Jonathan Groff
Jonathan Groff (Photo: Shutterstock)

As we reported yesterday, one of the highlights of this year’s Tony Awards was Jonathan Groff’s emotional acceptance speech. Groff won the award for Best Actor in a Musical for his role in the revival of Merrily We Roll Along

Among those Groff thanked in his speech was his middle school drama teacher, Sue Fisher. 

Yesterday, a local news outlet caught up with the Lancaster, Pennsylvania, teacher to ask her reaction. 

Fisher said she’d burst into tears when Groff acknowledged her in his speech. He said she was among the first people to recognize he had acting talent and to tell him he could make a career out of it. 

“There was something special about him as an eighth grader,” Fisher recalled. She said Groff performed a monologue from You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown, and was struck by his talent. 

“I said ‘Jonathan, you have a talent like I have not seen in an eighth grader.’ I said ‘You are an actor. You could make this your life’.”

And that’s exactly what he did. He first found success on Broadway before creating memorable screen roles on the likes of Glee, cult gay series Looking, and Netflix crime drama, Mindhunter

Fisher said she and Groff had stayed in touch and met up over the years. 

“I’m so proud of him,” said Fisher. “And really it’s the best gift a teacher can get, to be able to see where your students go and to be able to follow them on the journey.”

Audience welcomes Groff back to theater

Groff is still appearing in Merrily We Roll Along. Yesterday, during his first performance after his Tony win, the audience applauded when his character, Frank, made a remark in the show about winning a Tony. 

The sweet moment was caught on camera.

Also, in the wake of both Groff and Merrily co-lead Daniel Radcliffe winning Tony Awards, a clip of them and co-star Lindsay Mendez has gone viral again. They subjected themselves to Vanity Fair’s ‘Lie Detector’ test last October and Groff was asked why he spits so much when singing. 

Watch below.

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