The Race to the 2013 Tonys: A look at the candidates for Best Actor in a Leading Role in a Play

It’s that time of year again, and the theatre world is abuzz with Tony nominations.  Best Actor in a Leading Role in a Play is one of the most prestigious awards in theatre, and this year’s nominees are in for a close race!

Tom Hanks as Mike McAlary in "Lucky Guy."

Tom Hanks as Mike McAlary in “Lucky Guy.”

Tom HanksLucky Guy:

For Best Actor in a Leading Role in a Play, the name that immediately stands out to most is Tom Hanks, who is nominated for his performance as the sensational journalist Mike McAlary in Lucky Guy. Hanks is solid, as always, maintaining his reputation as a reliable, stable lead actor.

Tom Sturridge as Phillip in "Orphans."

Tom Sturridge as Phillip in “Orphans.”

Tom Sturridge, Orphans:

While Alec Baldwin was snubbed this year, his equally talented co-star Tom Sturridge received the nod from Tony nominators for his striking portrayal as the unstable Phillip in Orphans. He has a nervous energy to him for the duration of the play, which is not an easy thing to keep up for so long.

Nathan Lane as Chauncey Miles in "The Nance."

Nathan Lane as Chauncey Miles in “The Nance.”

Nathan LaneThe Nance:

In The Nance, Nathan Lane delivers an emotional performance as Chauncey Miles, a gay burlesque performer in 1937. The show is more serious than it lets on, and while Lane’s signature comedic sense is definitely present, there’s also a more subdued side to his portrayal of Miles.

David Hyde Pierce as Vanya in "Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike."

David Hyde Pierce as Vanya in “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike.”

David Hyde Pierce, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike:

In Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, David Hyde Pierce plays the titular Vanya, who has lived in his family home since childhood and has a miserable life in contrast to his movie star sister Masha. Like the show itself, Pierce is both funny and touching in the role.

Tracy Letts as George in "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?"

Tracy Letts as George in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”

Tracy Letts, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?:

Tracy Letts doesn’t disappoint in his Broadway debut as Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?’s intense and frightening George. He’s extremely physical in his portrayal of the character, prowling about the stage with a tautness that keeps the audience on edge – in a word, his performance is terrifying.

My prediction: While Tom Hanks’ name holds quite a bit of weight, and there is the fact that Nora Ephron wrote the character of McAlary with Hanks in mind, I’m going to predict that Nathan Lane will take home the Tony.  He’s a Broadway veteran with two Tonys already under his belt, and his role is one that requires an ability to be uproariously funny and heartbreaking in turn, and without a doubt, Lane is both.

Who is your favorite to win? Do you think anybody was unduly snubbed? Let me know what you think in the comments below!

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2 Responses

  1. Tracy Letts was AMAZING! Not taking anything away from Tom Hanks or Nora Ephron, or Nathan Lane, no other performer became the character like Letts did. One of the best performances of ANY Year. I hope the voters remember his performance which was much before Hanks and Lane.

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