Tonys: As Corny as Osage in August


If I drank, I’d be hungover. That’s the feeling I have today after partying with the cast of “South Pacific,” who were the big winners last night at the 2008 Tony Awards: seven statuettes. All of them were deserved, in my humble estimation, as were the five awards received by “August: Osage County.” Before the book is closed on this year’s broadcast, which gave acting awards to Paulo Szot, Patti LuPone, Deanna Dunagan, and Mark Rylance (all pictured) a few fast opinions: 1) Where the hell was He Whom I Revere Above All Others — Stephen Sondheim? He was given a Lifetime Achievement Award and he couldn’t show up and say thank you? 2) Although I wish Kelli O’Hara had won for Best Actress in a Musical (and, one day, she will), I couldn’t begrudge Patti LuPone her award: her speech was giddy and self-deprecating. 3) Boyd Gaines was fine in “Gypsy,” but he didn’t deserve a fourth Tony. (For some perspective, think about this: Meryl Streep has only two Oscars.) 4) If you’re an actor and you want to win a Tony, get cast in a classy revival not a new piece. 5) Better yet, if you’re an actor and you want to win a Tony, play a Mama — pill-popping or long-resentful. (And guess what: there’s talk of turning “August: Osage County” into a musical, and whom do I think is the natural to star? Ms. LuPone, of course. And what do I propose for that adaptation’s title? “August: Osage County Fair.”) 6) What drug was Mark Rylance on? 7) Who was Whoopi Goldberg’s stylist for her “regular” outfits? (Awful.) 8) Who thought up Whoopi’s Zelig-like costumes? (Brilliant.) 9) Raul Esparza may not have won for “The Homecoming,” but he’ll win next year for the musical “Leap of Faith.” (You heard it here first.) On to 2009!

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