British actress born to Nigerian parents Cynthia Erivo wins the Tony Awards for lead role in Color Purple

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British actress and singer-songwriter Cynthia Erivo won a Tony Award last night. The 29-year-old actress born to Nigerian immigrants in London, who has a lengthy resume in the UK, took home the Tony Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical for her role as Celie in The Color Purple.

“I thank you very much for looking into my eyes, for making me a stronger woman on stage,” Erivo said to her co-stars during her acceptance speech. “Thank you.”

This is Erivo’s Broadway debut, though she has starred in the UK version of Sister Act and her songwriting talents were also used in the blockbuster Beyond the Lights.

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