Broadway Actor Levi Kries Wins Tony Award for Portraying Jerry Lee Lewis

Broadway actor Levi Kries won a Tony Award on Sunday night (June 13) in New York City for his portrayal of Jerry Lee Lewis in the musical, Million Dollar Quartet. Kries, a Tennessee native, was named best featured actor in a musical. Staged at the Nederlander Theatre, the Broadway production is based on a one-time only jam session in 1956 between Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Lewis and Elvis Presley at Sun Studios in Memphis, Tenn. The production was also nominated for best musical and best book of a musical, although both of those awards were presented to Memphis, a production about rock ’n’ roll in the segregated South during the 1950s. Lewis released his first two singles, “Whole Lot of Shakin’ Going On” and “Great Balls of Fire,” in 1957, with both tracks reaching No. 1 on Billboard’s country chart. Between 1957 and 1981, Lewis charted 28 Top 10 country singles, including six No. 1 hits.