Tony Awards Nominations Reactions: Tina Fey, Nathan Lane And Nominees From ‘Mean Girls’, ‘Harry Potter’, ‘A Band’s Visit’ Weigh In

Tina Fey Mean Girls

The 2018 Tony Award nominations this morning spread the honors around, with Mean Girls and SpongeBob SquarePants leading the field with 12 nominations apiece.

Tied with 11 nominations each were The Band’s Visit and revivals of Angels in America and Carousel. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child topped all original plays with 10 nominations.

The following is a sampling of reactions from select nominees:

Tina Fey and Jeff Richmond, Mean Girls

“We are honestly too excited and too proud of our ensemble to make a joke about this. We are are so grateful to be embraced by the Broadway community in this way and that we get to work together twenty-five hours a day with the same amount of excitement as our young cast. This is new for all of us.”

Lorne Michaels, producer, Mean Girls

“If you had told me when I was in high school that someday I was going to get a Tony nomination I would have thought, ‘Fantastic. Lead Actor in a Musical.’ Still, I’m thrilled. It’s been a joy to work with this cast and creative team and we hope we’ve made Stuart Thompson proud.”

Nathan Lane, Angels in America

“I am thrilled to be a part of the most nominated revival in Tony history. Just to be in this company of extraordinary actors under the direction of the brilliant Marianne Elliott in Tony Kushner’s masterwork has been an incredible gift. So today is more than just the proverbial icing on the cake, it’s the entire dessert tray at the Four Seasons. I feel very happy and grateful and a little bloated.”

Jamie Parker, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

“This is like some excruciating teen-aged day dream that you’d be mortified if anyone found out about it even 25 years later. I’m literally the only person here I’ve never heard of. Tonys, what the hell? Thanks, by the way. That was very lovely of you. Let me say also to the Tony nominators thanks for acknowledging every possible corner of the production they could. The whole team is world class and every last one of them deserves a late night special of their own. Thanks for recognizing them as a whole group, I wouldn’t want to be on this ride with anyone else.”

Sonia Friedman & Colin Callender, producers, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

“We are thrilled that the play, our incredible creative team and actors have been recognized in the Tony nominations – this production has been such a wonderfully collaborative experience from the very beginning, and these nominations are a reflection of the extraordinary and inspired artistry of everybody involved in the making of this production, both on and off stage.”

John Tiffany, director, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

“I’m over the moon that so many of the brilliant artists who I have had the great fortune of collaborating with on Harry Potter and the Cursed Child have been recognized by the Broadway League and the American Theater Wing.”

Jordan Roth, Jujamcyn majority owner and producer, Angels in America

“I am still processing this, but my heart is leaping and dancing and singing. I am so extraordinarily grateful to everyone who gave themselves in service of this piece. How extraordinary for all of the nominees to have been recognized. … Twenty-five years ago, we thought the play was about a prophecy. It turns out the play was the prophecy and it’s all coming true.”

Ashley Park, Mean Girls

“I am still speechless. Every ounce of me is dizzy with gratitude. I think I stumbled into every tree and fence in Central Park this morning… and there are more than you’d think. Wholly honored by this recognition from a community that I so cherish being a part of.  I already feel so lucky to be surrounded by such joyful energy each day on our stage and I am just so SO excited for my Mean Girls family and team! I was moved to tears by the messages of genuine love and congratulations from those who have been a part of my journey these past few years.  It means so much to me to be included in this way, amongst an incredible and diverse group of women, I mean Gretchen Wieners is fully stunned that she gets to sit with Dame Dolittle, Carrie, Donna, and Aunt Nettie… SO FETCH!”

Hailey Kilgore, Once on this Island

“This morning was a morning that I swore I would treat like any other. I looked out the window and thought to myself, “I’m just gonna take a walk.” Cue airpods, fresh air, and Ariana Grande. 8:44 AM my phone rings. On the other end my beautiful parents screaming, crying, laughing … all of it! My whole world was rocked. I literally ran to the nearest tree and held my hand to it. The initial thing that drew me to Ti Moune’s story was the sense of love and community. Not only among the people who raised her, but the people who raised her up on her journey. In this journey of mine, I have been so lucky to have a village of people to teach me the importance of hard work, perseverance, asking questions, and most importantly to love. Humbled. Honored. Grateful.”

