League awards tuner with top trophy
The Drama League has gone boy-crazy, presenting “Jersey Boys” with its tuner trophy and U.K. import “The History Boys” with play plaudits at a Friday awards ceremony.
“Awake and Sing!” and “Sweeney Todd” took play revival and musical revival, respectively, and Christine Ebersole drew the acting award for her widely praised perf in the Off Broadway tuner “Grey Gardens.”
Off Broadway candidates are eligible for League kudos.
Both “Boys” topped fellow Rialto offerings that are likely Tony contenders. “Jersey Boys,” based on the life and music of the Four Seasons, beat out “The Color Purple,” “The Drowsy Chaperone” and “The Wedding Singer,” while Alan Bennett’s “The History Boys” bested “The Lieutenant of Inishmore” and “Rabbit Hole.”
Helmer John Doyle’s pared-down “Sweeney” trumped sure-bet Tony rival “The Pajama Game,” while “Awake and Sing!,” the Lincoln Center Theater revival of the Clifford Odets play, was head of the class among Broadway offerings “The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial,” “Faith Healer” and “Three Days of Rain.”
Ebersole was among a pool of 74 acting nominees including Julia Roberts, David Schwimmer, Cynthia Nixon, Lois Smith and Harry Connick Jr.
“Jersey Boys” helmer Des McAnuff received a previously announced special award for directing. Marian Seldes and Patti LuPone drew body-of-work achievement honors.
Awards were announced at a luncheon hosted by Alan Cumming (“The Threepenny Opera”).