Questlove Pays Tribute to Wordle at the TIME100 Gala

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Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson spoke about finding joy through Wordle in a toast at the 2022 TIME100 Gala in New York on Wednesday evening.

“No one has been the same since 2020,” said the 2022 TIME100 list member, who wrote a tribute in this year’s TIME100 issue for the online word game’s creator and fellow honoree Josh Wardle. “My saving grace was an innocent game called Wordle.”

Questlove’s directorial debut Summer of Soul was awarded the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award for Best U.S. Documentary at the 2021 Sundance film festival. He is, of course, also the musical director for The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. “Not only is he a musical encyclopedia but also a comedy nerd and one of the most creative people I’ve ever met,” Fallon wrote in the TIME100 issue.

At the Gala, Questlove also spoke about facing artistic challenges during the pandemic. “I know a lot of us, especially coming from an artistic standpoint, we sort of live in a place of fear, we live in a place of self doubt, and imposter syndrome.” he said. “[I] not only pay tribute to Josh Wardle, but also give a toast to all of you who like me, lift themselves out of the fear to be a creative or to be an activist or to stand up for what you believe in is such a time of turmoil.”

Returning after two years on pause, the TIME100 Gala is TIME’s annual celebration of the TIME100 list of the world’s most influential people, released this year on May 23. The Gala brings together icons, leaders, change-makers, and celebrities from across industries and nations for one lively evening of meaningful dialogue and celebration. This year’s Gala features live performances from Miranda Lambert and Mary J. Blige, two honorees on the 2022 TIME100 list. Further attendees from this year’s list include actors Andrew Garfield, Ariana DeBose, and Amanda Seyfried, musicians Jazmine Sullivan and Jon Batiste, athlete Eileen Gu, director Taika Waititi, and legal activist Chase Strangio,

TIME is teaming up with ABC to bring viewers inside the exclusive TIME100 Gala for the first time with a special television event. TIME100: The World’s Most Influential People airs Sunday, June 12 at 8 p.m. EDT on ABC, featuring host Simu Liu, director Quinta Brunson, Ukrainian journalist Sevgil Musaieva, and more.

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