Tony Awards Orlando Shooting

Tony Awards: Tonight's Ceremony Dedicated to Families and Friends of Orlando Shooting Massacre

Tonight’s Tony Awards ceremony (8/7c, CBS) will be dedicated to the “families and friends of those affected” by the Sunday-morning shooting massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando, which left upwards of 50 people dead and another 53 injured.

“Our hearts are heavy for the unimaginable tragedy that happened last night in Orlando,” Tony organizers said in a statement. “Our thoughts are with the families and friends of those affected. The Tony Awards dedicate tonight’s ceremony to them.”

The attack — which ranks as the worst mass shooting in U.S. history — took place at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, early Sunday morning. The suspected gunmen has been identified as Omar Saddiqui Mateen, 29, of Fort Pierce, Fla.

All of the major broadcast networks have pre-empted regular Sunday daytime programming for live coverage of the massacre.

The Pulse incident occurred just miles from Friday’s shooting death of Voice contestant Christina Grimmie.

In an address to the nation Sunday afternoon, President Obama said, “In the face of hate and violence, we will love one another. We will not give in to fear or turn against each other. Instead, we will stand united as Americans to protect our people and defend our nation, and to take action against those who threaten us.”

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  1. Drew says:

    Now there are reports that the gunman was angered at seeing two men kissing, so that’s why he targeted the club. Given how inclusive Broadway is, there’s no way the show tonight can’t acknowledge the Orlando shooting. It’s another senseless tragedy and the audience will likely be higher tonight. Hopefully a message of tolerance and respect for the LGBT community will have some impact.

    • Lyn says:

      Brainwashing by religious indoctrination will never show tolerance for anything that defies their fanaticism.

      • The Beach says:

        Thank you!

      • Drew says:

        I’m not even talking about religious fanatics; I’m talking about so-called mainstream America (many of whom keep getting elected to public office) who need to hear the message.

        • Pamela says:

          It doesn’t help that Florida has a gun shop in every town. There have been so many deaths this year from guns in Florida that haven’t made nationwide news.

      • F.R says:

        religious indoctrination may have been the reason for this particular tragedy, but the problem of militant homophobia is bigger than just one specific religion. Look at the guy who tried to perform a shooting spree at the LA pride parade, just today. I doubt he was a radicalised Islamist. What I’m saying is that yeah, we should tackle fanaticism by all means but not ignore the fact that the problem runs deeper.

  2. Tim says:

    They should probably cancel it.

    • lariet50 says:

      I don’t think they can – contracts with the network, scheduling with the shows still on Broadway, etc. Plus I think that things need to go on, but with a manner of honoring the dead, as they’re planning here. Canceling things just gives another “win” to the monster who did this. I think the Tony organizers are handling is in the best manner available to them – they know the people presenting and winning awards will mention this anyway, so dedicate the night to the victims. I just hope it’s all done in a positive manner, placing the focus where it needs to be – on the tragic loss of life, and keeping the families in thoughts and prayers.

    • Shaun says:

      Is it even live?Thought the awards were already given out like most other award shows?

    • Anna says:

      I respectfully disagree. What good does cancelling it do? Give more airtime to the tragedy wreaked by this awful individual? Especially given that this shooting was directly related to LGBTQA issues and Broadway is one of the most visible outlets for the same community, the best thing is for this show to go on, to stand up and say that we will not cower in terror, but instead attempt to showcase the talents of many folks who belong to this community and bring joy to as many people as possible.

  3. MMD says:

    I am so glad that the Tony’s will continue and be dedicated to the victims, their families and friends. I will never understand the intolerance whether it be of race, gender, religion, political views, whatever. Whatever happened to live and let live? How some people have such hate that the answer is to kill is so beyond my comprehension.

    Deepest condolences to the LGBTQ community, Orlando, and all the many people around the world who are affected by the massive ripple effect of this horrific tragedy.

  4. adam says:

    What’s wrong with Orlando, first Christina Grimmie gets shot and killed and now this in the span of 2 days.