The Commercial Appeal

Tony Awards dedicated to Orlando shooting victims

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NEW YORK — “Hamilton,” the hip-hop stage biography of Alexander Hamilton, was vacuuming up Tony Awards on the telecast Sunday night, but it will not break the record for the most Tonys.

“Hamilton” went into the night with 16 nomination­s and with only three eligible awards left it had won nine — best score, best book, direction, orchestrat­ion, choreograp­hy and best featured actor and actress statuettes for Renee Elise Goldsberry and Daveed Diggs.

It earlier won awards for costume and lighting, but lost scenic design to “She Loves Me,” meaning “Hamilton” will not be able to break the 12-statuette record haul by “The Producers.” Still, few shows get introduced by a sitting president, as Barack and Michelle Obama did for the performanc­e by the show’s cast.

The awards show unspooled with a heavy heart a night after a gunman killed 50 people at a gay Florida nightclub, prompting a Broadway tribute to the victims at the top of the show and a smattering of references to tolerance throughout it.

Host James Corden, his back to the audience, spoke to viewers when he dedicated the night to celebratin­g the diversity of Broadway. “Hate will never win. Together we have to make sure of that. Tonight’s show stands as a symbol and a celebratio­n of that principle,” he said.

Lin-Manuel Miranda, the star and creator of “Hamilton,” won for best score and book, and read from onstage a sonnet, referencin­g the tragedy and emphasizin­g that “love is love is love is love...”

Thomas Kail won the Tony for directing “Hamilton.” He thanked Miranda, a frequent collaborat­or, and celebrated the diversity of Broadway this season. “Let’s continue to tell stories,” he said.

Jessica Lange won her first Tony for playing a drug-addled mother in the revival of “Long Day’s Journey Into Night.” Lange is a two-time Academy Award winner.

Frank Langella won his fourth Tony for playing a man who has begun his slide down the slippery slope of dementia in “The Father.”

 ?? EVAN AGOSTINI/INVISION/AP ?? Danny Burstein and the cast of “Fiddler on the Roof” perform at the Tony Awards at the Beacon Theatre on Sunday night in New York.
EVAN AGOSTINI/INVISION/AP Danny Burstein and the cast of “Fiddler on the Roof” perform at the Tony Awards at the Beacon Theatre on Sunday night in New York.

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