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

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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 the theatre's biggest night, BroadwayWorld has put together the ultimate Tonys Crash Course. We've outlined all of the shows nominated in the Best Play and Best Revival of a Play 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 the hashtag #BWWCrashCourse. We will unveil your picks on Friday, June 6th, right before the Tonys.


BEST PLAY NOMINEES

ACT ONE | #ACTONE

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

The ultimate valentine to the theatre and a Dickensian story of a young immigrant and his family in the early 20th century. James Lapine directs his own adaptation of Moss Hart's classic autobiography which eloquently chronicles the playwright/director's impoverished childhood and his determined struggle to escape poverty. Hart forges a career in the theatre which leads to his collaboration with George S. Kaufman that culminates with his first great success, ONCE IN A LIFETIME.

Written by: James Lapine
Starring: Tony Shaloub, Santino Fontana, Andrea Martin, Chuck Cooper
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek Meet the Tony Nominees- Beowulf Boritt & Dan Moses Schreier
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Opening Night
Tony Nominations: Best Play | Best Leading Actor in a Play- Tony Shalhoub | Best Scenis Design of a Play- Beowulf Boritt | Best Costume Design of a Play- Jane Greenwood | Best Sound Design of a Play- Dan Moses Schreier
BWW Interviews: "Andrea Martin, Times 3, in ACT ONE" (click here)


ALL THE WAY | #ALLTHEWAY

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

ALL THE WAY is a gripping new play about a pivotal moment in American history. This drama will take audiences behind the doors of the Oval Office and inside the first years of Lyndon B. Johnson's presidency, and his fight to pass a landmark civil rights bill.

Written by: Robert Schenkkan
Starring: Bryan Cranston, Eric Lenox Abrams, Betsy Aidem, J. Bernard Calloway, Brandon J. Dirden, Michael McKean
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Meet the Cast | Red Carpet | Opening Night | Meet the Tony Nominees- Robert Shenkkan
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party | Aaron Paul Visits Backstage
Tony Nominations: Best Play | Best Leading Actor in a Play- Bryan Cranston
BWW Interviews: "Brandon J. Dirden Takes MLK the Distance" (click here)


CASA VALENTINA | #CASAVALENTINA

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

Back in 1962, most men went to the Catskill Mountains to escape the summer heat, but others took the two-hour drive to escape something else entirely: being men. Nestled in the land of dirty dancing and borscht belt comedy, sat an inconspicuous bungalow colony that catered to a very special clientele: heterosexual men whose favorite pastime was dressing and acting as women. It was paradise for these men - white-collar professionals with families - to spend their weekends discreetly and safely inhabiting their chosen female alter egos. But when faced with the opportunity to become an official organization, these "self-made women" had to decide whether public recognition would help them gain a place in open society or spell their own personal disaster.

Written by: Harvey Fierstein
Starring: Reed Birney, John Ullum, Gabriel Ebert, Lisa Emory, Tom McGowan, Patrick Page, Larry Pine, Nick Westrate
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Red Carpet | Opening Night | Meet the Tony Nominees- Reed Birney | Meet the Tony Nominees- Harvey Fierstein
Photo Galleries: Show Shots 1 | Show Shots 2 | Red Carpet | Opening Night
Tony Nominations: Best Play | Best Featured Actor in a Play- Reed Birney | Best Featured Actress in a Play- Mare Winningham | Best Costume Design of a Play- Rita Ryack


MOTHERS AND SONS | #MOTHERSANDSONS

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

A mother visits the former lover of her late son, only to find him married to another man and raising a small child. A funny, vibrant, and moving look at one woman's journey as she reflects on her life, how society has changed-and how she might, too. Mothers and Sons is a provocative and powerful new play, sparking candid conversations about connection, forgiveness - and the evolving definition of family.

Written by: Terrence McNally
Starring: Tyne Daly, Bobby Steggert, Grayson Taylor, Frederick Weller
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Red Carpet | Opening Night | Tyne Daly & Company Chats MOTHERS AND SONS | Meet the Tony Nominees- Terrence McNally and Tyne Daly
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call
Tony Nominations: Best Play | Best Leading Actress in a Play- Tyne Daly
BWW Interviews: "Bobby Steggert Discusses MOTHERS AND SONS" (click here)


OUTSIDE MULLINGAR | #OUTSIDEMULLINGAR

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

Anthony and Rosemary are two introverted misfits straddling 40. Anthony has spent his entire life on a cattle farm in rural Ireland, a state of affairs that - due to his painful shyness - suits him well. Rosemary lives right next door, determined to have him, watching the years slip away. With Anthony's father threatening to disinherit him and a land feud simmering between their families, Rosemary has every reason to fear romantic catastrophe. But then, in this very Irish story with a surprising depth of poetic passion, these yearning, eccentric souls fight their way towards solid ground and some kind of happiness. Their journey is heartbreaking, funny as hell, and ultimately deeply moving.

