Tony Award for
Best Book of a Musical
Awarded forBest Book of a Musical
LocationUnited States New York City
Presented byAmerican Theatre Wing The Broadway League
Currently held byMichael R. Jackson for A Strange Loop (2022)

The Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical is awarded to librettists of the spoken, non-sung dialogue, and storyline of a musical play. Eligibility is restricted to works with original narrative framework; plotless revues and revivals are ineligible. This award was originally called the Tony Award for Best Author, until musicals were split off from dramas.

Winners and nominees

  indicates the winner


Year Author Production
3rd Tony Awards
Bella & Samuel Spewack Kiss Me, Kate


Year Author Production
4th Tony Awards
Oscar Hammerstein II & Joshua Logan South Pacific


Year Author Production
16th Tony Awards
Abe Burrows, Willie Gilbert & Jack Weinstock How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
Helen Deutsch & Michael Stewart Carnival!
17th Tony Awards
Larry Gelbart & Burt Shevelove A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum
Lionel Bart Oliver!
Leslie Bricusse & Anthony Newley Stop the World – I Want to Get Off
Neil Simon Little Me
18th Tony Awards
Michael Stewart Hello, Dolly!
Noël Coward & Harry Kurnitz The Girl Who Came to Supper
Timothy Gray & Hugh Martin High Spirits
Joe Masteroff She Loves Me
19th Tony Awards
Joseph Stein Fiddler on the Roof
Jerome Coopersmith Baker Street
Beverley Cross Half a Sixpence
Sidney Michaels Ben Franklin in Paris


Year Author Production
24th Tony Awards
25th Tony Awards
George Furth Company
Robert H. Livingston & Herb Schapiro The Me Nobody Knows
Sherman Yellen The Rothschilds
26th Tony Awards
John Guare & Mel Shapiro Two Gentlemen of Verona
Warren Casey & Jim Jacobs Grease
James Goldman Follies
Melvin Van Peebles Ain't Supposed to Die a Natural Death
27th Tony Awards
Hugh Wheeler A Little Night Music
Micki Grant Don't Bother Me, I Can't Cope
Roger O. Hirson Pippin
Melvin Van Peebles Don't Play Us Cheap
28th Tony Awards
Hugh Wheeler Candide
Michael Bennett Seesaw
Robert Nemiroff & Charlotte Zaltzberg Raisin
29th Tony Awards
James Lee Barrett, Philip Rose & Peter Udell Shenandoah
William F. Brown The Wiz
Gene Curty, Nitra Scharfman & Chuck Strand The Lieutenant
Michael Stewart Mack and Mabel
30th Tony Awards
Nicholas Dante & James Kirkwood Jr. A Chorus Line
Fred Ebb & Bob Fosse Chicago
Alfred Uhry The Robber Bridegroom
John Weidman Pacific Overtures
31st Tony Awards
Thomas Meehan Annie
Vinnette Justine Carroll Your Arms Too Short to Box with God
Michael Feingold & Elisabeth Hauptmann Happy End
Michael Stewart I Love My Wife
32nd Tony Awards
Betty Comden & Adolph Green On the Twentieth Century
Christopher Durang A History of the American Film
Stephen Schwartz Working
Elizabeth Swados Runaways
33rd Tony Awards
Hugh Wheeler Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Jerome Kass Ballroom
Larry L. King & Peter Masterson The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas
Neil Simon They're Playing Our Song


