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Daniel Radcliffe and Angelina Jolie Celebrate First Tony Award Wins

Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe received his first-ever Tony Award at Sunday’s ceremony in New York. Radcliffe was honored with the award for Best Actor in a Musical for his performance in the revival of Stephen Sondheim’s “Merrily We Roll Along.” The play garnered a total of four awards at the event, which celebrates the finest in Broadway theatre.

In his acceptance speech, the 34-year-old actor expressed his gratitude and love for his family, wishing his father a happy Father’s Day and thanking his girlfriend, Erin Darke. “My love Erin, you and our son are the best thing that has ever happened to me. I love you so much, thank you so much,” Radcliffe said. He also credited his parents for introducing him to Sondheim’s music and called the play “one of the best experiences of my life.”

Jonathan Groff, another standout performer from the musical, also took home his first Tony Award. In his speech, Groff praised his co-stars, Radcliffe and Lindsay Mendez, referring to them as “more than old friends.” He added, “You are soulmates, and I’m looking forward to watching each other change for the rest of our lives.”

Angelina Jolie celebrated her first Tony Award win for producing “The Outsiders,” which was named Best Musical at Sunday’s ceremony in New York. The production, based on SE Hinton’s book, also garnered three other awards from its total of 12 nominations. The 49-year-old actress was accompanied on stage by her 15-year-old daughter, Vivienne.

In her acceptance speech, director Danya Taymor acknowledged Jolie among the “great women who have lifted me up.” Jolie later joined the cast on stage to accept the award for Best Musical.

“The Outsiders” explores the conflict between two rival gangs of white Americans divided by socioeconomic status. The musical triumphed over “Hell’s Kitchen,” a semi-autobiographical work by Alicia Keys, which had received 13 nominations and won two awards. One of those wins went to theatre veteran Kecia Lewis for Featured Actress.

In an emotional speech, Lewis reflected on her four-decade-long career. “40 years ago yesterday I walked into the Imperial Theatre to begin my Broadway career at 18 years old,” she said. “I have had so many amazing experiences and some heartbreaking ones, too. I took a short break from show business and raised a son as a single parent while trying to build a career. This moment is the one I dreamed for most of those 40 years, so I say to everyone who can hear my voice – don’t give up.”

The evening also featured a special performance by Alicia Keys and Jay-Z, who joined the cast of “Hell’s Kitchen” to perform their 2009 hit song “Empire State Of Mind” in tribute to New York.

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