The Best Tony Performances Of The Last 10 Years

Photo: Courtesy of Joan Marcus.
If you've noticed your theater-kid friends are even more excitable than usual, it's probably because the Tony Awards are just three days away. It's the one night a year when you can enjoy the biggest Broadway shows without fighting with TicketMaster. Yes, Facebook friend, it is impossible to get Hamilton tickets, but when the Tonys are on, your social media feeds can be filled with Ham excitement, rather than frustration.
Looking back at Tony performances throughout the years, the numbers form a time capsule and a crystal ball. Some unknown actors and actresses brought up onstage just a few years ago have become household names. Their old-school Tony performances are their musical origin stories. By watching vintage performances, you might even discover that your current fav is even more talented than you knew.
So, as you get pumped for this weekend's show, take a moment to watch jazz squares of the past. And remember, some of the brightest stars at this year's Tony Awards might have been inspired watching one of these performances from the anonymity of their apartments.
1 of 10
Anything Goes (2011)

Anything Goes won the Tony for best revival of a musical and Sutton Foster swept up her second Tony for her performance as the tap-dancing queen Reno Sweeney. She went on to show off her dance skills in the too short-lived Bunheads and just might appear in the upcoming Gilmore Girls revival.
2 of 10
Pippin (2013)

This revival of the classic '70s musical was lauded for its imaginative acrobatics; by the end of the night, the show had won four Tonys, including one for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical.
3 of 10
Spring Awakening (2007)

When the cast of Spring Awakening took the stage in 2007, they were just a bunch of talented, but largely unknown theater kids. Now, the three leads — Lea Michele, John Gallagher Jr, and Jonathan Groff — have all starred on notable TV shows (Glee, The Newsroom, and Looking, respectively).
4 of 10
The Scottsboro Boys (2011)

Though this musical ran for just over a month, it earned 12 Tony nominations.
5 of 10
Newsies (2012)

Disney decided its best source material for the next Lion King was a mostly forgotten 1992 live-action movie that earned 39% on Rotten Tomatoes and ended up creating the most amazing theatrical use of newspaper, ever (the show, of course, won the Tony for Best Choreography).
6 of 10
Matilda (2013)

Most importantly, the musical got the stamp of approval from the real Matilda.
7 of 10
Fun Home (2015)

Once you get over how incredibly adorable Tony nominee Sydney Lucas is, try to imagine what an experience it must have been for IRL Alison Bechdel to see her younger self come alive onstage.
8 of 10
American Idiot (2010)

All the angst of the Hot Topic kids mixed with the energy of drama kids actually created surprisingly compelling musical theater.
9 of 10
In The Heights (2008)

Before there was Hamilton, there was In The Heights, the musical that earned Lin-Manuel Miranda his first Tony, for Best Original Score Written for the Theatre.
10 of 10
Hair (2009)

A musical so closely tied to the '60s could have easily seemed dated, but the 2009 production was the third Broadway revival, proving its appeal to several generations.