Veteran actor James Earl Jones will be honored with the Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theater in June (17).
The Star Wars actor will be feted on 11 June (17) at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
Jones began his career on the Broadway stage in 1958’s Sunrise At Campobello and has won Tony Awards for his roles in The Great White Hope and Fences.
He has also starred in and been nominated for several roles in stageshows including On Golden Pond and The Best Man.
“When I came to New York to study acting, my father – the actor Robert Earl Jones – took me on a grand tour,” he says. “The first night was to the opera Tosca starring Leontyne Price. I loved the singing, but I didn’t understand the format of opera.”
He continues, “The second night was Swan Lake starring Margot Fontaine. The movement of the bodies just seemed like magic. The third night was Pal Joey. I was captivated by the warmth of the light on stage. I was not inspired to sing and dance, but I knew I wanted to be in the warmth of the stage light.
He concludes by discussing the fourth night of his dad’s theatre tour: Arthur Miller’s The Crucible.
“By contrast, it created a cold world, coldness between human beings, but the ideas that Arthur Miller was able to evoke onstage were blazing hot. I knew I wanted to be a part of this and to explore the stage.”
The 71st Annual Tony Awards will be hosted by Kevin Spacey and will air live on American network CBS.