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Kevin Spacey to host Broadway's Tony Awards for first time

This will mark Spacey's first time hosting the Tonys, which will take place in New York on 11 June.

Actor Kevin Spacey performs onstage during the MPTF 95th anniversary celebration with 'Hollywood's Night Under The Stars' at MPTF Wasserman Campus on 1 October 2016 in Los Angeles, California. Picture: AFP

NEW YORK – Stage and screen actor Kevin Spacey will step up to host Broadway's Tony Awards, organisers said on Tuesday, less than two months before the national broadcast of the annual theatre honours.

It will mark Spacey's first time hosting the Tonys, which will take place in New York on 11 June broadcaster CBS said.

Recent hosts Neil Patrick Harris, Hugh Jackman and James Corden all won raves from critics but apparently were unavailable to do the honours again this year, prompting a wry bit of self-depreciating humour from Spacey.

"I was their 2nd choice for Usual Suspects, 4th choice for American Beauty, and 15th choice to host this year's Tony Awards. I think my career is definitely going in the right direction," he said.

"Maybe I can get short-listed to host the Oscars if everyone else turns it down,” he added.

British actor and talk show host Corden, who helmed the show a year ago, went on to host the Grammy Awards in February.

Spacey (57), himself a Tony winner for Lost in Yonkers as well as a two-time Oscar winner, currently stars in the Netflix political drama "House of Cards." He also served for 10 years as artistic director of London's Old Vic theatre company.

"We can’t wait to see the energy he brings to Radio City on Tony night," said Charlotte St. Martin, president of the Broadway League, and Heather Hitchens, president of the American Theatre Wing, in a reference Spacey's wry, sometimes sardonic humour.

Nominations for the Tony Awards, which cover plays, musicals, actors and creative teams on Broadway, will be announced on 2 May. Hip-hop historical musical "Hamilton" swept the board last year with 11 wins.

Stars appearing on Broadway this season included Bette Midler in a hit revival of Hello, Dolly!, as well as Sally Field, Jake Gyllenhaal, Nathan Lane, Glenn Close, Mark Ruffalo, Kevin Kline and Laura Linney.

The 71st Tony Awards will be broadcast live on CBS in a glittering three-hour show from Radio City Music Hall in Manhattan.

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