The results from 2010 are in and can be found in Inside Track, the blog of Playbill magazine editor Blake Ross, who heard from a varied collection of observers — from actor-writer Lin-Manuel Miranda, to The Broadway League's Charlotte St. Martin to Lion King actor Alton Fitzgerald White to Joe Benincasa of The Actors Fund, and more.
Here's a sampling:
|photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN|
Lin-Manuel Miranda, composer-lyricist, In the Heights
"The most heartbreaking and exhilarating moment of the year in theater was Josh Henry's stunning performance of 'You Can't Do Me' in The Scottsboro Boys."
Phyllis Newman, Tony Award-winning actress and founder of The Phyllis Newman Women's Health Initiative
"The highlight of my theatre year was Nov. 1 when we did the annual Nothing Like a Dame [benefit concert]. This year it was a party for Comden and Green and a great Broadway cast sang their songs, known and unknown. …We got to honor my husband [Adolph Green] and his colleagues and help so many people who need us in these tough times. All good things came together."
Hunter Ryan Herdlicka, actor, A Little Night Music
"My pick would have to be Carol Channing opening Gypsy of the Year with her signature songs 'Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend' and Hello, Dolly! The audience leaped to their feet both performances and there wasn't a dry eye in the house. (Next to me were Cherry Jones and Judith Light, who were weeping.) It was incredible to see a true Broadway legend 'back where she belongs' and celebrating her 90th birthday onstage!"
David Cote, theatre editor, Time Out New York
"Scott Shepherd in Gatz. It's hard to pick out a single moment in his epic, central performance as an office drone who becomes enraptured by 'The Great Gatsby,' but here goes: There's a point, late in this eight-hour marathon, where Shepherd is hunched over, reading his battered paperback copy of the Fitzgerald classic. As he reads, without missing a beat, Shepherd starts flipping and fanning through the book, not taking his eyes off it, still reciting the text. It's one of those bravura, look-ma-no-hands moves that makes you just want to spontaneously applaud."
Joe Traum, Playbill.com reader
"My most memorable theatre event of this year was in September when I saw A Little Night Music for the second time (after seeing it in April with the original cast). I was seeing two shows that day thanks to student rush tickets. From getting a student rush ticket there before, I expected it to be the same, where the tickets were standing room only. As such, I didn't look too closely at my ticket until I walked through the door and found out that my student rush ticket was front row center. And so I ended up being very close to the stage watching Bernadette Peters and Elaine Stritch in one of the most moving theatrical experiences I have been to so far. It was a fantastic day in the city."
Blair Howell, Playbill.com reader, Cedar Hills, UT
"Sorry, Broadway. But the best theatre moment of 2010 was in a 300-seat theatre in Orem, Utah: Audra McDonald singing 'Is It Really Me?' Showing their commitment to community theatre, McDonald and Will Swenson played Lizzie and Starbuck in 110 in the Shade to raise funds for the nonprofit Hale Center Foundation for the Arts and Education. Lucky theatregoers were reminded why we first fell in love with live theatre. On a postage-stamp-sized, 320-square-foot stage."