Tony Award 2018 Hosts Josh Groban & Sara Bareilles Preview a More More Mainstream Night

'Mean Girls' Broadway Opening - Kate Rockwell, Tina Fey, and Taylor Louderman at the opening night curtain call for the new musical based on the cult film
Bruce Glikas/Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic

The Hamilton phenomenon aside, the (often-obscure) shows honored on Broadway’s biggest — The Annual Tony Awards — night can leave viewers at home scratching their heads. Not this year. Big titles like SpongeBob SquarePants, Frozen and Mean Girls, adapted for the theater, and the original Harry Potter and the Cursed Child vie for top prizes.

“The shows are so vibrant and fun and based mostly on franchises that people in America know,” notes Broadway vet Josh Groban, who cohosts the ceremony with fellow pop star and Waitress songwriter Sara Bareilles. “It will be a high-energy night.”

Plenty of TV stars who also tread the boards will be on hand too. Expect to see Roseanne’s Laurie Metcalf (nominated for acting in Three Tall Women), Monk’s Tony Shalhoub (a best actor contender for The Band’s Visit) and 30 Rock alum Tina Fey, who turned her movie Mean Girls into a musical. (The show, along with SpongeBob, leads the pack with 12 nominations).

Bareilles hopes all the familiar faces will make the Tonys more accessible: “We want to play to the theater community without being too insidery.” Bravo to that!

The 72nd Annual Tony Awards, Sunday, June 10, 8/7c, CBS