By Devan Coggan
June 11, 2017 at 11:00 PM EDT
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Ben Platt is no longer on the outside, always looking in at the Tony Awards.

The Dear Evan Hansen star won the award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical at Sunday’s ceremony. In an emotional and rapid-fire acceptance speech, he thanked the Broadway community for his win and spoke about how much theater has changed his life.

“It’s where I found everything I ever loved and where I belong,” Platt told the audience. “And I’ve dreamed every day since of being on this stage and being a part of this community of artists.

Platt also offered a few words of wisdom to viewers around the country. “To all young people watching at home, don’t waste any time trying to be like anybody else because the things that make you strange are the things that make you powerful,” he said.

Platt, who is also known for his role as the magic-loving Benji in Pitch Perfect, made his Broadway debut playing Elder Cunningham in The Book of Mormon. Dear Evan Hansen marks his first Tony nomination, and earlier in the night, Platt delivered a powerhouse performance of Dear Evan Hansen’s showstopper “Waving Through a Window.”

In all, Dear Evan Hansen earned nine Tony nominations, including best musical. In his category, Platt beat out Christian Borle in Falsettos, Josh Groban in Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, David Hyde Pierce in Hello, Dolly!, and Andy Karl in Groundhog Day.

Dear Evan Hansen

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  • Michael Greif