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Unknown British actor swipes Tony Award from Bradley Cooper and Bill Nighy

Unless you happened to catch 26-year-old Alex Sharp on Broadway in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, you can forgive yourself for not knowing who he is.

However his is a name to remember — he won the Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play at last night’s 2015 ceremony, beating the likes of Bradley Cooper and Bill Nighy.

“Holy f*** I just won a Tony,” Sharp tweeted after his win was announced.

“Oh my God, this is so crazy,” he said in his acceptance speech. “Oh jeez. This time last year I picked up my diploma, graduating from Juilliard, so to be holding this is insane.” He went on to thank the producers of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time for “taking a chance on a blank resumé.”

“This play is about a young person who is different and who is misunderstood and I just want to dedicate this to any young person out there who feels misunderstood or who feels different,” he continued.

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Sharp got the lead role in The Curious Incident mere months after he graduated from Juilliard, the leading performing arts school in the U.S. He moved to New York to study after being rejected from every leading drama school in the U.K.

The play is based on the Booker Prize-winning book by Mark Haddon, told from the perspective of main character Christopher Boone, a gifted mathematician with Asperger’s syndrome.

it was first performed at the National Theatre in 2012 and is currently on in the West End, where Boone is played by Graham Butler, while the separate Broadway performance starring Mr. Sharp opened in October last year.

Another successful Brit at last night’s Tony Awards, held at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, was Helen Mirren, who won Best Lead Actress in a Play for her role as Queen Elizabeth II in The Audience.

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