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Lady Gaga talks about childhood trauma

a woman standing in front of a microphone: Lady Gaga accepts best actress for "A Star is Born" at the National Board of Review awards dinner in New York Tuesday.


Two nights after the Golden Globes, Lady Gaga was once again the belle of the ball.

Her bleach-blonde hair still tinged with purple, the pop star strode into the National Board of Review awards gala Tuesday in a plunging black gown to accept the best actress prize for “A Star is Born.” It marked her first major acting win for the drama, after losing to Glenn Close for “The Wife” on Sunday, and Gaga contentedly soaked up the spotlight.

Introduced by Stephen Colbert, who joked that he “had to miss the president’s stupid speech” to be there, Gaga gave an emotional, at times inspiring 13-minute speech, in which she opened up about the real-life pain she tapped into to play Ally, a struggling nightclub singer discovered by weathered rocker Jackson Maine (Bradley Cooper)

“Ally was all the things I was not when I went out into the world to pursue my dreams,” Gaga told the crowd at Cipriani 42nd Street. “I had to reflect on an earlier time in my life, in high school and earlier when I was bullied. I felt unheard. I was traumatized by people telling me over and over again that I wasn’t and couldn’t become who I dreamed of becoming.”

With the help of Cooper, who also picked up NBR’s best director award, Gaga was able “to face the trauma of my childhood, (and) bring to the forefront in myself and on screen the things I have hid for many years in my own work as a musician,” she continued. “Looking into your past, reawakening the pain, being brave enough to show the world things I didn’t even want to show myself: This is how I manifested Ally.”

a man and a woman posing for a picture: Presenter Stephen Colbert, left, and Lady Gaga embrace on the NBR red carpet.


Gaga dedicated the award to her fiance, talent agent, Christian Carino, whom she announced her engagement to last fall.

“Thank you, Christian, who’s not here, but I’ll let him read this later,” she said. “Thank you for loving and taking care of my heart every day.”

The newly minted Las Vegas star, whose real name is Stefani Germanotta, closed out her speech with a tribute to her Italian immigrant family.

“I have always made art not just for myself, but to make my family proud. I did this one Germanotta-style,” Gaga said. “And to anyone in the world, of any sexual identity, however you define yourself, I promise you: If you put your mind to it and you work hard and you don’t listen to the rejection, you can achieve anything that life throws your way.”



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