Politically charged speeches at Tony Awards

"Dear Evan Hansen" was the big victor at the 2017 Tony Awards, broadcast live from New York's Radio City Music Hall on Sunday, walking off with awards for best musical and lead actor as well as actress nods for Ben Platt and Rachel Bay Jones.

The crew of "Dear Evan Hansen" pose in the press room during the 2017 Tony Awards.

Kevin Spacey sang, danced and mimicked Bill Clinton at a Tony Awards ceremony where the policies of President Trump's administration were taken to task. Some non-white nominees, like set designer Mimi Lien and orchestrator Alex Lacamoire, won trophies, and the cast of "Jitney" - mostly African-American - helped it win the revival Tony.

Other awards went to Laurie Metcalf for her role in a newly written sequel to A Doll's House and to Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon for her supporting role in The Little Foxes.

Also among the night's big winners was Bette Midler for "Hello, Dolly!" and the drama "Oslo", a three-hour play about the Middle East peace accords.

The House of Cards star was joined for the opening by US talk show presenter Stephen Colbert and 2008 Tony's host Whoopi Goldberg, who also joked about her sexuality as she stepped out of a closet to make her big entrance.

"Come From Away", about Canadians from Newfoundland who provided refuge to almost 7,000 airline passengers on September 11, 2001 when USA air space closed, also won one Tony for best direction of a musical.

"My love, my gratitude and my undying respect go out to all the people in 2017 who are refusing to just stand and watch them do it", she added to applause. Andy Blankenbuehler won his second choreography Tony in as many years - last year for "Hamilton" and this time for "Bandstand".

Spacey peppered his routines - aided by Whoopi Goldberg and Stephen Colbert, to name a few guests - with a healthy dose of self-deprecating humor, making a storyline out of the fact that he wasn't the first choice for hosting duties.

Some of his most successful bits, judging by audience reaction, were his much-lauded impressions. "I'm not even talking about the Tony Awards".

On stage, she praised the old-school musical as a balm for "these bad, awful times".

Groban reminded the former vice president that Biden had once told him he has him on his iPod playlist, and he'd never forgotten that.

At the party, nominees, celebrities and other guests wandered through the hotel's food stalls, munching on everything from filet mignon to avocado gazpacho to lobster rolls to chocolate macaroons. And while Platt is a Tony rookie, he has a strong Broadway pedigree. "And then to be representing my show and performing tonight - I just had the best time".

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