Early Tony Predictions 2016: Best Original Score

Chris Peterson

OnStage Founder & Editor-in-Chief


A little while back we released some of our way too early Tony predictions, but now that the nominations are just a month away, and with very little left to open on Broadway, it's time to start thinking about who might be hearing their named called on June 12th. 

So with that in mind, for the next couple of days, I'll be releasing my Tony nominations and possible winners. 

Today's Category:  Best Original Score

While this category has a clear front runner, this is a race that can provide some surprises. Since 2000, only 9 musicals have won both Best Original Score and Best Musical. So it's not out impossible that there could be an upset. Here's our breakdown pending Tony eligibility. 


  • Lin-Manuel Miranda - Hamilton
  • Sara Bareilles - Waitress

Probable Nominees

  • Andrew Lloyd Webber - School of Rock

One the Bubble

  • Jay Kuo - Allegiance
  • Nathan Tysen and Chris Miller - Tuck Everlasting
  • Steve Martin and Edie Brickell - Bright Star
  • Eubie Blake and Noble Sissle - Shuffle Along
  • Duncan Sheik - American Psycho

Since this might be the only time Miranda's name is announced during the evening(more on that later), I have no reason to believe he's not going to take home this award. While some might debate hip hop vs. a traditional musical score, Hamilton is the best example of both this year and deserves the award. 

With that said, this category also tends to favor the newcomer. Since 2000, only one person has won the award twice(Robert Lopez), so that trend might be enough for Bareilles to upset here. It also doesn't hurt that the score for Waitress is absolutely gorgeous, so while shocking, it would be hard to argue against her winning. 

Webber should expect a nomination because he's Andrew Lloyd Webber. and he hasn't been nominated in 21 years. As "blah" as School of Rock is, it's his strongest work since Sunset Boulevard. I would be shocked if he's not nominated. 

As for the bubble, here is where it's going to get interesting because most of these shows haven't opened yet but what I've heard of them so far, isn't exactly ear raising. Sadly, I doubt Allegiance is going to net many nominations but the score was the best thing about the show, so a nomination in this category could be likely. Give the name status of its composers and decent quality of Bright Star, I also imagine it has a strong chance for a nod. 

The early returns I've heard on Tuck Everlasting haven't exactly been strong so I doubt a nomination is likely here and the same could has been said for American Psycho. The wild card in all of this is Shuffle Along, given the background of the show and it's unconventional path,  I don't know how the Tony Nomination Committee is going to rule on their eligibility. If they are ruled eligible, I would bet on a nomination. 

Probable Winner: As I implied earlier, it's Miranda's award to lose at this point. If anyone is going to unseat him right now, it's Bareilles or possibly Blake and Sissie.