The show must go on. That was the message of the Tony awards that continued as scheduled in spite of the terrorist attack at a Florida gay nightclub.
The Broadway actors who spoke at the awards show paid tribute to the victims of the attack, but a pre-recorded video aired Sunday night from President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama did not mention the attacks that occurred earlier in the day.
Obama praised the music in the play, pointing out that it made rap music “the language of revolution” and used hip-hop as its “urgent soundtrack.”
“It’s a musical about the miracle that is America, a place of citizenship where we debate ideas with passion and conviction,” Michelle Obama added, while her husband asserted that America was “a place of inclusiveness where we value our boisterous diversity as a great gift.”
The Obamas began the video by reminding the audience that Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda had appeared at a “poetry-jam” at the White House seven years ago and performed one of his songs from the now smash-hit musical.
“I confess, we all laughed but who’s laughing now?” Obama recalled. “Seven years later Hamilton has become not only a smash-hit but a civics lesson our kids can’t get enough of.”
Michelle Obama urged Americans to remember the values that made the country what it is today.
“America is what ‘We the People’ make of it, as long as we stay just like our country, young scrappy and hungry,” she said.