Tony Awards wrap-up

Though it sometimes seemed more like an ad for live theater than an awards show, this year’s televised Tony Awards did an important thing right: It gave more time to production numbers from Broadway shows and less time to acceptance speeches.

Highlights included: A rousing ballad sung by the two women who played Siamese twins in “Side Show” (a musical that closed prematurely due to poor ticket sales); a beautiful production number from “The Lion King” (which is about the most you’ll see of the show, since it’s sold out from now till kingdom come); and Rosie O’Donnell’s likable performance as host. (Her joke about Tampax signing on as sponsor of “Ragtime,” however, deserved the groans that it got.)

By the way, the discomfort of the actors in the “Cabaret” number may have had something to do with performing on the huge Radio City Music Hall stage instead of the tiny Kit Kat Klub, or maybe it was because they had to tone down their lascivious performance for TV. In any case, the show is a lot better live and in person — which explains why people still go to the theater. Here are some of the winners:

Best New Play:“Art”
Best Musical Revival: “Cabaret”
Best New Musical: “The Lion King”
Best Actor, Play: Anthony LaPaglia, “A View from the Bridge”
Best Actress, Play: Marie Mullen, “The Beauty Queen of Leenane”
Best Actress, Musical: Natasha Richardson, “Cabaret”
Best Actor, Musical: Alan Cumming, “Cabaret”
Best Score: Lynn Ahrens and Steven Flaherty, “Ragtime”
Best Direction, Musical: Julie Taymor, “The Lion King”
Best Book, Musical: Terence McNally, “Ragtime”