James Corden began his hosting of the Tony Awards in New York City last night (June 12) by addressing the day’s tragic events in Orlando, Florida.
Omar Mateen killed 50 people and wounded 53 more when he opened fire at Orlando gay nightclub Pulse in the early hours of Sunday morning. He was shot dead by police.
“On behalf of the whole theatre community, and every person in this room, our hearts go out to all of those affected by this atrocity,” Corden told the audience at New York City’s Beacon Theatre. “All we can say is you are not on your own right now. Your tragedy is our tragedy. Theatre is a place where every race, creed, sexuality, and gender is equal, is embraced, and is loved.”
Corden continued: “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.”
Corden, who won the 2012 Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play for his performance in One Man, Two Guvnors, was hosting the event for the first time last night. Hip-hop musical Hamilton was the big winner, taking home eleven prizes including Best Musical, while Frank Langella and Jessica Lange were among those to receive acting accolades.