Musical theatre has its very own awards show, and The Tonys are very prestigious honors. But they aren't the only place where the best of Broadway is recognized. Thanks to the release of cast albums as well as television and film versions of musicals, the Grammys take notice as well. This year, the Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album went to Kinky Boots (music written by Cyndi Lauper), making it the newest addition to the hall of fame that was inaugurated in 1959 with The Music Man. Here's a bunch of things you probably didn't know about musical theatre and the Grammys:
9 Things You Never Knew About Musicals and the Grammys:
- Shows that do very well at the Tonys don't always win at the Grammys. Avenue Q beat Wicked in almost every category in 2004, but Wicked won Best Musical Show Album at the Grammys in 2005.
- The Grammy award now known as Best Musical Theater Album has gone by 10 different names, including Best Broadway Show Album, Best Original Cast Show Album, Best Score from an Original Cast Show Album, Best Cast Show Album (hopefully they just stick with this one).
- There have been times when multiple shows were honored in the same year. In 1959, The Music Man won for Best Original Cast Album (Broadway or TV), while Gigi won for Best Sound Track Album, Dramatic Picture Score Or Original Cast. In 1960, Gypsy tied with Redhead. Nowadays, though, they stick to one award per year.
- The award has been given to different contributors in different years. It used to be given only to the album producer(s) and the composer(s)/lyricist(s). Now, the award goes to the principal vocalist(s) as well as the album producer(s) and the composer(s)/lyricist(s).
- Don't let a Broadway actor hear you call it a "soundtrack." Soundtracks are background music for movies. They prefer that you acknowledge their contributions by calling it a "Musical Theater Album" or, better yet, "Cast Album." Especially if they've won a Grammy for it.
- A few shows have won the Grammy multiple times. Cast albums for Gypsy won in 1960 and 2004, West Side Story won in 1962, 1986, and 2010, and Les Miserables won in 1988 and 1991 (the first time for the Original Broadway Cast Recording and the second time for The Complete Symphonic Recording).
- Several Broadway stars have been nominated for or won Grammys outside of cast albums. Bernadette Peters (Into the Woods) and Barbara Cook (She Loves Me) were nominated for solo recordings, Julie Andrews (My Fair Lady) won a Lifetime Achievement Award, and Robert Goulet (Camelot) won Best New Artist--in 1962!
- Several musical films that won Grammys later had Broadway adaptations. Disney sure knows how to transfer film success onto the stage: The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Mary Poppins, and Tarzan, to name a few.
- Film versions of popular musicals have often been nominated for and/or won Grammys. 2002's Chicago was a big winner. Nominations went to Mamma Mia!, Sweeney Todd, Hairspray, Les Miserables, and even the unfortunate Rock of Ages. A song from The Producers was nominated, and a song from Dreamgirls won.