14 Tony-Nominated Shows to See Before the Tony Awards

Sponsored Content   14 Tony-Nominated Shows to See Before the Tony Awards
 
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The 2017–2018 Broadway season has concluded—and now it's Tony Awards season! For anyone looking to catch up on some of the most critically acclaimed (and just plain fun) shows of the season, here's a handy guide to everything still running that scored a nomination this year.

Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes

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James McArdle and Lee Pace Brinkhoff-Moegenburg

The first revival of Tony Kushner's Pulitzer Prize-wining masterpiece scored 11 nominations, making it the most-nominated play in Tony history. This production arrives in New York following a sold-out run at the National Theatre, where it was the fastest-selling play in the theatre’s history. In late 1985 and early 1986, as the first wave of the AIDS epidemic in America is escalating and Ronald Reagan has been elected to a second term in the White House, the play’s two parts bring together a myriad of disparate characters whose lives intersect, intertwine, collide and are blown apart during a time of heartbreak, reaction and transformation. Ranging from earth to heaven, from the political to the intimate to the visionary and supernatural, Angels in America is an epic exploration of love, justice, identity and theology, of the difficulty, terror and necessity of change. Buy tickets here.

The Band’s Visit

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Tony Shalhoub Matthew Murphy

David Yazbek's contemplative musical, which transferred from Off-Broadway, earned 11 nominations.An Egyptian police band arrives in Israel to play a concert. After a mix up at the border, they are sent to a remote village in the middle of the desert. With no bus until morning and no hotel in sight, these unlikely travelers are taken in by the locals. Under the spell of the desert sky, their lives become intertwined in the most unexpected ways. Stick around after the show: The band jams on stage after the curtain call each night! Buy tickets here.

Carousel

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Company Julieta Cervantes

The classic Rodgers & Hammerstein musical is nominated for 11 Tony Awards. Brash carousel barker Billy Bigelow and Julie Jordan, a quiet girl who works in the mill, fall in love, marry, and have a stormy relationship that leads to tragedy and an attempt at mending old wounds from beyond the grave, in Rodgers and Hammerstein's musical adaptation of Liliom. This revival is not the first time opera superstar Renée Fleming has sung the iconic “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” having performed the musical theatre staple during the 2009 Obama Inaugural Celebration. Buy tickets here.

Frozen

Caissie Levy and the company
Caissie Levy and the company Deen van Meer

The stage adaptation of the beloved film earned three nominations. From the beloved 2013 Academy Award-winning Disney film, this is the timeless tale of two sisters pulled apart by a mysterious secret. Both are searching for love. They just don’t know where to find it. While the beloved songs from the movie—including the Oscar-winning “Let It Go”—are included in the musical, audiences can expect new songs and elements not seen on screen, including the “hidden folk,” inspired by Scandinavian folklore. Buy tickets here.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts I and II

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Company Matthew Murphy

The eighth chapter in the Harry Potter story has been nominated for 10 Tony Awards for its Broadway premiere. To embrace the Hogwarts spirit during rehearsals, the cast was sorted into their respective houses (Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw, and Hufflepuff), and a point system determined a House Cup winner each week. In the play, as Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places. Buy tickets here.

Mean Girls

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Cast Joan Marcus

Tina Fey's classic movie came to Broadway as a musical and scored 12 nominations, tying for the most-nominated show of the season! While Fey wrote and appeared in the 2004 film, don’t expect her to take the stage in the musical. While hosting Saturday Night Live, the comedian showed what disasters would await were she to join the cast. As in the movie, Cady Heron may have grown up on an African savanna, but nothing prepared her for suburban Illinois. How will this naïve newbie rise to the top of the popularity pecking order? By taking on The Plastics, a trio of lionized frenemies led by the charming but ruthless Regina George. But Cady learns the hard way that you can’t cross a Queen Bee without getting stung. Buy tickets here.

