POSE -- "Mother of the Year" -- Season 1, Episode 8 (Airs Sunday, July 22, 9:00 p.m. e/p) Pictured: Billy Porter as Pray Tell. CR: JoJo Whilden/FX
Credit: JoJo Whilden/FX

Billy Porter can’t stop giggling.

The Pose star, who plays ballroom MC Pray Tell, is on vacation with his husband and friends in Provincetown, Massachusetts and was at the grocery store when Emmy nominations were announced Tuesday morning. “I’m throwing a barbecue today so I was shopping,” says Porter. “I didn’t wanna think about it and I was hoping the phone would start buzzing…and it did!”

Now, he can’t stop giggling with joy. Porter garnered his first nomination for Best Actor in a Drama Series for his work on the FX show which chronicles ball culture and the LGBTQ community in New York in the late ’80s/early ’90s (Pose was nominated for six Emmys total).

“I’m just so grateful to have lived long enough to see this day, to see this kind of change and kind of progress,” says the star. “Just in the act of being an artist and the act of being a storyteller, we have power. We have the power to change hearts and minds through our art and that’s why it’s always attacked first by people in power who want to control because the arts really changes people. It can change people and Pose is a show like that. If you watch Pose and you have a heart, you don’t stay the same as you were before you entered the space. You just can’t. You just can’t. It’s amazing.”

Porter has also become a red-carpet icon in the last few months thanks to his show-stopping, gender fluid looks at events like the Oscars and the Met Gala. Don’t worry: he’s already planning his Emmy outfit. “Me and my stylist have thought about it and we’re working on something,” teases Porter. “I don’t know much yet though because designs are coming in.”

Pose airs Tuesdays at 10 p.m. on FX.

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