Published: Fri, June 16, 2017
National | By Rosalie Gross

Tony Awards Shine on New Stars

Now their soundtrack for "Dear Evan Hansen" has soared to number after the Tony Awards win last night.

The 71-year-old Broadway legend, who won Best Actress in a Musical for her role in Hello, Dolly!, was in the middle of delivering an epic thank-you speech when the orchestra began to warp her up.

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul's Tony win felt like a win for theatre kids everywhere. Unlike twelve months ago when "Hamilton" nearly swept the board, this year's Tonys were more even-handed. Oslo performer Michael Aronov won the Tony Award for best featured actor in a play, while Gavin Creel of Hello, Dolly! won best featured actor in a musical. Andy Blankenbuehler dedicated his award of best choreography in a musical for "Bandstand" to his grandfather, and proudly displayed his grandfather's war tags in homage.

"It's my honour to be here presenting the Tony for best revival of a musical", Colbert said at New York City's Radio City Music Hall.

Even though she didn't sing, you could feel Midler ruled the night.

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Best musical went to Dear Evan Hansen, a musical about anxiety disorder and coming of age in the internet era.

"It's where I found everything I've ever loved and where I belong, and I've dreamed every day since of being on this stage and being part of this community of artists".

Bette Midler, the veteran Jewish actress and singer, won for best actress in a musical for "Hello Dolly" as Broadway handed out its highest honors on June 11 in NY. Dear Evan Hansen took home Best New Musical, while Come From Away, which was neck-in-neck for the big prize, got Best Direction of a Musical. In the show's opening monologue Spacey tried his hand Tony nominated shows Natasha Pierre And The Great Comet Of 1812 and Dear Evan Hansen.

But despite huge opposition to Trump in the United States entertainment industry in general and NY in particular, there were only oblique political references during the singing-and-dancing production. (Little Foxes costume designer Jane Greenwood also won her first competitive Tony after 21 nominations).

In all the pandemonium tonight I neglected to thank the brilliant ensemble of 'Hello Dolly, ' whom I adore. They have a host of other projects underway so you can expect to see (and hear) a lot more of them. His Frank Underwood from "House of Cards" made a late appearance, striding onto the stage with his TV wife played by Robin Wright.

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