There is a an “elite” group of entertainment folks who have all four competitive awards for theater, movies, TV and music – which means they have at least one Emmy Award, one Grammy Award, one Oscar and one Tony Award (abbreviated EGOT). This is a list I’ve perused from time to time because of my various “trivial pursuits” (and because, as one of my young perky co-workers Gabby pointed out to me a few years ago – “You’re kind of a movie buff, aren’t you?” Other folks have pointed out that elephant in the room to me as well! Yes…I love movies! When I was a kid, I actually enjoyed watching the end credits so I could see who played whom. I also liked reading the two-sentence descriptions of movies in TV Guide. I credit these things with explaining why I have such a “knack” for remembering release years of movies so well. I see a year attached to a movie – and bam – chances are it will take up residence in my brain.
Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford in The Way We Were (1973).
Since I’ve already established that I’m a trivia nerd – AND a “movie buff” – why not make one of my first blogs of the year be about the very, very fascinating subject of EGOT winners? Whether they earned their awards by writing the cheesy theme song to The Way We Were, recorded a spoken-word album (which, to me, is phoning it in as far as Grammy awards go, but who the Hell am I), yelling “Hey you Guys!” on The Electric Company, directed a young Dustin Hoffman while he was playing a character stalked by his girlfriend’s mother – or played a stuffy man servant to Dudley Moore in Arthur? If you’ve done any of these things, then you just might be an EGOT winner!
The youngest EGOT winner on this list is John Legend (born in 1978), and the oldest living winner is Mel Brooks (born in 1926). The most recently added winner on this list is Tim Rice, whom you might recognize as a prominent musical theater lyricist known for such shows as Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita and Chess (aka that musical for which the ABBA guys wrote the music). He frequently collaborates with Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber, whom is also a recent addition to this list. Non-actors on this list include Richard Rodgers, Marvin Hamlisch, Jonathan Tunick, Mike Nichols, Scott Rudin, Robert Lopez, Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice. John Legend technically became an actor when he performed in the recent live production of Jesus Christ Superstar.
Please note, all of these individuals will have only one award each unless a number is given by their awards (competitive awards only). All Emmy Awards are primetime Emmy Awards unless otherwise noted. Also, I gleaned this information from multiple sources, so there may be no differentiation between the years the awards were given – and the years the productions were released (those facts are easily verified elsewhere). I intended this to be a “one-stop shopping” blog outlining the awards won by all of the current EGOT owners.
Without further ado…
Richard Rodgers (1902-1979)
Richard Rodgers and his frequent “partner in crime” Oscar Hammerstein II
- Emmy: Music for the ABC documentary Winston Churchill: The Valient Years (1962)
- Grammy (2): Best Original Cast Show Album, No Strings, (1962); best show album – original cast The Sound of Music, (1960).
- Oscar: Best original song, 1945, State Fair.
- Tony (4): Best musical, best original score, best producer, South Pacific (1950), best original score, The King and I (1952).
Helen Hayes (1900-1993)
Helen Hayes, whose nickname was “First Lady of American Theater”
- Emmy: Non-specific role, 1953
- Grammy: Spoken Word Recording, Great American Documents
- Oscar (2): The Sin of Madelon Claudet (1932) and Airport, (1970)
- Tony (2): 1948, Happy Birthday; 1958, Time Remembered (both leading actress wins) and lifetime achievement, 1980
Rita Moreno (b. 1931)
Morgan Freeman and Rita Moreno on The Electric Company (I LOVED that show when I was a kid)
- Emmy (2): Individual performance – musical/variety program (The Muppet Show, 1977), guest actress, Rockford Files, (1978)
- Grammy: Best Recording for Children (The Electric Company)
- Oscar: Supporting actress, West Side Story (1960)
- Tony: Featured actress, The Ritz (1975)
Sir John Gielgud (1904-2000)
John Gielgud and Dudley Moore in Arthur, which was about a really drunk rich guy – also the movie that won a supporting actor Oscar for Gielgud (which I’m sure must have made him absolutely cringe)
- Emmy: Summer’s Lease, (1991)
- Grammy: Ages of Man: Readings from Shakespeare (1960)
- Oscar: Supporting actor, Arthur (1981)
- Tony: Best direction of a play, Midsummer Night’s Dream (1961)
Audrey Hepburn (1929-1993)
Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face – she holds the distinction of having won an Oscar and a Tony in the same year (1954, see below).
