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USM alumnus Tony Shalhoub wins first Tony Award

Tony Shalhoub poses with Tony Award/AP Photo

A “Bravo!” goes out to actor and University of Southern Maine alumnus Tony Shalhoub, who on Sunday took home the 2018 Tony Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role for his work on the musical, “The Band’s Visit."

It was the star actor’s first win and fourth nomination for the coveted award. He earned previous Tony nominations for the plays “Act One,” “Golden Boy” and “Conversations with My Father.”

Shalhoub earned a degree in Theatre from USM in 1977. He was awarded three Emmy Awards for his most well-known role as the title character in the TV show “Monk.” That role also earned him a 2003 Golden Globe award.

He has acted in movies ranging from “Barton Fink” to “Men in Black” and has earned praise for his current role on Amazon’s “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.”

Also winning a Tony Award was Tyler Micoleau, son of Charles Micoleau, the chair of the Board of Visitors of USM’s Muskie School of Public Service. He took home the award for Best Lighting Design of a Musical, also for his work on “The Band’s Visit,” which won 10 Tonys, the most of any show of the night.

Shalhoub’s win was highlighted in the Portland Press Herald, The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, CBS News and ABC News' "Good Morning America," among others.

Shalhoub, pictured with USM President Glenn Cummings, has been a donor to USM and in 2003 gave the Commencement address. In his acceptance speech Sunday, the actor — who won the award for his role as Tewfiq in “The Band’s Visit, — delivered a heartfelt thank you to his father who immigrated to America from Lebanon in the 1920s. Watch the speech and a performance from the "The Band's Visit" at the 72nd Tony Awards below.