'It's a Glorious Thing': Watch Nathan Lane's Emotional Acceptance Speech for the Sondheim Award | Playbill

Video 'It's a Glorious Thing': Watch Nathan Lane's Emotional Acceptance Speech for the Sondheim Award

Faith Prince, Krysta Rodriguez, James Caverly, and more honored Lane at the recent gala at Signature Theatre.

Arlington, Virginia's Signature Theatre honored three-time Tony winner Nathan Lane with its 13th Stephen Sondheim Award April 29 at a black-tie gala at The Anthem.

The annual award, created in 2009 to recognize the importance of the late composer-lyricist's work, celebrates those who have made important contributions to the American musical theatre. Previous recipients include Pulitzer Prize winner Sondheim, followed by Angela Lansbury (2010), Bernadette Peters (2011), Patti LuPone (2012), Harold Prince (2013), Jonathan Tunick (2014), James Lapine (2015), John Weidman (2016), Cameron Mackintosh (2017), John Kander (2018), Audra McDonald (2019), Carol Burnett (2022), and Chita Rivera (2023).

While accepting the award, Lane joked that he "retired from musical theatre a while ago," adding that "there aren’t that many truly great musicals, but when it does work, when the hairs on the back of your neck stand up, it’s a glorious thing, and there’s nothing quite like it." Watch his emotional speech in the video above.

Paying tribute to the Broadway veteran with live performances were Lane's Tony-winning Guys and Dolls co-star, Faith Prince; Into the Woods' Krysta Rodriguez; Only Murders in the Building’s James Caverly; and three-time Tony nominee Christopher Fitzgerald. Signature favorites Adelina Mitchell, Tracy Lynn Olivera, Awa Sal Secka, Claire Leyden, and Ethan Turbyfill also performed, accompanied by Jon Kalbfleisch. And, five-time Tony winner Susan Stroman, who directed Lane in The Producers and The Frogs, offered remarks as part of the presentation.

Stage and screen star Lane won his first Tony for his performance in the 1996 revival of Sondheim's A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. After winning a second Tony in 2001 for The Producers, Lane revised the book and starred in the 2004 Broadway debut of Sondheim’s The Frogs. His latest Tony was for his work as Roy M. Cohn in the 2018 revival of Angels in America. Among his numerous screen credits are The Birdcage, Only Murders in the Building, and his voice work as Timon in Disney’s The Lion King.

Video: Nathan Lane on How He Almost Changed His Name to Norman Lane

During the evening, Signature also honored The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation with The J. Watkins Distinguished Service Award for the Foundation’s decades-long commitment to civic leadership and community support.

The gala benefited Signature Theatre’s artistic, education, and community programs.

Visit SigTheatre.org/SondheimGala.

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