Before raising millions of individuals around the world up with his music, Josh Groban needed to find his voice. The Evermore singer opened up to HOLA! USA about overcoming personal obstacles on Monday evening at the National Dance Institute's annual gala. “I was somebody that was lucky to have arts as a refuge,” he shared. “I was somebody who was shy. I was not doing great in school. I was battling anxiety and all kinds of things and it was my arts teachers that pulled me out of my shell that gave me self-confidence, leadership skills, all the things that made me the well-rounded human that I like to think I am today.”

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joshgrobanVIEW GALLERY The singer admitted that his arts education helped him overcome his shyness and anxiety Photo: Paul Zimmerman/WireImage

Josh, who is the founder of the Find Your Light Foundation, was honored on April 24 at the NDI Gala for his passionate support of arts education. During his acceptance speech, the 36-year-old recalled the first time he sang publicly by himself — much to the surprise of those who put him down. He revealed, “It was a teacher that pulled me out from the back of the choir and gave me my first solo and it was my parents' first time hearing me sing and they were crying and the bullies that were constantly giving me grief came up to me and were like ‘You’ve got the voice of an angel bro’ and I realized if I can win over that guy maybe there’s something I can have here. Maybe there’s something that is in me.”

Since then, Josh has gone on to become a multi-platinum selling artist, Grammy nominee and theater star, making his Broadway debut in the musical Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812. Looking back on his early days, the singer admitted to HOLA! USA that he would tell his younger self to not “spend all of your time worrying.” He explained, “I’ve found that as somebody who is generally pretty anxious I didn’t spend enough time celebrating the good things. I always worried about the next thing. So I would tell my younger self worrying is a wasted energy, be passionate, have a fire under yourself, never stop working hard but worrying is not something you should do.”

joshndiVIEW GALLERY Josh was honored at the 2017 National Dance Institute Gala Photo: Paul Zimmerman/WireImage

With the 2017 Tony nominations just around the corner (May 2), the Great Comet star isn’t worried about securing a nod, but rather excited to simply be a part of the “post-Hamilton Renaissance” that is taking place on Broadway. Though should he received a nomination for his debut role, Josh admitted, “I’m going to dance around in my underwear. The best dancing I ever do will be in my underwear that day if it happens but I don’t want to jinx it.”

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