Tonys Preview: The Nailbiters

Tony usually has trouble just finding four decent works to nominate for best play. Fortunately, gone are the days when the org had to resort to including a new adaptation of Ivan Turgenev’s “Fortune’s Fool” to fill up the requisite four slots.

The problem today is a good one — and very nice for the drama-starved theatergoer: Which really good plays aren’t going to make the cut? Top contenders are David Lindsay-Abaire’s “Good People,” Rajiv Joseph’s “Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo,” Jez Butterworth’s “Jerusalem,” Stephen Adly Guirgis’ “The Motherfucker With the Hat,” Nick Stafford’s “War Horse” and John Guare’s “A Free Man of Color,” a Pulitzer Prize runner-up.

There’s also Noel Coward’s “Brief Encounter,” adapted by Emma Rice, which proved highly successful for Roundabout last autumn. Or does that fit into the Turgenev category?

Let the nailbiting begin.

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