CULTURE

Jennifer Hudson Makes History as the Youngest-Ever EGOT Winner

EGOT winner Jennifer Hudson at the 2022 Tony Awards
Photo by Dia Dipasupil via Getty Images

No one had a better Sunday night than Jennifer Hudson. The 40-year-old actor and singer took home a Tony Award for her role as producer of Michael R. Jackson’s musical A Strange Loop, and it wasn’t just any Tony Award: The honor meant that Hudson has officially achieved EGOT status, meaning she’s racked up an Emmy, Oscar, Grammy, and Tony. The achievement is all the more impressive given that the play took home the award for Best Musical, as well as Best Book of a Musical. (In his acceptance speech, Jackson—who won a Pulitzer Prize for the play—summed it up as “about a young Black gay man named Usher who works as an usher at a Broadway show who is writing a musical about a young Black gay man named Usher who works as an usher at a Broadway show.”) At 40, Hudson also made history as the youngest-ever EGOT winner.

Just 16 people had hit the awards gram slam before Hudson—Audrey Hepburn, John Legend, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and Rita Moreno among them. And that list has become a little more diverse now that she’s joined their ranks: Hudson is only the second Black woman (following Whoopi Goldberg) and third Black person (following Goldberg and Legend) to achieve EGOT status.

Hudson first became a major award winner in 2007, when she was awarded that year’s Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her performance in the musical Dreamgirls. Next came a Best R&B Album Grammy for her eponymous record in 2009, and a Daytime Emmy for her role as executive producer of the animated fairytale Baby Yaga last year. Along the way, she picked up another Grammy, when The Color Purple was awarded Best Musical Theater Album in 2017.

Hudson has yet to post about her EGOT, though it’s clear she knows that winning the Tony marked a major milestone: Last year, she posted a photo of herself wearing a gold ring in the shape of the letters E, G, and O, celebrating the fact that she’d won an Emmy. Looks like it’s time to get a new ring.