71st Tony Awards
Official poster
DateJune 11, 2017
LocationRadio City Music Hall, Manhattan, New York City
Hosted byKevin Spacey
Most awardsDear Evan Hansen (6)
Most nominationsNatasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (12)
Television/radio coverage
Viewership6.0 million[1]
Produced byRicky Kirshner
Glenn Weiss
Directed byGlenn Weiss
← 70th · Tony Awards · 72nd →

The 71st Annual Tony Awards were held on June 11, 2017, to recognize achievement in Broadway productions during the 2016–17 season. The ceremony was held at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, and was broadcast live by CBS.[2] Kevin Spacey served as host.[3]

The musical Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 led the nominations with 12, while the play with the most nominations was A Doll's House, Part 2, with eight.[4] At the ceremony, Dear Evan Hansen won six awards, including Best Musical, becoming the production with the most wins of the season. 23-year-old Ben Platt, who played the title character, became the youngest solo winner for Best Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical. 21-year-old Eva Noblezada received her first nomination for Best Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical for her Broadway debut as Kim in Miss Saigon, becoming one of the youngest nominees in Best Actress in a Musical category. The Bette Midler-led revival of Hello, Dolly! won four awards, and The Great Comet won two. The productions of plays Indecent, The Little Foxes, and Oslo each won two awards.[5]

The ceremony received mixed reviews, with many criticizing the performance of Spacey as host. Due to the sexual misconduct allegations against Spacey, the producers announced that it would not be submitted for the 70th Primetime Emmy Awards.[6] However, the show did receive a nomination for Outstanding Lighting Design / Lighting Direction for a Variety Special.[7]


Shows that opened on Broadway during the 2016–2017 season before April 27, 2017, were eligible for consideration.[8]


Awards events


The Tony Award nominations were announced on May 2, 2017, by Jane Krakowski and Christopher Jackson.[8][10]

The musical Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 garnered 12 nominations, becoming the most-nominated show of the season. The revival of Hello, Dolly! earned 10 nominations, the musical Dear Evan Hansen earned nine, and the new play A Doll's House, Part 2 earned eight. New musicals Come from Away and Groundhog Day each earned seven nominations, as did the new play Oslo.[4]

Other events

The annual Meet the Nominees Press Reception took place on May 3, 2017, at the Sofitel New York Hotel.[11] The annual Nominees Luncheon took place on May 23, 2017, at the Rainbow Room.[12] A cocktail party was held on June 5, 2017, at the Sofitel New York Hotel to celebrate the season's Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre and Special Award recipients.[13]



The ceremony's presenters included:[14][15]


The following shows and performers performed on the ceremony's telecast:[16][17]

Non-competitive awards

The 2017 Tony Honors for Excellence were awarded to general managers Nina Lannan and Alan Wasser.[18] Actor James Earl Jones received the season's Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement.[19] The 2017 Isabelle Stevenson Award was awarded to Baayork Lee, "for her commitment to future generations of artists through her work with the National Asian Artists Project and theatre education programs around the world."[20] A special Tony Award for Sound Design [21] was awarded to Gareth Fry and Pete Malkin for The Encounter, following the removal of the competitive sound design awards in 2014. The season's Excellence in Theatre Education Award was awarded to drama teacher Rachel Harry of Hood River Valley High School in Hood River, OR.[22][23]

Winners and nominees

Sources: Playbill;[24] The New York Times[25]

Best Play Best Musical
Best Revival of a Play Best Revival of a Musical
Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play
Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical
Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play
Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical
Best Book of a Musical Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre
Best Scenic Design of a Play Best Scenic Design of a Musical
Best Costume Design of a Play Best Costume Design of a Musical
Best Lighting Design of a Play Best Lighting Design of a Musical
Best Direction of a Play Best Direction of a Musical
Best Choreography Best Orchestrations

∞ This marks Greenwood's 21st Tony Award nomination and first competitive win.

