Cynthia Erivo speaks onstage during the Los Angeles LGBT Center's Annual Gala at Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall on May 18, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Araya Doheny/Getty Images for the Los Angeles LGBT Center)

Watch: Cynthia Erivo Delivers Empowering Speech About Being 'Black, Bald-Headed, Pierced, and Queer'

Emell Adolphus READ TIME: 2 MIN.

Tony Award-winning actor Cynthia Erivo is on fire with her film "Wicked," starring opposite Ariana Grande, poised to take over movie theaters when it hits screens November 27, 2024, and a slew of other groundbreaking Broadway, TV, and film roles under her belt, her star is quickly rising.

But during an intimate moment at the Los Angeles LGBT Center Gala on Saturday, May 18, Erivo shared that her strength comes from within and feeling comfortable in her skin.

"As I stand here in front of you: Black, bald-headed, pierced, and queer, I can say I know a thing or two about being the other," said Erivo, who was presented with the Schrader Award by Jada Pinkett-Smith during the event, People reported.

In a speech that can only be described as wickedly good, Erivo shared that she actually has a lot in common with the Elphaba character she embodied in the film.

"Elphaba's story is a cautionary tale of what it sometimes means to have to stand on your individuality, your otherness, even when systems of oppression are set against you," she said, adding, "Elphaba's story is... about how a colorful, powerful, magical woman–despite being disparaged, demonized, and discriminated against–becomes a hero."

She continued, "'Wicked' is a reclamation and a reimagining of the labels used against her. It is the proclamation of her right to exist in all her power," adding, "If that sounds familiar to you colorful, magical people in this room–it should."

It is a truly magical moment, and we are betting there wasn't a dry eye in the room.

In a 2022 interview with British Vogue, Erivo came out as bisexual and has been rumored to be dating director Lena Waite.

"It took time for me to outgrow my box, but time is a gift that gives us space to see ourselves clearly enough to know that denying a part of oneself is a disservice to the whole being," Erivo said. "And now, the glass is shattered and there is no glass in sight. And I have walked out into the wide-open spaces, into the arms of you all, and it feels like home."

Congratulations, Erivo!

Joel Kim Booster served as master of ceremonies for the evening, and comedian Dana Goldberg hosted the live auction. Overall the event reportedly raised $1.6 million for the LGBT Center. Artist Mickalene Thomas was also presented with the Vanguard Award, and pop trio Muna were presented with the inaugural Leslie Jordan Award for Excellence in the Arts.

Watch Erivo in the trailer to "Wicked," out at Thanskgiving.

by Emell Adolphus

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