Cicely Tyson is no stranger to the stage, but she has not appeared in anything on Broadway for 30 years. However, the 79-year-old returned to the Great White Way this past year in “The Trip to Bountiful,” which earned her her first Tony Award Sunday night (June 9).
“I’m the sole surviving member of my immediate family. I’ve asked over and over again why. I now know why. It’s been 30 years since I stood on stage,” says Tyson. “I really didn’t think it would happen again in my lifetime. And I was pretty comfortable with that, except that I had this burning desire to do just one more. One more great role, I said. I didn’t want to be greedy, I just wanted one more.”
After thanking a number of people, she peers at the teleprompter and says, “It says, ‘Wrap it up.’ Well, that’s what you did. You wrapped me up in your arms after 30 years. Now I can go home with a Tony. God bless you all and thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”
This is Tyson’s second major award win. She has won two primetime Emmys and was nominated for an Oscar in 1973 for “Sounder.”