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story.lead_photo.caption The Tony Awards will be hosted for the first time by Josh Groban and Sara Bareilles. CBS will air the three-hour Broadway lovefest beginning at 7 p.m. today.

Never having been to a play on Broadway, or even to New York for that matter, I always feel a bit hayseedish at Tony time. I'm more of a Golden Globe and Emmy guy.

Sure, I've been to Los Angeles more than a dozen times for TV press tours, but the Beverly Hilton ain't The Plaza and Rodeo Drive is just a 5th Avenue-wannabe with palm trees.

But I know some folks who so love live theater, they travel all the way to the Big Apple each year and pay a small fortune to take in a few shows. Tickets to the biggest hits can become exorbitant.

According to Variety, the Broadway box office set a new high last year with $1,150 for a ticket to the super hit Hamilton during the week after Christmas. The regular top ticket price for Hamilton is $199.

Granted, I may not be among the Broadway cognoscenti, but one doesn't have to be to know that winning a Tony is a major deal. Having one of the little circular medallions mounted on an armature on your mantel opens doors and frequently makes a career.

If you want to see what all the fuss is about, set aside three hours tonight to watch The 72nd Annual Tony Awards on CBS. The curtain rises at 7 p.m. for what one critic termed the "the Super Bowl for theater aficionados worldwide."

The show airs live from Radio City Music Hall, with Tony nominees Sara Bareilles and Josh Groban hosting for the first time. Bareilles is up this year for best original score for SpongeBob Square-Pants: The Broadway Musical.

The talented Bareilles was fortunate enough to be nominated for best score for Waitress in 2016, but unfortunate enough to be up against Lin-Manuel Miranda and Hamilton.

I mean, seriously, Hamilton won 11 Tonys, a Grammy, and the Pulitzer Prize for drama. She never stood a chance.

Last season, Groban earned a best actor in a musical nomination playing Pierre in Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, but lost to Ben Platt in Dear Evan Hansen.

Television viewers may have seen Bareilles (a six-time Grammy nominee) as Mary Magdalene in NBC's Easter production of Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert. Groban, who has been nominated for four Grammys, pops up on the occasional TV show, usually playing himself.

Among those on hand to present the trophies will be Uzo Aduba, Matt Bomer, Claire Danes, Armie Hammer, Tatiana Maslany, Leslie Odom Jr., Jim Parsons, Andrew Rannells and Zachary Quinto.

Why will the show take three hours? Well, there will be plenty of performances in between the awards for 26 categories (15 for musicals, 11 for plays). According to, the nominations were determined by secret ballot by 51 theater professionals. The winners were then decided by approximately 846 eligible voters from the Broadway community.

Here are the two biggies.

Best Play: The Children, Farinelli and the King, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Latin History for Morons, Junk.

Best Musical: Frozen, Mean Girls, SpongeBob SquarePants, The Band's Visit.

According to The New York Times, the odds-on favorites to win are Harry Potter and The Band's Visit.


If Broadway isn't your thing, here are a few other diversions, including game night on ABC.

• Celebrity Family Feud, 7 p.m. today on ABC. Season 5 of the Steve Harvey-hosted series kicks off with some big names in pop culture. It's "The Kardashian Family vs. The West Family."

Team Kardashian includes Kris and Kendall Jenner, Khloe Kardashian, family friend Jonathan Cheban, Kris' mother Mary Jo Campbell (an Arkansas native) and cousin Cici Bussey.

Team West consists of Kanye West and his wife, Kim Kardashian West, and some West cousins you never heard of.

• The $100,000 Pyramid, 8 p.m. today on ABC. Opening Season 3 with host Michael Strahan are Leslie Jones (Saturday Night Live) vs. Julie Bowen (Modern Family) and Debra Messing (Will & Grace) vs. comedian Mario Cantone.

• To Tell the Truth, 9 p.m. today on ABC. Celebrity panelists are Octavia Spencer, Dermot Mulroney, Nikki Glaser and Gabby Douglas. Anthony Anderson returns as host.

• Claws, 8 p.m. today on TNT. It's Season 2 for the adult comedy/drama set in a Florida nail salon where the ladies launder money for the Russian mafia.

• Vet Gone Wild is a new series debuting at 7 p.m. today on Animal Planet. In tonight's episode, "Into the Elephant Kingdom," Australian veterinarian Dr. Chris Brown gives medical attention to endangered Asian elephants.

The TV Column appears Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Email:

Style on 06/10/2018

Print Headline: See what you missed on Broadway on Tony Awards


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