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Got EGOT? 16 In Entertainment Have Earned Industry’s Biggest Honor

Of the 16 EGOT winners – those who have won an Emmy®, Grammy®, Oscar® and a Tony® – three of them won the grand slam before it was actually dubbed an EGOT.

The first three winners of the big four entertainment awards were:

Richard Rodgers, second from left, in rehearsal for South Pacific in 1949.

1 – Richard Rodgers (1962), one of America’s most significant composers, including musical theater favorites Oklahoma, The King and I and The Sound of Music, was the first EGOT “winner” and reigned alone with that title for 15 years.

Helen Hayes, circa 1927.

2 – Helen Hayes (1977), The First Lady of American Theatre earned her award perfecta with a Grammy® win for Best Spoken Word Recording, Great American Documents, a reading of The Declaration of Independence, The Constitution and more by Hayes, Henry Fonda, James Earl Jones and Orson Welles.

Rita Moreno in Terrence McNally’s play The Ritz in 1975.

3 – Rita Moreno (1977), the actress’s Emmy-winning guest appearance on The Muppet Show was the last jewel in her EGOT crown and she is the earliest winner of all four awards still alive.

The term EGOT came to be in 1984, when Miami Vice star Philip Michael Thomas was asked about a medallion around his neck with the letters E, G, O, T which displayed his ambition in winning.

“Hopefully, in the next five years, I will win all of those awards,” he reportedly said. 

This is glory yet to be realized – and won’t be. Sorry, Mr. Thomas. Thirty-six years after his utterance, he’s never been nominated for any of the awards needed. Sometime when it became apparent to him it wasn’t going to happen, he said that the necklace medallion actually stood for energy, growth, opportunity and talent.  For the record, he was nominated in 1986 for a Golden Globe®, losing to Miami Vice co-star Don Johnson and nominated with Johnson for “Coolest Crime Fighting Team” at the TV Land Awards, losing to the team from Dragnet, respectively.  According to IMDB, his last acting job was in 2015, billed as Michael Philip Thomas, as Bloody Captain/Porter in Thank You, 15, a movie short by the Hilberry Acting Ensemble.

Cautionary tale: be ambitious but maybe keep it to yourself.

The remaining 13 EGOT winners are:

A few other interesting EGOT facts:

Needs an Oscar: Lin-Manuel Miranda, Billy Porter, Lily Tomlin, Bette Midler, Cynthia Nixon, Dick Van Dyke, Cyndi Lauper, Audra McDonald, Ben Platt, Cynthia Erivo, Hugh Jackman and Trey Parker and Matt Stone

Needs a Tony: Kate Winslet, Julie Andrews, Cher, Common, Martin Scorsese, Ron Howard and John Williams

Needs an Emmy: songwriting duo Justin Paul and Benj Pasek, Elton John, and Stephen Sondheim

Needs a Grammy: Frances McDormand, Viola Davis, Jeremy Irons, Helen Mirren, Al Pacino, Christopher Plummer and Maggie Smith

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