Three alumni are nominated for Tony Awards

Three alumni  – including one who currently serves on the faculty – are nominated for Tony Awards for their work on some of Broadway’s most popular shows during a season cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The nominees are Lindsay Jones (Drama ’92, current adjunct faculty), Mary-Louise Parker (Drama ’86) and Riccardo Hernández, who studied in the scenic design graduate program in the School of Design & Production (D&P). Two additional alumni worked on shows that are nominated for best musical.

UNCSA has ties to the four most nominated productions: “Jagged Little Pill,” with 15; “Moulin Rouge!” with 14; “Slave Play,” with 12; and “Tina: The Tina Turner Musical,” with 12.

Jones, who currently teaches sound design in D&P, received two nominations: best original score and best sound design for “Slave Play.”  He is the faculty adviser for the sound design of UNCSA’s upcoming radio play of Shakespeare’s “Henry V.”

A celebrated composer and sound designer for theater, film and television, Jones is the recipient of two Ovation Awards for his work in Los Angeles theater, seven Joseph Jefferson Awards for work in Chicago theater, and two awards from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Producers (ASCAP). His film compositions have been heard at festivals around the world, including Cannes, South By Southwest and Slamdance, and his work for television has aired on HBO, Bravo, Sundance Channel, IFC, Telemundo and PBS.

At this moment Broadway may be dark longer than it ever has, but I’m praying it’s just waiting for us and I have my own ghost light on and burning bright until those stage doors open again. I’m longing for my theatre family but grateful we have today to connect and that I can celebrate my Sound Inside collaborators as well. Thank you for your faith in us. I can speak for the entire theatre community when I say we cannot wait to tread the boards again.

Mary-Louise Parker, Playbill, Oct. 15, 2020

Parker is nominated as best actress for “The Sound Inside,” which received six nominations. She won a Tony in 2001 for best actress in “Proof,” both the Emmy and Golden Globe in 2004 as best supporting actress in the miniseries “Angels in America,” and the Golden Globe in 2007 as best actress in “Weeds.”  She was nominated for Emmy Awards for “The West Wing” and “The Robber Bride” and has been nominated many times for additional Golden Globe, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, Screen Actors Guild, Satellite, and People’s Choice awards.

She was set to appear this year in the Broadway production of “How I Learned to Drive” in a role she originated off-Broadway in 1997. The play is expected to open in 2021, when Broadway resumes productions.

Hernández is nominated for best scenic design for the musical “Jagged Little Pill.” He is the previous winner of a Drama Desk Award for set design and an Obie Award for sustained excellence of set design.

Alumni connections to best musical nominees include Paloma Garcia-Lee (H.S. Drama ’08), who performed in the ensemble for “Moulin Rouge!”; and Lisa Renkel (D&P ’15) who worked on the projections for “Tina: The Tina Turner Musical.”

The 74th annual Tony Awards ceremony will be held virtually at a date to be announced. It will honor a Broadway season that ended abruptly when theaters went dark on March 12 as COVID-19 began to spread rapidly in New York City. The Broadway League and American Theatre Wing, presenters of the Tony Awards, determined a Feb. 19 eligibility cut-off, leaving 18 total productions the running.

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October 16, 2020