Though the past year has been full of conflict and occasional catastrophe for the local arts scene, Seattle came out of the 59th annual Tony Awards Sunday, June 5, smelling like a rose. Bill Irwin, a favorite with Seattle Rep audiences, won a best actor award for holding his own against Kathleen Turner in the high-profile revival of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf; Rep alum Doug Hughes, sporting a previously unknown British accent, took home a trophy for his direction of John Patrick Shanley's Pulitzer-winning play Doubt, which was also awarded best play; and shining above all the rest was the Intiman Theatre–bred musical The Light in the Piazza, which received six awards—more for the night than any other show in its genre. Piazza swept the technical categories (costume, scenic design, and lighting), and was singled out for orchestrations, for Adam Guettel's challenging score, and, finally, for Victoria Clark's moving, magnificent lead performance as a Southern mother in Florence handling her mentally impaired daughter's romance with a handsome young Italian. Piazza lost the top prize of the night to Monty Python's Spamalot, the crowd-pleasing musical adaptation of the Python Holy Grail film, but its success could mean a bigger and brighter future for an ambitious Intiman.
Winners of the 2005 Tony Award
Best play: Doubt. Best musical: Monty Python's Spamalot.
Best book of a musical: Rachel Sheinkin, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.
Best original score: Adam Guettel, The Light in the Piazza.
Best revival of a play: Glengarry Glen Ross.
Best revival of a musical: La Cage aux Folles.
Best special theatrical event: Billy Crystal 700 Sundays.
Best performance by a leading actor in a play: Bill Irwin, Whose Afraid of Virginia Woolf.
Best performance by a leading actress in a play: Cherry Jones, Doubt.
Best performance by a leading actor in a musical: Norbert Leo Butz, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.
Best performance by a leading actress in a musical: Victoria Clark, The Light in the Piazza.
Best performance by a featured actor in a play: Live Shreiber, Glengarry Glen Ross.
Best performance by a featured actress in a play: Adriane Lenox, Doubt.
Best performance by a featured actor in a musical: Dan Fogler, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.
Best performance by a featured actress in a musical: Sara Ramirez, Monty Python's Spamalot.
Best scenic design, play: Scott Pask, The Pillowman.
Best scenic design, musical: Michael Yeargan, The Light in the Piazza.
Best costume design, play: Jess Goldstein, The Rivals.
Best costume design, musical: Catherine Zuber, The Light in the Piazza.
Best lighting design, play: Brian MacDevitt, The Pillowman.
Best lighting design, musical: Christopher Akerlind, The Light in the Piazza.
Best direction of a play: Doug Hughes, Doubt.
Best direction of a musical: Mike Nichols, Monty Python's Spamalot.
Best choreography: Jerry Mitchell, La Cage aux Folles.
Best orchestrations: Ted Sperling, Adam Guettel, and Bruce Coughlin, The Light in the Piazza.
Regional theatre Tony award: Theatre de la Jeune Lune (Minneapolis, Minnesota).
Special Tony award for lifetime achievement: Playwright Edward Albee.
Compiled by Nichole Boland