SPONGEBOB on Broadway Cast And Creative React To Their Tony Award Nominations
BroadwayWorld has been checking in with Tony Award nominees all morning! We caught up with the nominated cast and creative from SpongeBob Squarepants on Broadway to get their first reactions at being up for Tony Awards this season.
SpongeBob Squarepants the Musical is tied for the most nominated show of the season with Mean Girls with 12 nominations.
SpongeBob's nominations include Best Musical, Best Leading Actor in a Musical - Ethan Slater, Best Book of a Musical - Kyle Jarrow, Best Featured Actor in a Musical - Gavin Lee, Best Scenic Design of a Musical - David Zinn, Best Costume Design of a Musical - David Zinn, Best Lighting Design of a Musical - Kevin Adams, Best Sound Design of a Musical - Walter Trarbach and Mike Dobson, Best Direction of a Musical - Tina Landau, Best Choreography of a Musical - Christopher Gattelli, and Best Orchestrations - Tom Kitt.
See reactions below, and stay tuned for more! See reactions from all the shows here!
Ethan Slater, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical
I am freaking out! I'm trying to calm myself down right now. It hits me in waves. I was trying to act cool this morning and I had Facebook Live on in the background as I was cooking breakfast. Then I just had to stop cooking and watched fully. It's the kind of thing where I'd be proud no matter what happened, because we've approached this from a place of creative integrity. We are really proud of our show, and of course it feels so good to see it recognized. We know that some people who came to see this show were skeptical and it is so great to see those people converted. But, I understand the skepticism! It takes a village to put on a show, and there are so many people who worked at the top of their game, all starting with Tina Landau. I actually screamed when I saw her name today! She brought out the best in all of us. It looks like it's a beautiful day, so I'm going to celebrate by going for a walk and then to physical theapy!
Gavin Lee, Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical,SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical:
OMG! I am over the moon for Spongebob. Getting recognized for so many categories is awesome for our fabulous show. I was actually taking my oldest daughter to school when the nominations happened, but my fabulous agent called me to let me know that I'd gotten nominated. Thank you Tony Awards!
Tina Landau, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Best Direction of a Musical
I'm so crazy proud of our entire SpongeBob team! - that's how I feel. Thrilled for the show itself. I'm most proud of the multiple nominations because making theater comes from an 'us' not a 'me,' you know? I was watching live online with my girlfriend, and as names were being read aloud - Tom Kitt, Walter Trarbach and Mike Dobson, Kyle Jarrow, Chris Gatelli, our designers, actors, composers - I kept fist pumping the air and saying, "Yes!" When my name was read, I fell completely silent. Much to my own surprise, it brought me to a place of quiet reflection. It's moving and layered for me, and causing me to reflect on the whole ten-year journey this has been for me so far. So yes, I'm quiet and humbled and grateful this moment - but tonight I get to go to the Palace Theater where pure joy is spread in abundance each night and I get to celebrate with the whole friggin' town of Bikini Bottom!! Also, congrats to every single person who has made theater this year, that's what I say!
Kyle Jarrow, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Best Book of a Musical
I'm incredibly honored to be nominated, alongside three writers I admire so much: Tina Fey, Itamar Moses and Jennifer Lee. Talk about good company, wow! I'm also over-the-moon proud of the amazing Spongebob Squarepants cast, crew and creative team. It's a testament to all of their hard work - and to director Tina Landau's awesome vision - that the show got so many nominations.
As for how I found out: I have an almost-two-year-old daughter Oona who recently got a set of Sesame Street toys that she's obsessed with. We were playing with them together, putting them in and out of a little toy car (Oona never seems to tire of that) while my wife (also a Tony nominee, Lauren Worsham) watched the nomination streamcast in the corner, giving live reports. When I got the nomination, Lauren screamed - I screamed too - thoroughly scaring our toddler. Sorry Oona!
David Zinn, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Best Scenic Design of a Musical AND Best Costume Design of a Musical
I was having breakfast at my corner diner and flipped my phone over after i knew the announcements would be out-figuring there would either be some texts with lots of exclamation marks, or it would be blank. So it was nice to see all the exclamation marks. Of course I'm so excited to have so much of the work on SPONGEBOB recognized-its a project that was really birthed in Joy and the spirit of Creative Exuberance, and having that message embraced is a thrill and an honor. And I am nominated alongside colleagues whose work i love and admire, so...yeah, just a delightful and humbling way to start the morning.
Christopher Gattelli, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Best Choreography
I'm beside myself. Literally. To say I'm honored and overwhelmed is an understatement. I'm incredibly grateful, but I'm even more so excited about our shows. Both SpongeBob and My Fair Lady being recognized as they were. Both teams and casts are truly special led by our brilliant leaders Tina and Bart, that that made me more happy and proud than anything. I tried to go about my morning like any other and thought, well, if I hear my phone "bing" that could be a good thing... and it did, and I found out from Seth Rudetsky who was the first to text. Which made it all the more special as I basically started this phase of my career choreographing with Seth doing numbers for Broadway Cares and that's when the bug really bit me. So to hear from Seth was pretty special.
Kevin Adams, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Best Lighting Design of a Musical
It's the first day of sun in some time and I was out mulching my yard early this beautiful spring morning. Very excited to come inside and hear the news from my agent. I'm very proud to be nominated with so many other remarkable friends, collaborators and theatre artists from other shows and SpongeBob and I'm especially happy for the director of SpongeBob Tina Landau.
Walter Trarbach & Mike Dobson, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Best Sound Design of a Musical
Mike Dobson: I was making breakfast and watching the announcement live. I was already freaking out that the show was getting so many nominations. By the time they got to sound design, it was all a blur. I'm so honored and excited to be nominated. It feels totally surreal.
Walter Trarbach: I was working preparing for Ain't Too Proud this morning. I didn't know it was Tony nomination day. My assistant on the show texted me a bunch of exclamation points, and I wrote back and asked her "what?" Then I started hearing from a bunch of people, phone calls, emails, and texts. I find it quite exciting, and also a little embarrassing.
Tom Kitt, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Best Orchestrations
Today, I'm elated and extremely proud to be recognized by the Tony Committee along with my friends and collaborators on SpongeBob Squarepants, as well as all the other gifted artists who made this season so extraordinary. I'm very grateful for this nomination and I also want to congratulate my fellow nominated orchestrators as well, who are all musicians that I draw inspiration from. It is truly an honor to be in their company. This has been an enormously busy year for me and I've had the great privilege of working on so many projects I love, but my family has had to weather a lot of time apart. So this morning, while I was up in Boston, it was very special to be on FaceTime with my wife as the nominations were being read and to experience that moment with her. And as that was happening, I thought of my kids in school and how I can't wait to tell them the news and give them all big hugs. My family has shared the journey of SpongeBob from the beginning and has seen all of the work that has gone into it, so experiencing this moment now with them is truly a gift that for today, makes the distance seem not so great.
The SpongeBob SquarePants cast includes Ethan Slater as SpongeBob SquarePants, Gavin Lee as Squidward Q. Tentacles, Lilli Cooper as Sandy Cheeks, Brian Ray Norris as Eugene Krabs, Wesley Taylor as Sheldon Plankton and Danny Skinner as Patrick Star.
SpongeBob SquarePants on Broadway began preview performances on Monday, November 6th opened on Monday, December 4th at The Palace Theatre (1564 Broadway - Broadway at 47th Street).
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