John Legend gave the commencement address at Duke University's undergraduate graduation at Wallace Wade Stadium in Durham, North Carolina on Sunday.
'You know, I'm feeling good because today because this is the first time I've been in front of a live audience, hearing live applause, since last February, 14 months ago,' the 42-year-old singer said in kicking off his speech.
Legend addressed the difficult times for the graduates in the wake of a year plagued by the COVID-19 pandemic.
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The latest: John Legend, 42, gave the commencement address at Duke University's undergraduate graduation at Wallace Wade Stadium in Durham, North Carolina on Sunday
'Your class lost a lot: Some lost job offers, some lost loved ones, and all of you last a whole year those little moments that make college so special,' Legend said. 'I feel your pain: You've lost something that you won't get back. I won't sugarcoat that - it sucks.'
The EGOT winner, who also got an honorary degree from the institution, complimented the student on their resilience amid the troubled times.
'The fact that you're here today, graduates of one of the world's greatest universities means that you've had to approach life with a certain competitiveness,' the All of Me singer said. 'But over the past year, you were forced to pause, to see yourselves not just in competition with one another, but in community with each other.
Legend noted the unprecedented nature of the past year amid the shutdown and the precautions people took to quell the pandemic.
Return to normalcy: Legend said Sunday's event marked his first time in front of a live audience in 14 months
Legend noted the unprecedented nature of the past year amid the shutdown and the