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Tony Awards: 5 things to watch for
Neil Patrick Harris will be back to host the 67th annual Tony Awards from Radio City Music Hall tonight.
Newsday Westchester will be covering the ceremony as it unfolds, but in the meantime, here are five things to watch for when the show, well, must go on.
1. Will actors with Hudson Valley connections win their first Tony Awards? In acting categories, former Mount Vernon resident Condola Rashad is up for best featured actress in a play ("The Trip to Bountiful") while Mount Kisco native Danny Burstein is up for the male equivalent for his role in "Golden Boy."
Also up for an acting award in his category is Tom Hanks, who filmed pivotal scenes from his 1988 movie "Big" at Rye Playland; if he wins, he'd be on the cusp of being an "EGOT" winner — all he'd need is a Grammy Award to add to his collection of at least one Emmy, Oscar and Tony.
In a noncompetitive category, 9-year-old Westchester resident Sophia Gennusa and the other three young actresses to share the title role of "Matilda" (Oona Laurence, Bailey Ryon and Milly Shapiro) will receive Tony Honors for Excellence in Theatre.
2. Will Eastchester native Kenneth Posner, nominated three times in one category, split his own votes? The Purchase College grad — who's up for "Kinky Boots," "Pippin" and "Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella" — told Newsday Westchester he's worried his votes will be split among the three shows for which he's nominated, clearing a path for his friend Hugh Vanstone to win the award for his work on "Matilda." (Check out our Posner video and photo gallery while you're at it.)
One could argue it's more impressive to get three nominations in one Tony category than it is to win it. Plus, Posner can take solace in knowing he's already tasted Tony victory, bringing home the award in 2007 for his lighting contributions to the play "The Coast of Utopia."
3. What will host Neil Patrick Harris do? The good news is the ceremony is in reliable hands with Harris, a Broadway vet and star of CBS' "How I Met Your Mother." That said, it's his third consecutive year hosting and his fourth time hosting overall, so there is the question of whether he can bring something new to his role as master of ceremonies.
Harris seems to be feeling the pressure of topping his past performances, based on a recent tweet urging his followers to tune in.
Also, with what will almost certainly be a musical number to start the show, will Harris push the envelope or go tame in a post-Seth MacFarlane society?
4. Will Tony voters be in the mood to rock out? "Kinky Boots" leads the season with 13 nominations, and it's scored by pop icon Cyndi Lauper. She could be considered the favorite in the category for best original score, but don't count out jam-band favorite Trey Anastasio, the Phish front man and a longtime Palisades resident who, with Amanda Green, revved up the tunes for "Hands on a Hardbody."
But now that we mention "Kinky Boots," it's worth asking...
5. Can any musical boot "Kinky Boots"? Given the positive reviews, star power of Lauper and the Broadway-friendly themes of positivity and acceptance, it would appear to be the odds-on favorite to take home a metric ton of Tonys.
The indicator might be Posner's category. If he doesn't split his own votes and wins for "Kinky Boots," look for that show to dominate; if Vanstone wins, "Matilda" — with 12 nominations — might be the big winner by the end of Sunday night.
What nominees are you rooting for the hardest? Let us know in the comments section!
Tags: Mount Vernon , Condola Rashad , The Trip To Bountiful , Rye , Tom Hanks , Eastchester , Purchase , Kenneth Posner , Kinky Boots , Pippin , Rogers and Hammerstein's Cinderella , Mount Kisco , Danny Burstein , Golden Boy , Palisades , Trey Anastasio , Sophia Gennusa , Matilda , Tony Awards , Westchester , Rockland , TV , theater , Broadway