Sheryl Lee Ralph accepted the award for best supporting actress in a comedy series at the Emmys 2022 for her work on Abbott Elementary as Barbara Howard, a veteran teacher, but it was Ralph’s acceptance speech that had the room on their feet—literally!—here are three key moments that stole the show.
The shock: Ralph appeared shocked when she realized she won her first Emmy after decades in the entertainment industry. The Tony Award winning actress deserves every bit of the recognition from her industry peers, something that was long overdue.
This is the second time since 1987 that a black woman has won in this category. The first was actress Jackee’ Harry for her role as Sandra Clark, the nemesis of Mary Jenkins, on the NBC TV series 227. Jackee’ took to Twitter to celebrate Ralph’s win sharing, “Winning my Emmy was a career highlight, but it was also a lonely experience. For 35 years I’ve been the only black woman to win Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. But that all changes tonight… and it’s come full circle! #Emmys”
The standing ovation: Ralph’s moving speech received thunderous cheers and claps around the room, the actress sharing “To anyone who has ever, ever had a dream and thought your dream wasn’t, wouldn’t, couldn’t come true, I am here to tell you that this is what believing looks like,” Ralph said. “This is what striving looks like, and don’t you ever, ever give up on you. Because if you get a Quinta Brunson in your corner, if you get a husband like mine in your corner, if you get children like mine in your corner, and if you got friends like everybody who voted for me, cheered for me, loved me, thank you, thank you, thank you.”
The show was created by Quinta Brunson who also won an Emmy for ‘Writing for a Comedy Series’. The series also stars Tyler James Williams, Janelle James, Lisa Ann Walter, and Chris Perfetti—Brunson, Williams, and James were also nominated for individual acting Emmys.
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