The Tony Awards recognize only the apex of musical and theatre genius. And since it’s founding 7 decades ago, The Tonys have continued to exemplify only the greatest.
The 1964 comedy/drama film My Fair Lady is an excellent example of this, timeless in the art of theatre. The film, originally starring Audrey Hepburn, was adapted from the musical of the same name by George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion. As a critical success, it only continued to strike public consciousness as a musical film in its prime, and My Fair Lady has now found its way to The Tonys.
The award show recognizes Norbert Leo Butz (Big Fish, Dead Accounts, Bloodline) as the recipient for featured actor in the 2018 musical rendition of My Fair Lady. Here’s what he had to say:
Yeah, yesterday I was dead asleep. I had to be woken up by the phone. And I actually told myself this year I was gonna try to watch – you know, your nerves are up, you know – blah, blah blah; but my 7-year-old woke up in the middle of the night with fever and sore throat and was up all night so I was just exhausted and totally forgot about the nominations. We were up from like 3am till 7am. Really sick kid, just strep throat. And then it was just totally out of my mind, which was like the benefit of having kids, you know because all this stress is for nothing. Anyway, so my manager called and that was lovely news.
I get asked that question a lot about what my dance background is and, you know, it’s as mysterious to me – I have always loved to dance. I’ve always been a mover. My father was a dancer as a kid before he moved into sports, but like a trained kid dancer. He – I’m one of 11 kids – I have 7 brothers. He tried to get us all in dance class; none of us would go. I regret it so much … And so I was kinda thrust into this musical, theatre world and I just gleaned from the dancers around me. I have great choreographers and they give me stuff, and what I lack in technique they let me kinda do my own thing. And that’s the only way I could describe it. I am a dancer. I have zero training, but I am the guy who, at every wedding, every school dance, every time I’m in my house in my underwear with a brush in my hand, I always am dancing.
The Tony Awards premiere on June 10th.