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The Tony Awards show is serious business and the exposure in front of millions is priceless. Many shows that are suffering pre-summer slumps are counting on a bump from the telecast. “Godspell” producer Ken Davenport was warned that his production’s future may hinge on making a splash at the ceremony.

Overall, the health of Broadway is good, with shows yielding a record $1.14 billion in grosses this season, and total attendance reaching 12.3 million. The only concern is that audience numbers were flat, meaning higher ticket prices are pushing the overall box office take.

This season, 40 new shows opened _ 14 new musicals, 23 new plays and three specials. Many of the musicals once again relied on Hollywood, with “Once,” “Ghost The Musical,” “On a Clear Day You Can See Forever,” “Newsies” and “Leap of Faith” all originating on celluloid.

Some older works _ “Follies” and “Death of a Salesman” _ reminded a new audience why they are classics. And George and Ira Gershwin _ or at least their estates _ are clear winners, with the revival of “Porgy and Bess” and the musical “Nice Work If You Can Get It” proving Gershwin songs still soar.

But, if anything, this was the season of brilliant original plays: “Clybourne Park” by Bruce Norris, “Other Desert Cities” by Jon Robin Baitz, “Peter and the Starcatcher” by Rick Elice and David Ives’ “Venus in Fur.”

So loaded with talent was this category that plays such as David Henry Hwang’s “Chinglish,” Katori Hall’s “The Mountaintop,” Nicky Silver’s “The Lyons,” David Auburn’s “The Columnist” and Theresa Rebeck’s “Seminar” didn’t even get nominations.

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Online: http://www.TonyAwards.com

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AP Entertainment Writer Jake Coyle and AP National Writer Jocelyn Noveck contributed to this report.