Taylor Louderman, Mean Girls

“I remember watching the Tony Awards as a young girl thinking I would never get that far, but in my heart wanting so badly to perform on Broadway and defy the expectations of my small town. I am so grateful to be included in this category. It is a dream.”

Itamar Moses, The Band’s Visit

“It’s a huge honor to be nominated but I’m also just thrilled over the nominations for so many people from throughout our company and creative team because the open-hearted collaboration amongst everyone involved is really what made the show what it is, this mysterious thing greater than the sum of its parts. Which is appropriate because, of course, the surprising things we can learn when we welcome another point of view into our hearts and minds is a big part of what The Band’s Visit is about.”

Grey Henson, Mean Girls

“In true New York fashion, I stepped on a roach in my apartment this morning and then found out one of my dreams came true. I couldn’t be happier to be a part of this show. Truly too gay/overwhelmed to function.”

Bartlett Sher, director, My Fair Lady

“I am genuinely excited for our show. My Fair Lady was the largest undertaking I have ever attempted at Lincoln Center Theatre.  It was a huge risk and I felt very fortunate to share this work with such an astonishing group of artists.  People don’t realize how hard it is to make these musicals, and how intense the pressure is, and how close a company can become. So the recognition from the Tony Awards is well deserved for all us, and it feels especially good because it acknowledges profoundly all of our commitment and hard work.”

Harry Hadden-Paton, My Fair Lady

“Thank you to the Tony nominators, André Bishop and Lincoln Center Theater, and to our director Bartlett Sher for believing in me. I truly could not have imagined a better and more welcoming Broadway experience and am continuously grateful to our cast, crew, and to my family for their amazing dedication to the work, and support. Not-to-mention the wonderful and loyal theatergoers who make this job such an absolute pleasure. Cheers to all the nominees.”

LaChanze, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical

“I am so thrilled and honored to be nominated this year for outstanding leading actress in a musical for the Tony Awards. And I am very grateful to be in the category of women that have been selected who are all divas in their own right, so I celebrate this moment with them all.”

Ken Davenport and Hunter Arnold, Once On This Island

“We  gathered together a team of brilliant creatives and performing artists  led by the visionary talent Michael Arden, who took a chance on the gifted Hailey Kilgore for the role of Ti Moune and took an entirely new look at the casting of other major roles. Once On This Island has always been a beloved Broadway underdog. The small feisty musical that won the hearts of audiences in the 1990s has been reinvented and is finding a new generation of fans who have  embraced Michael’s revolutionary interpretation of a new vision for the island. We could not be more proud that it all came together in this stunning and powerful production.”

David Morse, Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh

“Sometimes you feel like, maybe you’re setting yourself up. My wife said to me last night, ‘You’re not going to get nominated.’ And I thought, OK, maybe we should not believe in it. But this is such a great honor for the whole production. … [Director George C. Wolfe] shortened the play and really heightened the affection for these characters. There’s a real life to them that I’ve really never experienced before. The humor is really coming from these really unique characters that O’Neill wrote and adored.”

Condola Rashad, Saint Joan

“A huge thank you to the American Theater Wing and the Broadway League. I am thrilled for all of this year’s nominees, and am deeply humbled and grateful to have been acknowledged in this way. I am constantly moved and inspired by Joan, and I can’t wait to get back to the theater this afternoon to continue to tell her story to people of all ages and backgrounds, as many times as I possibly can!”

Ayad Akhtar, Junk

“I am so honored by this nomination, humbled to be in such amazing company with the other nominees. Junk was an enormous undertaking, and one that depended on so many, a company of amazing actors, a brilliant design team, the committed, inspired support of Andre Bishop and Lincoln Center Theater, and of course, the inimitable Doug Hughes, who was my partner in the enterprise from start to finish.”

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