The night of February 2, 2015 will go down in history as the night there were the most Tony Award winners in the Ballroom at New York’s Pierre Hotel, EVER! All that 'Tony' love for The Drama League’s 31st Musical Celebration of Broadway to honor James Earl Jones, and what an honor it was. The man is a legend and the theatrical community came out in full force to pay tribute to a groundbreaking career that includes Gershwin’s 'Porgy and Bess', 'Othello', 'The Merchant of Venice', 'The Great White Hope', 'The Cherry Orchard', 'Fences', 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof', 'Driving Miss Daisy'; and he is still going strong, performing at 84 on Broadway with 'You Cant Take It with You'.
His voice is magical and his green eyes are twinkling. The evening's spectacular performance, directed by Nick Corley, the stars just kept on shining on us all. Tyne Daly, Elizabeth Ashley, Kelsey Grammer, Julie Halston, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Charles Turner, Estelle Parsons and so many more performed. For me, Leslie Uggams’ belting out 'Mr. Jones' had me at the edge of my seat and James Monroe Iglehart rapping Dave Crawford’s 'What A Man', had us all up and moving. An amazing tribute to an amazing man.
As he rose to give Thanks to all who came out to show their support, that voice, yes that Darth Vader voice was clear and strong. The awesome Ellen Fox and I have had the privilege to co-chair this event for three years in a row and it has been an honor. From past tributes to Audra MacDonald to Neil Patrick Harris and now James Earl Jones. We have had a blast!