Broadway readies for biggest audience of the year at Tonys (copy)

File- This June 10, 2019, file photo shows a view of the stage at the 72nd annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall in New York. 

Five people with ties to the Triad were up for or won a Tony Award during Sunday night's ceremony.

Beth Leavel, who received her master’s degree at UNCG in acting and directing in 1980, lost out to Stephanie J. Block for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical. Block is one of three actresses to play the title character in the musical "The Cher Show."

Leavel stars in “The Prom,” which follows four Broadway stars on a hilarious mission to change the world and get a little publicity for themselves. A Raleigh native, Leavel won a Tony Award in 2006 for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for the title role of “The Drowsy Chaperone.”

Joseph Forbes, a 1975 UNCG graduate, was one of four recipients of this year’s Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre. The award is for individuals and organizations that have demonstrated extraordinary achievement in theater. Forbes founded Scenic Art Studios, a scene painting studio that has created backdrops and sculptures and painted scenery for more than 350 Broadway productions.

Rosemary Harris, a Tony-winning actress and Winston-Salem resident, received a special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theater.

Two men with local ties also were nominated for Best Costume Design of a Musical, which ultimately went to Bob Mackie for "The Cher Show."

Costume designer Paul Tazewell, an alumnus of the UNC School of the Arts in Winston-Salem, was nominated for “Ain’t Too Proud — The Life and Times of the Temptations.” Tazewell received the 2016 Tony Award for best costume design for “Hamilton.” He won an Emmy Award as costume designer for television’s “The Wiz Live” in 2016.

William Ivey Long was nominated for designing costumes for “Beetlejuice” and “Tootsie.” Winner of six Tony Awards, Long lived his first three years in the stage-left dressing room of the Raleigh Little Theatre, where his father was technical director. He long has served as production designer for “The Lost Colony,” performed in Manteo. The story about the first English settlement in America, on Roanoke Island on the Outer Banks, is America’s longest-running outdoor symphonic drama.

In Greensboro, Long’s cousins include longtime local arts leader Betty Cone, retired federal judge Frank W. Bullock Jr., Nancy Hogewood and Derusha Darden Phillips.

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