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Predictions: What Will Win the Best Musical and Best Play Tony Awards in 2022?

Our critics predict the Tony Awards ahead of the June 12 ceremony.

With the Tony Awards scheduled for June 12, our critics have been predicting the winners all week. Finally, we arrive at the two big awards: Best Musical and Best Play. You can read their predictions below:

Adam Godley, Simon Russell Beale, and Adrian Lester starred in Stefano Massini's The Lehman Trilogy, directed by Sam Mendes, at Broadway's Nederlander Theatre.
(© Julieta Cervantes)

Best Play

THE NOMINEES:
Clyde's
Hangmen
The Lehman Trilogy
The Minutes
Skeleton Crew

Zachary Stewart:
Will win: The Lehman Trilogy
Should win: Skeleton Crew

The cynical lefty living in my brain suspects that Tony voters (many of whom are Broadway producers) will vote their class and support Stefano Massini's fairytale of American entrepreneurship (which, to be clear, I thought was excellent). But my heart is with Dominique Morisseau's incisive, timely, bittersweet ode to American workers: It says a lot more about where we're heading than where we've been.

David Gordon:
Will win: The Lehman Trilogy
Should win: The Lehman Trilogy

This is another category where there's no real suspense, and The Lehman Trilogy will rightfully take it home. For argument's sake, I'd probably vote for Skeleton Crew, which is a more "relevant" piece, and if I were a nominator, I'd have suggested Dana H., Thoughts of a Colored Man, and Pass Over instead of Clyde's, Hangmen, and The Minutes, three middle-drawer plays by their respective authors.

Hayley Levitt:
Will win: The Lehman Trilogy
Should win: The Lehman Trilogy

This year's choice for Best Play feels pretty clear-cut. Stefano Massini's sparse, yet epic march through generations of Lehman financiers (and Ben Power's beautiful translation) reaches far beyond the world of banking, touching on themes of legacy, culture, and the easily corruptible American dream. Massini even manages to educate his audiences on the mounting complexities of America's banking system without putting a single ticketholder to sleep. The play is an achievement in countless aspects, and I believe we can expect it to be duly rewarded.

Pete Hempstead:
Will win: The Lehman Trilogy
Should win: The Lehman Trilogy

From the moment I left the theater after seeing The Lehman Trilogy, I said to myself and anyone who would listen that this was the play of the year, and despite the terrific work that we saw onstage this season (some of which, such as Pass Over, did not make the nominee list), my opinion holds. The Lehman Trilogy was far and away the most riveting and exciting play to hit Broadway. It will in all likelihood win, and it should.


James Jackson Jr., L Morgan Lee, Antwayn Hopper, John-Andrew Morrison, Jaquel Spivey, Jason Veasey, and John-Michael Lyles star in Michael R. Jackson's A Strange Loop, directed by Stephen Brackett, at Broadway's Lyceum Theatre.
(© Marc J. Franklin)

Best Musical

THE NOMINEES:
Girl From the North Country
MJ
Mr. Saturday Night
Paradise Square
Six
A Strange Loop

Zachary Stewart:
Will win: A Strange Loop
Should win: A Strange Loop

It's original. It's American. It pushes buttons and boundaries in a way that no other Broadway show does right now. A Strange Loop has a lot going for it; and Tony voters, who want to see themselves as part of the force driving the American musical into its next phase, will leap at the chance to support Michael R. Jackson's daring new musical with a Tony Award.

David Gordon:
Will win: A Strange Loop
Should win: A Strange Loop

A Strange Loop's Tony will go very nicely alongside its Pulitzer Prize, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle awards. For Six and MJ, the top prize will be the money-printing factories they build across the country on tour, which is not too shabby, either.

Hayley Levitt:
Will win: A Strange Loop
Should win: Six

Michael R. Jackson's A Strange Loop is coming to the Tonys armed with a Pulitzer Prize and rave reviews that are only a month old. Jackson unabashedly expands the genre of musical theater with his much-accoladed piece — and with it fresh in the critics' minds, it seems he's all but certain to add another trophy to his shelf. Let's not forget, however, the buzz of innovation that Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss's banger-filled Six was riding in on when it was intended to open in March of 2020. It ended up opening in October 2021, receiving the enthusiastic reviews it was always expected to earn. But even as it rides steady with healthy grosses and a thriving fan base, Six may have lost that new-show smell that voters love to reward.

Pete Hempstead:
Will win: A Strange Loop
Should win: A Strange Loop

I really enjoyed MJ, and I walked out of Six feeling like I had had a terrific night of theater, but A Strange Loop stuck with me as the most original musical on Broadway this season. It's a gut-punch that makes you laugh, a riotous carnival that makes you cringe. When something new is done so well, it deserves to be recognized.

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