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Tony Awards tonight

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The annual Tony Awards will be announced tonight, Sunday 13 June 2010, at Radio City Music Hall in New York.

Sean Hayes, presenting this year's Tony awards

The star-studded event will be hosted by Sean Hayes, best known as Jack from Will & Grace and currently starring in Promises, Promises on Broadway.

The awards, the most important in the US arts calendar, will feature performances from current Broadway shows including American Idiot, Fela!, Memphis, Million Dollar Quartet, La Cage aux Folles, A Little Night Music and Ragtime. Star presenters will include Katie Holmes, Will & Jada Pinkett Smith, Angela Lansbury, Mark Sanchez, Daniel Radcliffe, Barbara Cook, Stanley Tucci, Idina Menzel and Laura Bell Bundy!

Other appearances and performances will include Glee’s Lea Michele and Matthew Morrison, Paula Abdul, Antonio Banderas, Cate Blanchett, Kristin Chenoweth, Michael Douglas, Scarlett Johansson, Lucy Liu, Helen Mirren, Chris Noth, Bernadette Peters, Raquel Welch and David Hyde Pierce, who will receive a special Tony Award and is slated to appear in London next month in La Bete at the Comedy Theatre.

Shows up for awards this year include a revival of August Wilson’s Fences starring Denzel Washington (10nominations); Broadway musical Fela! (11 nominations) – and which makes its UK premiere at the National Theatre in November; and nods for a number of high-profile Hollywood stars including Christopher Walken (Behanding in Spokane), Liev Schreiber (A View From The Bridge), and Scarlett Johansson (A View from the Bridge).

Glee's Lea Michele rehearsing on Friday for the Tony Awards

Recent Broadway musical The Addams Family starring Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth, failed to find favour with the Tony awards committee, scoring only two nominations – best original score and best supporting actor in a musical for Kevin Chamberlin.

UK creatives or shows have garned 28 nominations this year. The Menier Chocolate Factory in South London will be awaiting news on two of its successful productions that have transferred to Broadway and received 15 Tony nominations:  La Cage Aux Folles opened at the Longacre Theatrein April to enormous critical acclaim. The show features original London star Douglas Hodge and US actor Kelsey Grammer, both of whom have been nominated in the best actor in a musical category. In total the show has picked up 11 nominations, including best revival of a musical, scenic design (Tim Shortall), costume design  (Matthew Wright),  lighting design (Nick Richings), sound design (Jonathan Deans), direction (Terry Johnson), choreography (Lynne Page), orchestrations (Jason Carr) and best supporting actor (Robin De Jesus).

Also A Little Night Music, which started life at the Menier in 2008 before transferring to the Garrick theatre in the West End, opened on Broadway at the Walter Kerr theatre in December 2009. It has picked up 4 nominations, including competing against La Cage in the best musical revival category, and nods for Catherine Zeta-Jones (best actress in a musical), Angela Lansbury (best supporting actress in a musical), and sound design (Dan Moses Schreier and Gareth Owen).

Douglas Hodge and Kelsey Grammer in La Cage Aux Folles

Other nominated UK shows include the Donmar Warehouse’s transfer of Red which enjoys 7 nominations including best play, best actor for Alfred Molina, best supporting actor for Eddie Redmayne, and best scenic design (Christopher Oram), lighting design (Neil Austin), sound design (Adam Cork) and direction (Michael Grandage). The Donmar production of Hamlet sees a nod for Jude Law and best lighting design of a play for Neil Austin. And the Royal Court’s production of Enron, which failed on Broadway but continues to sell well in London is nominated for best original score (music by Adam Cork and lyrics by Lucy Prebble), best supporting actor for Stephen Kunken, best sound design (Adam Cork) and best lighting design (Mark Henderson). Also veteran UK actress Rosemary Harris also received a best supporting nod for The Royal Family and one of the UK’s greatest living playwrights, Alan Ayckbourn, will receive a lifetime achievement award.

US viewers can watch the awards on CBS from 8pm ET. Selected countries are also airing the awards over the next week, although not in the UK. TonyAwards.com will only be featuring live footage of the red carpet arrivals and Creative Arts Awards from 6pm until 8pm ET.

See a list of Tony Award 2010 nominations here

www.tonyawards.com

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