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Patrick Stewart (TNG: Picard) today received a Tony Award nomination for Best Performance By a Leading Actor in a Play, for his performance in Macbeth, currently playing on Broadway. The actor has received a number of previous theater awards and nominations for Macbeth (and previous plays), but this is his first Tony nomination.
Big news for Shakespeare fans – Stewart elated
Even though Shakespeare is often shunned by the Tonys, Macbeth garnered a total of six nominations, including Best Revival of a Play as well as Best Performance By a Leading Actress for Stewart’s co-star Kate Fleetwood.
Stewart told Playbill:
It feels so good! This is a primo nomination for a stage actor, and for a British stage actor to be nominated on Broadway is about as good as it can get. So it’s a wonderful morning. This is quite something for a show that started out in a 200-seat studio theatre on the South Coast of England. I was told that, if I were nominated, I would be the first actor in the history of the Tony Awards to be nominated for this role. That’s amazing. I don’t think any production of Macbeth has been nominated before.
Stewart has some stiff competition, going up against Ben Daniel (Les Liaisons Dangereuses), Laurence Fishburne (Thurgood), Mark Rylance (Boeing-Boeing), and Rufus Sewell (Rock ‘n’ Roll). A full list of nominees available at the official Tony Award site.
UPDATED: EW Interview with Patrick Stewart + talks Abrams Trek
Entertainment Weekly just put up a new interview with Stewart, here are a coupe of excerpts.
On being nominated
EW: I was surprised to realize this is actually your first time being nominated for a Tony. Are you surprised it’s taken this long?
Stewart: There have been a couple of disappointments in the past, yeah. But I’m not surprised. At awards time, you just have got to be as philosophical as possible. I’ve won, I’ve lost, I’ve been ignored, you know — I’ve run the whole gamut of experiences of awards! But this morning is a very, very special morning. It’s always been a dream of mine to have a Tony nomination. It is the premier theater award, and for English actors, of course, it has a very special meaning.
Stewart looking forward to Abrams Trek
EW: Are you looking forward to seeing the new Star Trek film that’s coming out next year?
Stewart: Oh, I am! Yes, looking forward to it very much. And I know nothing about it.
EW: Have the producers of that film been in touch with you at all?
Stewart: No, no, no, no, no, no, no. It has nothing to do with The Next Generation at all.
Stewart also talked to EW about his upcoming performance of Hamlet with David Tennant (Doctor Who) and a secret theater project to follow. On that followup, Stewart would only say it was with “an actor I’ve wanted to do something with for a long time.”
Stewart and Whoopi together again…and again
Stewart will find out if he wins at the 2008 Tony Awards on June 15 at Radio City Music Hall. The show is hosted by Whoopi Goldberg (TNG’s Guinnan) and will be broadcast on CBS. Stewart will be seen even sooner with Goldberg, when he is the guest on The View Thursday.
Stewart Talks Macbeth
The NY Post has put up a new backstage video interview (conducted before the Tony nominations) with Stewart.