Broadway Stars React To 2020 Tony Award Nomination



Whether it's your first or twenty-first, how would react to news that you've just been nominated for Broadway's biggest award?! Who would be the first person you'd call, text, or tweet?


Although the Tony season has been pushed to later than previous years, nothing can stop the Broadway's biggest awards show from celebrating the work of this past season.


Even though Broadway shows sadly remain dark, there was still so so much beautiful art from this past season that deserves to be celebrated. Last week, Tony winner James Monroe Iglehart announced the nominees for the 2020 Tony Awards. Check out their reaction to receiving the exciting news below!


View the complete list of nominees!


Tom Hiddleston (Betrayal), Best Leading Actor in a Play

"My deepest thanks to the American Theatre Wing, The Broadway League & the Tony Committee for this great honour, and my congratulations to my fellow nominees. I'm very grateful. I share it with the whole company, creative team and everybody involved in our production of Betrayal. These uncertain and extraordinary times have put our theatre communities at home and abroad under great strain. The best way to keep theatre alive is to help take care of all those who make it happen. If you are working in the industry and need help, please visit https://actorsfund.org/ (US) and https://theatreartists.fund/ (UK). I miss the theatre - it means so much to so many. I hope we'll all find a way back soon.


Ian Barford (Linda Vista)- Best Leading Actor in a Play

Muhammad Ali once uttered a two word poem that may be my favorite of all: 'Me. We.' In this time of extreme polarization, when our nation is consumed with righteous hatred toward 'other' - I am reminded of how theater-making is fundamentally collaborative. Let's find our way to Ali's 'we'. Any recognition for ME is shared with ALL of my collaborators, most especially Tracy Letts whose writing is second to none. I am sincerely honored to be recognized. Thank you.


Paul Englishby (The Inheritance)- Best Score

I'm absolutely delighted and honoured to receive a Tony nomination for Best Original Score. It's been an incredibly difficult time for Theatre practitioners and musicians, but I have great faith that our community will be back stronger than ever. Right now, the next vital thing is to get out and vote.


Myra Lucretia Taylor (Tina)- Best Featured Actress in a Musical

I am so honored to be nominated. It is thrilling to be recognized in this way, and it is thrilling to be part of this community that is strong and determined to carry on. Broadway will be back. America will be back. It is up to us, all of us, to have hope, and vote.


Jeff Sugg (Tina)- Best Scenic Design of a Musical

Wow! I'm so excited and honored to be recognized by the Tony nominating committee and my community of theater makers. In these days of physical separation it feels great to be able to celebrate this together. It is also an important opportunity to remember that there is so much work to be done to make our lives, our theater, and our country more equitable and open. I have been blessed with so much and am humbled by the responsibility that comes with this nomination. VOTE!


Alanis Morissette (Jagged Little Pill)- Best Musical

I couldn't be happier for our jagged little pill musical community! everyone has generously offered their whole selves to this collective mission of shining light on our deeply held values of inclusion, de-stigmatizing human experiences, connection, relational healing and grace, race love and multiple forms of fierce activism in such an expressed and deeply empathic story-slash-movement. i am overcome with emotion about this beautiful team-effort resonating with anyone who might be assuaged in this wildly unusual and challenging time. sending big love!

Diane Paulus (Jagged Little Pill)- Best Direction

The incredible recognition for JLP is a tribute to ALL the artists, crew, Impact Board members, and staff on Broadway and at the A.R.T. who have cared so deeply about this story and our production. I am ever grateful for the continual learning and deepening of empathy that Alanis inspires and that has been at the center of our JLP journey. Any activity around Tonys this year is a celebration of the entire theater community and the collective presence with audiences that we all profoundly miss. My deepest hope is that the jolt of energy sparked by today's announcement inspires greater participation in and advocacy for our democracy, and for transformative equity in our industry.

Sean Allan Krill (Jagged Little Pill)- Best Featured Actor in a Musical

I am simply flabbergasted. As a theater actor, it's a dream come true to be nominated for a Tony Award, and I am incredibly honored. Working on Jagged Little Pill and bringing Steve Healy to life has been one of the greatest joys of my career. I am so proud of the show and the difficult, necessary stories it brings to light. We are living in a particularly troubling time, and the show's central message of communication and compassion moving toward growth, forgiveness, acceptance and understanding is more timely than ever. Theater is essential; it enriches our lives and shows the depths of our humanity and our true potential. I'm incredibly proud to be a part of a Tony season that I hope can, in this unsettling 'intermission', help bring back the joy and sense of community that live theatre can bring to artists and theatregoers alike!


