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"What if life were more like theater?" 2012 Tony Award host Neil Patrick Harris asks the audience before breaking out into song and dance.
The magical night brought a slew of dancing stars and singing sensations to the stage at the Beacon Theatre in New York as performances by Ricky Martin, the cast of Once and a special award presented to Hugh Jackman made for an entertaining evening.
Missed out on all the action? Never fear, fellow theater lovers! We've got the best, the worst and all the rest from this year's 2012 Tony Awards:
Opening Act The 2012 Tony Awards kick off with the musical number "Hello" from 2011 Tony winner The Book of Mormon. Let the razzle dazzle begin, folks!
Best Opening Line: "Welcome to the 66th Annual Tony Awards, or as we like to call it, Fifty Shades of Gay," third-time host Neil Patrick Harris quipped before gushing over the show. LOL! We knew this veteran host would bring his A-game.
From the Best Kick-Off Routine: Neil Patrick Harris breaks out into song and dance with an original musical number and wonders what life would be like without theater. Amanda Seyfried and little orphan Annie even take the stage with Harris as he belts out Tony-inspired lyrics. "If like were more like theater, life wouldn't suck so much," NPH sings.
To The First Big Win!: Paul Rudd presents the award for Best Actress for a Feature Role in a Play. Theater speak translation? Best supporting actress—which went to Judith Light for Other Desert Cities. "I'm a little bit in shock, but I'm really thrilled...I dreamed about it, hoped about it," Judith gushed to E! News backstage.
JoBro Sighting!: Nick Jonas takes the stage to introduce the company of Newsies before the cast breaks out into a peppy rendition of "Seize the Day." Cue the impressive dancing and acrobatic tricks—we loved all the action in this high-energy performance.
Worst (Silly) Idea: NPH takes the stage and makes a fairly convincing argument for a Tony Award mash-up—and suggests combining popular movies with popular musicals. Our favorite? My Left Footloose.
Nice Work!: Amanda Seyfried, who looks stunning with her hair slicked back and deep red lips, presented the award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Feature Musical Role. The winner? Michael McGrath for his performance in Nice Work If You Can Get It. First surprise of the night!
Spooky Surprise: The cast of Ghost takes the stage for a performance after a brief commercial break. It's far mellower than the Newsies showdown we saw earlier, but the cast sounds phenomenal as they belt out the sweet tunes.
Worst Shocker: But we're not complaining! John Tiffany takes home his first Tony for Once and thanks his family for the "gift of music" onstage.
Best Sweet Speech: Mike Nichols wins Best Director of a Play for Death of a Salesman—his sixth Tony Award (and 18th nomination!). Nichols teared up as he thanked the "cast straight from heaven" and was bursting with happiness onstage while his wife beamed in the audience.
Best Superstar Performance: Josh Young belts out a hit from the Broadway show Jesus Christ Superstar. Dressed in a shiny, royal blue suit, Young gave a powerful and entertaining performance.
Neil, Quit Hanging Around!: Leave it Neil Patrick Harris to serve up a few surprises! We couldn't help but LOL when NPH was suspended from the ceiling upside down in an ode to Spider-Man. Add Andrew Garfield's adorable smile from the audience and you have one priceless Tony moment.
Best Smile, Worst Outfit: Jessica Chastain had us mesmerized with her stunning smile and beautiful red hair as she presented the award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play, which went to Christian Borle for Peter and the Starcatcher. Our only complaint? Chastain's dress—the nude mesh and sequined embroidery were simply too much.
Worst Performance: Sorry, Matthew Broderick, but we simply weren't feeling your Nice Work performance. It was cute and entertaining, but far from the night's best.
Best Ode to the Plays: It's not just about the musicals! Of course, the Tony Awards took a moment to recognize the year's best plays with a video montage and mini performances from the stars. One of our favorite moments from the night so far!
Best Original Score: Eight-time Oscar winner Alan Menken takes home his first Tony for Newsies and recalled how the film bombed at the box office and received a Razzie before becoming one of the most successful musicals on Broadway this year. What an impressive turnaround!
Once Upon a Tony: Cast of Once takes the stage for a very instrument-savvy performance. The violins, guitars and sweet vocals made for a nice mid-show musical number.
Big Banging at the Tonys: Jim Parsons brings his signature smirk to the stage as he introduces the nominees for Best Play as moments from each nominee flash across the screen. Sheldon Cooper himself then presents the Tony Award to Clybourne Park, penned by Bruce Norris.
Livin' La Vida Tony: The company of Evita, including the multi-talented Ricky Martin, bring their sizzle to the stage for a fun performance. Ricky rocks a silly 'stache and hits some seriously high notes as he somersaults for the audience.
Best Crowd Surfer: The cast of Hairspray took the stage and gave an energetic performance, but our attention went to the crowd surfer as NPH cut to commercial. Seriously, a woman stiffens her body and crowd surfs in her high heels down the front of the stage! Look to the right of Neil in the audience if you're watching a replay.
Best Married Moment: Hugh Jackman was beaming as his wife took the stage to present a special Tony Award honoring the musical thesp. "I know you hate public speaking. This is probably the greatest thing you've ever done for me," Jackman gushes as he accepts his honor. "This was a minor miracle that it happened," Hugh told E! News backstage after the big surprise.
Most Touching Moment: Steve Kazee gave the most emotional speech of the night when he accepted his award for best lead actor in a musical and remembered his mother, who passed away on Easter Sunday. "My mother always told me before shows to stand up and show them whose little boy you are. And I am here to tell you I am the son of Kathy Withrow Kazee who lost the fight with cancer on Easter Sunday this year," he proudly said. Talk about a tear-jerker!
Worst Upset: Fans were shocked when James Corden won for Best Lead Actor in a Play for One Man, Two Guvners snagging the award from frontrunner Philip Seymour Hoffman. A tearful Cordon thanked his fellow nominees including his "favorite actor in the world," Philip Seymour Hoffman. "When you're on a list like that, you don't expect to win," Corden admitted to E! News backstage after the big moment.
Best Closing Moments: Nina Arianda squeals with excitement as she accepts the award for Best Lead Actress in a Play for Venus in Fur. Audra McDonald then accepts the award for Best Lead Actress in a Musical for The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess. "I was a little girl with a pot belly and Afro puffs, hyperactive and overdramatic, and I found the theater and I found my home," McDonald remembers.
And That's a Wrap!: Once wins the award for Best Musical as the show comes to a close!