THE PERFORMER | Neil Patrick Harris
THE SHOW | Tony Awards
THE AIRDATE | June 9, 2013
As host of Broadway’s biggest night, Neil Patrick Harris took our breath away without ever losing his.
From the moment the show started, we knew we were in for a treat, but we never could have imagined the impeccably delivered and stamina-testing opening number that was to follow. He jumped through a hoop. He climbed a giant statuette. He did it all. Never pausing for more than a few seconds, Harris sang and danced his heart out (at one point while being hoisted by Bring It On cheerleaders!) with so much dynamic enthusiasm and power that it radiated out from the screen — and left us gasping for him.
As if that wasn’t enough, he performed a magic trick, sprinting from the stage to the back of theater in seconds — we’re still trying to figure that one out — and even imbued heartfelt emotion into a verse reaching out to all the theater-loving kids out there. (When he said, “We were that kid,” you knew he meant it.)
And it only got better from there. A clever bit about Broadway vets from recently canceled TV shows, featuring Megan Hilty (Smash), Andrew Rannells (The New Normal) and Laura Benanti (Go On), delighted, and as both a performer and a producer, multihyphenate Harris deserves some credit for that.
Then, for the crème de la crème, the host delivered a wrap-up rap about the night’s big winners and moments with help from Broadway star Audra McDonald. It’s become something of a tradition for Harris to close out the show with Lin-Manuel Miranda (In the Heights) and Tommy Kail’s on-the-fly written words, but he still impresses every time he does so.
What performance knocked your socks off this week?