With Lin-Manuel Miranda On the Brink of EGOTing, Revisit Some of His Best Award Speeches

Read more

With his recent Oscar nomination for penning the music and lyrics for Moana’s “How Far I’ll Go,” Lin-Manuel Miranda is one step closer to achieving peak award status: the EGOT. That means an entertainer has won all four major annual American entertainment awards: the Emmy, the Grammy, the Oscar, and the Tony. While he wouldn’t be the first Latino to manage such a feat (that would be Rita Moreno, the third ever person to have EGOT-ed!), he would be the youngest one to achieve it, and he’d join the ranks of people like Marvin Hamlisch, Audrey Hepburn, Whoopi Goldberg, and Robert Lopez. Moreover, if we wins the Oscar, he’d also be just the third person ever to PEGOT, because on top of the many awards he’s won, Miranda is also a Pulitzer Prize winner.

Known for turning his acceptance speeches into works of art themselves (he’s been known to freestyle them), Miranda should very well begin rehearsing what he’s gonna say should he win an Oscar next. Until then, revisit his past wins below.

Tony Award, Best Score & Best Musical for In The Heights (2008)

“I used to dream about this moment now I’m in it,” he began, and boy none of us could have foretold how far the kid from Inwood would go. Miranda’s first brush with awards glory came courtesy of his Broadway smash In the Heights, which put Latinos front and center during that Tony telecast. Set in the Washington Heights neighborhood of New York, In the Heights was first conceived by Miranda while still in college back in 1999, though it wouldn’t arrive on Broadway until 2008 when it took the Great White Way by storm with its infectious music, which included freestyle raps and salsa numbers. Nominated for thirteen awards altogether, Miranda’s musical ended up netting the Nuyorican two individual wins.

Grammy Award, Best Musical Theater Album for In The Heights (2009)

Not content with winning four Tony awards, In the Heights went on to be nominated for a Grammy, where it competed against the recordings for Gypsy, The Little Mermaid, and two musicals by EGOT holders, Richard Rodgers’s South Pacific and Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein: The Musical.

Emmy Award, Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics for “Bigger!” from 67th Tony Awards (2014)

For his Tony Awards hosting gig, Neil Patrick Harris enlisted Miranda (and fellow Tony winner Tom Kitt) to create a great opening number. The result? “Bigger!” which features plenty of Mirandaisms throughout, including lines like “At the end of the day we are gathered together to honor the best and the brightest. And tomorrow the fashion police will report on your dress and who wore it the tightest.” Kitt and Miranda (who was also nominated that year for a Daytime Emmy for his appearance on Sesame Street) picked up an Emmy for the song, beating songs from SNL and Key & Peele.

Grammy Award, Best Musical Theater Album for Hamilton (2016)

Before it became the hottest selling ticket on Broadway, Miranda’s history musical Hamilton was a downtown sensation, wowing audiences at the Public Theater and playing to packed houses. So by the time it actually opened and its recording was released, everyone was pretty much aware that it was a phenomenon unlike anything else. Cut to: the 2016 Grammys where it not only won (in a category that’s rarely televised!) but became the 8th musical ever to perform during the telecast.

Tony Award, Best Book & Best Musical for Hamilton (2016)

Stunning no one, the Broadway production of Hamilton went on to earn a record-setting 16 nominations including four alone for Lin-Manuel, and while he lost one of those (Best Actor to his fellow cast-member Leslie Odom, Jr.), he did prevail in the other three, including for Best Book and Best Musical.

Tony Award, Best Score for Hamilton (2016)

If there is one speech among those here listed that will forever be tied to Miranda’s legacy it is the one he delivered while winning Best Score (one of 11 awards Hamilton won that night). Rather than offer his signature freestyle acceptance speech, he offered audiences a sonnet. Ostensibly a tribute to his wife, it also spoke directly to the recent Pulse shooting which was in many people’s minds watching, reminding us that “Love is love is love is love is love.”