BY: JULIA SALKIN
As we approach the 73rd Annual Tony Awards this Sunday, Broadway Spin thought it would be fun to take a look back at some of the most unique wins throughout the ceremony’s history. Has anyone ever received two nominations in one year? How many times have two people tied for the prize in a single category? We’ve got the answers to everything you want to know!
Joint Wins & Nominations
Broadway actors have been jointly nominated or awarded Tonys a total of four times, beginning in 1960 with a total of seven actors sharing one nomination slot for The Sound of Music. Lauri Peters, Kathy Dunn, Evanna Lien, Mary Susan Locke, Marilyn Roger, William Snowden, and Joseph Stewart were jointly acknowledged with a Best Featured Actress nomination for their portrayal of various Von Trapp children in the iconic musical’s original production. Ultimately, the win went another performer in the show: Patricia Neway for her turn as Mother Abbess.
In 1966, Donal Donnelly and Patrick Bedford were jointly nominated as Best Actor in a Play for Philadelphia, Here I Come! In 1975, John Kani and Winston Ntshona shared a win for Best Actor in a Play for the double bill Sizwe Banzi is Dead and The Island. Most recently, Emily Skinner and Alice Ripley were jointly nominated as Best Actress in a Musical for Side Show in 1998!
On top of these joint bills, Tony Awards history has seen many ties in categories from Best Actress to Best Scenic Design! The first winners to take home a tied prize were the incomparable Gwen Verdon and Thelma Ritter, for their performances as Anna and Marthy in the 1958 musical New Girl in Town.
The following season, Russell Nype and Leonard Stone tied for the title of Best Featured Actor in a Musical, for Goldilocks and Redhead, respectively.
In 1960, audiences witnessed the first (and only!) tie for the coveted Best Musical title, between The Sound of Music & Fiorello! Combined, the two shows took home a total of eight Tonys that night!
Voters were yet again of split minds when it came to the 1962 Best Actress in a Musical award, which ended up being shared by Anna Maria Alberghetti (Carnival!) and Diahann Carroll (No Strings). In 1968, Patricia Routledge and Leslie Uggams both took home the prize for their performances in Darling of the Day, and Hallelujah, Baby!
1977 saw the Tony Awards’ first ever design category tie, when Theoni V. Aldredge (Annie) and Santo Loquasto (The Cherry Orchard) split the votes for Best Costume Design. The original production of Annie took home a whopping seven Tonys, including this tie for Costume Design. Loquasto has taken home the award for Best Costume Design three times in his career, most recently for the 2017 revival of Hello, Dolly!
In 1979, Constance Cummings and Carole Shelley tied for the title of Best Actress in a Play for their performances in Wings and The Elephant Man.
The award for Best Scenic Design was presented as a tie in 1980, going to both John Lee Beatty for Talley’s Folly, and David Mitchell for Barnum. Best Score was awarded as a tie in 1993, when John Kander & Fred Ebb and Pete Townshend took home the win for Kiss of the Spider Woman and The Who’s Tommy, respectively.
The most recent tie in Tonys history was awarded in 2009, when Martin Koch (Billy Elliot) and Michael Starobin & Tom Kitt (Next to Normal) shared the title for Best Orchestrations.
Since 1982, six Broadway performers have received two nominations for two different productions in a single season. The first to achieve this unbelievable feat was Amanda Plummer, who was nominated for Best Actress in a Play for A Taste of Honey, and for Best Featured Actress in a Play for Agnes of God. Plummer took home the big award for Agnes of God. Two years later, Dana Ivey received nominations for Best Featured Actress in a Play for Heartbreak House and for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for Sunday in the Park with George.
In 2002, Kate Burton was nominated for Best Actress in a Play for Hedda Gabler, and for Best Featured Actress in a Play for The Elephant Man. Jan Maxwell received nominations for Best Actress in a Play for The Royal Family and for Featured Actress in a Play for Lend Me a Tenor in 2010.
This first man to be nominated twice in one season for two different productions was Mark Rylance, receiving nods for Featured Actor in a Play for Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, and Best Actor in a Play for Richard III in 2014. Rylance took home the award for Twelfth Night that year, and has been nominated for a total of five Tonys throughout his career, winning three.
This year, we’re celebrating the most recent double-header nomination: Jeremy Pope! Pope is nominated for Best Actor in a Play for his performance in Choir Boy. Just four days after departing Choir Boy in late February, Pope rushed over to the Imperial Theatre to begin previews of Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations, for which he is nominated for Featured Actor in a Musical!
Tune into The 73rd Annual Tony Awards this Sunday, June 9th at 8:00pm on CBS to see if this competitive season brings us any new additions to this list!
& All of this year’s Tony-nominated shows are in play at Broadway Roulette!