The Tonys 2016

“All around the world people are trying to come to terms with the horrific events that took place in Orlando this morning. On behalf of the whole theater community, and every person in this room our hearts go out to all of those affected by this atrocity. All I can say is that you are not on your own right now, your tragedy is our tragedy. Theater is a place where every race, creed, sexuality and gender is equal is embraced is loved. 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 — this is the Tony Awards.” Barely 18 hours after the mass shooting in Orlando, Florida, James Corden opened the Tony awards with those words on June 13th. Corden hosts CBS’s “The Late Late Show,” and the popular Carpool Karaoke series.

Some 8.7 million viewers tuned in for the show, a 35 percent increase over last year. The expanded audience is mostly credited to the popular hit play “Hamilton,” which won 11 Tonys including Best Musical. For the first time, the top four awards for acting in musicals went to people of color: Renée Elise Goldsberry, Daveed Diggs, and Leslie Odom, Jr., from “Hamilton,” and Erivo, from “The Color Purple.” “The show was so diverse that Donald Trump threatened to build a wall around the theater,” joked Corden. Click here for the full list of winners.

The Tony awards highlight what is happening in Broadway theatre for everyone in America. Established in 1947 by a committee of the American Theatre Wing, named after Antoinette Perry, an actress, director, producer and co-founder of the American Theatre Wing, who died in 1946.

Scenes from The Tonys 2016: