Associated Press drama writer Mark Kennedy has predicted that part-time New Orleans resident Michael Cerveris will win a Tony Award Sunday for best actor in a musical. Cerveris appears in the 12-time nominated “Fun Home.”
The Tony Awards broadcast begins at 7 p.m. Sunday, June 7, on WWL-TV in New Orleans and WAFB-TV in Baton Rouge.
Kennedy didn’t pick former Baton Rouge residents Karey and Wayne Kirkpatrick to win Tony Awards, but the brothers are nominated for co-writing the score for the Broadway musical “Something Rotten!” The production has 10 nominations, including another nomination for Karey Kirkpatrick for co-writing the “Something Rotten!” book.
The Kirkpatrick brothers are graduates of Baton Rouge Magnet High School. Karey Kirkpatrick is also a screenplay writer whose credits include the animated films “Over the Hedge,” “Chicken Run” and “James and the Giant Peach.”
Wayne Kirkpatrick is a Nashville-based songwriter who co-wrote the 1996 Eric Clapton hit “Change the World,” which won a Grammy award for song of the year.
Other Tony nominees with New Orleans connections are New Orleans native Patricia Clarkson for “The Elephant Man”; K. Todd Freeman appears in a play written by New Orleans resident Lisa D’Amour, “Airline Highway”; and former New Orleans resident Helen Mirren for her performance as Queen Elizabeth II in “The Audience.” Mirren is another of Kennedy’s choices to win a Tony.
Cerveris previously won a Tony for his portrayal of John Wilkes Booth in the 2004 revival of Stephen Sondheim’s “Assassins.” His film and television roles include Cook County State’s Attorney James Castro in the Julianna Margulies-starring “The Good Wife” and Marvin Frey, manager of Lucia Micarelli’s Annie in HBO’s “Treme.”
Clarkson’s nomination for “The Elephant Man” is one of four nominations for the production, including recent Oscar-nominee Bradley Cooper’s nomination for best act in a play.
Following the nominations announcement in April, Clarkson called “The Elephant Man,” a revival of Bernard Pomerance’s play about John Merrick, “one of the greatest experiences of my career.”
Freeman, a Houston native and member of Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre, based the physicality of his “Airline Highway” character, drag queen Sissy Nana, on New Orleans’ bounce rapper Big Freedia.
Mirren’s Broadway performance as Elizabeth II follows her Oscar win for playing the British monarch in the 2006 film, “The Queen.” AP drama writer Kennedy prefers, however, that Geneva Carr win for “Hand of God.” Carr plays a widow whose son is being bullied by a satanic sock puppet. Kennedy calls her performance “ferocious.”