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Will Brill wins a Tony Award.
Will Brill accepts the Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play award for "Stereophonic" onstage during The Tony Awards. Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions
Will Brill wins a Tony Award.
Will Brill accepts the Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play award for "Stereophonic" onstage during The Tony Awards. Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions

Carnegie Mellon Alumni Earn 4 Tony Awards

CMU alumni recognized with 64 Tonys to date — onstage and behind the scenes

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Peter Kerwin
University Communications & Marketing
Pam Wigley
College of Fine Arts

Broadway raised the curtain at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York to hold The 77th Annual Tony Awards on Sunday, June 16.

The theater community honored the 2023-2024 Broadway performances and productions during a multiplatform preshow on Pluto TV, Paramount+, and a primetime telecast on CBS. 

Throughout the evening, Carnegie Mellon University alumni were among the award show performers, presenters, nominees, winners and advocates for theater education. CMU has a long-standing tradition of producing top talent onstage and behind the scenes. Its School of Drama (opens in new window)is the oldest degree-granting drama school in the country and consistently ranks as one of the world's best drama schools.

Tonys attendees on the red carpet discuss the importance of arts education. Featured here are: David Israel Reynoso, costume designer, "Water For Elephants;" Leigh Silverman, director, "Suffs" and alum of CMU's School of Drama; Camille A. Brown, choreographer, "Hell's Kitchen;" Betsy Aidem, lead actress, "Prayer for the French Republic;" and Jesmille Darbouze, presenter of the 2024 EITEA and alum of CMU's School of Drama.

2024 CMU alumni Tony Award winners 

  • Will Brill

    2009 School of Drama alumnus, actor
    Best Featured Actor in a Play
    Reg in “Stereophonic”

  • Jamie deRoy
    1967 Carnegie Mellon alumna, producer
    Best Revival of a Musical “Merrily We Roll Along” 
    Best Play “Stereophonic”

  • Billy Porter
    1991 School of Drama alumnus 
    2024 Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award

Jamie deRoy

Jamie deRoy. Photo by Carnegie Mellon University

The Isabelle Stevenson Award is presented annually to a member of the theater community who has made a substantial contribution of volunteered time and effort on behalf of one or more humanitarian, social service or charitable organizations. CMU alumnus Billy Porter received this year’s Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award in recognition of his outstanding dedication and contributions as an activist and spokesperson for the LGBTQ+ communities, including his work with The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation and the Entertainment Community Fund, among other organizations.

Billy Porter

Billy Porter at the 2024 Tony Awards. Photo by Justus Henry for Carnegie Mellon University

“For today’s performing artists, recognition on Broadway and at the Tony Awards is among the highest forms of praise possible,” said Farnam Jahanian(opens in new window), president of Carnegie Mellon. “Carnegie Mellon University alumni are some of the most brilliant and respected talents in the theater arts industry, and it is always wonderful to see their contributions celebrated in this way. Congratulations to all of this year’s winners and nominees!” 

The Tony Awards and CMU honor arts educator from Baltimore

CJay Philip

CJay Philip is the 2024 recipient of the Excellence in Theatre Education Award. Photo by Justus Henry for Carnegie Mellon University

In 2014, the Tony Awards and Carnegie Mellon co-founded the annual Excellence in Theatre Education Award(opens in new window) to recognize top K-12 drama teachers across the U.S. and to celebrate arts education. 

This year, during The Tony Awards: Act One, CMU alumna and “A Doll’s House” actress Jesmille Darbouze — a drama teacher herself — and Jahanian presented the 2024 Excellence in Theatre Education Award to CJay Philip, the founder and creative director of Dance & Bmore Theater Programs(opens in new window) in Baltimore, Maryland.

Philip was honored for her exemplary efforts to provide accessibility to high-quality professional training in theater production and performance by partnering with organizations serving at-risk youth to ensure that young adults, regardless of their background or circumstances, have equal access to the transformative opportunities that theater education provides. A panel of theater experts from the American Theatre Wing, The Broadway League and CMU selected Philip from a nationwide call for entries. 

During The Tony Awards live telecast on CBS, Philip was recognized by actor, director and Tony-Award winning producer Tamara Tunie. Tunie, a CMU alumna and university trustee, also announced that submissions for the 2025 Excellence in Theatre Education Award are now open at in new window).

Carnegie Mellon is the exclusive higher education partner of the Tony Awards. In addition to the Tony-night spotlight, Philip receives a $10,000 grant and a visiting master class for her students taught by CMU drama faculty. 

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