The Drama Desk, which since 1972 has handed out the coveted Obie Awards to playwrights, directors and lighting designers, has announced the nominees for the 91st Annual Tony Awards. This year, the Drama Desk will hand out its own Tony nominations on May 4.
In addition to shows like “Assassins,” “The Music Man” and “The Liar,” this year’s nominations also included two highly anticipated dramas, both of which will air on Broadway this winter.
The play, “Jagged Little Play,” was the runaway winner of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, winning the award in May and winning the Tony nomination for Best Play.
Written by the longtime Tony Award nominee Sarah DeLappe, the play tells the story of a young man named Adam who is trying to find a way to escape the small, tight-knit town where he has grown up and pursue a new career in the film industry.
The play stars rising Hollywood star Brandon Victor Dixon, who played the Phantom in “School of Rock” and was one of the lead actors in “The Lion King.” He is best known for his work in Disney films such as “Hercules,” “Pocahontas” and “Tarzan.”
In April, the star also released his first album, which was executive produced by rapper and singer Chance the Rapper. Dixon appeared in “The Lion King” on Broadway and in the Disney movie “Moana.”
Judging by its reception in the awards circuit, “Jagged Little Play” is set to be one of the star productions this year, especially since Netflix plans to bring it to life as a series. There’s no information about the fate of the play’s storyline; however, the show has been known to have some of the playwright’s most emotional moments.
The other new play up for Tony nominations is “The Children.” Directed by Moisés Kaufman, the drama was the recipient of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The play tells the story of Rebecca Wright, a widow who is in a long-distance relationship with her estranged son, Nicholas. They have not seen each other in years.
“The Children” is produced by Lincoln Center Theater and was also well-received at the Roundabout Theatre Company in 2017, winning the Tony award for Best Play for that production and for Joanna Murray-Smith, who won a Tony in 2015 for directing “Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women.”