While people like to have a fit about which black people are and are not being nominated for and winning Academy Awards, it seems that our actors and actresses are holding things down big time when it comes to the Tonys and the Great White Way.
At last night’s Tony Awards, black stars took home four major awards (and one other production award) during the evening. According to Shadow and Act, this is just the second time that four black folks won in the same year, with the last time being in 1982 when Dreamgirls was running the world.
The legendary Cicely Tyson won the Tony for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play for her work in A Trip to Bountiful (which I’ve seen, and loved!). A Trip to Bountiful was originally a televised play that was turned into a successful, Academy Award-winning film. In it, Tyson plays an elderly woman living with her son and his over-the-top wife, wishing that she could return to her childhood home before she dies. So she does everything in her power to make that trek.
Aside from Tyson, actor Billy Porter won for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical for his work in Kinky Boots. Patina Miller won for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical for Pippin, and Angela Bassett’s husband, Courtney B. Vance, won a Tony for Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play for Lucky Guy. Outside of acting, making that five Tonys for black people, producer Ron Simons received a Tony for Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, which won for Best Play.
If all this doesn’t make you want to hurry up and see some killer Broadway shows, I don’t know what will. Now, who wants to go see Kinky Boots with me???