The New York Drama Critics Circle Tuesday named “Millennium Approaches,” the first part of Tony Kushner’s “Angels in America,” as the best play of the 1992- 93 season. The play won the Pulitzer Prize for drama last month, and earlier this week garnered nine Tony Award nominations, a record for a non-musical.
Exercising its option to consider a separate award for a foreign play when an American play wins the top award, the Circle members voted Frank McGuinness’ “Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me” as best foreign play. “Kiss of the Spider Woman,” with a book by Terrence McNally and score by John Kander and Fred Ebb, was named the season’s best musical.
Both “Millennium” and “Someone” won on second, weighted ballots. In the first vote for best play, “Millennium” won nine of 19 votes cast, less than a majority , forcing the second vote. On the first vote for foreign play, “Les Atrides”– four classical Greek plays reinterpreted by Ariane Mnouchkine and presented here by her Paris-based Theatre du Soleil — won more first-place votes than “Someone ,” but not a majority. “Someone,” which has Tony nominations for best play and for actor Stephen Rea, won on the second vote.
“Kiss of the Spider Woman” won on the first ballot with 11 votes. Its closest competition was “The Who’s Tommy” with four votes.
After some discussion, the critics decided against special awards.
Voters were Clive Barnes (New York Post), Greg Evans (Variety), Michael Feingold (Village Voice), Jeremy Gerard (Variety), William A. Henry III (Time), Melanie Kirkpatrick (Wall Street Journal), Howard Kissel (New York Daily News), Jack Kroll (Newsweek), Michael Kuchwara (Associated Press), Jacques le Sourd (Gannett newspapers), Julius Novick (New York Newsday), Edith Oliver (New Yorker), William Raidy (Newhouse newspapers), David Patrick Stearns (USA Today), Jan Stuart (New York Newsday), Jerry Tallmer (New York Post), Doug Watt (New York Daily News), Edwin Wilson (Wall Street Journal) and Linda Winer (New York Newsday).