By Eileen Murphy and Andrew Bushe
The Druid Theatre company has swept the boards in the run up to the Tony awards with six nominations for the production of Martin McDonagh’s “The Beauty Queen of Leenane.”
Director Garry Hynes, who is herself one of the nominees, said
they were “flabbergasted and absolutely thrilled” by their
success in the Tony nominations, which are theater’s equivalent of the Oscars.
“Obviously, we were hoping for a few nominations, but to find that
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we have made such a clean sweep is quite extraordinary,” she said.
The drama set in rural Ireland has also been nominated for Best Play and Best Actress for Marie Mullen, Featured Actress for Anna Manahan, and Featured Actor for Tom Murphy and Brian F O’Byrne.
Hynes said they were searching back through the record books in
New York to find if an entire acting company had ever been nominated before.
The production is exactly the same as the one that opened in the Town Hall Theatre in Galway in February 1996, and is now set to be the major hit of the season in Broadway. It received ecstatic reviews and has played to packed audiences.
London-born playwright McDonagh, whose parents are from Galway and Sligo, wrote the play in eight days about an old woman’s possessive relationship with her unmarried daughter.
Liam Neeson’s star turn in David Hare’s “The Judas Kiss” got no nominations, although Neeson’s wife, Natasha Richardson, was nominated for her performance as Sally Bowles in the revival of “Cabaret.” Bob Crowley, who designed the evocative sets and costumes for “Judas Kiss,” was nominated for his design in the short-lived musical, “The Capeman.”
Other top nominees: in the musicals “Ragtime” (13 nominations), “The Lion King” (11 nominations), “Cabaret” (10 nominations); the plays “Beauty Queen of Leenane” (6 nominations), “The Chairs” (6 nominations) and “A View from the Bridge” (4 nominations.)
The awards will be announced on June 7 at a ceremony in Radio
City Music Hall in New York. This year’s Tony host will be actress/talk show host Rosie O’Donnell.