The Tony Awards are given annually by the American Theatre Wing to recognize excellence in American theatre. The award is called a "Tony" in honor of Antoinette Perry, an actress and past director of the American Theatre Wing. The first Tony awards were presented on April 6, 1947.
At the first ceremony in 1947, awards were presented in 11 categories. There are now awards given in 27 categories of live theatre (plays) and musicals.