Milestone Moments from the 67th Annual Tony Awards: Patina Miller, Tracy Letts and Cyndi Lauper Chart New Territory
By Adam Hetrick
The glamour, the glitter and the dust are settling across the theatre district this week as Broadway basks in the Tony Awards afterglow.
Playbill.com offers a look at milestones (and trivia) from the 67th Annual Tony Awards ceremony, which was held June 9 at Radio City Music Hall.
Here's a look:
Cyndi Lauper, who penned music and lyrics for Kinky Boots, is the first woman to win the Tony Award (without a songwriting partner) for Best Score.
Tracy Letts became the first actor to have won the Tony Award for Best Play, the Pulitzer Prize for Drama (both for August: Osage County) and also take the Tony Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?).
The Trip to Bountiful star Cicely Tyson became the oldest individual to win a Tony Award, according to the New York Times, which reports the star to be 88 years old. Tyson has never publicly confirmed her age.
The Assembled Parties star Judith Light is the first actress to ever have consecutively won in the category of Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play – having also earned the Tony Award for Other Desert Cities in 2012. … Other actors to have achieved this feat in other categories include Stephen Spinella (Angels in America 1993/1994) and the late Gwen Verdon (New Girl in Town and Redhead 1958/1959).
Patina Miller, who won in the category of Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical for Pippin, also charted new territory. Her win for her performance as the Leading Player marked the first time both a man (Ben Vereen in the 1972 original) and a woman won a Tony Award for playing the same role.
Jules Fisher, who along with Peggy Eisenhauer, won the Tony Award for Best Lighting Design of Play (Lucky Guy), now holds a record nine Tony Awards for lighting design. He first won for Pippin in 1973.
Nine African American actors were nominated for Tony Awards on June 9, a record in Tony Awards history. The four winners included Patina Miller (Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical for Pippin); Cicely Tyson (Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play for The Trip to Bountiful); Billy Porter (Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical for Kinky Boots); and Courtney B. Vance (Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play for Lucky Guy).
For the second time in Tony Awards history, two women took home the honor in the Best Direction categories. Diane Paulus won for Best Direction of a Musical (Pippin), and Pam MacKinnon won for Best Direction of a Play (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?). Julie Taymor (The Lion King) and Garry Hynes (The Beauty Queen of Leenane) won prizes for Best Direction of a Musical and Best Direction of a Play, respectively, in 1998.
With four Tony Awards under his belt, host Neil Patrick Harris is closing in on veteran actress Angela Lansbury. The Mame and Sweeney Todd star holds the record, having hosted the Tonys five times. (Coincidentally, Lansbury has five Tony Awards of her own).
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