The Price is just one of several revivals that earned Tony recognition this season. Sally Field makes her stamp on The Glass Menagerie; Laura Linney and Cynthia Nixon swap lead roles in The Little Foxeseach night; Jitney makes black life matter on Broadway (and brings producer John Legend one step closer to an EGOT); and Corey Hawkins brings an unexpected weight to Six Degrees of Separation. Playing Paul in John Guare’s existential play about interconnected lives, Hawkins says he’s fortunate to play a character who’s a different person in every scene. “It’s a roller coaster.”
It’s not unlike the ride Laurie Metcalf takes audiences on with A Doll’s House, Part 2, a sequel to Henrik Ibsen's 1879 play about marriage and gender roles. As Nora, Metcalf volleys dialogue with her co-stars in hilarious (and scathing) fashion. “She is very much quick on her feet,” the former Roseanne star explains.
It’s one of the two most talked about new plays this season. The other is Sweat, which earned the Pulitzer Prize for Drama ahead of its three Tony nominations. The timely play, by Lynn Nottage, centers on a Reading, Pennsylvania, blue-collar population in pain and stripped of its dignity. Michelle Wilson, nominated alongside co-star Johanna Day, plays Cynthia, a middle-class factory worker forced to go against her friends in order to come home at the end of the day with a paycheck. And in the Trump era, Wilson says audiences are reacting to it in a whole new way. “It went from being like, ‘Oh, that’s too bad,’ to ‘Oh, this is what happened.’”
And it’s reactions like that that made for another successful Broadway season. Who among ET’s featured nominees -- the standout performances of the season -- will win at the 2017 Tony Awards hosted by Kevin Spacey? Audiences will have to watch when the statues are handed out live from Radio City Music Hall on Sunday, June 11 starting at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.
--Additional reporting by Elysa Gardner, Naveen Kumar and Leigh Scheps