Aaron Tveit (Moulin Rouge! The Musical)- Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical

It's a huge honor and I am so grateful to be nominated!! It's also vitally important to highlight that this recognition represents, collectively, thousands of hours of work by hundreds of individuals working on Moulin Rouge! The Musical. All the brilliant craftspeople, technicians, stagehands and crew that run our show night to night, those in the front and back of the house, inside and outside our stage doors, our incredible audience and fans, and of course the cast, creative team, and producers.

A day hasn't gone by since the shutdown began that I haven't missed the theatre and I look forward to when we can all return. I hope this can be a positive lift amidst an industry shut down with an ever-changing timeline, as well as a reminder of power of live theatre, and what it can do for us as individuals. And for our world.


Jonathan Deans (Jagged Little Pill)- Best Sound Design of a Musical


What does the nomination mean to you this year?

During this time of Pandemic, layered with the ongoing social unrest and inequalities, receiving a nomination on one-hand reminds me of the isolation and on the other-hand it represents.... HOPE.


Looking back on your experience in this show, what is your favorite memory?

The amazing welcoming creative team, cast, musicians and crew. The entire production is my favorite memory.


What are you most looking forward to when Broadway can re-open?

Seeing and hearing the streets of Broadway come alive again, with open arms for change.


What's helping you to stay positive/motivated in the meantime?

I have been sharing my experience and knowledge with Sound students from around the world, in groups and one-to-one. Plus being with my family.


Celia Rose Gooding (Jagged Little Pill)- Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical


What does the nomination mean to you this year?

I can't put it to words yet. I've been dreaming of this day for so long, I didn't imagine these exact circumstances of course, but I'm just so so so so so so so grateful.


Looking back on your experience in this show, what is your favorite memory?

My favorite memory changes all the time. But today I'm thinking about the 2/21 performance. It was the end of curtain call, right before the cast dances off stage for the final time. Lauren Patten and I always dance off together, it's been a ritual since the out-of-town tryout at ART. I remember grabbing her hand, looking at her, and saying, "that was my last performance as a teenager." and just dancing off. She had a very funny reaction, I think there's a video of it somewhere. I've been with this show since I was about 17, so to close that chapter of my life on that stage and with her, it was all just really special.


What are you most looking forward to when Broadway can re-open?

I'm really looking forward to taking everything I've learned about myself and the world around me and putting it into the show. I love how current Jagged can always be, some part of it always rings true to whatever is going on a specific day, and post-COVID Jagged it going to be amazing.


What's helping you to stay positive/motivated in the meantime?

Lots of good food, good TV (I just got all caught up on Lovecraft, highly recommend), and just taking it day by day. I've stopped pressuring myself to be "okay" all the time, and sometimes I'm not positive or motivated. I'm learning to honor that, and keep space for all of my feelings, no matter what. That's been a huge help.


Karen Olivo (Moulin Rouge! the Musical)- Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical:

Not one of us in the theater does ANYTHING by ourselves. And that is why I am so happy that the work of A.J. Littlefield (dresser for Satine), Daniel Mortenson (Hair/Makeup Supervisor), & Ashley Loren (standby for Satine) is being highlighted by this nomination. I hope that the spotlight on the Tony Awards will illuminate the fact that Arts Workers everywhere, not just on Broadway, are struggling. By all means, let's celebrate the work of all of these artisans but let us also seek the government mandated financial assistance that will ensure we exist beyond this global pandemic.


Lois Smith (The Inheritance)- Best Featured Actress in a Play

I have a Tony nomination! For my role in THE INHERITANCE, which I found to be a celebration all the time. A day of good news, not many of those lately. Thank you Tony committee. Now let's vote, and keep well, and instead of working for Law and Order, which has come to have a frightening meaning, let's rename it Justice and Civility, and see how much of that we can offer each other. Then we can celebrate.