‡ The award is presented to the producer(s) of the musical or play.[26]

Awards and nominations per production

Production Nominations Awards
Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 12 2
Hello, Dolly! 10 4
Dear Evan Hansen 9 6
A Doll's House, Part 2 8 1
Come from Away 7 1
Groundhog Day 7 0
Oslo 7 2
Jitney 6 1
The Little Foxes 6 2
Falsettos 5 0
War Paint 4 0
Indecent 3 2
Present Laughter 3 1
Sweat 3 0
Anastasia 2 0
Bandstand 2 1
The Front Page 2 0
Miss Saigon 2 0
Six Degrees of Separation 2 0
The Price 1 0
The Glass Menagerie 1 0
Heisenberg 1 0
Holiday Inn 1 0
The Play That Goes Wrong 1 1
The Present 1 0

Individuals with multiple nominations


The show received a mixed reception from media publications. On Metacritic, the ceremony has a weighted average score of 53 out of 100, based on 6 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[27] The Hollywood Reporter columnist David Rooney remarked, "Spacey is a brilliant actor, but warmth and humility are perhaps not his strongest suits. So opening on the defensive, with a messy mashup of songs from current-season musicals that he repurposed to head off any eventual criticism of his hosting performance, started the show on a strained note."[28] The New York Times theatre critic Neil Genzlinger commented, "Sunday night's broadcast of Broadway's annual celebration of itself had trouble figuring out what to do with Kevin Spacey, the evening's host, making use of him in ways that ranged from torturous (the opening number) to tolerable (he does pretty good Johnny Carson and Bill Clinton impressions). It fared far better when it was about the work being honored and the people who did it."[29] Cynthia Littleton from Variety wrote, "The biggest shortcoming was host Kevin Spacey, who just didn't deliver the same kind of engaging effort as his recent predecessors. The contrast was especially sharp against last year's emcee."[30]

The Guardian columnist Alexis Soloski wrote, "The House of Cards actor offered outdated Johnny Carson impressions, a Bobby Darin number and a misfiring gag about Hillary Clinton's emails on a night of occasional shock and unforgivable schtick."[31] IndieWire theatre critic Charles Isherwood commented, "Full of allusions to previous hosts (Neil Patrick Harris, James Corden, Hugh Jackman), it seemed to drag on forever — and was not particularly enlivened by guest appearances by Stephen Colbert and Whoopi Goldberg. Perhaps funny to those in the know, it could only have been mystifying to a wider audience."[32] In addition, television critic Robert Lloyd of the Los Angeles Times remarked, "Kevin Spacey was the somewhat surprising — though certainly not unqualified — host of the 71st running of the Broadway theater-honoring Tony Awards, broadcast Sunday night from New York's Radio City Music Hall."[33]


The ceremony averaged a Nielsen 4.7 ratings/11 share,[34] and was watched by 6 million viewers.[35] The ratings was a 31 percent decrease from previous ceremony's viewership of 8.7 million, becoming the lowest since 2012.[36]

In Memoriam

Broadway actors Justin Guarini, Kevin Smith Kirkwood, Okieriete Onaodowan, David Abeles, and Chuck Cooper performed Boyz II Men's "It's So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday" as images of theatre personalities who died in the past year were shown in the following order.[37]

