s become so common knowledge that Hamilton tickets are hard to get that it’s become something of a joke. Hamilton tickets, in fact, are available but you have to pay a relatively high price for them. For example, to see the show in New York City, you’ll be paying close to $1,000 per ticket. Prices are far lower to see Hamilton at the Pantages Theater in Hollywood, with some selling in the $300 price range.
Steve Martin may be best known as a comedian who got his start playing a “wild and crazy guy” on the NBC sketch series Saturday Night Live, but Martin is also an accomplished folk musician. Martin is a banjo player, and he wrote and composed the musical Bright Star with singer-songwriter Edie Brickell, with whom he collaborated to make the Grammy-winning folk album, Love Has Come For You.
The cast of The Color Purple recently rocketed into the public eye when they put their brilliant vocals on display to pay tribute to music giant Prince, who passed away unexpectedly last month. The musical is based on the famous novel by the same name written by Alice Walker, and runs through October 2 at the Bernard Jacobs Theatre in New York.
If you laughed at Jack Black’s 2003 comedy about cute prep school kids who he convinces to play rock ‘n roll instead of classical music in School of Rock, check out the Broadway version. The musical got four Tony nominations, including Best Musical and plays through October 1 at the Winter Gardens Theatre in New York.
There are some shows that are revivals of classics. These include Arthur Miller’s 1953 play, The Crucible, playing at the Walter Kerr Theatre in New York through July 17, and the Fiddler on the Roof, at the Broadway Theatre-NYC through September 4.
Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o is starring in the 2015 play Eclipsed, which is about five Liberian women and their story of survival after the Second Liberian Civil War. The show only runs through June 19 at the John Golden Theatre.
Considering the white-hot popularity and genuine inspiration behind this year’s Tony nominees, the ceremony this year may well be more interesting and entertaining than the Oscars. What better way to personalize the experience than to actually see some of the shows?