- Emmy: Outstanding individual achievement – informational programming (posthumous, 1993).
- Grammy: Audrey Hepburn’s Enchanted Tales (spoken word, posthumous, 1993).
- Oscar: Lead actress, Roman Holiday (1953).
- Tony: Ondine (1953).
Marvin Hamlisch (1944-2012)
I was the heroine of my trivia team for remembering Marvin Hamlisch’s name in a semifinal trivia game in February, 2018! He is one of only 10 people to win three or more Oscars in one night. If you’re thinking of picking on that dorky kid in band, you might want to think again! Someday that kid might have more Emmys, Tonys, Oscars and Grammys than you! And they just might stay pissed off enough at you years later for having picked on them – and wind up beating you over the head with their competitive awards! Now who would I beat to death when I win my Grammy Award? Hmmmm!
- Emmy: (2 ) Outstanding individual achievement/musical direction and outstanding individual achievement (music/lyrics) – Barbra Streisand: The Concert (1995); AFI’s 100 Years/100 Stars (1999, CBS)
- Grammy (4): Song of the year, The Way We Were; best new artist of the year; best pop instrumental performance, The Entertainer and best original score for a motion picture, The Way We Were (all of these awards were won in 1974…what were y’all doing in 1974)?
- Oscar (3): Best original song/score – The Way We Were; original dramatic score, The Way We Were; best score/original song score/adaptation – The Sting (all in 1974).
- Tony: best original score, A Chorus Line, (1976)
Jonathan Tunick (b. 1938)
Even if you’ve tried memorizing the list of EGOT winners, Jonathan Tunick is probably one of the people you know the least. He is probably best known in entertainment circles as having collaborated with lyricist/composer Stephen Sondheim. I will never, ever forget watching The Birdcage and getting all excited when I saw his name in the credits. Why? Because Mike Nichols, another prominent EGOT winner, also worked on that film (though neither guy won any awards for working on that film).
- Emmy: Outstanding Achievement in Music Direction, Night of 100 Stars (1982)
- Grammy: Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocals, No One Is Alone (Into the Woods, 1981)
- Oscar: Best Music, Original Song Score and Its Adaptation or Best Adaptation Score, (A Little Night Music, 1981)
- Tony: Best Orchestrations, Titanic (1997)
Mel Brooks (b. 1926)
Mel Brooks (right) with his son Max Brooks, author of Zombie Survival Guide and World War Z.
- Emmy(4): The Sid Caesar, Imogene Coca, Carl Reiner Howard Morris Special, (1967); Outstanding guest actor, Mad About You (1997, 1998 and 1999).
- Grammy(3): Best spoken word/comedy album, The 2000 Year Old Man in the Year 2000, (1999), best musical theater album, The Producers (2002); best long form music video, Recording The Producers – A Musical Romp With Brooks.
- Oscar: Best Writing, Story and Screenplay – Written Directly for the Screen, The Producers (1967).
- Tony (3): Best musical, best book of a musical, best original score, The Producers (2001)
Mike Nichols (1931-2014)
Mike Nichols is best known for directing such movies as The Graduate, The Birdcage, and Charlie Wilson’s War, but he also has a lot of Tony Awards (8).
- Emmy (4): Best achievement in directing, and outstanding made for television movie, Wit (2001); outstanding directing for miniseries, movie or dramatic special, and outstanding miniseries, Angels in America (2004).
- Grammy: Best comedy album, An Evening With Mike Nichols and Elaine May (1961)
- Oscar: Best director, The Graduate (1967)
- Tony (8): Best direction of a play, Barefoot in the Park (1963); best direction of a play, Luv (1964); best direction of a play, The Odd Couple (1965); best direction of a play, Plaza Suite, 1968; best direction of a play, The Prisoner of Second Avenue (1972); best musical, Annie (1977); best direction of a musical, Monty Python’s Spamalot (2005); best direction of a play, Death of a Salesman (2012).
Whoopi Goldberg (b. 1955)
Whoopi Goldberg and Patrick Swayze in Ghost (1990).
- Emmy: Outstanding Special Class Special (daytime), Beyond Tara: The Extraordinary Life of Hattie McDaniel (2001).
- Grammy: Best comedy recording, Whoopi Goldberg – Original Broadway Show Recording, (1985).
