More than 1,500 New Yorkers gathered today in Manhattan to mourn the death of a 32 year-old gay man, who was shot down on Friday just blocks away from the historic Stonewall Inn in an apparent act of anti-gay bias.
Tony Nominee Sean Hayes Hosts an Unforgettable Show
The 64th Annual Tony Awards continued its legacy of LGBT-inclusiveness, featuring openly gay host Sean Hayes and honoring LGBT shows and actors. A nominee for his role in Promises, Promises, Sean Hayes started the night off with a bang
, giving a great piano solo and as his speech began, cleverly addressing the controversial Newsweek article that claimed that LGBT actors can not convincingly play heterosexual roles. Hayes shared an extended lip lock with his co-star, Kristin Chenoweth. After the theatrical smooch, Hayes remarked, "I know what you're thinking. She's too short for me." Throughout the show, Hayes managed to comment on LGBT issues in a lighthearted manner, by later taking a comical jab at "closeted, right-wing politicians" secretly watching the Tony's and later when addressing Tony winner Scarlett Johansson's sex appeal, saying "even I'd take a crack at that."
Among the highlights was a spectacular opening act by Green Day (lead by bisexual frontman Billie Joe Armstrong), a performance by Glee co-stars Lea Michele and Matthew Morrison, and a presentation for best actor in a musical by out actor Nathan Lane.
Taking home the Tony for Best Revival of a Musical was the groundbreaking LGBT classic La Cage Aux Folles, which featured out nominee Robin De Jesus for his role as Jacob. Musician and actor Levi Kreis won the Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical for his performance in the nominated Million Dollar Quartet. Winning the Tony for Best Choreography was world renowned Fela! choreographer, Bill T. Jones, who thanked his long time partner Bjorn from the stage. Jones was also nominated in the Best Direction in a Musical category; that honor went to Terry Johnson for La Cage Aux Folles. Winning the prestigious Isabelle Stevenson Award, which recognizes thesps for their humanitarian work, was out actor David Hyde Pierce who discussed his Alzheimer activism and thanked his partner Brian in his acceptance speech.
Although Hayes had big shoes to fill after last year's hosting by out actor Neil Patrick Harris, the show received rave reviews from the Los Angeles Times and Entertainment Weekly. His kiss with co-star Kristin Chenoweth was only the beginning of his hilarious antics, which included the star dressed as everyone from little orphan Annie to Spiderman. Overall, his performance entertained and impressed the star-studded audience and theater buffs everywhere, his unrivaled talent a fitting response to Newsweek's controversial claims.