–The Tony Award recognizes excellence in live Broadway theater
–Nominations for the 72nd Tony Awards will be announced on May 1.
–The Tony Awards ceremony will be broadcast by CBS on June 10.
The Tony Awards began on April 6, 1947 and despite the growth of countless other forms of visual entertainment continue to be relevant today. The ‘official’ name is the ‘Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Broadway Theatre’ but since that doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue so the name was almost immediately shortened to ‘Tony Awards’. The award is named after Broadway actress/director/producer Antoinette Perry who died in 1946. She was also the co-founder of the American Theatre Wing which is essentially the live drama equivalent to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science and the organization that presents these awards. Ms. Perry was reportedly nicknamed ‘Tony’ which makes the shortened version of the award make perfect sense. The ‘Tony’ nickname dates back to the first awards presentation and is credited to Warner Brothers story editor Jacob Wilk. According to history, it was a complete ad-lib he made while giving out one of the inaugural awards and the name stuck.
The first few years the American Theatre Wing gave out useful stuff instead of an award. In the first two years of the Tony Awards the prizes were a scroll, cigarette lighter and articles of jewelry such as 14-carat gold compacts and bracelets for the women, and money clips for the men. The award itself was first used in 1949 and the official Tony Awards website provides this background:
In 1949 the designers’ union, United Scenic Artists, sponsored a contest for a suitable model for the award. The winning entry, a disk-shaped medallion designed by Herman Rosse, depicted the masks of comedy and tragedy on one side and the profile of Antoinette Perry on the other. The medallion was initiated that year at the third annual dinner. It continues to be the official Tony Award.
Since 1967 the medallion has been mounted on a black pedestal with a curved armature. After the ceremony, each award is numbered for tracking purposes and engraved with the winner’s name.
The addition of the pedestal was supposedly done to give the award more ‘heft’ as some had suggested that it compared unfavorably to the Oscars in this regard.
CBS REMAINS COMMITTED TO THE TONY AWARDS DESPITE PLUMMETING RATINGS
As the significance of Broadway Theatre has receded somewhat the viewership of the Tony Awards has declined. In 1974, the Tony Awards had 20,026,000 viewers. That dropped to 9,155,000 but has remained fairly consistent over the past 17 years bringing in between 6 and 8 million viewers per year. The 2016 Awards drew a 1.6 rating with 8.7 million viewers, largely attributed to the curious mainstream popularity of ‘Hamilton’. If that was the case, the absence of ‘Hamilton’ took a toll in the ratings in 2017–the Tony’s dropped to a 0.9 rating and 6 million viewers which is a drop of 44% in the ratings and 31% in total viewers.
A 2003 New York Times article explains why CBS remains committed to the awards despite the ratings drop:
What the Tony broadcast does have, say CBS officials, is an all-important demographic: rich and smart. Jack Sussman, CBS’s senior vice president in charge of specials, said the Tony show sold almost all its advertising slots shortly after CBS announced it would present the three hours.
”It draws upscale premium viewers who are attractive to upscale premium advertisers,” Mr. Sussman said, citing companies like Mutual of Omaha and Visa.
Now this ‘rich and smart’ demographic can bet on the 2018 Tony Award Nominations thanks to SPORTS BETTING EXPERTS. The major categories are below and we’ll have the odds for the acting categories up within the next 48 hours. The nominations will be announced on May 1:
2018 TONY AWARD NOMINATIONS BETTING ODDS
TO BE NOMINATED FOR ‘BEST MUSICAL’
The Band’s Visit: -350
Mean Girls: -150
SpongeBob SquarePants: +100
Summer: The Donna Summer Musical: +250
Escape to Margaritaville: +300
Prince of Broadway: +500
TO BE NOMINATED FOR ‘BEST PLAY’
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: -350
The Children: -150
Farinelli and the King: +150
Meteor Shower: +300
John Lithgow: Stories by Heart: +500
Latin History for Morons: +750
The Parisian Woman: +750
The Terms of My Surrender: +1500
TO BE NOMINATED FOR ‘BEST MUSICAL REVIVAL’
Carousel/My Fair Lady/Once on This Island To All Receive Nominations: -500
Carousel/My Fair Lady and/or Once on This Island Not Nominated: +350
TO BE NOMINATED FOR ‘BEST PLAY REVIVAL’
Angels in America: -450
The Iceman Cometh: -200
Children of a Lesser God: +100
Saint Joan: +200
Lobby Hero: +200
Three Tall Women: +350
M. Butterfly: +500
Time and the Conways: +500