See also


  1. ^ Mitovich, Matt Webb (June 12, 2017). "Ratings: Tony Awards Drop vs. 2016's Hamilton-Fueled 15-Year High". TVLine. Retrieved June 12, 2017.
  2. ^ Viagas, Robert. "Breaking News: Tony Awards Will Return to Radio City Music Hall", Playbill, January 12, 2017
  3. ^ McPhee, Ryan. "Kevin Spacey Will Host the 2017 Tony Awards" Playbill, April 18, 2017
  4. ^ a b Kelley, Seth. "Tony Nominations Announced: Full List of 2017 Nominees", Variety, May 2, 2017, accessed June 11, 2017
  5. ^ "2017 Tony awards winners: full list". The Guardian. 12 June 2017. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  6. ^ Evans, Greg (July 12, 2018). "Kevin Spacey Breaks Up Emmy's Long Romance With Tony". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 18, 2018.
  7. ^ "2018 Emmy Awards Nominations" (PDF). Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
  8. ^ a b "Calendar" Archived 2016-05-30 at the Wayback Machine, TonyAwards.com, December 13, 2016
  9. ^ Wontorek, Paul. "Exclusive: Jake Gyllenhaal, Annaleigh Ashford & Sunday in the Park with George Won't Compete in 2017 Tony Awards Race", Broadway.com, February 3, 2017
  10. ^ "Christopher Jackson & Jane Krakowski to Announce 2017 Tony Award Nominations". Broadway.com. Retrieved 2017-04-03.
  11. ^ "Meet the 2017 Tony Nominees | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-05-03.
  12. ^ "Inside the Annual Pre-Tonys Luncheon at the Rainbow Room". Vogue. Retrieved 2017-05-27.
  13. ^ "Cheers to the 2017 Tony Awards: Inside the Honors Cocktail Party | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  14. ^ Lefkowitz, Andy (May 31, 2017). "Tina Fey, Josh Gad, Stephen Colbert & More to Appear on 2017 Tony Awards". Broadway Buzz. Broadway.com. Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  15. ^ "Lin-Manuel Miranda, Cynthia Erivo & More Set to Appear on the 2017 Tony Awards". Broadway Buzz. Broadway.com. June 6, 2017. Retrieved 2017-06-06.
  16. ^ Amiri, Farnoush (June 11, 2017). "Tonys: Kevin Spacey Spoofs 'Dear Evan Hansen,' 'Sunset Boulevard' in Opening Medley". The Hollywood Reporter. Eldridge Industries. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
  17. ^ McPhee, Ryan; Gewirtzman, David (June 12, 2017). "Watch the Musical Performances From the 2017 Tony Awards". Playbill. TotalTheater. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
  18. ^ Clement, Olivia. "Nina Lannan and Alan Wasser Will Receive 2017 Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre", Playbill, April 20, 2017
  19. ^ BWW News Desk. "Legendary Actor James Earl Jones to Receive Lifetime Achievement Tony Award". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 2017-04-27.
  20. ^ Gans, Andrew. "Baayork Lee Named Recipient of 2017 Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award", Playbill, April 25, 2017
  21. ^ "Two Sound Designers for The Encounter Will Receive Special Tony Awards | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-07-19.
  22. ^ University, Carnegie Mellon. "Theatre Education Award - CMU & the Tony Awards - Carnegie Mellon University". www.cmu.edu. Retrieved 2021-09-06.
  23. ^ "The Excellence in Theatre Education Award from the Tony Awards and Carnegie Mellon University". www.tonyawards.com. Retrieved 2021-09-06.
  24. ^ "2017 Tony Award Nominations: The Great Comet and Hello, Dolly! Lead the Pack | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
  25. ^ Paulson, Michael (2017-05-02). "2017 Tony Awards: 'Great Comet' Leads With 12 Nominations". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-05-02.
  26. ^ "The Tony Awards – - Category by Category" Archived 2017-03-08 at the Wayback Machine tonyawards.com, accessed June 6, 2016
  27. ^ "The Tony Awards: Season 71". Metacritic. Retrieved June 17, 2017.
  28. ^ Rooney, David (June 11, 2017). "The 71st Annual Academy Awards: TV Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on March 1, 2016. Retrieved June 11, 2017.
  29. ^ Genzlinger, Neil (June 12, 2017). "An Uneven Night for Kevin Spacey as Tonys Host". The New York Times. Archived from the original on May 12, 2018. Retrieved June 12, 2017.
  30. ^ Littleton, Cynthia (June 11, 2017). "TV Review: '71st Annual Tony Awards'". Variety. Archived from the original on August 17, 2016. Retrieved June 12, 2017.
  31. ^ Soloski, Alexis (June 12, 2017). "House of bad jokes: Kevin Spacey wins the Tony award for worst host". The Guardian. Archived from the original on August 25, 2016.
  32. ^ Isherwood, Charles (June 12, 2017). "The 71st Tony Awards Review: Charles Isherwood on Why the Awards Ceremony That Celebrates Great Theater Was So Off-Key". IndieWire. Archived from the original on March 1, 2016. Retrieved June 12, 2017.
  33. ^ Lloyd, Robert (June 11, 2017). "Song-and-dance man Kevin Spacey's Tony Awards was sweet, corny and touching". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on February 29, 2016. Retrieved June 11, 2017.
  34. ^ Joe Otterson (June 12, 2017). "TV Ratings: Tony Awards Tumble Without 'Hamilton'". Variety. Retrieved June 13, 2017.
  35. ^ Nellie Andreeva (June 12, 2017). "Tony Awards Ratings Fall, Stanley Cup Finals Decider Rises, Game Shows Return". Deadline. Retrieved June 13, 2017.
  36. ^ Michael O'Connell (June 12, 2017). "TV Ratings: Tonys Lose Steam Without 'Hamilton' Buzz". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 13, 2017.
  37. ^ Platon, Adelle (June 11, 2017). "Justin Guarini Helps Pay Tribute to Late Theater Legends Performing Boyz II Men Classic at Tony Awards 2017". Billboard.