In the weeks leading up to the 2013 Tony telecast, Broadway.com is posting video clips of favorite Tony memories of this year’s nominees, with their own commentary. Keala Settle, whose heartfelt performance as Norma Valverde in Hands on a Hardbody yielded a Best Featured Actress in a Musical Tony nod, offered an equally heartfelt remembrance of the 52nd Tony ceremony on June 7, 1998, at Radio City Music Hall. Watch the clip below, and you'll understand why Keala never forgot this musical number.
“The first time I ever saw the Tonys was when Side Show was nominated, and I watched Alice Ripley and Emily Skinner sing [‘I Will Never Leave You’]. The amount of goosebumps on my body! You couldn't count them. I knew in that moment that it this was the kind of work and dedication that was required to be a performer. I drove toward that, and I still do. It was one of my favorite moments ever.”