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Predictions: Which Musical Actors Are Going to Win a Tony in 2022?

Our critics predict the winners of the 2022 Tony Awards.

Voting for the 2022 Tony Awards is now open, and the winners will be announced in a live televised ceremony on Sunday, June 12. While we wait, TheaterMania's critics have some predictions, which we will be rolling out all week. First off, here are our predictions for the four musical acting categories:

Matt Doyle sings "Getting Married Today" in the Broadway revival of Company.
(© Matthew Murphy)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical

THE NOMINEES:
Matt Doyle, Company
Sidney DuPont, Paradise Square
Jared Grimes, Funny Girl
John-Andrew Morrison, A Strange Loop
A.J. Shively, Paradise Square

Zachary Stewart:
Will win: Matt Doyle
Should win: Jared Grimes

I suspect Doyle will take home the trophy for his unforgettable rendition of "Getting Married Today," one of two showstoppers in the Broadway revival of Company (for the second, see the next category). However, Grimes receives just as much adoration for his ebullient dance in Funny Girl — and he represents that show's only shot at a Tony.

Hayley Levitt:
Will win: Matt Doyle
Should win: Matt Doyle

Matt Doyle has been flying under the Broadway radar for years and his Jamie puts on display all the comedy, pathos, and vocal talent he's always had to offer. And as the first groom to sing the breathless "Getting Married Today" on Broadway, he gives a definitive performance.

David Gordon:
Will win: Matt Doyle
Should win: John-Andrew Morrison

This statue has been engraved with Matt Doyle's for two years now, and I'll be very happy if he takes it home. But it's one song, the same way Jared Grimes's amazing tapping is just one facet of Funny Girl. In terms of a full arc and journey, I'd pick John-Andrew Morrison as Usher's religious and homophobic mother in A Strange Loop. The astonishing emotional switchover in his song "Periodically" is just as good, if not better, than Doyle's tongue-twisting and Grimes's fascinating rhythms.


Is Patti LuPone a lock to win a 2022 Tony Award?
(© Matthew Murphy)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical

THE NOMINEES:
Jeannette Bayardelle, Girl From the North Country
Shoshana Bean, Mr. Saturday Night
Jayne Houdyshell, The Music Man
L Morgan Lee, A Strange Loop
Patti LuPone, Company
Jennifer Simard, Company

Zachary Stewart:
Will win: Patti LuPone
Should win: Patti LuPone

The four minutes in which Patti LuPone sings "The Ladies Who Lunch," seemingly holding the entire audience within her martini glass, are magical — reason enough to see Company, and to come back to Broadway. She's a lock for this category, and rightfully so.

Hayley Levitt:
Will win: Patti LuPone
Should win: Jennifer Simard

Patti LuPone was made to play Joanne, and her "Ladies Who Lunch" is everything we dreamed it would be. That being said, Jennifer Simard is one of Broadway's greatest musical comedy performers, and she's often overlooked because she makes it look so effortless. Simard may be the best Sarah Company has ever seen, but the character, unfortunately, doesn't get to shove a vodka stinger in the audience's face and demand that they rise.

David Gordon:
Will win: Patti LuPone
Should win: Patti LuPone

This one has been Patti LuPone's to lose since "Ladies Who Lunch" was first written.


Myles Frost is in the running for the 2022 Tony for Lead Actor in a Musical for his performance in MJ.
(© Matthew Murphy)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical

THE NOMINEES:
Billy Crystal, Mr. Saturday Night
Myles Frost, MJ
Hugh Jackman, The Music Man
Rob McClure, Mrs. Doubtfire
Jaquel Spivey, A Strange Loop

Zachary Stewart:
Will win: Jaquel Spivey
Should win: Myles Frost

My guess is that Spivey, who is making an incredible, vulnerable, made-for-the-history-books Broadway debut, will surf to a Tony Award on a tidal wave of love for A Strange Loop. But for my money, Myles Frost is giving the more impressive performance, channelling Michael Jackson every night to perform the pop star's songs more frequently than the real MJ ever did.

Hayley Levitt:
Will win: Jaquel Spivey
Should win: Jaquel Spivey

The race this year is between Jaquel Spivey of A Strange Loop and Myles Frost of MJ — both newcomers making auspicious Broadway debuts under the age of 25. While both find themselves at the center of demanding musicals, I think the edge should (and will) go to Spivey, who carries his show both physically and emotionally. It's a performance that will resonate with audiences for a long while, and I believe it will be commemorated as such.

David Gordon:
Will win: Jaquel Spivey or Myles Frost
Should win: Rob McClure

Jaquel Spivey and Myles Frost are giving performances for the ages in their respective shows. Hugh Jackman and Billy Crystal are lucky to be nominated. My sentimental choice is Rob McClure, not because I loved Mrs. Doubtfire, which I did not, but because he elevated a bad show into something worth seeing. And he's the nicest guy to boot.


Joaquina Kalukango is a favorite to win the Tony Award for Lead Actress in a Musical.
(© Julieta Cervantes)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical

THE NOMINEES:
Sharon D Clarke, Caroline, or Change
Carmen Cusack, Flying Over Sunset
Sutton Foster, The Music Man
Joaquina Kalukango, Paradise Square
Mare Winningham, Girl From the North Country

Zachary Stewart:
Will win: Joaquina Kalukango
Should win: Joaquina Kalukango

She was robbed of a Tony last year for her performance in Slave Play, but even if that weren't true, Kalukango is bringing audiences to their feet in Paradise Square. She deserves the Tony for this performance, and it seems almost inconceivable that she won't get it.

Hayley Levitt:
Will win: Joaquina Kalukango
Should win: Sharon D Clarke

I'm loathe to distinguish will vs. should in this category. Joaquina Kalukango gives a showstopping performance in Paradise Square and manages to turn some shaky material into gold (I also believe Kalukango should have won in 2021 when she was nominated for Slave Play, for what it's worth). And yet, I still can't shake Sharon D Clarke's extraordinary performance in Caroline, or Change, a beautiful revival that closed back in January and runs the risk of being forgotten. Clarke already has an Olivier Award for her portrayal of Caroline Thibodeaux, so she's set for hardware. But I wouldn't be mad if we threw another trophy her way.

David Gordon:
Will win: Joaquina Kalukango
Should win: Joaquina Kalukango

I will be very happy when Joaquina Kalukango takes home her Tony on June 12. Her eleven o'clock number is so good she earns a standing ovation every single night. I just wish there was more to the role than that.

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