Time Magazine's annual Time100 list of the most influential people in the world is out, and among those recognized are stage favorites Alex Newell, Stephanie Hsu, Rachel Zegler, Paul Mescal, and Corey Hawkins.
The list features introductions written by fellow luminaries.
Hawkins was introduced in writing by Topdog/Underdog's Pulitzer-winning playwright, Suzan-Lori Parks. "I've been a fan of Corey Hawkins for forever, so I was thrilled when he agreed to play Lincoln in my play Topdog/Underdog last year. Some actors get up onstage and—it’s OK to be just OK. But that’s not an option for Corey," wrote Parks. "It’s hard for a brother, for a Black man, to be living in this world today...And for Corey to be that powerful and that vulnerable onstage, in front of a live audience, night after night, takes tremendous talent and skill."
Shucked star Alex Newell became the first openly non-binary performer to win a Tony Award this year, and their groundbreaking Tony Award acceptance speech was cited in their Time tribute, written by Mary Steenburgen. "As they said in their Tony Awards acceptance speech earlier this year: 'I should not be up here as a queer, non-binary, fat, Black little baby from Massachusetts. And to anyone that thinks that they can’t do it, I’m going to look you dead in your face [and tell you] that you can do anything you put your mind to.' Was it their amazing mother, their church, or some kind of genetic alchemy that caused their voice to emerge so powerful, unafraid, and divine?," wrote Steenburgen.
Broadway favorite Rachel Zegler, who first appeared onscreen as Maria in the 2021 film remake of West Side Story, was acknowledged by film West Side Story (both of them!) star, Rita Moreno: "I first heard her singing during rehearsals for a film, and I thought, 'wow, this is a find!' I told her that I sh*t a brick when I heard her voice. You just don’t hear voices like that in movies anymore." The EGOT winner also shared admiration for Zegler's resilience and positive outlook: "A very important lesson I learned—being Latina in particular, which worked against me so much and for so long—is that you need to have the stuff to withstand all that and still remain a positive person. I know, without a doubt, Rachel has all that and more," wrote Moreno.
Everything Everywhere All at Once breakout star Stephanie Hsu got her start on Broadway not long before exploding into onscreen stardom, with her performances in SpongeBob Squarepants the Musical and Be More Chill. Natasha Lyonne wrote of Hsu: "Stephanie knows she has the talent to back up her ambitions and that very rare gift: a sense of self-worth and awareness of her limitless potential."
See the complete 2023 Time100 list at Time.com.