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Maya Rudolph Channels Beyonce, Oprah Winfrey at Tulane Graduation

Maya Rudolph was the commencement speaker at Tulane University’s graduation this past weekend, and she ‘brought’ guests with her up onto the stage. Rudolph channeled a couple of mega...
Maya Rudolph Channels Beyonce, Oprah Winfrey at Tulane Graduation
Written by Kimberly Ripley
  • Maya Rudolph was the commencement speaker at Tulane University’s graduation this past weekend, and she ‘brought’ guests with her up onto the stage.

    Rudolph channeled a couple of mega-stars at specific points during her speech, getting huge laughs from the crowd.

    Tulane’s Green Envy a cappella group had a big surprise for Maya Rudolph before she started speaking, however. They serenaded her with their version of ‘Lovin’ You,’ which was her mother, the late Minnie Riperton’s, most famous song.

    “You just blew my mind. I am so honored. You’re going to make me cry, and I’m supposed to be funny,” the actress and Saturday Night Live alum said at the graduation on Saturday. “This is going to be interesting.”

    During her commencement speech she pulled out her best Oprah Winfrey impression.

    “Today, Class of 2015,” she bellowed in Oprah-esque form, “look under your seats because you are all leaving here today with a college diplomaaaaaa! You get a diploma, you get a diploma, you get a diploma and you sir, you get a diploma. We’re all getting diplomaaaaaas!”

    At the end of her speech–and because graduation took place in the Superdome--Maya Rudolph sang the national anthem a la Beyonce.

    Having graduated from UC Santa Cruz doesn’t mean Maya Rudolph didn’t have some hard and fast ties to Tulane University. Her father, Richard Rudolph, graduated from their back in 1968. Her cousin, Sabrina Rudolph, was part of Saturday’s 2015 graduating class. She managed to embarrass her by having her stand up and wave to everyone inside the Superdome.

    It must have been a blast for the graduating class at Tulane to have Maya Rudolph as their commencement speaker. And hearing her over-the-top impressions of both Beyonce and Oprah Winfrey were no doubt the icing on the cake.

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