NEW YORK– It was Lin-Manuel Miranda’s night, and the heartfelt, original sonnet he used as an acceptance speech wowed the crowd at the 70th annual Tony Awards Sunday night. As the 36-year-old ‘Hamilton’ creator and star read a sonnet he wrote for his wife, Vanessa Nadal, he fought back tears to address the Orlando massacre that killed 50 people earlier that morning.
“My wife’s the reason anything gets done
She nudges me towards promise by degrees
She is a perfect symphony of one
Our son is her most beautiful reprise.
We chase the melodies that seem to find us
Until they’re finished songs and start to play
When senseless acts of tragedy remind us
That nothing here is promised, not one day.
This show is proof that history remembers
We lived through times when hate and fear seemed stronger;
We rise and fall and light from dying embers, remembrances that hope and love last longer
And love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love cannot be killed or swept aside.
I sing Vanessa’s symphony, Eliza tells her story
Now fill the world with music, love and pride.”
Lin’s raw emotion touched everyone sitting in the audience at the Beacon Theater. Immediately following his speech, celebrities took to Twitter to express their appreciation for Lin’s artistic perspective on the tragic shooting that took the lives of 49 people just hours earlier.
Oprah, who was a presenter that evening, applauded Lin for his moving tribute, calling it “perfect.”
Debra Messing simply posted a video of Lin’s speech with the caption, “THIS.”
Lin went on to take the stage nine more times that evening, accepting Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Featured Actor in a Musical and Best Original Score.
By Chloe Melas