Kenny Leon (A Soldier's Play)- Best Direction of a Play

So honored to be recognized in this way ..This gives us fuel to continue to tell everyone's story on a raised stage in front of the whole community. We stand on the shoulders of Charles Fuller, August Wilson, Ruby Dee, Harry Belafonte and so many others as we continue to build a better Broadway inclusive of all.


Alex Timbers (Moulin Rouge! the Musical)- Best Direction of a Musical

I'm so excited and honored to be nominated alongside such incredible directors I admire and for "Moulin Rouge," a show I love so much. There's obviously great sadness right now, and the fact that we're in a period without plays and musicals in New York can feel like an incomparably small part of that. But "Moulin Rouge" itself is a musical about "show people" and their resilience in times of struggle and I take inspiration from it every day and the knowledge that Broadway will be back - and that we'll all be reunited with our own "show families." It's wonderful that the American Theater Wing and Broadway League have made the choice to celebrate the theater industry and a season that we all felt very lucky to be a part of.


Catherine Zuber (Moulin Rouge! the Musical)- Best Costume Design in a Musical

During this unprecedented time, I often think about all the theaters of NYC patiently waiting since March 12, for their performers, crew, and audience to bring the energy of live performance back to our beloved city. Moulin Rouge exemplifies an explosion of the celebration of love, of life, of deep friendships and artistic freedom. With my brilliant team of associates and collaborators, I am so honored to be recognized with this Tony nomination.


Peter Hylenski (Moulin Rouge! the Musical)- Best Sound Design in a Musical

I'm honored to be nominated alongside my Moulin Rouge family. Our shows' ideals of Truth, Beauty, Freedom, Love are something we can continue to strive for, even during the challenges of 2020. Now, more than ever, it's crucial for us as an industry to support one another, to become leaders of change, and examples of strength and compassion.


Diablo Cody (Jagged Little Pill)- Best Book of a Musical for

I'm honored to be nominated but I obviously wish the field had not been limited by current circumstances. With that said, I believe in my heart that art can heal; Jagged Little Pill was always intended as a balm in anxious times. I'm pleased that the Tonys are going forward, because I think it's important to recognize not only the work that has moved us, but the beloved industry so many are determined to protect and resurrect. While the Tonys might not be a traditional celebration this year, I hope the show will be a memorable opportunity to express love for the theater and demonstrate solidarity.


Jake Gyllenhaal - Triple nominee as Best Actor in a Play; and lead producer for two Best Play nominees: SEA WALL / A LIFE & SLAVE PLAY

I am deeply honored to be nominated today, but also recognize what an uncertain time this is for the theater world, and the world at large. So I encourage everyone first to VOTE and then, if you can, donate to The Actors Fund in support of the many amazing people who depend on live theater. Being without theater right now has left a huge void in anyone who cherishes the communal experience of artists coming together to tell a story in front of a live audience. I miss the incredible work of the theater community and I cannot wait to be back on stage with you all soon!


Tom Sturridge, Best Actor in a Play for SEA WALL / A LIFE & SLAVE PLAY

Congratulations to my fellow nominees. I am so proud of everyone involved in this production. The journey from a reading in a windowless back room of The Public to here has been a kind of magic. The best way to celebrate theatre is to support its practitioners in these uncertain times. Please give to the Actors Fund if you can. And no vote matters more than the one on November 3rd.


Robyn Hurder - Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical for Moulin Rouge

"The two things I've kept repeating this afternoon: "This isn't real. Is this real life?" When I saw my name appear on the screen, I burst into the most horrific ugly cry and roared like a dying lion. My husband and son latched onto me and we cried. Hard. I am so unbelievably honored to have received this recognition from The Broadway League and American Theatre Wing. I truly was not expecting this at all. I will cherish this day for the rest of my life, and I cannot wait to get back on that beautiful stage at the Hirschfeld and welcome everybody back into our gorgeous underworld, The Moulin Rouge."


Sahr Ngaujah - Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical - for Moulin Rouge

I am overjoyed to be recognized in this way! I hope that my nomination serves to inspire young artists for whom the idea of working in an elite sector of this field seems so far away. It is definitely hard work, and the tireless efforts of thousands of theater practitioners all over this industry are seldom recognized in such a big way. But these types of awards would never be given out were it not for the daily passion and craftsmanship that so many of our colleagues come to work with every day. We thus inspire each other to do our best work again and again. Until we all meet again to conjure magic in dark theaters and bright rehearsal halls all over this planet, please VOTE!


