It worked like a charm five years ago, so why jinx it?

When the Anaïs Mitchell musical "Hadestown" was up for the best musical Tony in 2019, Broadway producer Frances Wilkinson, a partner in Minneapolis-based Stone Arch Theatricals that backed the show, bought her outfit for the ceremony from the Edina womenswear boutique Dugo. "Hadestown" won eight Tonys that year, including best musical.

Now that Stone Arch is again a co-producer of not one but two shows up for the 77th Tony Awards — "Suffs" is in the running for best musical and "The Who's Tommy" is up for best musical revival — Wilkinson and partner Jennifer Melin Miller are hoping again for the luck of the stylish.

Both have gone to Dugo for outfits for this year's Tony Awards, which will be broadcast at 7 p.m. Sunday on CBS.

"It's not super-expensive, but it's glam and right for the occasion," Wilkinson laughed, even as she hedged on naming the designer. "Dresses matter and we want to have fun with what we wear even as we celebrate diverse voices and expose power differentials."

"Anything to advance our work, which has a huge passion point around stories of women's rights and human rights," said Miller, adding that she's excited for the second and third nominations for shows backed by her company that's named for Minneapolis' most storied bridge and the only one of the Mississippi River bridges made of stone.

As the theater world celebrates its biggest achievements in a glitzy ceremony at Lincoln Center, Minnesotans swim in the thick of the Broadway and off-Broadway ecosystem.

The incredible Lange

Jessica Lange, the two-time Oscar winner who is nominated for best leading actress in a play for her portrayal of the title character in Paula Vogel's "Mother Play: A Play in Five Evictions," is probably the most illustrious Minnesota-connected name at this year's Tonys.

The Cloquet native, 75, plays an alcoholic single mom of two queer children in the drama, a performance that has left key stakeholders speechless.

"She's absolutely incredible," said 14-year Tony voter Jim Sheeley, president of the Upper Midwest region of Broadway Across America, which presents touring Broadway in Minneapolis. "She has this time onstage when she says absolutely nothing for what I thought was 10 minutes. But it's actually 12, and you're just spellbound."

This is the first time that Lange, who won a Tony for her performance of Mary Tyrone in Eugene O'Neill's "Long Day's Journey Into Night," has originated a theatrical role. She told the Los Angeles Times that she was excited by the opportunity to create a complicated character from scratch.

"There are no other performances to compare it to," Lange told the newspaper. "It's just like a clean slate. You just walk out there, and people are going to see and hear it for the first time. They're going to learn about a character that nobody has ever played before. So that was the reason that I signed on, other than thinking that the play was really saying something and well written."

Hosted by Ariana DeBose for the third time, Sunday's Tony show has a lot of star power on tap. Celebrity contenders include "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" headliner Liev Schreiber ("Doubt: A Parable"), "Harry Potter" star Daniel Radcliffe ("Merrily We Roll Along"), Tony winner Leslie Odom Jr. ("Purlie Victorious: A Non-Confederate Romp Through the Cotton Patch"), Emmy and Tony winner Bebe Neuwirth ("Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club"), "Succession" star Juliana Canfield ("Stereophonic"), Tony winner Kelli O'Hara ("Days of Wine and Roses"), Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne ("Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club") and "American Gothic" actor Sarah Paulson ("Appropriate").

Producer Alicia Keys, whose "Hell's Kitchen" has 13 nominations, is expected to be in the audience alongside the likes of Oprah and Hillary Rodham Clinton, the former first lady and secretary of state who is one of the celebrity producers of "Suffs." (Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai is the other.)

The Broadway stardust glistens on other Minnesotans, as well.

Minnetonka High School grad Christine Heesun Hwang, who was not nominated, is grateful to be making her Broadway debut in the ensemble of "Suffs," composer, librettist and star Shaina Taub's musical about the suffragette movement. Hwang played Eponine in the national tour of "Les Misérables," which came to the Orpheum Theatre in 2022 for a two-week run.

"Suffs" has been "a crazy ride," Hwang said, "mainly because it's my Broadway debut and I cover six roles."

'Broadway is broken'

But not every Broadway story this season is bathed in glitter and glam.

"Lempicka," conceived with lyrics by Minnesota playwright Carson Kreitzer, who co-wrote the book with composer Matt Gould, ran for only five weeks, closing on May 19. It received so-so reviews and had deeply discounted tickets, which means that even though it was building a fan base, it would have a hard time recouping its $19 million investment, despite high-wattage support from the likes of Madonna.

Minneapolis-based Broadway backer Colleen "Kittie" Fahey, who became a full-time producer two years ago to raise money for "Lempicka," nominated for three Tonys, which she calls a passion project, remains stung by the experience.

"For the first time in years, I'm not going to the [Tony] ceremony," said Fahey, a prolific investor in Broadway shows. "Broadway is broken. And it's too painful to sit there knowing that it takes $20 million just to open the door of a show and that you have no time to build an audience. I'm sad for the cast members like Eden Espinosa and Amber Iman, who put their hearts into it and now are out of jobs." Espinosa and Iman are both nominated this year in acting categories.

If "Lempicka," about a Polish artist from a century ago, missed out on the nominations for best musical that often give shows a boost, it may also have to do with Broadway's calendar, which was exceptionally crowded and competitive this year.

"There were 36 new shows, and a lot of them are really solid, though not 'Hamilton' or 'Producers' good," said Sheeley, one of a handful of Minnesotans who are part of the 800 or so Tony voters. A week out from the ceremony, he was still weighing his choices. In the musicals category, there's Keys' "Hell's Kitchen," Sufjan Stevens' "Illinoise" and the stage adaptation of "The Outsiders."

Among the new plays nominated this year, Sheeley also was taken with Jocelyn Bioh's "Jaja's African Hair Braiding" and David Adjmi's "Stereophonic."

And playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, who is writing the book for the stage adaptation of Prince's "Purple Rain" in spring 2025 that will kick off in Minneapolis, is up for a Tony for the revival of his play, "Appropriate."

Those shows inspire Minnesotans in the larger ecosystem. That's true of Sun Mee Chomet, who finished a run June 2 in Suzan-Lori Parks' "Sally & Tom" at the Public Theater, where "Hamilton," "Suffs" and other Broadway hits got their start.

"Sally & Tom" premiered at the Guthrie, also with Chomet, before being reworked in New York, where it was extended four times.

"It's an honor to be back in the city and to originate a role in an SLP play," Chomet said.

Rajane Katurah, a former Twin Citian, is in the Broadway tour of "MJ" the musical. That tour's assistant wigs and makeup supervisor, Paul Toni, was the longtime hair and makeup designer at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres.

And on the calendar, Perpich High School graduate Nimene Wureh, who has performed at Theatre Latte Da, the Jungle and with Blackout Improv, is set to make her Broadway debut next season in Kenny Leon's "Our Town."

"People are still finding their way back to the theater but there's a lot of good and compelling work to watch," Miller said. "I'm excited that the telecast will give a sneak peek into this amazing art form that really changes lives."