Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Cincinnati: On Broadway

In Tony company

Cincinnati's rich history of artistic creativity was highlighted Sunday night on one of the world's most recognizable stages: Hairspray was named best musical at 2003 Tony awards, and a University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music graduate took a top acting award in another production.

Hairspray's connection to Cincinnati is that three graduates of Walnut Hills High school were among several producers on the project, a feel-good musical set in 1960s Baltimore around an American Bandstand-style show. It is a musical adaptation of a cult-film classic.

Kudos to Cincinnati natives Rick Steiner (who received his third Tony), Fred Mayerson and John Osher for their work. Hairspray dominated the awards show at Radio City Music Hall, winning eight awards in all, including best leading actor and actress honors.

University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music graduate Michele Pawk received her first Tony (best performance by a featured actress) for Hollywood Arms, a play written by Carol Burnett and her late daughter, Carrie Hamilton. The play is about three generations of women living in a run-down apartment at the foot of the Hollywood Hills.

Seeing Cincinnati so well represented on Broadway is certainly reason for applause.

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