By Dave Carlin

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Celebrating the best of Broadway at the 74th Annual Tony Awards, the stars reunited Sunday after the pandemic shut down Broadway for 18 months.

Broadway’s long delayed big night finally arrived.

READ MORE: The Aztecs 'Slowly Crush You': CBS Sports' Randy Cross Previews Fresno State-#21 San Diego State, Other Matchups

Nominees and special guest performers were all dressed up, feet finally back on the red carpet, feeling over the moon that live performance is back.

“The fellowship of the community is what I’m looking forward to most. There are performers in there who I’m in awe of, who do things that I can’t do,” actor and Tony nominee Tom Hiddleston told CBS2’s Dave Carlin.

“What matters is that, like, I’m finally able to celebrate the fact that our play happened, right? With all the people that made it,” said Jeremy O. Harris, the Tony-nominated playwright of “Slave Play.”

WATCH: Broadway Shines Again

“We all made it. We’re all here, and Broadway is coming back. It’s moving forward,” said Adrienne Warren, who took home the award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical for her portrayal of Tina Turner in “Tina – The Tina Turner Musical.”

In her acceptance speech, she thanked the legendary queen of rock ‘n’ roll and touched on the struggle for a more inclusive Broadway.

“The more the art will be transformative, the more the art will change live, the more the art will change this world because the world has been screaming for us for change,” she said.

MORE: List Of 74th Annual Tony Awards Winners

It was a big night for “Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” winning 10 awards, including both Leading Actor and Featured Actor in a Musical.

Aaron Tveit, who was the sole nominee in the Leading Actor in a Musical category, got choked up.

“We are so privileged… We are so privileged to get to do this, to be on Broadway, to have a life in the theater. Let us continue to strive to tell the stories that represent the many and not the few,” he said.

READ MORE: New York State Trooper Christopher Baldner Charged With Murder In Christmas 2020 Crash In Ulster County That Killed 11-Year-Old

For Danny Burstein, his seventh Tony nomination resulted in his first win for playing Harold Zidler.

He spoke of a tremendously tough year for him personally.

“I want to thank all of you because, whether you know it or not, my wife passed away in December of ALS and you all showed up,” he said.

Lauren Patten received her first nomination for “Jagged Little Pill” and took home the award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical.

“First and foremost, I want to thank my trans and non-binary friends and colleagues who have engaged with me in difficult conversations and have joined me in dialogue about my character, Jo,” she said.

The Tony Award for Best Play went to “The Inheritance,” and for Best Revival of a Play, the winner was “A Soldier’s Play.” David Alan Grier won the Tony for Best Featured Actor in a Play for the revival.

PHOTOS: 74th Annual Tony Awards Red Carpet

Among those with Special Tony Awards that were previously announced is David Byrne for show “American Utopia” with an international cast of musicians.

“It’s a part of who we are to be together, experience things together, not to just be isolated,” Byrne said.

Tony Award winner Leslie Odom Jr. hosted a concert welcoming Broadway back and featuring some of Broadway’s legendary performers.

“Nothing inspires me like the work that happens in this town,” he said.

On the star-studded red carpet were familiar faces who just had to be part of bringing Broadway back off pause.

MORE NEWS: FDNY Planning Big Anti-COVID Vaccine Mandate Demonstration For Thursday Morning Outside Gracie Mansion

“Trying to put on a show, and that’s what we all fell in love with when we did the school play. Like, oh my gosh, let’s get together and put on a show, and that’s what tonight really is,” Lin-Manuel Miranda said.

Dave Carlin