Thursday, May 23, 2024

2024 Tony Award Nomination Predictions

The Tony Awards are arguably the most difficult awards show to predict during the nominations stage. Unlike the Oscars or the Emmys, there are relatively few precursor awards bodies, and the small Nominating Committee often goes their own way. Trying to foresee what they’ll pick is a tough task any year, but this season is extra hard. Several categories are wide open, especially those that award new musicals. Here’s my best attempt at something resembling an educated guess for this year’s Tony nominations (which will be announced tomorrow), with added commentary wherever I feel the need to defend myself and my decisions…

Best Musical
Days of Wine and Roses
Hell’s Kitchen
The Outsiders

Alt: The Notebook

This is simply the most unpredictable Best Musical race I’ve ever seen in my lifetime. An argument could be made for most of these contenders potentially being an eventual winner (for now, my money is on the well-reviewed late opener Illinoise). Beyond these musicals, a handful of other new shows could hear their name called on nomination morning, including The Great Gatsby, Here Lies Love, Lempicka, and Water for Elephants.

Best Play
Jaja’s African Hair Braiding
Mary Jane
Mother Play
Prayer for the French Republic

Alt: Patriots

This category is much less challenging to predict than Best Musical. Stereophonic received some of the best reviews of this, or any, season, so expect it to pop up in many categories.

Best Revival of a Musical
Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club
Gutenberg! The Musical!
Merrily We Roll Along
The Who’s Tommy

Alt: The Wiz

Given the less-than-stellar reception of the hugely publicized West End transfer of Cabaret, it’s easy to see Merrily We Roll Along conquering this and many other categories. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if it ended up taking the most awards of the night.

Best Revival of a Play
An Enemy of the People
Purlie Victorious

Alt: Doubt

Despite this being its Broadway debut, the decade-old Appropriate was labeled a revival due to its many pre-Broadway productions at regional theaters. This decision helps launch it to the top of the pile of the relatively thin number of contenders in this category.

Best Actress in a Musical
Eden Espinosa – Lempicka
Maleah Joi Moon – Hell’s Kitchen
Kelli O’Hara – Days of Wine and Roses
Maryann Plunkett – The Notebook
Shaina Taub – Suffs

Alt: Gayle Rankin – Cabaret at the Kit Kat Klub

Best Actor in a Musical
Ali Louis Bourzgui – The Who’s Tommy
Jonathan Groff – Merrily We Roll Along
Brian d’Arcy James – Days of Wine and Roses
Jeremy Jordan – The Great Gatsby
Chip Zien – Harmony

Alt: Eddie Redmayne – Cabaret at the Kit Kat Klub

I’m taking a big swing in predicting that both Cabaret stars will miss. Still, I have a feeling the production’s mixed reviews combined with the well-publicized exorbitant ticket prices may lead to the Nominating Committee choosing to look elsewhere. After all, Oscar-nominee Michelle Williams was snubbed for her performance in Cabaret’s previous revival in 2014. Occasionally, the Nominating Committee turns their noses up at starry casting decisions, especially if the reviews are not in the performers’ favor.

Best Actress in a Play
Jessica Lange – Mother Play
Rachel McAdams – Mary Jane
Sarah Paulson – Appropriate
Amy Ryan – Doubt

Alt: Betsy Aidem – Prayer for the French Republic

Best Actor in a Play
Steve Carell – Uncle Vanya
Leslie Odom Jr. – Purlie Victorious
Liev Schreiber – Doubt
Jeremy Strong – An Enemy of the People
Michael Stuhlbarg – Patriots

Alt: William Jackson Harper – Uncle Vanya

Best Featured Actress in a Musical
Shoshana Bean – Hell’s Kitchen
Nikki M. James – Suffs
Kecia Lewis – Hell’s Kitchen
Lindsay Mendez – Merrily We Roll Along
Bebe Neuwirth – Cabaret at the Kit Kat Klub

Alt: Jenn Colella – Suffs

Best Featured Actor in a Musical
Paul Alexander Nolan – Water for Elephants
Daniel Radcliffe – Merrily We Roll Along
Conrad Ricamora – Here Lies Love
Steven Skybell – Cabaret at the Kit Kat Klub
Ricky Ubeda – Illinoise

Alt: Brandon Victor Dixon – Hell’s Kitchen

Given how many contenders there are, it’s obviously a bit more difficult to predict the featured acting musical categories than the leading ones. However, Featured Actor feels shockingly easy to guess (I may regret saying that). Featured Actress will almost certainly see previous winners Lindsay Mendez and Bebe Neuwirth nominated for their well-loved performances, and the remaining nominees could be made up of any number of performers from the all-women cast of Suffs.

Best Featured Actress in a Play
Francis Benhamou – Prayer for the French Republica
Juliana Canfield – Stereophonic
Celia Keenan-Bolger – Mother Play
Sarah Pidgeon – Stereophonic
Kara Young – Purlie Victorious

Alt: Quincy Tyler Bernstine – Doubt

I just want to note that Purlie Victorious is Kara Young’s third Broadway credit, and if she’s nominated, she’ll have a perfect track record of three nominations for three shows.

Best Featured Actor in a Play
Will Brill – Stereophonic
Eli Gelb – Stereophonic
Michael Imperioli – An Enemy of the People
Will Keen – Patriots
Corey Stoll – Appropriate

Alt: Jim Parsons – Mother Play

Best Direction of a Musical
Maria Friedman – Merrily We Roll Along
Michael Greif – Hell’s Kitchen
Justin Peck – Illinoise
Leigh Silverman – Suffs
Alex Timbers – Here Lies Love

Alt: Rebecca Frecknall – Cabaret at the Kit Kat Klub

Once again, I’m going out on a limb and predicting a shocking snub for Rebecca Frecknall’s reconceptualization of Cabaret, but nobody would be surprised if she were, in fact, nominated, myself included.

Best Direction of a Play
Daniel Aukin – Stereophonic
Sam Gold – An Enemy of the People
Anne Kauffman – Mary Jane
Kenny Leon – Purlie Victorious
Lila Neugebauer – Appropriate

Alt: Tina Landau – Mother Play

Best Original Score
Days of Wine and Roses
Here Lies Love
The Outsiders

Alt: The Notebook

Another wildly unpredictable musical category, where the only sure thing seems to be previous-winner Adam Guettel’s score for the already-closed Days of Wine and Roses. There’s a good chance the songs written for Stereophonic by Arcade Fire’s Will Butler will be recognized in this category, which is usually dominated by musicals. Could it be the first play to beat a roster of musical nominees?

Best Book of a Musical
Days of Wine and Roses
Hell’s Kitchen
The Notebook
The Outsiders

Alt: Illinoise

Best Choreography
Cabaret at the Kit Kat Klub
Hell’s Kitchen
The Outsiders
The Who’s Tommy

Alt: The Wiz

Are you excited for the 2024 Tony Awards? What are you predicting will be nominated tomorrow? Please let us know in the comments section below or on our Twitter account.

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Cody Dericks
Cody Dericks
Actor, awards & musical theatre buff. Co-host of the horror film podcast Halloweeners.

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