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News

Cutoff Date for Tony Eligibility Announced, Confusion Ensues

08.24.20

BY: PHEOBE HORIBE

On August 21, The American Theatre Wing announced the Tony Awards would be broadcast virtually this fall. There is still no official date or platform announced for the broadcast, but that isn’t the only concern. Since Broadway shut down before many shows had the chance to open, the powers-that-be had to set a new cutoff date to determine shows’ eligibility. 

Well, the Wing has decided the cutoff date will be Feb. 19, 2020. This cutoff means that both Scott Rudin’s West Side Story and critics’ darling Girl From The North Country will not be eligible for this year’s Tony Awards. West Side Story opened Feb. 20 (the day after the determined cutoff) and Girl From the North Country opened March 5.

Without the revival of West Side Story eliminated, there are exactly zero eligible revivals this year. There would have been two other contenders in the revival category, but unfortunately Caroline, or Change and Company did not get a chance to open this year. (Company had been in performances, while Caroline had yet to begin.)

And without Girl From The North Country being eligible for Best Musical, the only four contenders include, Tina: The Tina Turner Musical, Moulin Rouge, The Lightning Thief, and Jagged Little Pill. That’s a rather thin lineup, to say the least. Another interesting fact is with the current guidelines, Rob Rokicki’s score for The Lightning Thief is the only musical eligible for the Original Score category since the other three musicals have scores that were not originally written for the musical. (While The Lightning Thief was widely loved by Percy Jackson fans, the critics were pretty unimpressed, so it would be quite the upset for that show to take home one of the year’s top honors.)

The original cutoff date was April 23, 2020 with the nominees slated to be announced April 28, but Broadway shutdown on March 12, 2020 due to COVID-19. There were 18 other productions scheduled to open this season.

Here is a list of the eligible shows for this year’s Tony Awards. These are only eligible shows and not actual nominees:

Best Musical 

Moulin Rouge!

Tina: The Tina Turner Musical

The Lightning Thief

Jagged Little Pill

Shows scheduled for the 2019-20 season that did not make the February 19 cutoff date: Six, Diana, Mrs. Doubtfire, Girl From the North Country, Flying Over Sunset, Sing Street.

Best Play 

Sea Wall/ A Life

The Height of the Storm

The Great Society

Slave Play

Linda Vista

The Sound Inside

The Inheritance

A Christmas Carol

My Name is Lucy Barton

Grand Horizons

Shows scheduled for the 2019-20 season that did not make the February 19 cutoff date: The Minutes, The Lehman Trilogy, Hangman, Birthday Candles.

Best Revival of a Musical 

(none apply)

Shows scheduled for the 2019-20 season that did not make the February 19 cutoff date: West Side Story, Caroline, Or Change, Company.

Best Revival of a Play

Frankie and Johnny in Clair de Lune

Betrayal

The Rose Tattoo

A Soldier’s Play

Shows scheduled for the 2019-20 season that did not make the February 19 cutoff date: Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Plaza Suite, American Buffalo, Take Me Out, How I learned To Drive.

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