Last week, the nominees for the 2022 Tony Awards were announced, and as always, the roundup includes many predicted possible winners, a few snubs, and some surprises.
Most people only look at a simple roster of the shows and actors and move on, but for those who want to dig in and do the research, there are some interesting tidbits to be uncovered, hidden within the nominations.
Here are five tidbits and facts you may have missed in the roundup of nominees for the 2022 Tony Awards.
Already one of the most successful people in the television industry, RuPaul Charles has now started what could be his takeover of the theater world as well.
The Drag Race host earned his first Tony nomination as a credited producer on the musical A Strange Loop, which ended up as the most-nominated show of the season.
RuPaul is already the winningest Black talent in Emmy history, with 11 trophies (out of 16 nods), and he surely has more coming his way.
L Morgan Lee made history when her name was called out as one of the six potential winners in the Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical field, as she’s up for her work in A Strange Loop.
Lee became the first openly trans performer to be nominated in an acting category, and it appears she is just the second trans or non-binary talent to be up for any Tony. In 2019, Taylor Mac earned a chance to win for writing the play Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus.
After the nominations were unveiled, Lee took to Twitter to share a very short and powerful message: “I can’t stop crying.”
Alongside RuPaul, singer and actor Jennifer Hudson is also nominated for Best Musical for her part in producing A Strange Loop. While she has performed on Broadway before in The Color Purple, and her work has been recognized with a Drama League Award nomination, she earned her first Tony nod this year.
If A Strange Loop does win the prize, Hudson will become the latest person to complete her EGOT, meaning she’s won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony — the four major awards in the entertainment world.
In 2021, Hudson won a Daytime Emmy for Baba Yaga (in the not-often-followed Outstanding Interactive Media for a Daytime Program category). She scored her first of two Grammys in 2009 for her self-titled debut album, which won Best R&B Album. She later won Best Musical Theater Album for the cast recording of the Broadway show The Color Purple. Her Oscar came to her for her acting performance in the musical film Dreamgirls.
Should she do so, Hudson will become just the second Black woman to EGOT, following in the footsteps of Whoopi Goldberg.
Typically, five people are nominated in each category at the Tonys, but it’s not uncommon for six names to sneak in, due to how votes are tabulated.
In fact, there are a few fields that feature half a dozen artists this time around, but one is even more crowded than the rest. Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play is flush with seven performers, any one of which could take home the coveted prize. The group includes all three main stars of The Lehman Trilogy.
Usually, producers work behind the scenes, but when it comes to A Strange Loop, part of the marketing push when the show debuted was the more famous artists who contributed their ideas (and funds) to the creation of the musical posting on social media and promoting the new show. For their contributions, they’re all nominated for Best Musical, and if the title wins, they all earn a trophy.
In addition to RuPaul and Hudson, the list of credited producers on A Strange Loop includes well-known names like Alan Cumming, Ilana Glazer, Mindy Kaling, Billy Porter, and Pasek & Paul, known as the composers of Dear Evan Hansen and The Greatest Showman.
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