Following a year of uncertainty, the 2020 Tony Awards took place on Sunday, September 26 with an air of celebration. After over 18 months of shutdown on Broadway, the long-delayed ceremony came just as many productions finally reopened their doors. The evening was full of notable wins, outstanding performances, and a few Denver Center for the Performing Arts connections.
- Matthew Lopez’s play The Inheritance wins Best Play
The Inheritance, a play about the legacy of the AIDS epidemic, took home four Tony Awards this year, including Best Play. The playwright, Matthew Lopez, subsequently became the first Latino in history to win the accolade. The DCPA has previously produced two of Lopez’s other works – the world premieres of The Legend of Georgia McBride in 2014 and Zoey’s Perfect Wedding in 2018. The Legend of Georgia McBride is currently being developed into a film starring Jim Parsons.
- Moulin Rouge! The Musical wins Best Musical
Based on the 2001 movie by director Baz Luhrman, Moulin Rouge! The Musical also won big at the awards ceremony, scoring 10 Tony Awards including Best Musical! The stage adaptation is headed out on its North American national tour in February and will make its way to the Buell Theatre here in Denver in June 2022.
- Molly Brown’s Derek McLane wins Best Scenic design for Moulin Rouge! The Musical
After a 2009 reading at the Colorado New Play Summit, The Unsinkable Molly Brown came to the stage of the Stage Theatre (now the newly renovated Wolf Theatre) in 2014. The scenic designer for that production was Derek McLane, who has also designed on shows like Beautiful: The Carole King Musical and The Heiress. Derek won his first Tony Award for his lavish scenic design on Broadway’s Moulin Rouge! The Musical.
- David Byrne’s American Utopia performance
We’re still anxiously awaiting the rescheduled dates of Off-Center’s next immersive production, Theater of the Mind, which opens here in Denver in 2022. The project is a collaboration between DCPA Off-Center, Talking Heads front man David Byrne and writer Mala Ganokar. David currently appears in his Broadway production of American Utopia, which performed a rendition of “Burning Down the House” during the broadcast.
Missed the broadcast? No worries! You can stream both the awards portion of the ceremony and “The Tony Awards Present: Broadway’s Back!” on Paramount+.