The Tony Awards is the biggest celebration of Broadway and stage stars. The awards ceremony was hosted by James Corden, who opened the show with a touching tribute to the men and women who lost their lives in the Orlando nightclub shooting. Lin-Manuel Miranda also offered a touching poetic tribute to the victims when he accepted the Tony for Best Score of a Musical. Hamilton, which is now worth almost $1 billion, also won for Best Musical, which wasn’t a surprise to most theater enthusiasts.
The cast of Hamilton poked fun at Corden during a comical musical number, and Corden also performed an opening number that was a tribute to several Broadway hits. Other memorable performances included a musical number by the young cast of School of Rock, as well as a performance by the cast of On Your Feet. Gloria Estefan even joined the cast to sing a medley of her greatest hits over the years. Actor and banjo player Steve Martin played a tune at the Grammys as well, then introduced the cast of the play Bright Star.
The Humans took home the Tony for Best Play. Jayne Houdyshell, who has been working on the New York stage for more than four decades, also took home her very first Tony for her role in the play.
The cast of Hamilton closed out the night with a huge musical tribute to the city of New York.
Although Will Ferrell is primarily known as a funnyman, he has experimented with more dramatic roles throughout his career, perhaps most prominently in 2006’s ‘Stranger Than Fiction.’ The actor may get the chance to show soon off his dramatic chops again in a new drama on HBO called ‘Succession.’
The show will star Ferrell as the high-powered head of a global media corporation, and will follow his character’s wealthy family. ‘Succession’ pairs Ferrell with Adam McKay, reuniting the team behind ‘Anchorman’ and ‘Step Brothers.’ McKay recently established his dramatic chops by directing last year’s Oscar-winning drama about the financial crisis, ‘The Big Short.’ McKay and Ferrell are both credited as executive producers on the show.
Despite the star power associated with the project, ‘Succession’ needs to beat out another show to secure the coveted Sunday night time slot on HBO. The competing drama, entitled ‘Mogadishu, Minnesota,’ follows a Somalian immigrant family living in the Twin Cities area. This show is also backed by serious Hollywood players, with Kathryn Bigelow attached as an executive producer. Bigelow is most well known for directing the war dramas ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ and ‘The Hurt Locker.’
The show’s pilot will be directed and written by K’naan Warsame, a Somali-Canadian rapper most famous for performing the song “Wavin’ Flag.” The pilot will be Warsame’s directorial debut; he is also credited as an executive producer on the project.
In the year of smartphones and cars that park themselves, it’s refreshing to hear names like Alexander Hamilton around the house. The Tony Awards, airing Sunday June 12th, are setting the stage for the musical event of the year, Hamilton. Sure, other productions have been nominated in the “Best Musical” category, but do they really stand a chance?
For most of us, this will be our only opportunity to see Lin Manuel Miranda up close and personal, as ticket prices to the actual Broadway production have soared. Even if you did win Dionysus’ lottery and scored those $1200 tickets, the creator and star of the production announced he is leaving the show as of July 9th. Before you scalp your tickets, consider the talent and quality of the production as a whole. Behind the creative mastermind that is Miranda, is an ensemble of culturally diverse performers who have secured their spot among the Broadway elite, and earned a “Best Musical” nomination while educating the masses on the meaning of being American as a person of color. That is also history in the making.
Some say it will be a sweep at the Tony Awards, and the ten-month run of Hamilton will extend for years, complete with a national tour and distribution of copyrights to middle schools everywhere. Others say it’s just a passing fad, and the musical will die as quickly as the man for which it’s named. But Broadway lives and breathes with its patrons, so the real question is, what do you say?