My Fair Lady

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Lauren Ambrose Joan Marcus

Another revival of a classic Golden Age musical, this Lincoln Center Theatre production earned 10 nominations and was inspired most strongly by George Bernard Shaw’s version of the Pygmalion story, as director Bartlett Sher drew from the 1938 movie starring Wendy Hiller and Leslie Howard more than any other iteration of the story. Directed by Tony winner Sher, the stellar cast—led by Tony nominees Lauren Ambrose, Harry Hadden-Paton, Norbert Leo Butz and Diana Rigg—tells the story of Eliza Doolittle, a young Cockney flower seller, and Henry Higgins, a linguistics professor who is determined to transform her into his idea of a “proper lady.” But who is really being transformed? Buy tickets here.

Once On This Island

Cast of <i>Once on This Island</i>
Cast of Once on This Island Joan Marcus

The beloved Ahrens & Flaherty musical returns to Broadway, and scored eight nominations. In it, Ti Moune is a fearless peasant girl who falls in love with a wealthy boy from the other side of the island. When their divided cultures keep them apart, Ti Moune is guided by the powerful island gods, Erzulie, Asaka, Papa Ge, and Agwe, on a remarkable quest to reunite with the man who has captured her heart. The new orchestrations for the show incorporate instruments made out of found objects, including trash bins, flexible piping, and more. Buy tickets here.

Saint Joan

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Condola Rashad and Daniel Sunjata Joan Marcus

Condola Rashad earned a Tony Award nomination leading the company as the title role in this George Bernard Shaw revival. Rashad is the ninth actor to play Joan in Shaw's classic, set in 15th-century France. Saint Joan follows a country girl whose mysterious visions propel her into elite circles. When the nation’s rulers become threatened by her popularity and influence, they unite to bring her down and she finds herself on trial for her life. Buy tickets here.

SpongeBob SquarePants, The Broadway Musical

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Cast Joan Marcus

Based on the Nickelodeon animated series, this new musical tied with Mean Girls for most-nominated show of the season with 12 nods. The design of the show was created to look as though it’s built from trash and found objects in the ocean as stakes are higher than ever before when SpongeBob and all of Bikini Bottom face the total annihilation of their undersea world. Chaos erupts. Lives hang in the balance. And just when all hope seems lost, a most unexpected hero rises up and takes center stage. Buy tickets here.

Springsteen on Broadway

Bruce Springsteen
Bruce Springsteen Rob DeMartin

Bruce Springsteen earned a special Tony Award this season for his critically acclaimed solo show. Springsteen on Broadway is actually a family affair. The Boss is joined onstage each night by his wife, Patti Scialfa, and the two perform a handful of songs together. After a career of more than 40 years, 20 Grammys and an Oscar, Springsteen comes to Broadway with a solo acoustic performance for an intimate night with Bruce, his guitar, a piano, and his stories. Buy tickets here.

Summer: The Donna Summer Musical

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Ariana DeBose Joan Marcus

Earning two nominations for actress and featured actress in a musical, this biomusical about Donna Summer is "Hot Stuff"! A trio of actors star as the late disco icon. LaChanze, Ariana DeBose, and Storm Lever portray Summer at various points in her life and career, taking on the roles of Diva Donna, Disco Donna, and Duckling Donna, respectively as this vibrant musical charts the incomparable life of Donna Summer—the undisputed Queen of Disco. Features more than 20 of Summer’s classic hits and electric dancing, all in tribute to the voice of a generation. Buy tickets here.

Three Tall Women

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Glenda Jackson Brigitte Lacombe

The Edward Albee Pulitzer Prize winner makes its Broadway debut, and received six Tony nominations to boot. Hailed as his most personal work, Albee’s play is actually based on his own mother as three women of different ages talk about their lives and their relationships with their families. Gradually it emerges that they may all be the same woman. Buy tickets here.

Travesties

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Patrick Kerr, Scarlett Strallen, Dan Butler, Seth Numrich, Opal Alladin, Peter McDonald, Sara Topham, and Tom Hollander Joan Marcus

Tom Stoppard's Tony-winning play—about life in 1917 Zurich for artist Tristan Tzara, James Joyce, and Lenin—has been revived and earned four nominations this time around. Many scenes in the play intersperse Stoppard’s dialogue with quotes and paraphrases from The Importance of Being Earnest. Buy tickets here.

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