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BWW Crash Course: Your Study Guide to the Tony Nominated Musicals

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Look, we get it, whether due to budget or geography, you didn't see every show of the Broadway season, but that doesn't mean you can't be fully up-to-date for this Sunday's Tony Awards. To help get you prepared for theatre's biggest night, BroadwayWorld has put together the ultimate Tonys Crash Course. We've outlined all of the shows nominated in the Best Musical and Best Revival of a Musical categories, and provided you "study materials" as only BWW can, by mining our one-of-a-kind archives.

If you are still hungry for more Tony Award info, check out our full 2014 Award Season Coverage. While you might not have a say in who wins on Sunday, you can make sure your voice is heard by following @BroadwayWorld on Twitter, and tweeting your favorite in each category (hashtags below) to #BWWCrashCourse. We will unveil your picks on Friday, June 6th, right before the Tonys.


BEST MUSICAL NOMINEES

AFTER MIDNIGHT | #AFTERMIDNIGHT

BWW Crash Course: Your Study Guide to the Tony Nominated Musicals

This evocative new musical celebrates Duke Ellington's years at the Cotton Club using his original arrangements, along with timeless songs of Harold Arlen, Cab Calloway and their contemporaries, woven together by the prose of Langston Hughes. The Jazz at Lincoln Center All-Stars, 17 musicians hand-picked by jazz legend Wynton Marsalis, puts you at the center of one of Harlem's legendary nightclubs in a hotbed of Jazz-its intoxicating rhythms, its innovative style, its unpredictable danger and fun. Special guest stars join offer vocal interpretations that shatter everything you think you know about music, nightlife and Broadway.

Written by: Conceived by Wynton Marsalis and Jack Viertel, Selected text by Langston Hughes, Featuring music by Duke Ellington
Starring: Dule Hill, Adriane Lenox, and a rotating cast of Special Guests including Fantasia Barrino, Toni Braxton, Natalie Cole,Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds, Christopher Jackson, Gladys Knight, Patti LaBelle, k.d. lang, and Vanessa Williams
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Red Carpet | Fantasia performs "Sunny Side of the Street" | k.d. lang Highlights | k.d. lang Gives Special Actors Fund Performance of "Hallelujah" | Vanessa Williams Sings "Stormy Weather" | Meet the 2014 Tony Nominees- Warren Carlyle | Meet the Ensemble- Phillip Attmore and Daniel Watts | Meet the Ensemble- Virgil "Lil' O" Gadson and Julius "iGlide" Chisholm | Meet the Ensemble- Jared Grimes
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots 1 | Performance Shots 2 | Stage Door | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party | k.d. lang's First Curtain Call | Babyface and Toni Braxton Performance Shots | Babyface and Toni Braxton First Curtain Call | Vanessa Williams Performance Shots | Vanessa Williams Return Curtain Call
Tony Nominations: Best Musical | Best Featured Actress in a Musical- Adriane Lenox | Best Direction of a Musical- Warren Carlyle | Best Choreography- Warren Carlyle | Best Costume Design of a Musical- Isabel Toledo | Best Lighting Design of a Musical- Howell Bunkley | Best Sound Design of a Musical- Peter Hylenski
BWW Interviews: Chatting with AFTER MIDNIGHT's New Stars- Toni Braxton and Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds! (click here)


ALADDIN | #ALADDIN

BWW Crash Course: Your Study Guide to the Tony Nominated Musicals

Adapted from the Disney film and centuries-old folktales including One Thousand and One Nights, the story of Aladdin is brought to fresh theatrical life in this exuberant new musical comedy. Aladdin's journey sweeps audiences into an exotic world of daring adventure, classic comedy and timeless romance. This new production features a full score, including the five cherished songs from the Academy Award-winning soundtrack, as well as more written especially for the stage.

