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Hank Azaria Gives A Hilarious and Moving Commencement Speech At Tufts University

Hank Azaria also had some timeless advice about being yourself

Usually, graduation commencement speeches are made by political leaders, educators, or people in the business community. But last Sunday, Tufts University welcomed actor Hank Azaria to give a speech to the Class of 2016. Azaria voices some of The Simpsons’ most popular characters, and has had memorable roles in The Birdcage and Tuesdays with Morrie. Azaria had the crowd in stitches as he dispensed advice from Chief Wiggum, Moe the Bartender, Apu, and Comic Book Guy. But it may be Azaria’s personal advice on following your own instincts that will stick with the students forever.


In his speech, Azaria told the students how his work as an actor helped him appreciate his own unique gifts and value in this world. “Most of my Simpsons voices are either good or bad impressions of people. I’m a mimic at heart. I become an actor, as the result, because I really just wanted to be other people,” he said to the Tufts graduating class. “When I was your guys’ age I had a belief that who I was and how I thought and how I felt was inherently uninteresting and flawed and not practical…But it wasn’t until I embraced the person that I really was that my work as an actor got really interesting.”

Watch the entire 18-minute speech

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