Alex Timbers - Best Direction of a Musical for Moulin Rouge

I'm so excited and honored to be nominated alongside such incredible directors I admire and for "Moulin Rouge," a show I love so much. There's obviously great sadness right now, and the fact that we're in a period without plays and musicals in New York can feel like an incomparably small part of that. But "Moulin Rouge" itself is a musical about "show people" and their resilience in times of struggle and I take inspiration from it every day and the knowledge that Broadway will be back - and that we'll all be reunited with our own "show families." It's wonderful that the American Theater Wing and Broadway League have made the choice to celebrate the theater industry and a season that we all felt very lucky to be a part of.


Daniel Kluger - (double nominee for Best Sound Design of a Play for SEA WALL / A LIFE & THE SOUND INSIDE)

I'm so surprised and honored by the nominations - it was a huge privilege to be a part of both special productions SEA WALL / A LIFE and THE SOUND INSIDE. We're all mourning the loss of live theater right now, and this is a reminder that our community of artists and workers struggling under the weight of this recession and pandemic. The industry desperately needs support, and I implore us all to elect competent progressive leaders who will fight for working people, a functional government, and a progressive society.


Robert O'Hara, Nominee for Best Director of a Play, SLAVE PLAY

I'm honored to be nominated especially for leading a team helmed by black and brown artists. BIPOC voices are vital to the theater, but also to the ballot box. Please take this opportunity to vote and make sure your voice is heard.


Katori Hall - Tina: The Tina Turner Musical - Best Book of a Musical and as a producer in the Best Musical Category

Being nominated this year is a bittersweet honor. The intermission our industry is experiencing is unprecedented and its impact will undoubtedly be felt for years. But the curtain being down has allowed many to lift the veil on the pervasive and stubborn roots of racism that still infect our nation. In this dark moment, we are plagued by the virus of COVID-19 and the virus of racism. But both Goliaths can be slain. I feel so blessed to have laid my hands on a musical about a woman who slayed-who conquered the Goliaths of domestic abuse and industry-wide sexism and racism. The story of Tina Turner is truly an inspiration for these dark and turbulent times, and I'm so proud of our team for bringing TINA: THE TINA TURNER MUSICAL to the world.


Kathryn Gallagher, Best Featured Actress in a Musical - JAGGED LITTLE PILL

I am so proud of our Jagged Little Pill family today and so deeply honored to be included in this group of Tony Nominees. This show has taught me so much about what it means to speak up for what's right and to speak your truth so to get this nod of celebration amidst such uncertainty is an immense honor and just the inspiration needed to keep working towards a better future for America. See you at the polls!


Mary Louise Parker -Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play

At this moment Broadway may be dark longer than it ever has, but I'm praying it's just waiting for us and I have my own ghost light on and burning bright until those stage doors open again. I'm longing for my theater family but grateful we have today to connect and that I can celebrate my Sound Inside collaborators as well. Thank you for your faith in us, I can speak for the entire theater community when I say we cannot wait to tread the boards again.


Adrienne Warren (TINA - THE TINA TURNER MUSICAL) - Best Leading Actress in a Musical

During this time, I wasn't sure how to feel about today...then my heart is exploded with pride for our entire show and everyone involved. Thank you to the nominating committee for this recognition! I am truly honored and grateful.


Lauren Patten (Jagged Little Pill) - Best Featured Actress in a Musical

I am incredibly grateful for this Tony nomination, which is made so much more special for me because I share it with my entire Jagged Little Pill family. I am deeply proud of our show and everything that it stands for. I can't wait until we are all able to return safely to our theatres to share the brilliant work of the shows that opened, and the shows that were not able to open because of the coronavirus pandemic. As a country and as an artistic community, we are going through deeply difficult times, and I hope that this moment of reflection and celebration can fuel and inspire us to return to Broadway stronger, and with true equity and justice for our entire community.


Sonya Tayeh (Moulin Rouge! )- Best Choreography

Moulin Rouge! The Musical is made up of one of the hardest working teams I've ever been a part of, both on stage and off. It is a show where the craft of dance is celebrated and honored. Our beloved ensemble fires off an electricity that echoes, and I'm so grateful to them. As an Arab-American queer choreographer, it has been an honor to work on a show that celebrates