The lights of broadway shone brightly during the 2022 Tony Awards on Sunday as members of the Broadway community gathered at Radio City Music Hall to celebrate Broadway’s return after the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hosted by Academy Award winner and Tony nominee Ariana DeBose, the night was full of performances by the musicals that made up the night’s best musical category.
Viewers were also treated to a reunion of the 2007 cast of Duncan Sheik’s “Spring Awakening” as well as a moving tribute to the late Stephen Sondheim, who died in November at 91.
DeBose, 31, opened the show with a mash-up of some of Broadway’s greatest hits including the likes of “Cabaret,” “Bye Bye Birdie,” “Evita,” “The Wiz,” “Chicago,” “Hamilton,” – which included a shoutout to Lin-Manuel Miranda – “Rent” and “Hairspray.”
Billy Crystal, 74, did an energetic rendition of “Mr. Saturday Night, ”which included a cameo with Samuel L. Jackson doing a skat in Yiddish.
The cast of “MJ: The Musical” fronted by Myles Frost, who later won for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical, had the audience grooving with a medley of the late King of Pop’s greatest hits.
Hugh Jackman, 53, and 47-year-old Sutton Foster, stars of “The Music Man,” tap-danced gleefully in their stage moment.
The cast of “Company,” including Best Featured Actress in a Musical winner Patti LuPone, 73, sang a lively rendition of the hit Stephen Sondheim stage play.
Jeannette Bayardelle and cast members from “Girl from the North Country” sang some of Bob Dylan’s greatest hits.
Bernadette Peters, 74, had the audience in tears during her moving tribute to Sondheim while Billy Porter, 52, gave everyone the feeling during the In Memoriam portion of the show.
The cast of Best Musical winner “A Strange Loop” charmed everyone, just moments after Michael R. Jackson scored the award for Best Book of a Musical.
Fans of the musical “Spring Awakening” were treated to a special reunion performance of “Touch Me” featuring “Hamilton” star Jonathan Groff, Gideon Glick and Skylar Astin, who is currently starring in the off-Broadway revival of “Little Shop of Horrors” . ”
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical winner Joaquina Kalukango brought down the house with a powerful song from “Paradise Square,” bringing the crowd to their feet for an enthusiastic standing ovation.
The cast of “Six,” including one understudy, had the crowd dancing in the night’s final performance.