NEW YORK (WETM/AP) – ‘Moulin Rouge! The Musical’ walked home with an astounding 10 Tony Awards Sunday night, including the highest honor of best new musical.
But while this year’s Tonys recognized the accomplishments of Broadway’s freshest shows, they were also the shows that had to shut down because of the pandemic. ‘Moulin Rouge!’ actually opened over two years ago.
The stage version of Baz Luhrman’s hyperactive 2001 movie started off-Broadway, at the Emerson Colonial Theatre in Boston in July 2018.
Then a year later, on July 25, 2019, the jukebox adaptation opened for its first Broadway performance a the Al Hirshfeld Theatre.
Sunday night’s Tonys celebrated the shows that were shuttered by the COVID-19 pandemic, mourned Broadway’s fallen, and looked forward to welcoming audiences back.
The show about the goings-on in a turn-of-the-century Parisian nightclub, updated with tunes like “Single Ladies” and “Firework” alongside the big hit “Lady Marmalade,” won 10 Tonys. The record is 12, won by “The Producers.”
Producer Carmen Pavlovic struck a philosophical note in her acceptance speech, sharing the award with all the shows that struggled in the past 18-month shutdown.
“It feels a little odd to me to be talking about one show as best musical. I feel that every show of last season deserves to be thought of as the best musical,” she said. “The shows that opened, the shows that closed not to return, the shows that nearly opened. And of course, the shows that paused and are fortunate enough to be reborn — best musical is all of those shows.”