Written by: Book by Chad Beguelin, Musica by Alan Menken, Lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice, Additional lyrics by Chad Beguelin
Starring: Adam Jacobs, James Monroe Iglehart, Courtney Reed, Jonathan Freeman
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Purple Carpet | Opening Night Party | Cast Recording Session | Sizzle Reel | Backstage with Richard Ridge- Casey Nicholaw | Meet the Tony Nominees- James Monroe Iglehart | Meet the Tony Nominees- Casey Nicholaw | Meet the Tony Nominees- Chad Beguelin |
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Curtain Call | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Musical | Best Book of a Musical- Chad Beguelin | Best Original Score- Alan Menken, Howard Ashman, Tim Rice | Best Featured Actor in a Musical- James Monroe Iglehart | Best Choreography- Casey Nicholaw
BWW Interviews: "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- ALADDIN's Jonathan Freeman" (click here)


BEAUTIFUL- THE CAROLE KING MUSICAL | #BEAUTIFUL

BWW Crash Course: Your Study Guide to the Tony Nominated Musicals

Long before she was Carole King, chart-topping music legend, she was Carol Klein, Brooklyn girl with passion and chutzpah. She fought her way into the record business as a teenager and, by the time she reached her twenties, had the husband of her dreams and a flourishing career writing hits for the biggest acts in rock 'n' roll. But it wasn't until her personal life began to crack that she finally managed to find her true voice.

Written by: Book by Douglas McGrath, Music and Lyrics by Gerry Goffin, Carole King, Barry Mann, and Cynthia Weil
Starring: Jessie Mueller, Jake Epstein, Anika Larsen, Jarrod Spector, Liz Larsen, Jeb Brown
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Meet the Cast and an Onstage Performance | Highlights | Opening Night Interviews | Opening Night Party | Carole King Surprises Cast on Stage (click here) | Cast Recording Session | Meet the Tony Nominees- Jarrod Spector | Meet the Tony Nominees- Doug McGrath | Meet the Tony Nominees- Jessie Mueller
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots 1 | Performance Shots 2 | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party 1 | Opening Night 2 | Opening Night 3 | Cast Recording Session
Tony Nominations: Best Musical | Best Book of a Musical- Douglas McGrath | Best Leading Actress in a Musical- Jessie Mueller | Best Featured Actor in a Musical- Jarrod Spector | Best Featured Actress in a Musical- Anika Larsen | Best Orchestrations- Steve Sidwell | Best Sound Design of a Musical- Brian Ronan
BWW Interviews: "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- BEAUTIFUL's Jake Epstein" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- BEAUTIFUL's Anika Larsen" (click here) | "Jarrod Spector is Not a Hypochondriac (He Only Plays One)" (click here) | "Debut of the Month- Rebecca LaChance" (click here)


A GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO LOVE & MURDER | #GENTLEMANSGUIDE

BWW Crash Course: Your Study Guide to the Tony Nominated Musicals

Getting away with murder can be so much fun... and there's no better proof than this new comedy of manners (well, bad manners) set in England's elegant Edwardian era. When Monty Navarro, a disinherited relative of the rich and powerful D'Ysquith clan, learns he's ninth in line to inherit the earldom, he sets out to secure his future by, er, process of elimination. Monty does what any ambitious gentleman would do: he eliminates them one by one. Of course, it will all be worth it if he can slay his way into Highhurst Castle... and be done in time for tea.

Written by: Book by Robert L. Freedman, Music by Steven Lutvak, Lyrics by Robert L. Feedman and Steven Lutvak
Starring: Jefferson Mays, Bryce Oinkham, Lauren Worsham, Lisa O'Hare
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup | Blogger Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Meet the Cast and Performance | Red Carpet | Opening Night Party | Opening Night Interview | Meet the Tony Nominees- Bryce Pinkham and Lauren Worsham
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Musical | Best Book of a Musical- Robert L. Freedman | Best Original Score- Steven Lutvak and Robert L. Freedman | Best Leading Actor in a Musical- Jefferson Mays | Best Leading Actor in a Musical- Bryce Pinkham | Best Featured Actor in a Musical- Lauren Worsham | Best Direction of a Musical- Darko Tresnjak | Best Orchestrations- Jonathan Tunick | Best Scenic Design of a Musical- Alexander Dodge | Best Costume Design of a Musical- Lindo Cho
BWW Interviews: "Pamela Bob Makes Broadway Dreams Come True" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- Joanna Glushak" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- Jennifer Smith" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- Mark Ledbetter" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- Price Waldman" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- Jeff Kready" (click here)


BEST REVIVAL OF A MUSICAL NOMINEES

HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH | #HEDWIG

BWW Crash Course: Your Study Guide to the Tony Nominated Musicals

"Internationally ignored song stylist" Hedwig Robinson brings her fourth-wall-smashing rock 'n' roll saga to New York to set the record straight about her life, her loves and the botched operation that left her with that "angry inch."

