Langella, accepting his fourth Tony win, said that he was putting aside his thank yous because of what he called “a dose of true reality — what happened today in Orlando.” An instant hush fell over the theater as the renowned actor spoke.
“I found some words that will mean more to you than a litany of names,” he said. “When something bad happens we have three choices. We can let it define us, we can let it destroy us or we can let it strengthen us. Today in Orlando we had a hideous dose of reality. I urge you Orlando to be strong. I’m standing in a room full of the most generous human beings on earth and we will be with you every step of the way.”
Langella won best leading actor in a play for his work in “The Father.”
Fifty people were killed and 53 more were injured at gay nightclub Pulse in Orlando, Fla., on Sunday in what is being billed as the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
It’s hardly the first mention of the shooting at Broadway’s biggest night. Host James Corden kicked off the show by addressing the attack, and Lin-Manuel Miranda, accepting his award for best original score for “Hamilton,” also paid tribute to the victims of the shooting.
The Tony Awards also dedicated the show to the victims and families of the victims earlier on Sunday.