Brow Beat

John Legend, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and Tim Rice All Became EGOT Winners in One Fell Swoop

John Legend, in a photo taken during Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert, kneeling on stage and singing.
Newly-minted EGOT winner John Legend performs in Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert. Legend, along with Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, attained EGOT status when the show won the Outstanding Variety Special (Live) Emmy at the Creative Arts Emmys on Sunday. Virginia Sherwood / NBC

John Legend, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and Tim Rice joined an exclusive club on Sunday at the Creative Arts Emmys: All three men became EGOT winners at the same time when Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert won the Emmy for Outstanding Variety Special (Live). Only fifteen people in history have won an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony in competitive categories (versus lifetime achievement awards), and three of them did it Sunday. Legend’s wife, model Chrissy Teigen, tweeted out a photo of the winners with their new Emmys:

John Legend has been working on his EGOT since 2006, when he won his first three Grammys; he now has ten in total. In 2010, he and Common won the Academy Award for Best Original Song for “Glory,” which was written for Selma. In 2017, he won a Best Revival of a Play Tony for producing the Broadway revival of August Wilson’s Jitney.

Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Weber took a considerably longer time to complete their EGOTs, a 38-year journey they started and finished together; the two collaborated on their first musical in 1965, shared their first Tony nomination for Jesus Christ Superstar in 1972, and shared their first win in 1980, taking home the Best Original Score Written for the Theatre Emmy for Evita. Rice took home a solo Tony that year for Evita’s book, then won another in 2000, for his work with Elton John on Aida. Lloyd Webber also won Tonys in 1983 and 1995 for the music for Cats and Sunset Boulevard, respectively. The two men shared a Best Cast Show Album Grammy win in 1980 for the Evita cast record. Lloyd Webber also won a solo Best Cast Show Album Grammy in 1983 for Cats and a Best Contemporary Composition Grammy in 1985 for “Requiem.” In 1993, Rice won three Grammys, all related to his work on Disney’s Aladdin with Alan Menken; in 2000, he won his fifth Grammy for the cast album for Aida. Rice and Lloyd Webber share an Academy Award win too; in 1996, they won the Music (Original Song) Oscar for the film adaptation of Evita. Rice has two additional Original Song Oscars, a 1992 win for “A Whole New World” in Aladdin (shared with Alan Menken) and another, in 1996, for “Can You Feel the Love Tonight,” from The Lion King, which he shared with Elton John.

Besides Legend, Lloyd Webber, and Rice, only twelve other people have ever attained EGOT status in competitive awards:

• Richard Rodgers (1962)
• Helen Hayes (1977)
• Rita Moreno (1977)
• John Gielgud (1991)
• Audrey Hepburn (1994, completed posthumously)
• Marvin Hamlisch (1995)
• Jonathan Tunick (1997)
• Mel Brooks (2001)
• Mike Nichols (2001)
• Whoopi Goldberg (2002)
• Scott Rudin (2012)
• Robert Lopez (2014)

Although Legend, at 39, is very young to achieve EGOT status, he is neither the youngest nor the fastest: in 2014, composer Robert Lopez did it in ten years to Legend’s 12, winning the Academy Award that completed his set just two weeks after his 39th birthday. And Lloyd Webber and Rice took their time, but they didn’t take as much time as Mike Nichols (40 years), Audrey Hepburn (41 years) or all-time EGOT slowpoke Helen Hayes, who took 45 years, winning a Best Actress Oscar in 1932 for The Sin of Madelon Claudet, and completing her EGOT with a 1977 Best Spoken Word Recording Grammy win—shared with Henry Fonda, James Earl Jones, and Orson Welles—for a bicentennial-themed record called Great American Documents. But it’s the first time a single award has made two people EGOTs, let alone three, a useful reminder that if you’re not going to set records for being fastest or slowest, “most” is sometimes available. Congratulations to John Legend, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and Tim Rice for winning all four of the most important honors in the American entertainment industry.