Tony Awards Eligibility: ‘Front Page’ Cast Sorted, ‘The Present’ Deemed New

The Tony Awards Administration Committee, the group that decides questions of eligibility for the Tonys, has met for the second time during the 2016-17 season, emerging with answers to outstanding questions regarding shows including “The Front Page” and “The Present.”

The starry cast of the “Front Page,” the blockbuster revival that’s done big business thanks in part to the well-known names attached, has been sorted, with John Slattery deemed a lead performer and his co-stars — including Nathan Lane, John Goodman, Jefferson Mays and Sherie Rene Scott —  eligible for nominations in featured acting categories.

Meanwhile, “The Present” — another major sales draw, thanks to Cate Blanchett in the lead role — will vie for a new play nomination. The show is an adaptation of an early Chekhov work, but Andrew Upton’s script has been deemed enough of its own beast to be considered a new play.

Christian Borle, meanwhile, will be in the running for a lead actor nomination for “Falsettos.” James Lapine will be eligible for his direction of that revival, after having directed the original Broadway production.

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In general, the Tonys consider above-the-title actors to be leading performers while those billed below the title are deemed supporting. The administration committee makes decisions on eligibility that deviates from those norms; in the most recent meeting, below-the-title actors including Ben Platt (“Dear Evan Hansen”), Bobby Conte Thornton (“A Bronx Tale”) and Bryce Pinkham (“Holiday Inn”) were classified as leads.

“The Encounter,” “Oh, Hello on Broadway” and “Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812” were also among the batch of productions considered in the latest meeting of the admin group. The committee will meet two more times throughout the season in the run-up to the 71st Annual Tony Awards, with nominations due to be announced May 2.


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