Year Author Production
34th Tony Awards
Tim Rice Evita
Ralph G. Allen & Harry Rigby Sugar Babies
Mark Bramble Barnum
Dick Vosburgh A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine
35th Tony Awards
Peter Stone Woman of the Year
Mark Bramble & Michael Stewart 42nd Street
Mary Kyte Tintypes
Julian More & Monty Norman The Moony Shapiro Songbook
36th Tony Awards
Tom Eyen Dreamgirls
Martin Charnin & Joel Siegel The First
Arthur Kopit Nine
Tim Rice Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
37th Tony Awards
T. S. Eliot Cats
Betty Comden & Adolph Green A Doll's Life
Richard Levinson & William Link Merlin
Timothy S. Mayer & Peter Stone My One and Only
38th Tony Awards
Harvey Fierstein La Cage aux Folles
Charles Blackwell The Tap Dance Kid
James Lapine Sunday in the Park with George
Sybille Pearson Baby
39th Tony Awards
William Hauptman Big River
Barbara Damashek & Molly Newman Quilters
Fay Kanin Grind
Michael Stewart Harrigan 'N Hart
40th Tony Awards
Rupert Holmes The Mystery of Edwin Drood
Betty Comden & Adolph Green Singin' in the Rain
Bob Fosse Big Deal
Jane Iredale Wind in the Willows
41st Tony Awards
Alain Boublil & Claude-Michel Schönberg Les Misérables
Howard Ashman Smile
Stephen Fry, Douglas Furber, Mike Ockrent & L. Arthur Rose Me and My Girl
Joseph Stein Rags
42nd Tony Awards
James Lapine Into the Woods
Lee Breuer The Gospel at Colonus
Barry Harman Romance/Romance
Richard Stilgoe & Andrew Lloyd Webber The Phantom of the Opera
43rd Tony Awards


Year Author Production
44th Tony Awards
Larry Gelbart City of Angels
Luther Davis Grand Hotel
Andrew Lloyd Webber Aspects of Love
Hugh Wheeler Meet Me in St. Louis
45th Tony Awards
Marsha Norman The Secret Garden
Lynn Ahrens Once on This Island
Alain Boublil & Claude-Michel Schönberg Miss Saigon
Peter Stone The Will Rogers Follies
46th Tony Awards
William Finn & James Lapine Falsettos
Ken Ludwig Crazy for You
Clarke Peters Five Guys Named Moe
George C. Wolfe Jelly's Last Jam
47th Tony Awards
Terrence McNally Kiss of the Spider Woman
Peter Kellogg Anna Karenina
Des McAnuff & Pete Townshend The Who's Tommy
Willy Russell Blood Brothers
48th Tony Awards
James Lapine Passion
Walter Bobbie A Grand Night for Singing
Koen van Dijk Cyrano: The Musical
Linda Woolverton Beauty and the Beast
49th Tony Awards
Don Black & Christopher Hampton Sunset Boulevard
50th Tony Awards
Jonathan Larson Rent
Graciela Daniele, Michael John LaChiusa, & Jim Lewis Chronicle of a Death Foretold
Reg E. Gaines Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring in 'Da Funk
John Weidman Big: The Musical
51st Tony Awards
Peter Stone Titanic
Leslie Bricusse Jekyll & Hyde
Cy Coleman, Ira Gasman & David Newman The Life
David Thompson Steel Pier
52nd Tony Awards
Terrence McNally Ragtime
Roger Allers & Irene Mecchi The Lion King
Nan Knighton The Scarlet Pimpernel
Bill Russell Side Show
53rd Tony Awards
Alfred Uhry Parade
Charles Bevel, Lita Gaithers, Randal Myler, Ron Taylor & Dan Wheetman It Ain't Nothin' But the Blues
Walter Bobbie & Dean Pitchford Footloose
Pam Gems Marlene


