sat 18/05/2024

Corden, Bennett win Drama Desk Awards - are Tonys next? | Arts News

Corden, Bennett win Drama Desk Awards - are Tonys next?

James Corden and Tracie Bennett were named best actor and actress in a play Sunday night at New York's Drama Desk Awards, one of that city's numerous theatre prize-giving jamborees on the way to the Tony Awards, which are June 10.

Corden's much-loved star turn as the one man wth two "guvnors" in the Richard Bean comedy of the same name beat Philip Seymour Hoffman's Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman, and the two actors will go head-to-head at the Tonys as well. Corden's speech doubtless won't endear him to denizens of his home town, High Wycombe, which he described to the New York crowd as "a shithole". (He was considerably more gracious about his One Man colleagues, especially fellow actor Tom Edden, who was named best supporting actor in a play at the same ceremony.)

Bennett (pictured right), who lost the 2011 Olivier Award to Nancy Carroll for the same play with which she is now making her Broadway debut (End of the Rainbow), gave an effusive speech in which she encouraged producers to take more chances on chorus girls who are slight of stature - a reference to her origins in the profession.

Best play went to another Briton, Nina Raine, for her Off Broadway success, Tribes, which ran in London at the Royal Court, while the intimate musical Once, adapted from the Irish film of the same name, got the top musical prize, beating putative heavyweight, Newsies, the latest screen-to-stage transfer from Disney. (Unlike the Tonys, which belong to Broadway alone, the Drama Desks mix up Broadway, Off Broadway, and even Off Off Broadway.)

Among the night's also-rans were the Michael Grandage-directed revival of Evita, starring Ricky Martin as Che, which went home empty-handed. So did English actor Hugh Dancy, nominated for the David Ives two-hander Venus in Fur.




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