No, Andrew Lloyd Webber is not a grand-slam winnah
I got a bit alarmed when one of Gold Derby's trusty readers e-mailed me to point out that we fail to mention Andrew Lloyd Webber whenever we cite the 10 people who've won the grand slam of showbiz awards: the Oscar, Emmy, Grammy and Tony. They are: Mel Brooks, John Gielgud, Whoopi Goldberg, Helen Hayes, Audrey Hepburn, Marvin Hamlisch, Mike Nichols, Rita Moreno, Richard Rodgers and Jonathan Tunick.
Our reader said that Andrew Lloyd Webber — who has indisputably won the Oscar, Grammy and Tony — has won two International Emmys, as is noted in his bio at Wikipedia, among other places, including his personal website. Among other mistakes at Lloyd Webber's website is the assertion that he's won seven Tonys, while the official Tonys website lists only three.
Yikes! Yes, it's possible that I've forgotten to scout the list of winners of International Emmys in the past when compiling our roundup. There's no easily searchable list of those winners. To find them, you must pore over the lists at the International Emmys' own site. But when I did that yesterday, I couldn't find his name listed, so I contacted the organization and asked them to double-check.
PR chief Jennifer Langusch replied, "In 2001 ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ won but Andrew Lloyd Webber was not listed as a producer and then in 2007 ‘How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?’ won in non-scripted entertainment but he was listed as cast. He personally hasn’t won any International Emmys."
Determining who is — and is not — a grand slam winnah is a tricky and sensitive topic fussed over ridiculously by award gurus because the key criterion is the word "win." For example, fans of Barbra Streisand insist she should be on the list because she has a Tony in addition to the Oscars, Emmys and Grammys that she won, but she didn't win the Broadway prize. Her Tony in 1970 was honorary. When Streisand was nominated for the Tony as best actress of 1964 for "Funny Girl," she lost to Carol Channing, which is freighted with irony since Streisand later swiped the film role of "Hello, Dolly!" from Channing. Thus Channing's Tony victory is sweet — and stinging — revenge since that trophy is what has so far kept Streisand from entering the showbiz pantheon as an official grand slam champ.
(AndrewLloydWebber.com, 20th Century Fox, St. James Theatre, Winter Garden Theatre)