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The well-received Roundabout Theater Company revival of “She Loves Me” led the nominations for the 2016 Drama Desk Awards, pulling in nine nods including best musical revival, plus acting awards for cast members including Laura Benanti, Zachary Levi and Jane Krakowski. New musical “American Psycho” earned eight — although not one for outstanding musical.

Theater fans will notice a distinct absence of “Hamilton” from the list; that’s because the show was considered in its Off Broadway incarnation last year (and won seven 2015 awards). The Drama Desks, therefore, make for an imperfect crystal ball in trying to predict trends in the upcoming Tony Awards nominations.

Perhaps the most interesting development: “Shuffle Along,” the musical opening tonight with a stellar cast including Audra McDonald and Brian Stokes Mitchell, was deemed a new musical, putting it in the running for outstanding musical with fellow Broadway titles “Waitress ” and “School of Rock” (as well as Off Broadway productions “First Daughter Suite” and “Daddy Long Legs”). One of the biggest open questions in the Tony race is whether the Tony nominators will deem the show a revival, as its producers hope, or a new musical, which would thereby put the production in contention with presumptive champion “Hamilton” for the top Tony.

“Shuffle Along” earned a total of six Drama Desk nominations — although none, surprisingly, for the strong cast of actors that includes McDonald, Mitchell, and Billy Porter. Choreographer Savion Glover scored a nod, as did several design elements.

In the the musical revival race — sure to be one of the most hotly contest at the Tonys this year — “The Color Purple,” “Fiddler on the Roof” and “Spring Awakening” square off with “She Loves Me,” as does Off Broadway’s “The Golden Bride.” Lead actress in a musical, another extremely competitive category this season, encompasses Benanti, Cynthia Erivo (“The Color Purple”), Jessie Mueller (“Waitress”), Carmen Cusack (“Bright Star”) and Annette O’Toole (for Off Broadway’s “Southern Comfort”).

Special award recipients includes the ensemble cast of Broadway play “The Humans” — a team of actors likely to make a strong showing in the Tony nominations — and Danai Gurira, the familiar TV face (“The Walking Dead”) whose play “Eclipsed” is now running on Broadway with Lupita Nyong’o.

The nominations for the Drama Desk Awards, presented annually by the titular nonprofit theatrical development organization and by TheaterMania.com, were announced the day before final Tony Awards eligibility questions will be decided, and a few days in advance of the May 3 Tony nominations announcement.

The 2016 Drama Desk Awards will be handed out in a June 5 ceremony hosted by Michael Urie at midtown Manhattan venue Town Hall. The complete list of nominations follows.

2016 Drama Desk Award Nominations

Outstanding Play

The Christians, Playwrights Horizons

The Humans, Roundabout Theatre Company

John, Signature Theatre

King Charles III

The Royale, Lincoln Center Theater

Outstanding Musical

First Daughter Suite, Public Theater

Daddy Long Legs

School of Rock

Shuffle Along


Outstanding Revival of a Play

Cloud Nine, Atlantic Theater Company

Death of a Salesman, New Yiddish Rep

Henry IV, Donmar Warehouse at St. Ann’s Warehouse

Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Roundabout Theatre Company

A View from the Bridge

Women Without Men, Mint Theater Company

Outstanding Revival of a Musical

The Color Purple

The Golden Bride, National Yiddish Theatre Folkesbiene

Fiddler on the Roof

She Loves Me, Roundabout Theatre Company

Spring Awakening

Outstanding Actor in a Play

Andrew Garman, The Christians, Playwrights Horizons

Avi Hoffman, Death of a Salesman

Frank Langella, The Father, Manhattan Theatre Club

Tim Pigott-Smith, King Charles III

Mark Strong, A View from the Bridge

Outstanding Actress in a Play

Georgia Engel, John, Signature Theatre

Mamie Gummer, Ugly Lies the Bone, Roundabout Undeground

Marin Ireland, Ironbound, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater/Women’s Project Theater

Jessica Lange, Long Day’s Journey Into Night

Nicola Walker, A View from the Bridge

Outstanding Actor in a Musical

Danny Burstein, Fiddler on the Roof

Robert Creighton, Cagney, York Theatre Company

Michael C. Hall, Lazarus, New York Theatre Workshop

Zachary Levi, She Loves Me

Benjamin Walker, American Psycho

Outstanding Actress in a Musical

Laura Benanti, She Loves Me

Carmen Cusack, Bright Star

Cynthia Erivo, The Color Purple

Jessie Mueller, Waitress

Annette O’Toole, Southern Comfort, Public Theater

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play

Bill Camp, The Crucible

David Furr, Noises Off, Roundabout Theatre Company

Matt McGrath, The Legend of Georgia McBride, MCC Theater

Richard Thomas, Incident at Vichy, Signature Theatre

Michael Shannon, Long’s Day Journey Into Night

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play

Brooke Bloom, Cloud Nine

Megan Hilty, Noises Off

Kellie Overbey, Women Without Men

Saycon Sengbloh, Eclipsed, Public Theater

Jeanine Serralles, Gloria, Vineyard Theatre

Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical

Nicholas Barasch, She Loves Me

Christopher Fitzgerald, Waitress

Baylee Littrell, Disaster!

