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'Hamilton' Stars 'Proud' of Broadway Diversity After All 4 Musical Acting Tonys Won by People of Color

by Alex Ungerman 9:59 PM PDT, June 12, 2016
Playing 'Hamilton' Stars 'Proud' of Broadway Diversity After All 4 Musical Acting Tonys Won by People of Color

James Corden joked during his opening monologue on Sunday night that the Tony Awards are "like the Oscars, but with diversity."

Only, it wasn't a joke.

Shortly after the program ended, the Tony Awards tweeted out, "For the first time in #TonyAwards history, all four musical acting awards have gone to people of color."

MORE: Tony Awards 2016: The Complete Winners List

Hamilton stars Leslie Odom, Jr., Daveed Diggs, and Renée Elise Goldsberry, along with The Color Purple's Cynthia Erivo, all took home accolades to make Sunday a history making occasion for Broadway's biggest night.

"The way that this season feels, it’s all very new to me," Diggs told reporters after his big win. "I know what I felt like growing up, like there wasn’t place for me."

"There’s so much diversity on Broadway," he added. "I’m very proud to be part of it."

"I never thought for a second that there was anything strange about the fact that I was playing Angelica Schuyler [Church]," said Goldsberry about portraying the historical figure in the hip-hop telling of the life and legacy of founding father Alexander Hamilton. "I'm very grateful."

Odom, Jr. told reporters, "I’m leaning on the support of a lot of people."

"The best thing to do is to put your head down and follow your instincts and hope — try not to lose hope. Somewhere along the way, I lost this vision," the leading actor – who plays Aaron Burr, the rival of Hamilton’s titular character -- candidly shared. "This show has helped me find some direction, find some purpose again… It always felt like I was meant to be doing it, but I was just waiting for Lin [Manuel Miranda, Hamilton’s creator and star] to write it."

The cast of Hamilton was already celebrating a record-breaking 16 nominations, although the musical -- which won in 11 categories, including Best Musical -- fell just one short of The Producer's 12 wins to tie the record for most Tonys on a single night.

EXCLUSIVE: Lin-Manuel Miranda Opens Up About Leaving 'Hamilton': 'This Is Not the End of Anything'

Miranda, who delivered a heartbreaking sonnet for his acceptance speech for Best Original Score during the show, talked to ET on the red carpet before the show to address rumors that he'd be leaving his Hamilton post next month.

"This is not the end of anything," he said. "I don't know when I'm leaving yet, but I think that I built a house I can come back to any time I want, so I’m really excited about that."

WATCH: James Corden Raps With Lin-Manuel Miranda on ‘Carpool Karaoke,’ Belts Show Tunes With Other Broadway Legends

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