|Photo by Monica Simoes|
Regarding Madison County, some observers were surprised and irate to see that the musical was not given a number on the Tonys broadcast, and that Rocky, another luckless show, was given time for a scene but not a song... but not as surprised and irate as they were to see Sting perform a number for The Last Ship and Jennifer Hudson sing a song from Finding Neverland. Both those shows are coming to Broadway next season, but were not part of the 2013-14 season — the season the June 8 Tony ceremony purported to celebrate. So they amounted, in the eyes of critics, to nothing more than advertisements for coming attractions.
The grumbling about the Tonys that began with the Sting and Hudson performances intensified June 11 when the Tony Awards Administration Committee met for the final time this season to determine new eligibility rules for the 2014-15 season. It emerged with the stunning announcement that the Best Sound Design of a Play and Best Sound Design of a Musical would be eliminated from the competitive categories in the 2014-2015 season. However, it was added, "the Tony committee holds the right to determine a special Tony award for certain productions that have excelled in this particular design realm."
The outcry from the theatre community was almost immediate. The sound design awards had been hard won. The oft-ignored craft was finally given a complete category in 2008, falling alongside awards for scenic, lighting and costume design.
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