Tony nominations: 11 nods each for 'Fela!' and 'La Cage'
“Fela!” -– a dance-infused stage biography from choreographer Bill T. Jones -– and a revival of the drag musical “La Cage aux Folles” led the Tony Award nominations on Tuesday, receiving 11 nods each and beating out several highly touted blockbuster productions.
The current revival of August Wilson’s “Fences” received 10 nominations, including nods for stars Denzel Washington and Viola Davis, while the new musical “Memphis,” which ran at the La Jolla Playhouse before transferring to Broadway, scored eight nods.
The 2010 nominations lacked a clear standout like last year’s “Billy Elliot,” which received 15 nominations. But the roster was noticeably rich with screen stars who had bravely left the security of movie sets for the lights of Broadway.
Nominees who were making their Broadway debuts included Scarlett Johansson (“A View From the Bridge”), Catherine Zeta-Jones (“A Little Night Music”) and Sean Hayes (“Promises, Promises”).
The nominees also included Jude Law (“Hamlet”), Christopher Walken (“A Behanding in Spokane”), Laura Linney (“Time Stands Still”), Kelsey Grammer (“La Cage aux Folles”) and Liev Schreiber (“A View From the Bridge”).
Among the acting nominees were three grandes dames of the stage – Rosemary Harris (“The Royal Family”), Barbara Cook (“Sondheim on Sondheim”) and Angela Lansbury (“A Little Night Music”).
A number of blockbuster productions came up noticeably short on Tuesday. “American Idiot” – the rock musical featuring songs by the band Green Day – was nominated for best new musical but received only two other nods.
“The Addams Family,” which has been a box-office success so far despite mostly bad reviews, received only two nominations.
-- David Ng
Photo: From left, Catherine Foster, Sahr Ngaujah and Nicole de Weever in "Fela !" Credit: Monique Carboni