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Musical 'Once' big winner at Tony awards

12 june 2012, 17:02
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Steve Kazee and the cast of "Once" perform during the American Theatre Wing's 66th annual Tony Awards in New York. ©AFP
Steve Kazee and the cast of "Once" perform during the American Theatre Wing's 66th annual Tony Awards in New York. ©AFP
The musical "Once" which tells the love story between a musician and an immigrant singer and pianist was the big winner at this year's Tony awards ceremony, scooping a total of eight prizes, AFP reports.

"Clybourne Park" by Bruce Norris won the Tony for best play, and Arthur Miller's "Death of a Salesman" won the awards for best revival play and best director of a play for Mike Nichols.

Tony awards are given for excellence in theater and are considered to be the Broadway equivalent of the Oscars, which recognize the best performances in the movie industry. The ceremony Sunday night was held for the second consecutive year at the Beacon Theatre in New York.

"Once", which went into the contest with a total of eleven nominations, gained some of the most important awards: best musical, best director of a musical for John Tiffany, and best actor for Steve Kazee.

In addition, it gained the prizes for best book of a musical, sound, instrumentation, lighting and scenery.

Based on an Irish musical film, which in 2007 won the Oscar for best original song for "Falling Slowly", "Once" tells the story of a musician and an immigrant singer and pianist who meet and fall in love in the streets of Dublin.

The controversial musical "The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess," which features a shorter version of the legendary opera by George Gershwin, won the awards for best musical revival and best performance by an actress in a leading role in a musical. The leading role of Bess in this production was played by Audra McDonald.

Other winners included "Peter and the Starcatcher," which obtained a total of five awards. The play, which recounts the early adventures of Peter Pan, is based on a children's novel by the same name published in 2006 by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson.

It won the Tonys for best supporting actor for Christian Borle, best costumes, best sound, best scenery and best lighting.

Nina Arianda, who spent practically all of her career in theater, won the award for best performance by an actress in a leading role in a play. She starred in "Venus in Fur", an adaptation of a novel by 19th century Austrian writer Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, who gave birth to the term masochism.

The musical "Nice Work If You Can Get It," whose music and lyrics were written by brothers George and Ira Gershwin, took the awards for best performance by an actor in a featured role in a musical given to Michael McGrath, and best performance by an actress in a featured role in a musical given to Judy Kaye.

Last year, the big winner was the musical "The Book of Mormon", a religious satire that took in a total of nine awards.

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