Below are two short videos from the two new Broadway musicals that were most nominated for 2022 Tony Awards: “A Strange Loop” by Michael R. Jackson received 11 Tony nominations, “MJ the Musical” with music by Michael Jackson and a book by Lynn Nottage, received 10. They are going head-to-head in eight Tony categories:
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical: Myles Frost of MJ and Jaquel Spivey of A Strange Loop
Best Book of a Musical: Lynn Nottage for MJ, Michael R. Jackson for A Strange Loop
Best Direction of a Musical: Christopher Wheeldon for MJ, Stephen Brackett for A Strange Loop
Best Scenic Design of a Musical: Derek McLane and Peter Nigrini for MJ, Arnulfo Maldonado for A Strange Loop
Best Lighting Design of a Musical: Natasha Katz for MJ, Jen Schriever for A Strange Loop
Best Sound Design of a Musical: Gareth Owen for MJ, Drew Levy for A Strange Loop
Best Orchestrations: Jason Michael Webb and David Holcenberg for MJ, Charlie Rosen for A Strange Loop
The stars of both shows are young, gifted and Black: Frost, 22, and Spivey, 23, are making their Broadway debuts, and both have won 2022 Theater World Awards.
But the musicals are markedly different — so much so that how they do at the Tonys could be read as a gauge of where Broadway is going….or at least, where Tony voters want Broadway to go.