Paul Alexander Nolan, Bright Star

A.J. Shively, Bright Star

Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical

Danielle Brooks, The Color Purple

Alison Fraser, First Daughter Suite

Rachel Bay Jones, Dear Evan Hansen, Second Stage

Jane Krakowski, She Loves Me

Mary Testa, First Daughter Suite

Outstanding Director of a Play

Rachel Chavkin, The Royale

Sam Gold, John

Rupert Goold, King Charles III

Joe Mantello, The Humans

Jenn Thompson, Women Without Men

Ivo van Hove, A View from the Bridge

Outstanding Director of a Musical

Michael Arden, Spring Awakening

John Doyle, The Color Purple

Rupert Goold, American Psycho

Bartlett Sher, Fiddler on the Roof

Bryna Wasserman, Motl Didner, The Golden Bride

Outstanding Choreography

Joshua Bergasse, Cagney

Spencer Liff, Spring Awakening

Lynne Page, American Psycho

Randy Skinner, Dames at Sea

Savion Glover, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Music

Sara Bareilles, Waitress

Michael John LaChiusa, First Daughter Suite,

Andrew Lloyd Webber, School of Rock

The Lobbyists, SeaWife, Naked Angels

Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, Bright Star

Outstanding Lyrics

Sara Bareilles, Waitress

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, Dear Evan Hansen

Glenn Slater, School of Rock

Michael John LaChiusa, First Daughter Suite

Outstanding Orchestrations

August Eriksmoen, Bright Star

Larry Hochman, She Loves Me, Roundabout Theatre Company

Joseph Joubert/Catherine Jayes, The Color Purple

Andrew Lloyd Webber, School of Rock

Michael Starobin/Bruce Coughlin, First Daughter Suite

Outstanding Music in a Play

Billie Joe Armstrong, These Paper Bullets!, Atlantic Theatre Company

Estelle Bajou, Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally, One Year Lease Theater Company

Shaun Davey, Pericles, Theatre for a New Audience

Philip Glass, The Crucible

Tom Kitt, Cymbeline, New York Shakespeare Festival

Outstanding Set Design for a Play

Riccardo Hernandez, Red Speedo, New York Theatre Workshop

Mimi Lien, John

W. Mercier, Head of Passes, Public Theater

Christopher Oram, Hughie

Derek McLane, Fully Committed

Outstanding Set Design for a Musical

Es Devlin, American Psycho

Emily Orling, Matt Saunders, Eric Farber, Futurity, Soho Rep/Ars Nova

David Rockwell, She Loves Me

Outstanding Costume Design for a Play

Jessica Ford, These Paper Bullets!

Martha Hally, Women Without Men

Constance Hoffman, Pericles

William Ivey Long, Shows for Days, Lincoln Center Theater

Anita Yavich, The Legend of Georgia McBride

Outstanding Costume Design for a Musical

Jane Greenwood, Bright Star

Katrina Lindsay, American Psycho

Jeff Mahshie, She Loves Me

Alejo Vietti, Allegiance

Ann Roth, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Lighting Design for a Play

Neil Austin, Hughie

Mark Barton, John

Bradley King, Empanada Loca, Labyrinth Theater Company

Tyler Micoleau, Antlia Pneumatica, Playwrights Horizons

Justin Townsend, The Humans

Outstanding Lighting Design for a Musical

Jane Cox, The Color Purple

Jake DeGroot, SeaWife,

Ben Stanton, Spring Awakening

Justin Townsend, American Psycho

Jules Fisher/Peggy Eisenhauer, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Projection Design

Nicholas Hussong, These Paper Bullets!

Darrel Maloney, Tappin’ Thru Life

Peter Nigrini, Dear Evan Hansen

Finn Ross, American Psycho

Tal Yarden, Lazarus

Outstanding Sound Design in a Play

Fitz Patton, An Act of God

Fitz Patton, The Humans

Miles Polaski, Fulfillment, The Flea Theatre

Bray Poor, John

Ryan Rumery, Empanada Loca

Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical

Mick Potter, School of Rock

Brian Ronan, Lazarus

Nevin Steinberg, Bright Star

Dan Moses Schreier, American Psycho

Scott Lehrer, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Wig and Hair

David Brian Brown, She Loves Me

Jason Hayes, The Legend of Georgia McBride

Robert-Charles Vallance, Women Without Men

Charles G. LaPointe, The School for Scandal, Red Bull Theater

Mia M. Neal, Shuffle Along

Outstanding Solo Performance

Simon Callow, Tuesdays at Tesco’s, 59E59

Kathleen Chalfant, Rose, Nora’s Playhouse

James Lecesne, The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey

Daphne Rubin-Vega, Empanada Loca

Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Fully Committed

Unique Theatrical Experience

ADA/AVA, Manual Cinema/3LD/The Tank/

Antigona – Soledad Barrio/Noche Flamenca

That Physics Show

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show


Special Awards

The Humans – Special Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble
Cassie Beck, Reed Birney, Jayne Houdyshell, Lauren Klein, Arian Moayed, and Sarah Steele spend a very special Thanksgiving Day together in Stephen Karam’s play, reminding us that home is indeed where The Humans are.

The Royale – Special Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble
The heavyweight cast of McKinley Belcher III, Khris Davis, Montego Glover, John Lavelle, and Clarke Peters gels as a unit in bringing Marco Ramirez’s story, inspired by Jack Johnson, to unforgettable life, offering a trenchant statement on racism in America.

Sheldon Harnick – Special Drama Desk Award
New productions of Fiddler on the RoofRothschild and Sons, and She Loves Me this season remind us that this veteran lyricist’s takes on faith, family and community are as resonant as ever.

Camp Broadway – Special Drama Desk Award
For more than 20 years, this indispensable organization has introduced young people to the magic of theater. Camp Broadway plays a crucial role in creating tomorrow’s audiences.

Danai Gurira – Sam Norkin Award
Whether writing about women in wartime Liberia in Eclipsed or about an affluent immigrant family from Zimbabwe struggling with assimilation in Familiar, Danai Gurira demonstrates great insight, range, and depth, bringing a fresh new voice to American theater.