Jeremy Pope is the first African-American man to be Tony-nominated for separate performances in the same year. This week, the actor sat down with Gayle King of CBS This Morning to discuss his tremendous achievements and the the road that led him to Broadway.
When the Orlando native was in high school, he had a choice: run track or be in a musical. He chose the later, appearing as Skimbleshanks in Cats. From there on, the theatre bug grabbed hold and wouldn’t let go.
When he first came to Broadway, there wasn't much he thought he could do. "I was like, 'I can be Simba in Lion King.' but I knew I'd get here and just work, work, work, and figure it out."
It seems like he did, because when his name was called twice during the Tony nominations this year (once for Best Actor in a Play for Choir Boy and again for Best Featured Actor in a Musical for Ain’t Too Proud —The Life and Times of the Temptations), he cried.
"The tears came because of the sacrifice,” Pope explained. "I felt a release like, 'you did good, and you’ll keep working towards bigger and better [things].'"
Watch the entire interview above.