James Corden opened the 2016 Tony Awards with a moving message addressing the tragic nightclub shootings in Orlando.
“All around the world, people are trying to come to terms with the horrific events that took place in Orlando this morning,” Corden said after at least 50 people were killed and 53 more were injured in what is the worst mass shooting in US history.
“On behalf of the whole theatre community and every people in this room, our hearts go out to all of those affected by this atrocity. All we can say is you’re not on your own right now,” host Corden said at the start of the theatre awards ceremony.
“Your tragedy is our tragedy,” he continued, after a lone gunman claiming allegiance to Isis opened fire at an LGBT nightclub.
“Theatre is a place where every race, creed, sexuality and gender is equal, is embraced, and is loved. Hate will never win. Together, we have to make sure of that. Tonight’s show stands as a symbol and celebration of that principle.”
Earlier in the day it had been confirmed that the ceremony would be dedicated to those affected.
Many of those collecting awards on the night addressed the events, including The Father’s Frank Langella, who urged the people of Orlando to remain strong.