×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Tony Awards to Restore Sound Design Categories Next Season

The Tony Awards will bring back two awards for sound design next season, restoring categories that had been summarily dropped in 2014.

The move comes after a long review by the Tony Awards Administration Committee, which, according to reps for the Tonys, conducted their deliberations in conjunction with industry pros. Soon after the decision was announced three years ago, the elimination raised an outcry from Broadway’s musical talents. A 2014 petition calling to bring back the category attracted more than 30,000 signatures at the time.

Beginning next season, Tony nominators and voters will weigh candidates for Best Sound Design of a Musical and Best Sound Design of a Play. Whereas the winners in those categories used to be chosen by all 800 Tony voters, the restored categories will now be decided by a subset of the voters based on their professional affiliation and expertise. The same procedural change is being made to the category of Best Orchestrations. (The nominees in all three categories will still be decided on by the full panel of approximately 30 nominators.)

These changes to the voting process address some of the major reasons said to have influenced the Tonys’ 2014 decision to nix the category in the first place: The fact that few people understand sound design enough to be able to judge it effectively, and many didn’t cast votes in those categories because of their lack of expertise.

The two sound design categories will be reinstated for the 2018 Tony Awards, for which shows that open during the 2017-18 season will be eligible. The decision, however, comes too late to make the change for the 2016-17 season, which sees its eligibility window close April 27.

The 71st Annual Tony Awards, emceed by Kevin Spacey, are set for June 11 at Radio City Music Hall.

Popular on Variety

More Legit

  • Sue Wagner John Johnson

    Tony-Winning Producers Sue Wagner and John Johnson Announce New Venture, Wagner Johnson Productions

    Sue Wagner and John Johnson, seven-time Tony award-winning producers, announced Wednesday that they have embarked on a new theatrical business venture, Wagner Johnson Productions. Under the name, they will produce and general manage a wide scope of theater productions. One of Wagner Johnson Productions’ current projects is a musical rendition of “Almost Famous,” which will [...]

  • Sam Rockwell and Laurence Fishburne

    Sam Rockwell, Laurence Fishburne Starring in Broadway Revival of 'American Buffalo'

    Laurence Fishburne and Sam Rockwell will star in an upcoming Broadway revival of David Mamet’s “American Buffalo.” The show marks Rockwell’s first appearance on the Great White Way since his 2014 performance in the revival of Sam Shepard’s “Fool for Love.” The five-year absence saw him pick up an Oscar for “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, [...]

  • Secret Derren Brown review

    Broadway Review: 'Derren Brown: Secret'

    Audiences love to be fooled, whether it’s with clever plotting with a twist, the arrival of an unexpected character or even a charming flimflam man with a British accent. The latter is Derren Brown, and he’s entertaining audiences for a limited run at the Cort Theatre, where he is playing head-scratching mind games and other [...]

  • Matthew Broderick, Sarah Jessica ParkerNew York

    Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker to Reunite on Broadway for 'Plaza Suite'

    Real-life couple Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker are hitting the Broadway stage again for a reboot of the late Neil Simon’s 1968 play “Plaza Suite.” The staging will mark the Broadway directorial debut of Tony award-winner John Benjamin Hickey. Set in New York City’s Plaza Hotel in Suite 719, “Plaza Suite” is comprised of [...]

  • Derren Brown

    Listen: Derren Brown Spills His Broadway 'Secret'

    Derren Brown has spent a lot of his career performing magic shows on theater stages — but he’ll be the first to tell you that magic usually doesn’t make for great theater. Listen to this week’s podcast below: “If you’re a magician of any sort, you can make stuff happen with a click of your [...]

  • A Very Expensive Poison review

    London Theater Review: 'A Very Expensive Poison'

    Vladimir Putin owes his power to the stage. The president’s closest advisor trained as a theatre director before applying his art to politics, and ran Russia like a staged reality, spinning so many fictions that truth itself began to blur. By scrambling the story and sowing confusion, Putin could exert absolute control. The long-awaited latest [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content