When we asked David Sheward (Back Stage) to give Gold Derby his early Tony Award noodlings, we thought he'd give us a good, sketchy overview. After all, about 10 productions still haven't officially opened on Broadway yet during this home stretch of the eligibility period before nominations come out on May 4. But the shows are being seen by audiences — including journalists — during preview performances. Still, making firm Tonys predix right now is perilous. However, that daredevil David doesn't mind. He gave us extremely firm predix – four or five per category, according to the size of each race. No equivocating.
Bravo, David! Tx. We hereby give you permission to rip up these predix as soon as all of the shows are finally open and all reax are in. Meantime, your early perspective is fascinating.
Pay heed to David's predix, dear reader. He is not only executive editor of the industry's news bible, but he usually trounces all of us other Tony pundits when we tally scores after predicting winners. In addition to reading this, you should also check out our overview of the best-play battle. Also, the predix of Martin Denton (NYTheatre.com).
Words below are David's.
BEST MUSICAL: "The Addams Family," "American Idiot," "Fela!", "Memphis." With the exception of "American Idiot," all the really hot, innovative musicals are Off-B'way this season: "The Scottsboro Boys," "Yank!," "Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson"
BEST PLAY: "Enron," "Next Fall," "Race," "Red." Once again, the big critical and audience favorite is Off-Bway— "The Orphan's Home Cycle," which will probably win the Pulitzer, the NYDCC, and the Drama Desk
BEST ACTOR IN A PLAY: Hugh Jackman ("A Steady Rain"); Liev Schreiber ("View from the Bridge"); Alfred Molina ("Red"); Christopher Walken ("A Behanding in Spokane"); Denzel Washington ("Fences")
BEST ACTRESS IN A PLAY: Valerie Harper ("Looped"); Linda Lavin ("Collected Stories"); Laura Linney ("Time Stands Still"); Jan Maxwell ("The Royal Family"); Sienna Miller ("After Miss Julie"). Except for Lavin all these shows have closed.
BEST ACTOR IN A MUSICAL: Alexander Hanson ("A Little Night Music"); Sean Hayes ("Promises, Promises"); Douglas Hodge ("La Cage Aux Folles"); Nathan Lane ("Addams Family"); Sahr Ngaujah ("Fela!")
BEST ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL: Barbara Cook ("Sondheim on Sondheim"); Kristin Chenoweth ("Promises, Promises"); Bebe Neuwirth ("The Addams Family"); Sherie Rene Scott ("Everyday Rapture"); Catherine Zeta-Jones ("A Little Night Music")
Plus Angela Lansbury will win her sixth Tony for "A Little Night Music."