Video: Tony Awards' Cancelled TV Show Number Brings Out Stars of Smash, New Normal, Go On

Several cancelled series enjoyed some time in the Tony spotlight Sunday night — to uproarious effect.

Newly-unemployed Broadway vets Megan Hilty and Andrew Rannells — whose respective small screen breaks, Smash and The New Normal, were axed last month by NBC — joined host Neil Patrick Harris on stage to literally sing the praises of TV (“The perks, the pay, the private jets… “).

VIDEO | Watch (and Grade) Neil Patrick Harris’ Tony Awards Opening

However, Laura Benanti — who is coming off the back-to-back cancellations of The Playboy Club and Go On — was far less reverential about her time on the telly.

RELATED | TVline’s Renewal Scorecard: What’s Cancelled? What’s Coming Back?

Press PLAY below and then hit the comments with an answer to this question: Was this your favorite moment from the three-hour telecast? And, if not, what was?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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43 Comments
  1. Michelle says:

    This was hilarious, but the opening number was just amazing. NPH can do no wrong when it comes to hosting.

  2. I thought this was really good! I like when actors poke fun at their careers. Lightens the mood. Bravo :)

  3. Winnie says:

    Wow – amazing display of talent and humor. I watched Go On, The New Normal, and Smash (show-killer in training?), so it was nice to have a sort of silver lining.

  4. Loved it!! <3 You'll always be Glinda to me Megan!

  5. LLA says:

    Best award show of them all every year! NPH did a spectacular job as host (as always) Loved this number–very funny! The entire show was terrific. Broadway has the post talented people in the world performing 8 shows a wk.

  6. eloise says:

    Just to give credit where it’s due, the number was written by Michael John LaChiusa :) (The opening number was written by Tom Kitt and Lin-Manuel Miranda, the closing number I believe just Lin)

  7. Midori says:

    For being a show about theatre that stage they were on was horrible!

  8. Lori says:

    This was just hysterical. They were all great.

  9. Ashleytv says:

    Favourite part of the night! I was a huge fan of Go On, Smash, and the New Normal (And th Playboy Club!) which were all NBC, technically, so damn you, NBC, but this was hilarious. I love when Andrew Rannells gets to sing in anything. Because he’s flawless and him and NPH should do things together, I would watch that.

  10. danbuckley141 says:

    4 shows, 3 actors, 1 network, NBC.

  11. Amanda says:

    I started flailing when Andrew started singing, and then flailed more when Megan walked out, and just flat out screamed when Laura walked out. I always said that there could be a Broadway show with all the vets from cancelled NBC shows this year … wishes *do* come true!

  12. David P. Graf says:

    The Oscars could certainly take a few notes from the Tony’s. My wife and I have not had the opportunity to ever see a show in NY but we still enjoyed the musical numbers and the sincerity of the presenters and award winners. They wore their hearts on the sleeves and God bless them for doing so. Plus, they were there to entertain not just the audience in the theater but also the audience watching the show on tv. They didn’t take themselves too seriously either and were willing to poke fun at themselves. Now let’s compare this to the Oscars.

    For whatever reason, the movies and those who make them still doubt that they deserve to be taken seriously. In some ways this is understandable. Something like the weekends with Bernie movie would never have made it to Broadway. Broadway cannot appeal to the lowest common denominator and make money because if a play flops, there’s no “direct to video” option to recoup their losses. But, getting back to my point, this insecurity leads them to do things which the Tonys can dispense with.

    For example, the Tony’s spend far less time on each award. Presenters do not have to “entertain” us with several minutes of snappy monologues or jokes. Instead, the presenters at the Tony’s announce the contenders and then the winners and then get out of the way. The Tony’s are not unashamed either to present major awards before the telecast and to edit the comments made by the winners as with lifetime achievement award recipients. In contrast, everyone who gets a major award gets time to thank everyone from God to Aunt Ethel on the Oscars’ telecast.

    Lastly, the Tony’s are an entertainment first and an awards show second. The Oscars reverse that. And so, it’s no surprise that the Oscars are a lot less fun to watch than the Tony’s.

  13. Steve says:

    I loved that number but Im surprised there wasnt a big dig at NBC or Peacocks or Comcast or something considering all 4 shows were on NBC.

  14. HarmonyMom says:

    At least Ivy got to sing at the Tony’s after all.

  15. MARY ANN says:

    I LOVE “SMASH”

  16. This was a great skit/number. Laura Benanti was my favorite part, I think. She was amazing in Go On, and I am most upset about that cancellation.

  17. Amanda says:

    I’m having trouble understanding one line. When Andrew starts the full song, he sings “I like to star on a tv show-” and then it’s muddled for a line. Any idea what he says? I can’t make any sense of it.

  18. lariet50 says:

    Does anyone know if the whole show is available to watch online anywhere? I missed it, but I’d love to see the whole thing!

  19. I totally want to get drunk with Bitter Laura Benanti.

  20. Melissa says:

    I didn’t see the awards show, but i loved that clip! very clever conncection of theater and TV :)
    the talent of theater actors is unmatched!!

  21. KBecks says:

    That was hilarious!! Still upset over the cancellation of Go On. Laura Benanti was amazing!

  22. This was certainly one of the better moments of the evening. Talent exudes on this telecast.

  23. Babybop says:

    That was adorable! I’m still hurting over the Go On cancellation…

  24. mrsjolie says:

    This was awesome!!!! =D Love Megan, Andrew and Laura and OF COURSE Neil

  25. Sarah K says:

    i really love the new normal and smash. i’m glad both those shows got some what of a proper ending even though they had such great potential to grow.

  26. Soapstef says:

    I was just watching the Tony’s on CBS! This was so brilliant and funny. I was rolling over laughing! Fantastic!

  27. Nicole says:

    I absolutely loved this bit (and thought NPH should mention that his long running show was on CBS) but I think my favorite was the closing number. That was brilliant!

  28. Bob says:

    Bits like this were the reason that the ratings were up significantly this year. Opening number, this one, closing number, even Lauper singing during the “In Memoriam”.

  29. Leigh Sweet says:

    Did notice they didn’t use anyone from the canceled shows on CBS

  30. Ally_D says:

    As a theater fanatic and TV geek I was whooping, cheering and seal-clapping during this and had to watch it back several times!!! I heart Andrew Rannells so much and when Megan came out followed by Laura (doing the excellent ‘drunk’ 11-o’clock number from ‘Company’) it just got better and better.
    .
    NPH is now as fundamental to The Tony Awards telecast as peanut butter and jelly to a good sandwich. They made him a producer several years ago – possibly as a way to secure his services – but can we really hope for a 5th outing in 2014? Would that just be tempting fate – all of his hosting jobs have been very well received and I’d hate for him to crash and burn. Quit while you’re ahead never felt truer but I feel bad for whoever has to take on the mantle…

  31. champmav says:

    Only saw her briefly, but I’d like to nominate Debra Messing as the best awards show audience member. She was delightful (and delighted) every time I glimpsed her! She clearly loves theater.