Live Blog of the Tonys
[I missed the first hour because of our Annual Meeting.]
What I'm noticing is that there are a lot of bodacious women with big tushies on this show. No Hollywood sticks -- everyone looks real, and fun, and healthy. Dang, they have to be. They're knocking their bippies out on stage nine times a week. You need something in your dress or the audience can't see you. You need to eat or you'll pass out on stage, and that just won't do, darling.
Cases in point: the babe (Sara something?) who won for "Spamalot" who is hiking up the top of her dress on the way to the stage. Hubba-hubba, but no class whatsoever. James Earl is a portly gent indeed, and Ms. Leslie Uggams is being worn by a fairly enormous, flopping purple frock. Much abundant ruffle around the face. Whatever. She's gorgeous.
(Mom says she looks like an eggplant. Yes. She does. Put a baby in that dress and Anne Geddes would trip all over herself to catch it on film).
The fat, frizzy-haired guy from "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" won for Best Actor. Very touching speech. The number from the production, as seen later is, however, blechville. Similarly, the number from "Spamalot" is uninspired, unfunny and completely un-entertaining. Sorry, I just calls 'em like I sees 'em.
Here comes Bob Goulet introducing "La Cage Aux Folles" with dialogue from the show. He looks rather perma-startled due to some bad facial work, but it's Lancelot and we will always love him. Bob, if ever I would leave you, it wouldn't be in summer (but don'tcha know this dialogue yet?).
Wow, it's a huge can-can number with a major population of saucy chorus boys looking gorgeous in little Frenchy girl wigs, whirly skirts and heels. They're working it all over the stage with incredible gymnastics (a bit much for my taste: it's cabaret, not the Olympics). I'm thinking, "I bet those broads are hilarious fun backstage." I'd love to be a fly on that wall.
(ouch! How do their gonads tolerate all those flying splits?)
Edward Albee chokes me up paying tribute to his recently-deceased partner of 35 years. "He made me a happy playwright. You've made me a happy playwright." Beautiful. I'm sorry never to have seen much of Mr. Albee's recent work. Must remedy that. I would have loved to have seen Mecedes Ruehl in "The Goat, Or Who Is Sylvia."
I'm watching Nathan Lane, who looks really old and tired, work some pretty lousy comic repartee with the audience -- I swear the producer has thrown in a recorded laugh track, 'cause it's reeeally not funny. And I don't see anyone laughing in the audience.
Billy Crystal just won something called"Special Event" (is this a new category? Pardon??) for "Seven Hundred Sundays." He's not happy, throwing in some snarky thing about "I thought this was a play."
9:32 Kate Burton, pursing her lips like Tim Conway doing the "Mrs. Tudball" routine, announces that one of my most favorite regional theatre companies, "Theatre de la Jeune Lune" of Minneapolis wins for best regional theatre!! Some of the best theatrical memories of my life were spent watching their productions.
Shout out to Jeune Lune!!! Kiss, kiss, wave, wave!! Felicity Jones, I still worship you for your performance in "Children of Paradise!" I still love you all for your miraculous rendition of "Germinal!" Bumpety-bumpety-bump!
9:43 Lifelong crush Mike Nichols wins Best Director For A Musical for "Spamalot." He's such a hottie in his crazy tux, big gray tie (is that quilted??) and his fashioning glasses. Diane Sawyer, you are one lucky girl.
Mike is all quavery-voiced and witty and unbelievably cute. Diane smiles from the audience, looking gorgeous and classy. Swoon. He thanks Eric Idle, "from whom all blessings flow." Love it. Camera on Eric Idle wearing a tux that functions as kind of a sartorial sight gag. Did he pay money for that?? "I'll take the tux with the swirly gold design, please."
9:45 Love Keri Russell's hair. (Remember when she had it all long, and then she cut it all off? Did you care? I never did. I never saw that show, "Felicity," either).
"La Cage" has won for revival. I saw the original on Broadway and had dinner with George Hearn afterward. Or was it Len Cariou? I honestly don't remember but it was a totally thrilling thing at the time. It was a matinee and he was hungry and he invited me and my friend to have a bite with him.
9:48 Sheer Madness! Al Sharpton has just shown up for a number from "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee!"
9:55 Oh, Idina Menzel. A billion high school theatre freaks just fainted.
Katherine Zuber, who won Best Costume Design in a Musical for "The Light in The Piazza," forgot to comb her ponytail. Isn't that always the way when it's your job to make everyone else look gorgeous?
10:00 Joan Allen: smoky rock-and-roll eyes. Many pounds of jet beads over garish purple gown. Frizzy Grecian braid. Very nude lips. It's not working.
10:01 Laura Linney looks great for a change. Special award for your stylist, Laura: "Most Improved!"
10:05 Musical tribute to Fred Ebb, who I cannot believe is dead.
10:16 Cherry Jones! Cherry Jones! Love the gown! Love the long, lingering kiss with Laura Wingfield (Yes, Mom, they're lovers. I'm pretty sure)! Love the shout out to the cast of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" (without feeling you have to similarly blow smoke up the skirts of all the other nominees)! Love your work! You were the only good thing in that chick-dreck flick, "Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood!" Can't wait to see you in "Doubt!" Congratulations! Many exclamation points!
(Remember what I said about no starving Hollywood sticks? Strike that. Here comes Marcia Cross, shiny and ravenous-looking. You could sharpen knives on that collar bone).
10:25 I'm so glad that someone was introduced as "a star of the stage and screen." Only it's Angela Bassett, as pretentious as ever, and Ethan Hawke, who rather radiates body odor.
10:30 Hugh Jackman sings "Somewhere" for no reason. Here comes Aretha Franklin wearing a left-over caftan from Elton John's "Aida" and a really bad wig, and singing as only Aretha can. But it's just not really working. Hugh, darling Hugh, just went very flat. But wotta hottie, honestly. I wish I'd seen him in "The Boy From Oz."
10:32 Oh, this is so bad Mom had to call again just for emotional support. Aretha couldn't hold the last note, so as Hugh held it, she threw her arm in the air in a sort of Fabulous Diva Move, as if to say "I am the Queen of Soul!! I don't NEED breath control!!" I will definitely steal that.
We wonder if maybe there are so few people of color actually in Broadway shows (and certainly 90% of the nominees are lily-white folk), they need to bring them in as presenters and performers in random ways. We are embarrased for Aretha and Hugh.
(10:35 Um, could the voice-overs on the Botox commercial be more vapid and insulting to women? And I quote: "I fit back into my skinny jeans." "I had a really good hair day." Wow, those are both major life goals for me. Am I "ready for Botox?" Gee, maybe I am!! :::blink, blink, drool:::
10:43 Victoria Clarke from "The Light in the Piazza" wins Best Actress in a Musical. Mom's happy, she saw it twice.
Here comes Bernadette Peters, who sold her soul to Satan so that she would never age. No..............wait.................Berni's eyes are suspiciously almondine. Yep. Our porcelain doll has had some skin pulled by the pros.
Great group of nominees for Best Actor in a Musical. Norbert Leo Butz wins it for "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels." It's one of my favorite movies, and one of the few musicals in the new season I really care to see.
(His girlfriend gets a shout-out as "my best friend, who makes me laugh on the inside again." That's original.)
(Can I go to sleep now?)
Oh, "Spamalot" just won for Best Musical. I can go to sleep now. This was terribly produced, boring despite the fact that they made the ignominious decision to turn the sound OFF on the winners if they went over their alotted time, and just dreary.
Give my regards to Broadway. It ain't what it used to be.