Hollywood may be the destination darling for most major award shows, but the east coast gets the upper hand at least one glamorous night of the year that always has a decidedly New York state of mind. We are of course referring to the annual Tony Awards, a celebration that highlights the best and brightest of Broadway shows and their stars, which last night was held at the Radio City Music Hall and helmed by “Wolverine in tap shoes,” a Mr. Hugh Jackman. While most people may not be as familiar with plays and musicals as with movies and television (one colleague, who may or may not have been tied to a pole and flogged, actually uttered “They televise that?”), we here at GoJane are definitely fans and patrons of the theatre arts and would never let the Tonys slip by without giving them our unique brand of coverage. So here’s our take on the bests of the best from the 68th Annual Tony Awards…
Best Lap Dance: Neil Patrick Harris
The legen-wait-for-it-dary NPH may not have reprised his now-usual role of Tony host (he’s won two Emmys for it), but that doesn’t mean he wasn’t onstage (as usual) and stealing the show (as usual). The actor was barely recognizable when he took the stage as a German transgender singer in a huge blond wig and tiny denim skirt. The gender-bending role from Hedwig And The Angry Inch would win him his first Tony, but we’re pretty sure the most memorable Neil Patrick Harris moment of the night came when he took off Samuel L. Jackson’s glasses and licked them before putting them back on his face. And SLJ wasn’t the only one to reap the benefits of sitting up close. Sting and Kevin Bacon both got a lap full of Neil, and he didn’t forget to lay a big one on husband David Burtka before finishing his set.
Best Newbie Who Is Really An Oldie But Goodie: Bryan Cranston
Since his run in the critically acclaimed AMC series Breaking Bad, Bryan Cranston has cemented his status as one of the most versatile actors of our generation (Malcolm In The Middle, anyone?), spanning television, film, and now stage. Last night he won a Tony Award for his Broadway debut as President Lyndon Johnson in the play All The Way, in which he wore prosthetic ears and transformed into a completely recognizable version of the historical figure. The trophy will sit on his mantle with the countless accolades he earned as Walter White, a role with which he will always have ties. Speaking of live theatre, he remarked, “When you can effect emotional change in the audience it’s like a powerful drug. It’s as strong as blue crystal meth.”
Best Beautiful Moment Ugly Cry: Audra McDonald
If Lupita N’yongo was the princess of this year’s Oscars, Audra McDonald was the queen of this year’s Tonys. The Broadway diva (in the best sense of the word; you should hear her opera voice!) picked up her sixth Tony for her role as Billie Holiday, breaking a three-way tie she held with theatre greats Angela Lansbury and Julie Harris and making her the first person to win Tonys in four different acting categories. She reigned with one of the most touching acceptance speeches of the night. “I’m standing on Lena Horne, I’m standing on Maya Angelou, Diahann Carroll, Ruby Dee, and most of all Billie Holiday. You deserved so much more than you were given when you were on this planet. This is for you, Billie.”
Best Bespectacled Bros: Matt Bomer and Zachary Quinto
This photo is pretty self-explanatory. It’s really just here so we can stare at it. But speaking of twinsies…
Best Unintentional Twinsies Moment: Kevin Bacon and Ethan Hawke
We know Kevin Bacon gets around (you’ve played The Six Degrees Of Kevin Bacon, right?), but we didn’t think his influence could be this potent. ‘Cause is it just us, or is Ethan Hawke slowly but surely morphing into Kevin Bacon? If one of them hadn’t worn that spectacular grey suit, we may have had a hard time figuring out who was who was who. And in case you’re wondering, Ethan Hawke was in Hamlet with Bill Murray who was in Wild Things with Kevin Bacon. Boom.
Best Red Carpet Color Mantra: Orange Is The New Black
We saw quite a few dark dresses on the Tonys red carpet, but orange definitely emerged as an it color last night. We’re imagining these stars’ stylists all making the same joke: “Orange you glad we went with orange?”😀
Best LOL Moment: Jonathan Groff
Only a few months ago, at the Academy Awards, John Travolta single-handedly turned Adele Dazeem into a household name. It was just too bad that she, like the alter-ego of a con artist on Catfish: The TV Show, never existed. Except maybe in his mind. Frozen star Idina Menzel may have laughed it off, but we’re sure RENT-heads and Wicked fangirls alike were waiting for some sort of misnomer redemption. Well, last night they got it, by way of the wick-edly talented (and adooooorable) Jonathan Groff, whose spot-on impression of John Travolta’s gaffe managed to be funny but good-spirited at the same time.
Best Fakeout: Hugh Jackman and Neil Patrick Harris
Did anyone else get abnormally excited thinking that a Beyonce / Solange / Jay-Z spoof was imminent when Hugh stepped into an elevator with Neil and we were treated to the black and white security camera footage? Alas, it was only wishful thinking on our parts.
Best Post-Show Plans: James Monroe Iglehart
While most award show attendees may find it most appealing to cap off the night with fancy drinks and tiny hor d’oeuvres, the larger-than-life winner of Best Featured Actor In A Musical had slightly different plans. James Monroe Iglehart, who dreamed of playing the Genie in Aladdin after seeing Robin Williams’ rousing rendition of Friend Like Me in the Disney movie, won his first Tony last night with his wife at his side. Their post-show plans in their black-tie attire? A late-night run to McDonald’s! “We do it after very important occasions. It keeps us humble. It keeps us grounded. We get a Big Mac and fries and we go back to the house and we kick it with our cats, and this lets us know that this is still real life.”
Check out the gallery below for more photos from the 2014 Tony Awards, and click here for a complete list of the 2014 Tony winners! Photos courtesy of NY Daily News, LA Times, Buzzfeed, and Tumblr.