Kevin Chamberlin in Dirty Blonde
Chamberlin originated the role of Charlie, the lovelorn Mae West fan and misfit in Claudia Shear's Dirty Blonde at New York Theatre Workshop (NYTW). He appeared in Drama Dept.'s production of As Thousands Cheer, director Sam Mendes' musical workshop of Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman's Wise Guys and had Broadway roles in My Favorite Year, Abe Lincoln In Illinois, and Triumph of Love. His City Center Encores! Series appearances include Ziegfeld Follies of1936 and One Touch of Venus.
Daniel Davis in Wrong Mountain
Davis brought 30 years of acting experience to his role as a flowery regional artistic director, in the short-lived Wrong Mountain. He has been associated with leading regional theatres in the U.S. and Canada including The American Shakespeare Festival, The Stratford National Theatre of Canada, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Seattle Repertory, The Guthrie, the Williamstown Theatre Festival and six seasons with the American Conservatory Theatre (A.C.T.) in San Francisco. He has starred in films ("The Hunt for Red October" and Sydney Pollack's "Havana") and on television as Professor Moriarty on "Star Trek: The Next Generation" and six seasons as Niles the butler on "The Nanny."
Roy Dotrice in Moon for the Misbegotten
This year's Tony nomination for Roy Dotrice caps a real life story that could rival those on stage. Dotrice stars as the rascally tenant farmer Phil Hogan in O'Neill's Moon for the Misbegotten. Dotrice has appeared in ten Broadway productions, including three one-man shows: Brief Lives (Golden 1968), Mister Lincoln (Morosco 1980), Brief Lives (Booth 1974) and he received a Tony nomination for his work in A Life.
Derek Smith in Green Bird
As Tartaglia, the comedic firebrand of a king in Julie Taymor's Green Bird, Smith revives his Off-Broadway role at the Cort Theatre. This is not the first time Mr. Smith has come to Broadway; he has had roles in Ring Round the Moon, Getting and Spending, Jackie, Timon of Athens, The Government Inspector. Off-Broadway, Smith's roles include an Obie winning performance in the original Green Bird a Drama League and L.A. Ovation Award winning role in Sylvia, as well as King John, Dark Rapture, Hyde in Hollywood, Ten by Tennessee, Cruse Control and The Acting Company.
Bob Stillman in Dirty Blonde Stillman plays Joe Frisco, Frank Wallace and others in the Claudia Shear hit Dirty Blonde but he is also familiar to Off-Broadway audiences as the singer-songwriter Gideon in The Last Session (for which he also provided musical direction and arrangements). Stillman's L.A. company work in The Last Session earned him a Drama Critics' Circle Award and an Ovation nomination. Also seen on Broadway in Kiss of the Spider Woman, Tommy Tune's Grand Hotel and Peter Allen's Legs Diamond, Stillman starred Off-Broadway in Adam Guettel's Saturn Returns.
Analysis: Tony voters might take into consideration the lingering sentiment for Wrong Mountain, which some feel was unfairly rushed to close; Derek Smith's challenge of capturing an audience while wearing a mask; or Stillman's subtle and versatile contributions to Dirty Blonde. Still, veteran Dotrice has an obvious edge here, though Chamberlin, who so successfully characterized humility, might be wise to break out his best madras tuxedo shirt just in case.