In my novel, the original ending actually took place at the Tony Awards, and had a very Julie Andrews-esque sort of scandal involved. Ultimately, even when completing my first draft, I decided to change this, but I did the great pleasure of revisiting one of my all time favorite theatre fantasies: The Tony Award Acceptance Speech.
For the majority of actors who have never won a Tony, I like to think we all consider what we would say if we ever got the chance. As we get older, the list of people who have helped us become the actors we are, gets longer and longer. Some people fall off the list of the theoretical speech you would give, but some remain forever.
While I'm far from winning a Tony, if I were to win tonight, it would go a little something like this:
[Richard takes the stage, looking shocked and when they hand him the statue, he bursts into tears while holding it aloft. After taking a deep breath he composes himself and begins to speak]
AHH!!! Okay, look, If I had the remainder of the evening to thank everyone who has brought me to this moment, I still wouldn't have enough time, so please know that if you've ever shared a stage with me, whether it was a one-off performance in a friend's apartment or every night for a year on a Broadway stage, please know that I owe a piece of this to you.
I have to thank my teachers, Mr. Clay from Pulaski Academy, thank you for guiding me to the stage and showing me that standing out isn't something to try and hide. To my college professors, thank you for every note and every lesson. You helped me find a world for light when I could see nothing but darkness.
A special thanks go to Nancy Beranek and Steve Berman, who helped me find a new way to return to the stage. You two helped me finally make myself a triple threat adding Author to my skills as an Actor and attorney.
Sara Davis, I'd never have done this without you in my life, I can't wait to remember this moment with you for the many years to come.
[the band begins to play Richard off.]
Okay, Okay, I know. Just two more, please. First to my incredible daughter, thank you for revealing what it to be human every day, being one of your fathers is the best gig I will ever have. And finally to my loving husband, thank you, thank you, thank you. I knew this dream could come true because I met you, and have felt the kind of love I write about and perform on stages, every day since then.
Dreams come true! So don't give up!
Obviously I'd likely have to thank the specific people who were involved with whatever I won for. I personally hold my breath when an actor names a bunch of people in a show but seems to forget the other co-star.
For me, this Tony Awards Season will reeally boil down to one thing for me: Will Ben Platt win for "Dear Evan Hansen." I usually don't care about this award, as most of my attention is spent on the best/supporting actress in a musical, but this year, this award really matters to me. Platt's interview with the NYT really resonated with me, as a lot of what the piece describes sounds similar to the grueling work that Mason does in The Role. Anyone who is willing to give up that much for the sake of giving a unbelievable performance (I had a chance to see Mr. Platt and it truly is one of the most impressive things I have ever seen,) has not only utmost respect but my heart as well.