[WATCH] Tony Awards 2016: James Corden’s opening number of classic Broadway show tunes

After a moment of reflection on the tragedy in Orlando, James Corden kicked off the 70th annual Tony Awards on Sunday with a medley of the most memorable musical moments from the past seven decades.

Corden may have won his Tony Award in 2012 over on the play side for the farce “One Man, Two Guvnor” but this British import proved his heart lies with musicals. His heartfelt number began with an introspective moment as he recalled a childhood spent dreaming of being onstage.

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He then imagined himself in a slew of top tuners including “Les Miserables,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” “The Lion King,” “Grease,” and “42nd Street.” His best moments were when he tackled those numbers associated with some legendary Broadway babies like Barbra Streisand (“People” from “Funny Girl”), Ethel Merman (“Rose’s Turn” from “Gypsy”) and Jennifer Holliday (“I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” from “Dreamgirls”).

Tony Awards 2016: Full list of winners (and nominees)

He ended by harkening back to the boy he once was before being joined by the 20 nominees for musical performance in a rousing chorus of “This Could Be You,” a message of hope and empowerment.

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