“Hey Corden, over here!” Neil Patrick Harris calls to Late Late Show host James Corden. “We have a score to settle, and it’s about Broadway.” The Tony Award winner and four-time Tony host appeared on the talk show’s January 9 episode. “I see you going around hosting the Tonys, acting like you're the only TV star who can sing Broadway showtunes,” Harris continued. “Some of us, dude, have actually won a Tony.”
“Right, yes some of us have,” replied Corden. “I've also won a Tony Award myself.” Corden won a Tony Award in 2012, prior to Harris, for his work in One Man, Two Guvnors.
“Yeah, for a non-singing role. Burn,” Harris bit back (to steal an -ism from his How I Met Your Mother character Barney Stinson).
“If I'm reading between the lines correctly, it seems to me like what you want is a Broadway musical riff-off. Is that what you want?” asked Corden, as he prepared to go toe-to-toe.
While it technically wasn’t a riff-off, it certainly was a competition. Backed by an all-male a cappella group, Filharmonic, Corden started out with “Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat” from Guys and Dolls, and Harris countered with a rendition of “Everything’s Coming Up Roses,” proving both could tackle the classics. For Round 2, each of the singers belted out a ballad: Harris on Company’s “Being Alive” and Corden on “On My Own” from Les Misérables. The final round saw the two gents face off in a competition of who could handle the sexy tunes. Corden sang “All That Jazz” from Chicago, and Harris followed with “Sugar Daddy” from his Tony-winning turn in Hedwig and the Angry Inch.
Corden was about to throw up the white flag, but ever the gracious guest, Harris said they should just sing together. The two closed with—what else?—“My Shot” from Hamilton.