Northwestern alumna Katrina Lenk (Bienen '97) took home her first Tony Award on Sunday night for best leading actress in a musical for her role in "The Band's Visit". David Cromer was named best director of a musical for "The Band's Visit, " and John Tiffany won for best direction of a play for "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child".
Lea Salonga had her "very, very special" moment as she returned to the Tony Awards stage Sunday (Monday in Manila), this time as a performer along with her fellow cast members in the Broadway show "Once On This Island". "And they're looking at me right now and I can't believe it".
Stachel, 26, is making his Broadway debut in "The Band's Visit".
"I avoided so many events with them (his parents) in the past because I pretended that I was not Middle Eastern", said Stachel, whose father is of Yemeni and Israeli heritage.
Orin Wolf, producer of "The Band's Visit", didn't have overall Monday ticket-sales numbers, but he said the post-Tony increase was significant.
The victory sent a strong message from Tony voters, who rewarded adult emotion and artistic integrity over commercialism and familiarity.
Others were less caustic though just as inspiring.
Co-hosts Sara Bareilles and Josh Groban kicked off the ceremony here at the Radio City Music Hall with a piano duet in which they poked fun at the fact that neither of them have won Tony or Grammy Awards.
British actors dominate the category for best leading actor in a play.
He then referenced last week's US Supreme Court decision which ruled in favour of a baker's right to deny a gay couple a wedding cake based on his beliefs. It is a spirit that says no to bigotry, no to shame, no to exclusion.
"We are all sacred and we all belong", Garfield said.
Best Actress in a play victor Glenda Jackson, recognised for work in "Three Tall Women", praised the multi-cultural nature of the theatre business.
"I'm gonna say one thing: "F*** Trump!" he exclaimed".
Veteran actress Glenda Jackson picked up best actress for her performance in Three Tall Women. She dedicated her award in part to the iconic Egyptian singer Umm Kulthum. He also declared, "I'm an immigrant, and I'm not an animal" - referring to Trump's recent remarks that some people living in a country illegally or without legal permission are "animals".
Kushner, noting it was 21 weeks until the mid-term congressional elections in the United States, continued the political vein adding, "21 weeks to save our democracy".
It was also up for Best Book of a Musical (for Jennifer Lee) and Best Original Score Written For The Theatre (for Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez) but both of those were won by The Band's Visit as well. However, the portion of the night that moved the audience to tears was a dedication to Melody Herzfeld, a drama teacher at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School who sheltered 65 of her students as a shooter opened fire throughout the Florida school in February (18).