Written by: Book and Lyrics by John Cameron Mitchell, Music by Stephen Trask
Starring: Neil Patrick Harris, Lena Hall
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Red Carpet | Opening Night Interviews | Meet the Tony Nominees- Lena Hall
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots 1 | Performance Shots 2 | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Revival of a Musical | Best Leading Actor in a Musical- Neil Patrick Harris | Best Featured Actress in a Musical- Lena Hall | Best Direction of a Musical- Michael Mayer | Best Scenic Design of a Musical- Julian Crouch | Best Costume Design of a Musical- Arianne Phillips | Best Lighting Design of a Musical- Kevin Adams | Best Sound Design of a Musical- Tim O'Heir
BWW Interviews: "Choreographer Spencer Liff Talks HEDWIG, DWTS & New Season of SYTYCD" (click here)


LES MISERABLES | #LESMISERABLES

BWW Crash Course: Your Study Guide to the Tony Nominated Musicals

Cameron Mackintosh presents a brand new production of Boublil & Schonberg's legendary musical, LES MISERABLES, with glorious new staging and dazzlingly reimagined scenery inspired by the paintings of Victor Hugo. This new production that has been acclaimed by critics, fans and new audiences and is breaking box office records around the country is now coming to Broadway.

Written by: Book by Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schonberg, Music by Claude-Michel Schonberg, Lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer
Starring: Ramin Karimloo, Will Swenson, Caissie Levy, Nikki M. James, Samantha Hill, Andy Mientus, Cliff Saunders, Keala Settle
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Meet the New Faces | Sneak Peek | Red Carpet | Opening Night Interviews | "Backstage with Richard Ridge- LES MISERABLES' New Bad Guy, Will Swenson!" (click here) | Meet the Tony Nominees- Ramin Karimloo
Photo Galleries: Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Revival of a Musical | Best Leading Actor in a Musical- Ramin Karimloo | Best Sound Design of a Musical- Mick Potter
BWW Interviews: "Debut of the Month- Kyle Scatliffe" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- Andy Mientus" (click here) | "Being in the LES MISERABLES Broadway Orchestra is Not the Pits" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- Samantha Hill" (click here)


VIOLET | #VIOLET

BWW Crash Course: Your Study Guide to the Tony Nominated Musicals

A musical story of one young woman's quest for beauty amidst the image-obsessed landscape of the 1960s. Facially disfigured in a childhood accident, Violet dreams of a miraculous transformation through the power of faith. Convinced that a televangelist in Oklahoma can heal her, she hops a Greyhound bus and starts the journey of a lifetime. Along the way, Violet forms unlikely friendships with her fellow riders, who teach her about beauty, love, courage and what it means to be an outsider.

Written by: Book and Lyrics by Brian Crawley, Music by Jeanine Tesori
Starring: Sutton Foster, Joshua Henry, Colin Donnell, Alexander Gemignani, Emerson Steele
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Red Carpet | Opening Night Interviews | Meet the Tony Nominees- Joshua Henry | Meet the Tony Nominees- Sutton Foster
Photo Galleries: Cast Recording Session | Performance Shots | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Revival of a Musical | Best Leading Actress in a Musical- Sutton Foster | Best Featured Actor in a Musical- Joshua Henry | Best Direction of a Musical- Leigh Silverman
BWW Interviews: "Debut of the Month- Emerson Steele" (click here) | "The Friday Six: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- VIOLET's Ben Davis" (click here)


Now, follow @BroadwayWorld on Twitter and vote for your favorite musical in each category by tweeting your pick and the hashtag #BWWCrashCourse. Then remember to check back on Friday, June 6th to see the results.

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Matt Tamanini Matt is BroadwayWorld's Chief TV and Film critic. He also writes across other BWW sites, including BWW Orlando, and serves as BWW's Database Manager. He received a BA in Journalism/Communications from The Ohio State University and has worked in sports broadcasting, media relations, and journalism. He also has directed and/or produced over 30 plays and musicals, and is currently writing two plays of his own. You can connect with Matt through Twitter: @BWWMatt.