TOP 10: 2024 Tony Nominations Cheers & Jeers

April 30, 2024

BY Kevin Dillon

Happy 2024 Tony Nominations Day from the Great Pop Culture Debate! I will start by saying this 2023-2024 Broadway (Tony-eligible) year is one of the weirdest I have seen. The divide between critics and audiences was cavernous, except for a few shows like Merrily We Roll Along and Stereophonic. Shows closed much earlier than expected, and some big names did not show up at all on Tony-nomination morning.

Before I delve into my “hot takes,” I will say I have seen a good amount of the musicals this season, but have tickets outstanding for The Wiz, The Outsiders, Illinoise, and Stereophonic. I would like to add Mary Jane and Appropriate to that list, but I am also not rich. 

I think there are absolutely some elements to celebrate, and some things I will never forget (for not-so-great reasons). At the end of the day, going to the theater is a magical experience, and I love to delve into this space. Here are my gut reactions on the 2024 Tony nominations.

RELATED CONTENT

Best Tony-Winner for Best Musical

Best 2000s Broadway Musical

Best Movie Musical

TOP 10: Musicals that DIDN’T Win Best Musical

CHEERS to Amber Iman in Lempicka 

Iman is incredible in this show. She is not someone many people were predicting in the Actress in a Featured Role category, but she is one of the best nominations to happen at the Tony nominations today. Her performance left a huge impact on me.

JEERS to Theatre Critics around Lempicka

I will absolutely admit Lempicka’s book is messy, and it attempts to do too much. But this show is bold, audacious, and provided some fantastic music that I am still listening to long after I left the theater. This show should have made the Best Musical line-up and showed up in Direction and, at minimum, the Orchestration category. I do think the overly negative reactions from critics impacted this.

CHEERS to Illinoise, The Outsiders, and Stereophonic 

While I have not seen these shows, the word of mouth is excellent. These late-season shows seem to have brought energy and liveliness to numerous categories, and on the surface appear to be bringing serious excitement and talent.

CHEERS to Grey House Technical Nominations 

I saw Grey House last summer. While the play had its issues, I am glad the nominating committee went to bat for this show in Lighting Design and Sound Design. The Scenic Design should have been nominated, too; this show was a technical wonder.

JEERS to The Notebook (In General) 

The Notebook was my least-favorite show I saw this year. I do think Maryann Plunkett (nominated for Actress in a Leading Role) is good in the show, but she does not sing, and I am always going to favor performers who sing. The show only nabbed three nominations. It’s a fair tally for the show, but I would not have nominated this show for anything.

Top 10 Lists

JEERS to the Hell’s Kitchen Book Nomination 

I am stunned that there are critics who took Lempicka’s book to task, but did not do the same with this show. The fast tracking of plot is both too thin on material and over stuffed, making for an odd balance. I personally would have cut the father character and focused on the women. 

CHEERS to the Women of Hell’s Kitchen

I have my problems with Hell’s Kitchen as a show, but the three core women are fantastic. Maleah Joi Moon (nominated for Actress in a Lead Role), along with Kecia Lewis and Shoshana Bean (nominated for Actress in a Featured Role) all blow the roof out of these numbers. They all really nailed the performance part, too.

CHEERS for Merrily We Roll Along 

This is one of the best productions of a musical I have ever seen. The entire cast is fabulous, Jonathan Groff (nominated for Actor in a Leading Role) and Lindsay Mendez (nominated for Actress in a Featured Role) are my standouts, but everyone is perfect. I hope it wins a ton of awards at the Tonys. If you get a chance to see one show this season, you should absolutely pick this show.

JEERS to the Tony Awards for Essentially Blanking Closed Shows

Days of Wine and Roses, Grey House, and Here Lies Love scored a couple of nominations, but most of the shows that scored massive nomination hauls are still open. There were absolutely technical elements about Once Upon a One More Time and some performances in How To Dance in Ohio and Here Lies Love that deserved to be honored with nominations. I get that the Tony Awards have a business element to them, but the nominating committee has to address this aspect, because it always breaks my heart. 

CHEERS to the Best Actress in a Play Line-up 

Like I shared above, I have not seen Appropriate and Mary Jane yet. I have not seen any of the women in this line-up. But on face value, I can’t clock any of these women, which include Jessica Lange, Rachel McAdams, Sarah Paulsen, Amy Ryan, and Betsy Aidem.  From the reviews and the reactions I’ve seen to all these performances, voting on this category is going to be a tough call for Tony voters! 

Do you agree with our Cheers & Jeers? Drop your own thoughts on the 2024 Tony nominations in the comments below.

Newsletter Banner

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

1 Comment
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Sally A Cooper
Sally A Cooper
17 days ago

Tommy got snubbed, only 1 nomination for best revival. What about Ali, the star, Des the director, Amanda the lighting designer, and Lorin the choreographer. They all were predicted to be nominated, then they were not. They got snubbed. Committee needs to stick to their predictions and not what is political correct in going with the celebrities.