Neil Patrick Harris hosted the 2013 Tonys, delivering a brash opening number, a soulful closing duet with Audra McDonald, and well-directed humor throughout
Lucas Jackson / Reuters
The reviews are in: It was a great Tony Awards. The dancing was inspired, the singing top-notch and the humor sly — and that's just for the host.
Neil Patrick Harris once again proved how invaluable he is to the success of one of entertainment's lesser-watched televised award shows on Sunday, and others may be paying attention.
"He's completely the real deal, totally multi-talented. When you're doing a show about Broadway with someone who understands television and also Broadway, it's a real unique opportunity," said Glenn Weiss, who co-produced the Tonys with Ricky Kirshner.
"He can perform, he has great energy, but he cares about the theater and you can't make that up," Weiss said. Added Kirshner: "He really has fantastic instincts with what will work and what won't."
From the big, brash opening number that included the casts from nearly a dozen musicals to the closing song three hours later that featured him rapping with Audra McDonald to a reworked "Empire State of Mind," it was Harris' night.
While much of it was scripted, those who attended rehearsals learned that Mr. Harris is also a master at ad-libs, too. After all, he has won more Emmy Awards as host (two) than he has as an actor (one).
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