Broadway’s Tonys Awards | Angela Lansbury| Liza Minnelli

Broadway’s Tonys seemed a family affair this year, with an outpouring of generosity from winners to losers despite the domination of the evening by “Billy Eliot,” which won 10 awards, and one actor bringing his wife to the stage to stand by him while he accepted his prize.

“I send my love and congratulations to the other nominees in this category. It wasn’t fair,” said Lansbury, who took home her fifth Tony, this time for her performance as the dotty medium Madame Arcati in a revival of Noel Coward’s “Blithe Spirit.” Her win in the featured-actress category tied the record for acting prizes held by Julie Harris, who has five plus a special lifetime achievement award given in 2002.

Billy Eliot won the best musical prize. Elton John lost the Tony for “Next to Normal”.

Rush took the top actor award for “Exit the King“, for the role of a dying monarch. The beat actor award was shared with three –David Alvarez, Trent Kowalik and Kiril Kulish.

“Billy Elliot” collected eight other awards: featured actor ,director, book, choreography, sets, lighting, sound and orchestrations, a prize it shared with “Next to Normal.”

Next to normal also won the actress-musical award for Alice Ripley.

“God of Carnage,” Yasmina Reza’s savage comedy of social discord, picked up two other major awards, one for its director, Matthew Warchus, and the other for Harden.

Oskar Eustis, head of the Public Theater, whose production of “Hair” won the musical revival prize.

Fiery performance was taken by Karen Olivo’s for “West Side Story”.

The stage of Radio City Music Hall presented a lifetime achievement award to composer Jerry Herman, who wrote “Mame,” the musical that won Lansbury her first Tony.

Roger Robinson, a feature-actor winner for his performance in the revival of August Wilson’s “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone.”

And Liza Minnelli championed her parents — Judy Garland and Vincente Minnelli — when her “Liza’s at The Palace” took the special theatrical event prize.

The awards show, televised by CBS, opened with a dizzying, exuberant montage of the season’s musicals, starting with “Billy Elliot” (and Elton John at the piano). It then worked its way through other shows including “West Side Story,” “Guys and Dolls,” “Rock of Ages,” Dolly Parton with performers from “9 to 5,” Liza Minnelli, the cast of “Hair” and finally a stage-filling rendition of “Let the Sun Shine In” with all the casts.

The huge opening was a number that the show’s host, Neil Patrick Harris been called ,the biggest and most expensive in the history of the Tonys. “And that is why I am your host tonight — I am on TV,” said the charming, Harris.

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