CMU Alumni Win Big at the Tony Awards

Renée Elise Goldsberry and Leslie Odom, Jr. win awards for their roles in the smash hit Hamilton.

Ticket costs for the Broadway hit “Hamilton” may be near-impossible to buy, but the show's reward for two Carnegie Mellon University alumni is priceless. Renée Elise Goldsberry and Leslie Odom, Jr., each won Tony Awards on Sunday night for their roles in the wildly popular production.

Odom, Jr., plays Aaron Burr, the third Vice President of the United States and notorious for his duel with Alexander Hamilton, took home the Tony for best performance by an actor in a leading role – one of the evening’s biggest awards. The 34-year-old graduated from CMU in 2003 and was previously best-known for his role on the NBC musical drama Smash.

A 1993 graduate, Goldsberry received the Tony Award for best performance by an actress in a featured role for her portrayal of Angelica Schuyler, Alexander Hamilton’s sister-in-law. Her previous credits include daytime soap opera One Life to Live and a recurring role on CBS’s political drama The Good Wife.

“We could not be prouder of Leslie Odom, Jr. and Renée Elise Goldsberry,” said Peter Cooke, OAM, Ph.D., professor and head of Carnegie Mellon’s School of Drama. “They are two extremely talented and deserving artists who are great ambassadors for the School of Drama Community.”   

Goldsberry and Odom, Jr.’s wins marked the 42nd and 43rd Tonys awarded to Carnegie Mellon graduates and two of the 11 victories that “Hamilton” earned on Broadway’s biggest night. It was the first time both Goldsberry and Odom received the honor.

Categories: The 412