The Tony Awards were in a tough position: Early Sunday morning, the country experienced the deadliest mass shooting in its history, with 50 dead and 53 wounded at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The show still went on, but not without acknowledging the terrible tragedy. The 70th annual Tony Awards opened with the lights dimmed, and host James Corden delivered the following statement, that “your tragedy is our tragedy.”
Good evening. 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 we can say is 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, and is loved. Hate will never win. Together we have to make sure of that. Tonight’s show stands as a symbol and celebration of that principle. This is the Tony Awards.