Wife, Avenue Q, Assassins, Henry IV Are 2004 Tony Award Winners; Mays, Menzel, Jackman, Rashad Golden

Tony Awards   Wife, Avenue Q, Assassins, Henry IV Are 2004 Tony Award Winners; Mays, Menzel, Jackman, Rashad Golden
 
In an announcement that surprised the Broadway community, Avenue Q won the 2004 Tony Award for Best Musical June 6.
Tony Winners Idina Menzel (left), Hugh Jackman, Phylicia Rashad, and Jefferson Mays
Tony Winners Idina Menzel (left), Hugh Jackman, Phylicia Rashad, and Jefferson Mays Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Hugh Jackman hosted the 2004 Tony Awards 8-11 PM June 6 at Radio City Music Hall, where the Broadway theatre industry and fans gathered to celebrate the best of the 2003-04 season. It was widely thought that the popular musical, Wicked, would fly off with the award for musical.

Avenue Q had humble beginnings originating in the imaginations of its songwriters, Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, who tested their tunes in The BMI-Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop, then in readings and then in an Off-Broadway run. That staging moved to Broadway, where the small cast of actors and actor-puppeteers found an eager audience of people under 40 (so eager, in fact, the show had recouped its investment). The "Sesame Street"-style satire (praised for also having a heart as well as a wisecrack) won Tonys for Best Score, Best Book and Best Musical.

Doug Wright's I Am My Own Wife, an exploration of a singular personality, the late German transvestite Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, won the Best Play Tony, and Jefferson Mays snagged the Best Actor in a Play Tony for creating some 40 characters in the staging.

Lincoln Center Theater's four-hour 33-actor version of Shakespeare's two-part Henry IV, adapted by Dakin Matthews, won as Best Revival of a Play. It closed this spring after a limited engagement that won raves for Kevin Kline as Falstaff. Jack O'Brien won as Best Director of a Play for helming the ambitious work.

In what was called the hottest race of the evening, Idina Menzel won as Best Actress in a Musical for playing a young Wicked Witch of the West in Wicked. The Oz-themed show won Tonys for its lavish set and costumes. Speaking of "Oz," Tony host Jackman took home the Tony for Best Actor in a Musical for playing Peter Allen in The Boy From Oz. Audiences have been eating up his charismatic performance as the flamboyant late singer-songwriter.

Assassins, Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman's musical about the underbelly of the American dream (namely, the passions of people who attempted or succeeded at killing U.S. presidents) took home the most 2004 Tonys: five. The Roundabout Theatre Company staging (now at Studio 54) won for Featured Actor in a Musical (Michael Cerveris), Orchestrations (Michael Starobin), Lighting (Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer), Direction (Joe Mantello) and Revival of a Musical.

Winners are indicated below in bold and with an asterisk.

 

 

Best Musical
*Avenue Q
Caroline, or Change
The Boy From Oz
Wicked

Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical
Hunter Foster, Little Shop of Horrors
*Hugh Jackman, The Boy From Oz
Alfred Molina, Fiddler on the Roof
Euan Morton, Taboo
John Tartaglia, Avenue Q

Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical
Kristin Chenoweth, Wicked
Stephanie D'Abruzzo, Avenue Q
*Idina Menzel, Wicked
Donna Murphy, Wonderful Town
Tonya Pinkins, Caroline, or Change

Best Play
Anna in the Tropics
Frozen
*I Am My Own Wife
The Retreat from Moscow

Best Revival of a Musical
*Assassins
Big River
Fiddler on the Roof
Wonderful Town

Best Revival of a Play
A Raisin in the Sun
*Henry IV
Jumpers
King Lear

Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play
Kevin Kline, Henry IV
Frank Langella, Match
*Jefferson Mays, I Am My Own Wife
Christopher Plummer, King Lear
Simon Russell Beale, Jumpers

Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play
Eileen Atkins, The Retreat from Moscow
Tovah Feldshuh, Golda's Balcony
Anne Heche, Twentieth Century
Swoosie Kurtz, Frozen
*Phylicia Rashad, A Raisin in the Sun

Best Direction of a Musical
*Joe Mantello, Assassins
Kathleen Marshall, Wonderful Town
Jason Moore, Avenue Q
George C. Wolfe, Caroline, or Change

Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play
Essie Davis, Jumpers
Sanaa Lathan, A Raisin in the Sun
Margo Martindale, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
*Audra McDonald, A Raisin in the Sun
Daphne Rubin-Vega, Anna in the Tropics

Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play
Tom Aldredge, Twentieth Century
Ben Chaplin, The Retreat from Moscow
Aiden Gillen, The Caretaker
Omar Metwally, Sixteen Wounded
*Brian F. O'Byrne, Frozen

Best Original Score
Boy George, Taboo
*Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, Avenue Q
Stephen Schwartz, Wicked
Jeanine Tesori and Tony Kushner, Caroline, or Change

Best Book of a Musical
Winnie Holzman, Wicked
Tony Kushner, Caroline, or Change
Martin Sherman; Nick Enright (original book) The Boy From Oz
*Jeff Whitty, Avenue Q

Best Choreography
Wayne Cilento, Wicked
*Kathleen Marshall, Wonderful Town
Jerry Mitchell, Never Gonna Dance
Anthony Van Laast and Farah Khan, Bombay Dreams

Best Direction of a Play
Doug Hughes, Frozen
Moises Kaufman, I Am My Own Wife
David Leveaux, Jumpers
*Jack O'Brien, Henry IV

Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical
John Cariani, Fiddler on the Roof
*Michael Cerveris, Assassins
Raul Esparza, Taboo
Michael McElroy, Big River
Denis O'Hare, Assassins

Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical
Beth Fowler, The Boy From Oz
Isabel Keating, The Boy From Oz
*Anika Noni Rose, Caroline, or Change
Jennifer Westfeldt, Wonderful Town
Karen Ziemba, Never Gonna Dance

Best Scenic Design
Robert Brill, Assassins
Ralph Funicello, Henry IV
*Eugene Lee, Wicked
Tom Pye, Fiddler on the Roof

Best Costume Design
Jess Goldstein, Henry IV
*Susan Hilferty, Wicked
Mike Nicholls and Bobby Pearce, Taboo
Mark Thompson, Bombay Dreams

Best Lighting Design
*Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer, Assassins
Brian MacDevitt, Fiddler on the Roof
Brian MacDevitt, Henry IV
Kenneth Posner, Wicked

Best Orchestrations
Paul Bogaev, Bombay Dreams
William David Brohn, Wicked
*Michael Starobin, Assassins
Larry Hochman, Fiddler on the Roof

Special Tony Award (previously announced)
*James M. Nederlander for Lifetime Achivement in the Theatre

Regional Theatre Tony (previously announced)
*Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park

Awards by production

5 - Assassins
3 - Wicked
3 - Avenue Q
2 - Henry IV
2 - A Raisin in the Sun
2 - I Am My Own Wife
1 - Wonderful Town
1 - Frozen
1 - The Boy from Oz
1 - Caroline, or Change

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