June 7, 2009

J. Robert Spencer Up For Tony Award Tonight!

June 7th, 2009

Bobby SpencerAs you all know, Bobby Spencer is nominated for a Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical for his portrayal of “Dan” in Next to Normal!

Bobby and his castmates will be performing in tonight’s Tony Awards telecast! Next to Normal is nominated for a total of 11 Tony Awards!

Here’s an excerpt of Bobby’s recent interview by Tom Nondorf in Playbill.com:

Q: Congratulations on your Tony nomination. Is that pretty exciting for you?
Spencer: Thank you, Tom. It is incredibly exciting — such an honor and a blessing. It’s been an incredible year for me, so this has been an added smile.

Q: I read another interview you did, and it seemed like you had almost a premonition about Normal coming to Broadway. Did you sense the quality or just feel it in your gut?
Spencer: Exactly what you said. It was a gut instinct and knowing that this is a magical piece. I’ve done a lot of workshops and a lot of readings of new musicals and plays, and a lot of them had out-of-town tryouts. Every single one of them said, “We’re coming back to Broadway!” And they never did for various reasons. When you’ve been in the game as long as my wife and I have, you know what is special. She came to a rehearsal and she [said], “This is amazing.” I said, “It is, isn’t it?” And then when they took it to Arena Stage for one final tweak, I knew that [director] Michael Greif was on board with this thing. I knew how passionate David Stone and the rest of the producers were. I knew how amazing Tom Kitt [music] and Brian Yorkey [book and lyrics]‘s piece was. I knew it was the right team, and if I didn’t jump on board, I would never live it down. I felt, “I have to make the call. I have to get this audition, and I have to land this role because this piece is going to come to Broadway.” The first day of rehearsal Alice and I were in a corner talking, and I said, “We’re coming to Broadway.” And she was like, “Mmm, yeah.” And I said, “Listen to me. We. Are. Coming. Back. To. Broadway. I know it.” Thank God I was right.

Q: How did your gut do regarding Jersey Boys?
Spencer: Same feeling. That’s why I knew I wasn’t wrong about Normal. I was in L.A., and I got a script for a show called Jersey Boys. I read it, and I called my wife and said, “I am coming back to New York with a lead in a Broadway show.” This was before auditions. But I read it, and I said, “This is what I’ve been waiting for!” I just knew it. And the moment we started rehearsals in La Jolla, I think we all knew it. The same gut feeling as with Next to Normal. So, two in a row, baby!

Once again, Bobby, congratulations on your nomination and all the best to you tonight!


  1. Bobby’s performance last night blew me away!!! His voice was beautiful, and his passion for the role was electric. If that doesn’t make you want to see NTN, I don’t know what would.

    Congratulations, Bobby!!! You may not have won the Tony, but you left no room for doubt that you ARE a WINNER!!

    Comment by Catherine — June 8, 2009 @ 9:32 am

  2. It was so great to see Bobby’s performance last night! He was fantastic and I’m going to have to try to get back to New York to see him in Next to Normal.
    I hope he’s not leaving the show anytime soon.

    Too bad he didn’t win the Tony, but it’s awesome that he got nominated and recognized for his role.


    Comment by Dina F. — June 8, 2009 @ 1:58 pm

  3. I must agree with everyone. Bobby’s performance on the Tonys last night was beautiful. He put so much of his heart and sould into that one performance, I just can’t imagine how wonderful the entire play must be. I would love to see it. I may be prejudice but I think Bobby should have won!!! Way to go Bobby!!!

    Comment by Lenora Antunes — June 8, 2009 @ 7:54 pm

  4. I have to agree with all of the above comments, particularly the first. I am hoping that when the Broadway run finishes, the same cast will take the show on the road.

    Oh – and how cute was that for J-Bob to hold up that photo of his kids!!

    Comment by stubbleyou — June 9, 2009 @ 2:38 am

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