Inside the 2014 Tony Award nominees: Best Revival of a Play

twelfth-night

Image Credit: Joan Marcus

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Twelfth Night 
Opened: Nov. 10, 2013

Closed: Feb. 16, 2014

Starring: Mark Rylance, Stephen Fry, Samuel Barnett, Liam Brennan, and Paul Chahidi

Written by: William Shakespeare

Directed by: Tim Carroll

Synopsis: Shakespeare classic comedic tale centers on twins Viola (Samuel Barnett) and Sebastian (Joseph Timms), separated by shipwreck, only to be reunited by hilarious circumstance. Duke Orsino (Liam Brennan) pines after the beautiful Olivia (Rylance), who falls in love with Cesario, who is really just Viola dressed as a man.

EW review: “For all the attention to period detail, Carroll’s Twelfth Night… still feel[s] fresh, and the Bard just as vital as he did four centuries ago. There is no need for modern glosses or strained attempts at relevance — though it never hurts to play on audience sympathies (and baser instincts). As Elizabeth tells Richard: ”An honest tale speeds best, being plainly told.” Plainly speaking, this Twelfth Night is a triumph.” A– (Thom Geier)

Nominations: 7 – Best Revival of a Play, Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play (Samuel Barnett), Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play (Paul Chahidi, Stephen Fry and Mark Rylance), Best Costume Design of a Play (Jenny Tiramani) and Best Direction of a Play (Tim Carroll).

Fun fact: The all-male production ran in repertory with Richard III and although that production only received a single nomination, it did make history. With Rylance’s lead actor nomination for Richard III and featured nomination for Twelfth Night, he is the first man to be nominated for two performances in the same year. Actresses Amanda Plummer, Dana Ivey, Kate Burton, and Jan Maxwell have all previously been nominated twice in the same year.

Odds of winning: This period-perfect production is the front-runner, by a slender Elizabethan thread.

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