Year Author Production
54th Tony Awards
Richard Nelson James Joyce's The Dead
Michael John LaChiusa Marie Christine
LaChiusa & George C. Wolfe The Wild Party
John Weidman Contact
55th Tony Awards
Mel Brooks & Thomas Meehan The Producers
John Caird Jane Eyre
Linda Kline & Lonny Price A Class Act
Terrence McNally The Full Monty
56th Tony Awards
Greg Kotis Urinetown
John Guare Sweet Smell of Success
Catherine Johnson Mamma Mia!
Richard Morris & Dick Scanlan Thoroughly Modern Millie
57th Tony Awards
Thomas Meehan & Mark O'Donnell Hairspray
David Henry Hwang Flower Drum Song
Willie Reale A Year with Frog and Toad
Jeremy Sams & Didier Van Cauwelaert Amour
58th Tony Awards
Jeff Whitty Avenue Q
Nick Enright & Martin Sherman The Boy from Oz
Winnie Holzman Wicked
Tony Kushner Caroline, or Change
59th Tony Awards
Rachel Sheinkin The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
Eric Idle Spamalot
Jeffrey Lane Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
Craig Lucas The Light in the Piazza
60th Tony Awards
Bob Martin & Don McKellar The Drowsy Chaperone
Chad Beguelin & Tim Herlihy The Wedding Singer
Marshall Brickman & Rick Elice Jersey Boys
Marsha Norman The Color Purple
61st Tony Awards
Steven Sater Spring Awakening
Heather Hach Legally Blonde
Rupert Holmes & Peter Stone Curtains
Doug Wright Grey Gardens
62nd Tony Awards
Stew Passing Strange
Douglas Carter Beane Xanadu
Quiara Alegría Hudes In the Heights
Thomas Meehan & Mark O'Donnell Cry-Baby
63rd Tony Awards
Lee Hall Billy Elliot the Musical
Hunter Bell [title of show]
David Lindsay-Abaire Shrek the Musical
Brian Yorkey Next to Normal


Year Author Production
64th Tony Awards
Joe DiPietro Memphis
Colin Escott & Floyd Mutrux Million Dollar Quartet
Bill T. Jones & Jim Lewis Fela!
Dick Scanlan & Sherie Rene Scott Everyday Rapture
65th Tony Awards
Trey Parker, Robert Lopez & Matt Stone The Book of Mormon
Douglas Carter Beane, Bill & Cheri Steinkellner Sister Act
David Thompson The Scottsboro Boys
Alex Timbers Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson
66th Tony Awards
Enda Walsh Once
Douglas Carter Beane Lysistrata Jones
Joe DiPietro Nice Work If You Can Get It
Harvey Fierstein Newsies
67th Tony Awards
Dennis Kelly Matilda the Musical
Douglas Carter Beane Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella
Harvey Fierstein Kinky Boots
Joseph Robinette A Christmas Story: The Musical
68th Tony Awards
Robert L. Freedman A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder
Woody Allen Bullets Over Broadway
Chad Beguelin Aladdin
Douglas McGrath Beautiful: The Carole King Musical
69th Tony Awards
Lisa Kron Fun Home
Karey Kirkpatrick & John O'Farrell Something Rotten!
Craig Lucas An American in Paris
Terrence McNally The Visit
70th Tony Awards
Lin-Manuel Miranda Hamilton
Julian Fellowes School of Rock
Steve Martin Bright Star
George C. Wolfe Shuffle Along
71st Tony Awards
Steven Levenson Dear Evan Hansen
Dave Malloy Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812
Danny Rubin Groundhog Day
David Hein & Irene Sankoff Come from Away
72nd Tony Awards
Itamar Moses The Band's Visit
Jennifer Lee Frozen
Tina Fey Mean Girls
Kyle Jarrow SpongeBob SquarePants
73rd Tony Awards
Robert Horn Tootsie
Dominique Morisseau Ain’t Too Proud
Scott Brown & Anthony King Beetlejuice
Anaïs Mitchell Hadestown
Chad Beguelin & Bob Martin The Prom


Year Author Production
74th Tony Awards
Diablo Cody Jagged Little Pill
John Logan Moulin Rouge!
Katori Hall, Frank Ketelaar & Kees Prins Tina: The Tina Turner Musical
Ceremony not held
75th Tony Awards
Michael R. Jackson A Strange Loop
Conor McPherson Girl from the North Country
Lynn Nottage MJ
Billy Crystal, Lowell Ganz & Babaloo Mandel Mr. Saturday Night
Christina Anderson, Craig Lucas & Larry Kirwan Paradise Square

Award records

Nomination records

5 Nominations
4 Nominations
3 Nominations
2 Nominations