Updated 06/08/2009 01:19 PM
"Billy Elliot" Sweeps 63rd Annual Tony Awards
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From brand-new musicals to classic revivals, the best of Broadway was honored Sunday night at the 63rd annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall.
The musical about a British coal miners son who longs to be a ballet dancer swept the night.
"Billy Elliot, the Musical" took home nine awards, including Best Musical, Best Direction of a Musical, Best Choreography, and Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical.
The three boys who play Billy became the first trio to ever win a Tony Award. David Alvarez, Trent Kowalik, and Kiril Kulish share the Best Actor in a Musical award.
"Next to Normal's" Alice Ripley won for Best Actress in a Musical. The show also won for Best Original Score. Composer Tom Kitt and lyricist Brian Yorkey accepted the award.
"Hair," the favorite to win Best Revival of a Musical, took home the prize. The show went up against "West Side Story", "Guys and Dolls" and "Pal Joey."
"I think [the show] is speaking to people of all ages and that's what's so incredible," said "Hair" director Diane Paulus. "Young people, who feel like it's their time for change, to have hope again, to express their beliefs and believe they can make change, and to generations who lived that, in the 1960s, who are saying, 'you know, we were part of something that we deserve to be proud of.' So I think that's the appeal of the show."
The Best Play award went to "God of Carnage," which also picked up the Best Actress award for Marcia Gay Harden. "God of Carnage" beat out "Dividing the Estate", "Reasons to be Pretty" and "33 Variations" for the honor.
"This is a horse race and I don't believe in it, because I think everyone is deserving," said Harden. "But I'm a hypocrite, because I'm proud to stand here holding this.
"The Norman Conquests" won Best Revival of a Play. Nominated in the category were also "Joe Turner's Come and Gone", "Mary Stuart", and "Waiting for Godot."
Also receiving honors this evening were Karen Olivo for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her role as Anita in "West Side Story" and Geoffrey Rush for Best Actor in a Play for his part in "Exit the King."
The awards for Best Featured Actor in a Play and Best Featured Actress in a Play went to Angela Landsbury for "Blithe Spirit" and Roger Robinson for "Joe Turner's Come and Gone."
For Best Special Theatrical Event, the legendary Liza Minelli won for her limited-engagement concert at the Palace Theatre. Minelli says she always gives it her all.
"It's a new audience every night," she said. "It has to be the first time every time."
For a complete list of winners, go to the official Tony website.