Written by: John Patrick Shanley
Starring: Debra Messing, Brian F. O'Byrne, Pater Maloney, Dearbhla Molloy
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Opening Night
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Play
BWW Interviews: "'Inside' Mullingar with Peter Maloney" (click here)


BEST REVIVAL OF A PLAY NOMINEES

THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN | #CRIPPLE

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

When a Hollywood director visits a remote Irish island to cast his latest film, the locals clamor for their once-in-a-lifetime chance at movie stardom. But it's Billy, a frail young man with the odds stacked against him, who has the biggest Hollywood dream of them all.

Written by: Martin McDonagh
Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Sarah Greene, Ingrid Craigie, Padraic Delaney, Gillian Hanna, Conor MacNeill, June Watson, Pat Shortt, Gary Lilburn
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Red Carpet | Opening Night | Meet the Tony Nominees- Sarah Greene
Photo Galleries: Production Shots (from London) | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night
Tony Nominations: Best Revival of a Play | Best Featured Actress in a Play- Sarah Greene | Best Direction of a Play- Michael Grandage | Best Scenic Design of a Play- Christopher Oram | Best Lighting Design of a Play- Paule Constable | Best Sound Design of a Play- Alex Baranowski
BWW Interviews: "Debut of the Month- Conor MacNeill" (click here)


THE GLASS MENAGERIE | #MENAGERIE

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

Amanda Wingfield is a Southern belle past her prime, living with two grown children in a small apartment in St. Louis. Amanda dreams of a better life for her shy and crippled daughter Laura, and so she pushes her son, Tom, to find a "gentleman caller" for the girl. However, the arrival of the gentleman caller sends shockwaves through the family and causes cracks to form in the delicate fantasies that have kept them going.

Written by: Tennessee Williams
Starring: Cherry Jones, Zachary Quinto, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Brian J. Smith
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Richard Ridge- SAG Foundation Conversations Series with Cherry Jones
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Revival of a Play | Best Leading Actress in a Play- Cherry Jones | Best Featured Actor in a Play- Brian J. Smith | Best Featured Actress in a Play- Celia Keenan-Bolger | Best Direction of a Play- John Tiffany | Best Scenic Design of a Play- Bob Crowley | Best Lighting Design of a Play- Natasha Katz
BWW Interviews: "Brian J. Smith Answers the Call of THE GLASS MENAGERIE" (click here)


A RAISIN IN THE SUN | #RAISIN

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

Set on Chicago's South Side, Lorraine Hansberry's play revolves around the divergent dreams and conflicts within three generations of the Younger family: son Walter Lee; his wife, Ruth; his sister, Beneatha; his son, Travis; and matriarch Lena, called Mama. When her deceased husband's insurance money comes through, Mama dreams of moving to a new home and a better neighborhood in Chicago. Walter Lee, a chauffeur, has other plans: buying a liquor store and being his own man. Beneatha dreams of medical school. The tensions and prejudice they face form this seminal American drama.

Written by: Lorraine Hansberry
Starring: Denzel Washington, Latanya Richardson Jackson, Sophie Okondeo, Anika Noni Rose, Sean Patrick Thomas
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Red Carpet | Opening Night
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Revival of a Play | Best Leading Actress in a Play- LaTanya Richardson Jackson | Best Featured Actress in a Play- Sophie Okonedo | Best Featured Actress in a Play- Anika Noni Rose | Best Direction of a Play- Kenny Leon


TWELFTH NIGHT | #TWELFTHNIGHT

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

Outrageous high comedy ensues as the pangs of unrequited love affect the unforgettable characters of Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. While the lovelorn Duke Orsino plots to win the heart of the mourning Olivia, an alliance of servants and hangers-on scheme against the high-handedness of Olivia's steward, the pompous Malvolio. When Orsino engages the cross-dressed Viola (Samuel Barnett), who has disguised herself as a young man under the name Cesario, to plead with Olivia on his behalf, a bittersweet and hilarious chain of events follows. Performed in repertory with Richard III, and presented in the custom of how Shakespeare's plays were first staged, with an all-male company playing male and female roles; actors participating in the pre-show ritual of dressing and preparing their make-up on stage, in front of the audience; music played live on traditional instruments; and lighting created almost exclusively by 100 on-stage candles.

Written by: William Shakespeare
Starring: Samuel Barnett, Paul Chahidi, Stephen Fry, Mark Rylance, Liam Brennan, Colin Hurley, John Paul Connolly
Reviews: BWW- Michael Dale | Review Roundup
BWW TV: Sneak Peek | Highlights | Red Carpet | Opening Night
Photo Galleries: Performance Shots | Red Carpet | Opening Night Curtain Call | Opening Night Stage Door | Opening Night Party
Tony Nominations: Best Revival of a Play | Best Leading Actor in a Play- Samuel Barnett | Best Featured Actor in a Play- Paul Chahidi | Best Featured Actor in a Play- Stephen Fry | Best Featured Actor in a Play- Mark Rylance | Best Direction of a Play- Tim Carroll | Best Costume Design of a Play- Jenny Tiramani


Now, follow @BroadwayWorld on Twitter and vote for your favorite play 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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