The 65th Annual Tony Awards
By Ellis Nassour
The excitement’s building. Rentals of black tie have been exhausted. Harry Winston and Tiffany’s have raided their vaults for diamond loanouts. Broadway’s main event is just hours away. The 65th Annual Tony Awards will telecast from the Beacon Theatre Sunday from 8 -11 P.M.
Hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, there’ll be enough A+-List smiles to boost Con Ed’s output for the long, hot summer. Harris will perform a specialty number, written by multiple Emmy winner and two-time Grammy winner David Javerbaum [The Daily Show with Jon Stewart; book/lyrics, Cry-Baby.
There’ll be performances by "unforgettable opening and closing production numbers and non-stop entertainment throughout the entire program." They include songs from Tony-nominated musicals Anything Goes, featuring Sutton Foster; Catch Me If You Can, with Norbert Leo Butz and Aaron Tveit; How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, featuring Daniel Radcliffe and John Laroquette; Sister Act, featuring Patina Miller and the sisters; one of the rare performable on network TV songs from Book of Mormon, featuring Andrew Rannells; and The Scottsboro Boys, featuring Joshua Henry.
In additon, the cast of the NYPhil’s April limited run Company concert will perform: Stephen Colbert, Jon Cryer, Katie Finneran, Neil Patrick Harris, Christina Hendricks, Aaron Lazar, Patti LuPone, Jill Paice, Martha Plimpton, Anika Noni Rose, Jennifer Laura Thompson, Jim Walton and Chryssie Whitehead.
Presenters include Alec Baldwin, Christie Brinkley, Matthew Broderick, Harry Connick, Jr., Viola Davis, Whoopi Goldberg, Kelsey Grammer, Joel Grey, Marg Helgenberger, Samuel L. Jackson, James Earl Jones, Angela Lansbury, Robert Morse, Jim Parsons, David Hyde Pierce, Daniel Radcliffe, Vanessa Redgrave, Chris Rock, Patrick Wilson and Catherine Zeta-Jones.
During the first hour, craft and special awards are presented. This year: Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre to Athol Fugard and Shubert Org prez Philip J. Smith; Regional Theatre, Chicago’s Lookingglass Theatre Company; Isabelle Stevenson Award, to playwright/performer/activist Eve Ensler [The Vagina Monologues]; with a special Tony honoring War Horse’s Handspring Puppet Company.
At www.TonyAwards.com, powered by IBM and featuring content from Playbill, you can enjoy video interactive features such as mobile alerts, access acceptance speeches, winners’ thoughts on winning a Tony, an archive of nominees and winners from 1947, Tony trivia and a detailed profile of Antoinette Perry, namesake of the Awards.
The Awards will simulcast on Times Square’s jumbo ClearChannel Spectacolor HD screen from 6 P.M., with red carpet arrivals, courtesy of the Times Square Alliance and the Broadway Association.