Tony Awards: Winners expected to come from a diverse field of contenders

Tony Awards host Kevin Spacy, celebrities Scarlett Johannson, Bette Midler and more arrive for the 71st Tony Awards.
Ben Platt (centre) in the musical Dear Evan Hanson at the Music Box Theater in New York, on Nov 13, 2016.
Ben Platt (centre) in the musical Dear Evan Hanson at the Music Box Theater in New York, on Nov 13, 2016.PHOTO: NYTIMES

NEW YORK (NYT) - The theatre world loves drama and the Tony Awards ceremony - this morning, Singapore time - promises plenty.

Unlike last year, when Hamilton dominated the show, the prizes this year are expected to be distributed among many contenders, reflecting a richly varied theatre season with a whopping 13 new musicals and 10 new plays.

Two unexpectedly crowd-pleasing musicals, Dear Evan Hansen and Come From Away, have rocketed to the top of the competition, despite breaking many of the rules of contemporary Broadway.

Neither show is adapted from a film or features a celebrity performer.

Both shows have daunting plot points (a teen suicide in Dear Evan Hansen and a terrorist attack in Come From Away).

The awards are determined by 839 voters - producers, investors, performers, directors, designers and others who work in the theatre world.

 

Winning the Tony for new musical can boost ticket sales.

Unlike the Oscars, which are awarded after most of the winners have concluded their box-office runs, the Tonys come early in the life of most stage shows.

The performances during the show can help sell both the individual musicals and Broadway itself.