Stoneman Douglas students who survived the Parkland, Florida shooting last February took the stage at the Tony Awards this weekend for a performance of “Seasons of Love” from the musical, Rent.
The school’s drama teacher, Melody Herzfeld, accepted the Tony Award for excellence in theater education.
Herzfeld shielded students during the February 14 shooting that killed 17 people.
“All the goodness and tragedy that has brought me to this point will never be erased,” Herzfeld said in her acceptance speech. “We all have a common energy. We all want the same thing. To be heard. To tell our truth. To make a difference. And to be respected. We teach this every day in every arts class.”
The award includes a $10,000 prize for the school’s theater program.
After Herzfeld’s speech, students from Stoneman Douglas’ drama club took the stage to perform “Seasons of Love.”
An all-time great Tonys moment — they rocked it! pic.twitter.com/RRKDgxK0r7
— Scott Feinberg (@ScottFeinberg) June 11, 2018
Everyone was moved…
Oh my God, the Marjorie Stoneman Douglas drama club kids are singing Seasons of Love perfectly and now I’m crying….then they cut to the audience who is crying, now I’m crying more. Theater heals. 💗 #Tonys2018
— Liz Gumbinner (@Mom101) June 11, 2018
And everyone was sobbing.
— Kevin Baron (@DefenseBaron) June 11, 2018
People thought it was inspiring…
OMG the drama students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS are at the #TonyAwards singing Seasons of Love and I'm bawling.
— Zack Ford (@ZackFord) June 11, 2018
— Ashley Hothan 💋🍒 (@ashleyhothan) June 11, 2018
And that the song choice was a powerful one.
This moment with Parkland kids singing "Seasons of Love" is undoubtedly most poignant of the #TonyAwards.
— Hilary Sutton (@hilarysutton) June 11, 2018
People called it “the perfect song for the moment.”
In many ways gun violence is the AIDS of this generation. The government doesn’t give a damn as young people keep dying from something that could be prevented. “Seasons of Love” is the perfect song for them to perform. #TonyAwards pic.twitter.com/f5HFj3k5HV
— Jose Solís (@josesolismayen) June 11, 2018
Omg the Parkland Drama club just performed “Seasons of Love” on the #Tonys and I am all mucus. That was so powerful. Thank you #Emmys for including these extraordinary kids in the evening’s. Elie ration.
— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) June 11, 2018
— Katie Dunn-Rankin (@KatieDR96) June 11, 2018
— Sydney Lucas (@SydneyLucasNYC) June 11, 2018