Awards show to spotlight nominees

The Tony Awards telecast will showcase all the Broadway tuners nominated for musical or musical revival, along with segs from three shows on tour, “Jersey Boys,” “Legally Blonde” and “Mamma Mia!”

Performance slots are considered valuable opportunities to market legit offerings during the theater world’s highest-profile kudofest. Similarly, the inclusion of performances from well-known offerings such as “Mamma Mia!” can help drum up viewer interest in the usually ratings-challenged broadcast.

“Billy Elliot,” “Next to Normal,” “Shrek the Musical” and “Rock of Ages,” all in the running for the new tuner trophy, will be featured, as will musical revival contenders “West Side Story,” “Hair,” “Guys and Dolls” and “Pal Joey” (which ended its limited run earlier this season).

News looks like a snub of the tuner version of “9 to 5,” which, although not nommed for new musical, seemed a shoo-in for inclusion given the broad fanbase of Dolly Parton, the show’s composer-lyricist.

But it’s said that Parton and the tuner’s three lead actress will sing the title tune of “9 to 5″ as part of the ceremony’s opening number — although that remains unconfirmed.

Telecast exec producers Ricky Kirshner and Glenn Weiss have previously said they will try to include bits from as many Broadway productions in the ceremony as possible.

Neil Patrick Harris hosts the 63rd Tony Awards, set for June 7 at Radio City Musical Hall and broadcast on CBS. This year the kudos, along with the initial hour of creative arts awards not shown on CBS, will be simulcast on a large screen in the newly pedestrian-friendly Times Square.

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