Norbert Leo Butz, Maplewood resident, won a Best Leading Actor in a Musical Tony Award Sunday night for his role as Carl Hanratty in the Broadway musical Catch Me If You Can.
Butz had already won his second Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actor in a Musical for the role. His first Drama Desk Award was for Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, for which he also won a Best Leading Actor in a Musical Tony. Butz has previously appeared on Broadway in Rent, Wicked and ENRON, among other musicals and plays. Butz's wife, Broadway performer Michelle Federer, is active locally with the theater company at SOPAC.
In accepting his award, Butz said he used his father as inspiration for the role. He also paid tribute to his sister Teresa who was killed in 2009.
"This is for my father," said Butz. "I based this character on him. And for my sister — I love you, Teresa — we remember you every night."
Butz thanked the producers of the show "for trusting me with the greatest role I've ever been offered in my life."
He also thanked his "incredible" wife and his three daughters.
And there's more good news for Essex County: Livingston High graduates Nikki M. James and Stephen Oremus won for their work in The Book of Mormon.