Monday, June 14, 2010

2010 Tony Awards Post-Mortem

My only 2010 Tony Awards prediction to come true is that I didn’t know jack while making my winner predictions. Of all the Broadway seasons in recent memory, this past one is probably the one I’ve been least invested in, having seen hardly any of the nominated performances due to just not caring about them. The season was full of lackluster revivals of mediocre shows and new works that had to rely on casting big-name Hollywood celebrities to sell tickets, which does nothing to allay my fear that New York theater is fast becoming Hollywood Junior, where famous faces and flashy stage tricks outweigh credible talent and well-crafted stories. Sad.

But anyway, here are some of the things that struck me during last night’s Tony Awards broadcast:

* Sean Hayes was a pretty decent host. Neil Patrick Harris did a great job hosting last year, so it was a tough act to follow, but Hayes was funny, charming, happy to be there, and played a mean piano during the opening number. I even enjoyed the moments when he came out in ridiculous costumes. I like my awards show hosts to be a little goofy; it’s gives the illusion that the entire ceremony isn’t a ridiculous and overwrought way of worshiping people whose egos are already inflated enough (which is, of course, exactly what these sort of awards shows are).

* With Scarlett Johansson, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Denzel Washington all winning an award, it felt more like Oscar Night than Tony Night. If I was a stage actor, I’d be a little annoyed with these interlopers.

* The sound engineer for the Tony Awards really needs to consider a new line of work. Last year’s ceremony was fraught with audio problems, and this year was no different. Though no one got knocked out by moving scenery this year, so that’s a plus.

* I’m sorry Lea Michele, but I still don’t think you’re nearly as talented or charming as you think you are. But Matthew Morrison, I would love to soft-shoe with you and your dimpled chin.

* I think I kind of want to see American Idiot.

* I know I don’t want to see Memphis.

* The musical number performed by the cast of Promises, Promises contained no singing and no Kristin Chenoweth. I found that odd.

* I still don’t know if Fela! is pronounced “fella” or “fay-la,” since presenters switched back and forth between the two all night. And nearly everyone left out the exclamation point.

* Angela Lansbury and Helen Mirren both looked stunning, elegant, and totally age-appropriate. And neither acted like you should fall at their feet just for being there. Take note, Raquel Welch.

* If David Hyde Pierce and Kelsey Grammar decide to do another TV show where they play brothers, I’d totally watch it.

* I haven’t seen A Little Night Music, and after hearing Catherine Zeta-Jones’ rendition of “Send in the Clowns,” I never will. Someone please tell me she’s a lot better in the actual show. Please?

* Do all atheists silently roll their eyes every time a winner talks about God and how they wouldn’t be where they are if it weren’t for him/her? Or is it just me?

* The drag queens for La Cage aux Folles look way better in spandex and short skirts than I ever have or ever will. You would think this would upset me more, but it doesn’t.

* So hold this moment fast, and live and love as hard as you know how. And make this moment last, because the best of times is now.

Here’s hoping for a more exciting Broadway season to celebrate next year. Until then, I’ll see you at the movies.

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