The 2016 Tonys Snub 'Hamilton' For 2 Awards, Proving That Even The Most Popular Show Can't Win Them All
Hamilton may be by far the hottest ticket on Broadway, but the show still experienced a few losses on Sunday night. Of its 16 total nominations, Hamilton was snubbed by the Tonys for both the Scenic Design and Best Actress in a Musical categories at the June 12 ceremony. Of course, that's not going to stop huge crowds from forming outside every evening for their "Ham4Ham" performances, or the over 10 months of sold-out shows they have coming. However, when Hamilton lost those two Tonys to the very deserving She Loves Me and The Color Purple's Cynthia Erivo, it proved that this year's awards show wasn't only about Hamilton — even if James Corden joked early in the night that only the commercials wouldn't focus on the hit musical.
Scenic design, which was handed out off-screen, wasn't much of a snub — Hamilton has a minimalist, wooden-themed set design. It does include an impressive spinning dais in the middle of the stage that's put to good effect during the Hamilton/Burr duel, but She Loves Me, the musical that beat Hamilton, has far more elaborate sets, making the loss a minor one. Erivo's emotionally powerful performance as Celie in The Color Purple revival also makes sense — actress Phillipa Soo is wonderful as Eliza Hamilton, but Erivo's performance at the Tony Awards showed off the immense talent she brings to her show.
Even with those unexpected losses for Hamilton, the show still won a great deal of Tony Awards. Out of 16 nominations, the show took home 11 statues for its incredible rewriting of American history through the lens of hip hop. And even though it was only snubbed in two categories, the show's other losses came from when multiple nominees from the show were competing against one another. For example, the show had three nominations for Best Featured Actor in a Musical, but Daveed Diggs took home the trophy over Christopher Jackson and Jonathan Groff.
Lin-Manuel Miranda's reaction to his own loss for playing the lead in Hamilton was, as you would expect, very gracious. Of course, the loss was probably sweetened by not just the two other Tony Awards he took home for his music and lyrics, but the fact that he lost to his costar, Leslie Odom, Jr. The whole cast seemed more than gracious with every victory and defeat, and even with a few losses, this was still Hamilton's night.