Theater archives

Broadway ChitChat From The Tony Nominees


This week’s column has my invigorating talks with various award nominees who sparkled up the Broadway season.

Here are some extra tidbits from the stars:

How did Mark Rylance (above), the volcanic actor who’s Tony nominated for Jerusalem, feel about not also being nominated for his performance in La Bete?

“The whole thing is rubbish!” he cracked.

Douglas Carter Beane was Tony nominated for co-writing Sister Act, and joked to me that he wants to get as many nominations as possible without winning. “I’m a Chita Rivera who can’t dance,” Beane offered. “I’m a Susan Lucci who can write. “

But what if he wins? “I’ll demand a recount!” he said, laughing,

Hannah Yelland was nominated for Brief Encounter, in which she was a married woman who meets a married man at a railroad station and gets involved with him.

In real life, Yelland said, she’s married to a lawyer who works at the White House.

“We met at a wedding and said goodbye at a train station,” Yelland told me. “Neither of us was involved with other people, so it’s a happy ending!”

And finally, when I told Joshua Henry — Tony-nominated for The Scottsboro Boys — that I can’t get the song “Commencing at Chattanooga” out of my head, he said, “We’re probably going to do that song on the Tony Awards.”

Now that’s a happy ending!

And wait. Here’s more from the Drama Desk nominees:

Women on the Verge‘s Laura Benanti (who’s also up for a Tony) told me, “It was very fun to play someone as wacky as I really am and not just ‘And then she swooned … .'”

And Colin Quinn said about his director, Jerry Seinfeld:

“He used to come every day. I think he’ll be a really great theater director because he’s great with movement. I’m Irish and I just stand there.”

Please, I’m Italian and I just lie there!