5:58 p.m.: Pam MacKinnon wins for best direction of a play for "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?"

5:55 p.m. Diane Paulus wins for best direction of a musical for "Pippin."

5:53 p.m.: Leon Rothenberg wins for sound design for a play for his work on "The Nance."

5:40 p.m.: Gabriel Ebert wins his first Tony for his role in "Matilda, The Musical."

FULL COVERAGE: Tonys 2013

5:34 p.m.:
Judith Light won her second consecutive Tony Award for featured actress in a play, for "The Assembled Parties" by Richard Greenberg. Tom Hanks, nominated for "Lucky Guy," presented the award.

The "Who's the Boss?" actress won last year for "Other Desert Cities."

The Tony Awards have been called a three-hour commercial for the Broadway industry, and this year is no different.

Cast members from old musicals have been brought back to introduce scenes from new musicals. Essentially, you get two marketing plugs for the price of one: "Newsies" introduced "Matilda," "Chicago" introduced "Bring It On," etc.

5:20 p.m.: Courtney B. Vance won the first major Tony Award of the evening, for featured actor in a play, for his performance in Nora Ephron's "Lucky Guy." The actor thanked his wife, actress Angela Bassett, and director George C. Wolfe.

Tony Awards handed out before the telecast went to costume designers Ann Roth for "The Nance" and William Ivey Long for "Cinderella."

"Kinky Boots," the musical juggernaut nominated for 13 awards, won for orchestrations.

RELATED: Courtney Vance glad he took a chance on 'Lucky Guy'

5:14 p.m.: Are we still in 2012? The 67th annual Tony Awards opened with host Neil Patrick Harris performing a comic tribute to the musical "Once," which opened last season.

It's easy to understand why Tony producers spotlighted a musical that's old news and one that’s based on a movie at the top of its prime-time broadcast on CBS. The need to appeal to a wide audience is a necessary evil for an awards show whose ratings have dropped steadily in the past few years. In case you needed further evidence, the telecast's first cut-away to "Lucky Guy" nominee Tom Hanks came just five minutes into the show.

Harris then jumped into a wisecracking, Billy Crystal-esque musical medley of the season's nominated musicals. To keep things topical, he made humorous references to Shia LaBeof and the movie version of "Les Miserables."

4:45 p.m.: The annual Tony Awards will begin at 5 p.m. PDT on Sunday with our coverage of the ceremony at Radio City Music Hall in New York. The CBS broadcast will be delayed until 8 p.m. PDT on the West Coast.

Culture Monster will have continuous coverage of the ceremony, with news updates of the winners and the most notable moments from Broadway's biggest night.

Viewers on the West Coast who like surprises should check by later because our online coverage will be live, beginning around 5 p.m. on Sunday.

PHOTOS: Hollywood stars on stage

This year's Broadway season featured big musical blockbusters ("Matilda," "Kinky Boots"), critically acclaimed playwrights (Richard Greenberg, Chistopher Durang) and a handful of celebrities (Tom Hanks, Sigourney Weaver, Scarlett Johansson).

The telecast will feature an impressive list of presenters that will include the aformentioned stars as well as Jesse Eisenberg, Jake Gyllenhaal, Sally Field, Zachary Quinto, Jon Cryer and Anna Kendrick.

ALSO:

Tony Awards 2013 nominees: Complete list 

Tony Awards 2013: Ceremony returning to Radio City Music Hall

Tony Awards 2013: 'Pippin,' Christopher Durang gain momentum