Wright State University musical theatre graduate Joey Monda is once again a contender for Tony Awards. Monda received two Tony Awards nominations for Best Play as producer of “Slave Play” and “The Inheritance.”
“Slave Play” earned a total of 12 nominations while “The Inheritance” received 11 nominations.
Monda, who earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in musical theatre in 2012 from Wright State, is producer and owner of Sing Out Louise! Productions.
“It’s a tremendous honor to have been a part of bringing these monumental productions to Broadway,” Monda said. “Both plays demonstrate the genuine power of live theatre to transcend an audience to see the world through someone else’s eyes, and if there is anything we need more of right now, it is empathy.”
Monda said he believes “Slave Play” and “The Inheritance” will be remembered for being cultural milestones.
“These plays profoundly resonate today as our culture continues to grapple with how we can lift the voices of the oppressed even if that means facing uncomfortable realities ourselves,” he said. “The choices we make now as a society have deep ripple effects for years and generations to come.”
“Slave Play” forces audiences to explore America’s complicated relationship with race and the need for each of us to reconcile what Monda called “the sins of our forefathers and how those sins continue to manifest themselves even into today.” “The Inheritance” speaks to the struggles of the LGBT community and how an entire generation was lost to an epidemic, a situation Monda said was “not unlike what we are seeing right now.”
A date and format for the 2020 Tony Awards ceremony have not yet been announced. Broadway theatres shut down in March, shortening the 2019–20 season. Broadway productions are not expected to resume until at least June 2021.
Monda said the story of the Tony nominations “is equally about how an entire industry of live entertainment is being devastated right now.”
“Without federal support, the U.S. is going to see millions of theatres, concert venues, artists and technicians die out, literally and figuratively,” he said. “It is imperative that we Save Our Stages as our artists are the most lasting reflection of our way of life.”
The day the Tony nominations were announced, Monda moved his office belongings into storage.
“It’s truly devastating and we need all of the community support we as an industry can get,” he said.
This is not the first time Monda has been nominated for a Tony. He received a Tony Award for Best Musical in 2019 for “Hadestown.” He has also produced the Broadway productions of “Allegiance,” “The New One” and “Mrs. Doubtfire.”
Monda received the 2020 Graduate of the Last Decade Award from the Wright State Alumni Association.
As a student at Wright State, Monda led the student-run theatre, the Jubilee Directing Lab, interned with The Human Race Theatre Company, and hosted a weekly radio show on WWSU. He also interned with theatre producer and Sirius XM radio host Seth Rudetsky, with whom he began a professional relationship that continued after graduation and led to off-Broadway and Broadway productions.
Monda has led a new sector of the entertainment industry in developing innovative contracts and structures to film and release Broadway shows for Cineplex release and pay-per-view showings, making live theatre available to everyone. He was the lead producer for the video release of the Broadway musical “Bandstand,” which demonstrated the effectiveness of this new marketing model.
He connects new Wright State graduates with mentors in New York City to help them begin their professional lives. His engagement in the annual industry immersion week of the Department of Theatre, Dance and Motion Pictures has helped make it an effective professional gateway experience for students and alumni.
“The theatre program is really spectacular in the relationship that the faculty builds with each individual student,” Monda said. “It’s an incredibly collaborative and supportive environment.”