- Oscar: Best supporting actress, Ghost (1990).
- Tony: best producer of a play, Thoroughly Modern Millie (2002).
Scott Rudin (b. 1958)
“The Dude” (aka Jeff Bridges, right) abides with Scott Rudin, whom is best known as a producer. If you need a name of a non-actor from this list for a trivia question answer, look no further than Scott Rudin!
- Emmy: Outstanding children’s program, He Makes Me Feel Like Dancin’ (1984).
- Grammy: Best musical theater album, The Book of Mormon (2011).
- Oscar: Best picture of the year, No Country For Old Men (2007).
- Tony (11): Best musical (producer), Passion (1994); best play (producer), Copenhagen (2000); best play (producer) Edward Albee’s The Goat or Who is Sylvia (2002); best play (producer) Doubt (2005); best play, (producer) The History Boys (2006); best play (producer), God of Carnage (2009); best revival of a play (producer), Fences (2010); best musical, The Book of Mormon (2011); best revival of a play (producer), Skylight (2015); best play (producer), The Humans (2016; best revival of a play (producer) Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge (2016).
Robert Lopez (b. 1975)
Robert Lopez with one of his Grammy awards. Your kid who adored the movie Frozen may not know (or care) who this guy is, but he won two Grammy awards and one Oscar for his contributions to the film’s music. He was recently hailed as being the first “double EGOT” winner (meaning he has at least two of every competitive award).
- Emmy: Outstanding achievement in music direction and composition (daytime), Wonder Pets (2008); outstanding music composition and direction (daytime), Wonder Pets (2010);
- Grammy: Best musical theater album, The Book of Mormon (2011); best song written for visual media, Let it Go (2014); best compilation soundtrack for visual media, Let it Go (2014).
- Oscar: Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Song, Frozen (2013); Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song), Coco (2017).
- Tony: Best musical score (music and/or lyrics) written for the theater, Avenue Q (2004); best book of a musical, The Book of Mormon (2011); best musical score (book and/or lyrics) written for the theater, The Book of Mormon (2011). best
John Legend (b. 1978)
John Legend (center) as Jesus in a recent televised production of Jesus Christ Superstar. He has more Grammy Awards than anyone else on this list (10).
- Emmy: Outstanding variety show (live), Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert (2018).
- Grammy (10): Best R&B pop vocal performance, Ordinary People (2005); best new artist (2005); best R&B album, Get Lifted (2005); best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocals, Family Affair (2006); best male R&B vocal performance, Heaven (2006); best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocals, Stay With Me (By The Sea), (2008); best R&B album, Wake Up (2010); best R&B song, Shine (2010); best traditional R&B pop vocal performance, Hang On In There (2010); best song written for visual media, Glory (2015).
- Oscar: Best original song, Selma (2015).
- Tony: Best original score (music and/or lyrics) written for the theater, Spongebob Squarepants: The Musical (2018).
Andrew Lloyd Webber (b. 1948)
Even if you’re not a follower of musical theater, you’d have to be living under a rock to not know who Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber (knighted in 1992) is!
- Emmy: Outstanding variety special (live), Jesus Christ Superstar Live In Concert (2018).
- Grammy (3): Best cast show album, Evita (1980); best cast show album, Cats (1983); best contemporary composition, Lloyd Webber: Requiem (1985).
- Oscar: Best original song, You Must Love Me, Evita (1997).
- Tony: Best musical score (lyrics and/or music) written for the theater, Sunset Boulevard (1995).
Tim Rice (b. 1944)
Tim Rice (right) with frequent collaborator Andrew Lloyd Webber. That HAIR!
- Emmy: Outstanding variety special (live), Jesus Christ Superstar Live In Concert (2018).
- Grammy (4): Best cast show album, Evita – cast recording (1980); best song written for motion picture or TV, A Whole New World, Aladdin (1993); best musical album for children, Aladdin Motion Picture Soundtrack (1993); song of the year, A Whole New World (Aladdin’s Theme)(1993).
- Oscar (3): Best original song, Aladdin (1992); best music/original song The Lion King (1994); best music/original song, Evita, You Must Love Me (1997).
- TONY – best book of a musical , Evita, 1980; best original score music or lyrics, Evita, 1980; best original score/music or lyrics, Aida, 2000.