21 Under 21: Charice

"Now I feel free," the "Glee" star declares in new interview.

Charice, the 21-year-old Filipina pop singer best known to U.S. audiences as Sunshine Corazon on "Glee," came out as a lesbian in an interview released on Sunday (June 2).

In a video sit-down with Boy Abunda, host of the Filipino show "The Buzz," Charice Pempengco confirmed that the rumors about her sexual orientation were true. "Opo, Tomboy po ako," Charice stated (translated: "Yes, I am a lesbian").

The native of Laguna, Philippines first found fame when she guested on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" in 2007 and on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" in 2008, the latter featuring a duet with Celine Dion. In 2010, her self-titled debut album debuted and peaked at No. 8 on the Billboard 200. The single "Pyramid" reached No. 56 on the Billboard Hot 100, while an earlier track, "Note to God," hit No. 44.

Also in 2010, Charice joined the cast of "Glee" in the smash show's second season, playing a foreign exchange student and rival to Lea Michele's character, Rachel Berry. Last year, the singer served as a judge on "The X Factor Philippines."

"Now I feel free," Charice said during the interview with "The Buzz" (via Us Magazine). "I can go out of the house without fear and and be certain that I'm not stepping on anybody's toes."

Check out this video of Charice performing "Pyramid" live at the Billboard studio in 2010:

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

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