Darren Criss and Julianne Hough will co-host “The Tony Awards: Act One,” an hour of exclusive content streaming live on Paramount+ on Sunday, June 12 immediately prior to the live broadcast of the Tony Awards on CBS. The pre-show, which will air from 7:00-8:00 p.m. ET/4:00-5:00 p.m. PT, will include the presentation of multiple awards and special performances.
Criss and Hough are both currently acting on Broadway in Tony-nominated shows. Criss stars opposite Sam Rockwell and Laurence Fishburne in American Buffalo, which received four Tony nominations last week, including best revival of a play. Hough made her Broadway debut in POTUS: Or, Behind Every Great Dumbass are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive, which received three Tony nominations, including nods for castmates Rachel Dratch and Julie White.
Criss and Hough are both Emmy winners, though their winning projects could hardly be more different. Criss won outstanding lead actor in a limited series or movie in 2018 for his chilling performance as spree killer Andrew Cunanan in The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story. Hough won outstanding choreography in 2015 for her work on ABC’s long-running crowd-pleaser, Dancing With the Stars.
Hough’s other acting credits include Safe Haven, Paradise, Rock of Ages and Dolly Parton’s Heartstrings. In 2009, she received an Academy of Country Music Award as top new female vocalist.
Criss’ other Broadway credits include Hedwig and the Angry Inch and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. Criss has also written music and lyrics for numerous projects spanning theater, film and TV including Glee (where he first rose to fame) and Central Park.
As previously announced, Oscar winner and Tony nominee Ariana DeBose will host the 75th Annual Tony Awards, airing live coast-to-coast (8:00-11:00 p.m. ET/5:00-8:00 p.m. PT) on CBS, and streaming live and on demand on Paramount+.
This is the second year in row that the Tonys will be presented on back-to-back shows, on different platforms, with different hosts. Last year, Tony, Grammy and Emmy winner Audra McDonald hosted the Tony ceremony on Paramount+, which preceded a prime-time CBS special dubbed The Tony Awards Present: Broadway’s Back!. That special included performances of classic Broadway songs and highlights from the three nominees for best musical, as well as the presentation of the awards for best musical, best revival of a play, and best play. Tony and Grammy winner Leslie Odom Jr. hosted that show.
A Strange Loop is this year’s most-nominated show, with 11 nods, followed by MJ (10), Paradise Square (10), a revival of Company (nine), The Lehman Trilogy (eight) and SIX: The Musical (eight).
The Tony Awards are presented by the Broadway League and the American Theatre Wing.
The Tonys were first broadcast nationally on ABC in 1967. They aired on NBC from 1968-70, returned to ABC from 1971-77 and have been broadcast on CBS since 1978. The association with Paramount+ began in 2021.
A limited number of tickets to the 75th Annual Tony Awards are now available at www.TonyAwards.com/tickets.
For additional information, visit www.TonyAwards.com and follow @TheTonyAwards on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok and Facebook.