Entertainment & Arts

War Horse scoops five Tony Awards

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UK export War Horse has won five prizes including best play at the Tony Awards in New York, while Briton Mark Rylance won the top acting award for Jerusalem.

War Horse, which opened at the National Theatre and then moved to the West End and Broadway, also earned Tom Morris and Marianne Elliott a directing award.

Quoting poetry when getting his award, Rylance said "walking through walls" was "a totally earth-related craft".

Satirical musical The Book of Mormon was the big winner with nine honours.

War Horse, based on a 1982 novel by Michael Morpurgo, tells the moving tale of a horse caught up in the carnage of World War I.

When collecting the award for best play, co-director Morris told the Beacon Theatre audience: "We quite like it when people cry."

Image caption After picking up his award from Catherine Zeta Jones, Mark Rylance recited poetry

The play, which has been made into a film by Steven Spielberg, also won design awards for sound, lighting and scenery.

Rylance, 51, who won for his role as Johnny "Rooster" Byron in fellow British export Jerusalem, by Jez Butterworth, was a best actor winner for the second time.

When he won in 2008 for a revival of Boeing-Boeing, which also transferred from the West End, he also quoted little-known Minnesota poet Louis Jenkins.

On Sunday, he told a bemused audience: "Unlike flying or astral projection, walking through walls is a totally earth-related craft, but a lot more interesting than pot-making or driftwood lamps."

'Sitting in underwear'

The night's biggest winner, The Book of Mormon, from the creators of TV show South Park, follows the adventures of two Mormon missionaries sent to Uganda.

Trey Parker and Matt Stone thanked South Park fans, saying they "wouldn't be here" without them.

Parker jokingly thanked their "co-writer" Joseph Smith, the founder of the Mormon religion.

"You did it Joseph, you got the Tony," he said.

Oscar-winner Frances McDormand won best actress in a play for her role as a single mother who reconnects with her high school boyfriend in David Lindsay-Abaire's Good People.

Image caption Daniel Radcliffe was among award presenters and also performed with the cast of How to Succeed in Business

The Normal Heart by Larry Kramer - based on his experiences of the beginning of the Aids epidemic in the early 1980s - won best revival of a play as well as a best featured actor prize for John Benjamin Hickey.

His co-star Ellen Barkin - star of films including Switch and The Big Easy - picked up best actress in a featured role in a play.

The Normal Heart first appeared in 1985, off-Broadway at the Public Theatre.

"I could not have written it had not so many of us so needlessly died," Kramer said.

A revival of musical Anything Goes also won three awards including best actress for Sutton Foster.

Norbert Leo Butz won best actor in a musical for his turn as an FBI agent in Catch Me If You Can, a musical take on Steven Spielberg's 2002 film.

John Larroquette - Daniel Radcliffe's co-star on Broadway in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying - won best musical actor in a featured role.

He said that, were it not for the Harry Potter star, he would be "home, sitting in my underwear, watching this on television".

The Scottsboro Boys, based on the 1930s case in which nine black men were unjustly accused of attacking two white women on an Alabama train, came away with nothing despite earning 12 nominations.

The event, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, was held at the Beacon Theatre because its long-time home, Radio City Music Hall, is currently home to performance arts company Cirque Du Soleil.

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