Musical inspired by novel War And Peace earns 12 Tony Award nominations

(From left) Taylor Trensch, Bette Midler and Gavin Creel in Dancing from Hello, Dolly!.
(From left) Taylor Trensch, Bette Midler and Gavin Creel in Dancing from Hello, Dolly!. PHOTO: HANDOUT COURTESY OF JULIETA CERVANTES

NEW YORK (AFP) - A musical inspired by 1869 Russian novel War And Peace scooped 12 Tony Award nominations in New York on Tuesday (May 2), with 10 for Hello, Dolly! starring Bette Midler five decades after her Broadway debut.

The star-studded 71st annual Tony Awards, the biggest night in Broadway and the equivalent of the Academy Awards for the theater, will be held on June 11 with two-time Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey as host.

Natasha, Pierre And The Great Comet Of 1812, inspired by 70 pages of Leo Tolstoy's 19th-century classic War And Peace, walked away with the most nominations this year. It weaves the story of ingenue Natasha, her fiance Andrey, the dashing but married Anatole and lonely outsider Pierre.

A revival of Hello, Dolly! got 10 nominations, including best performance by an actress in a leading role in a musical for Midler, the Grammy-winning singer and songwriter who debuted on Broadway in 1967.

There were nine nominations for Dear Evan Hansen about a high school student with anxiety, and eight for A Doll's House, Part Two, an imagined sequel to Henrik Ibsen's classic play A Doll's House written by playwright Lucas Hnath.

The play Oslo, inspired by the back-channel talks, friendships and heroics that led to the 1993 Oslo Peace Accords between the Israelis and the Palestinians, got seven nominations.

So did Come From Away, which turns into heroes residents of Newfoundland who provided refuge to nearly 7,000 anguished airline passengers after the Al-Qaeda hijackings killed nearly 3,000 people. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau travelled to New York to watch the production accompanied by President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka.

Last year, smash-hit, hip-hop musical Hamilton won 11 awards after scooping a record 16 nominations.