Emmy Winner Sheryl Lee Ralph Says She Started Practicing Her Speech at Age 5
Lifestyle September 20, 2022
Sheryl Lee Ralph has been waiting a long time to deliver her acceptance speech.
The actress — who this year won the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Emmy for her role on “Abbott Elementary” — sang her speech in an iconic moment at the ceremony (and she looked incredible while she did it).
On Tuesday’s episode of “The Jennifer Hudson Show,” Sheryl told JHud that she lost her mind when she heard her name called. “I was in such absolute shock because I didn’t think it was me,” she told JHud, adding that she was only there to support her cast. “I thought it was somebody else.”
Sheryl said she honestly doesn’t remember getting up out of her seat or walking onto the stage. She added that “things only started clicking” when Seth Meyers said. “Oh, so now you’re going to be on my show.”
“It felt great,” she told Jennifer. “It felt amazing. It still feels amazing!”
Jennifer — who began the interview by confessing she almost missed her own birthday party because she was watching the Emmys on September 12 and was taken by Sheryl’s speech — told Sheryl that the public felt the energy.
Asked whether she’d had a speech prepared, Sheryl said: “Like many of you, I have had a speech prepared since I was 5 years old!”
The actress told JHud that she’s been ready ever since Tinkerbell came up out of that steeple and started to “make dreams come true.” That’s how long she’s been practicing her speech. However, she said it all went out of her head as soon as she got up onstage.
Still, the star, who notes that she feels at home center stage, gave herself a pep talk when she realized the magnitude of the moment.
“Gather yourself,” she recalled telling herself. “Because this is your moment!”
Elsewhere in the interview, Sheryl admitted that she would’ve stopped her hairstylist if she’d seen how many crystals were being applied to her ponytail for the Emmys.
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“I’m so glad I didn’t have a mirror, because I’d have stopped them in their tracks. The mother in me would’ve come out. I would’ve said, ‘Oh, no, darlings, that’s too much.’”
Sheryl now acknowledges that the number of crystals was “just enough” because “everybody loved it.”
Watch the clip to see what she told JHud!
— “The Jennifer Hudson Show” airs weekdays. Check your local listings.