Comedian Jerrod Carmichael is debuting a new comedy special tonight on the eve of hosting Saturday Night Live, and he uses it as a platform to officially come out as gay. In the special, “Rothaniel,” Carmichael reportedly recounts a story about catching his father cheating. “After that was out in the open, I was left alone feeling like a liar, because I had a secret,” he says, according to Variety. “One that I kept from my father, my mother, my family, my friends, and you. Professionally, personally. And the secret is that I’m gay.” According to Variety, the revelation is followed by silence and then claps from the audience, which appears to leave Carmichael feeling relieved. “I thought I’d never, ever come out,” he says. “At many points I thought I’d rather die than confront the truth of that, to actually say it to people. Because I know it changes some people’s perceptions of me.” But now, he says he feels “freer.” The comedian, who created NBC’s The Carmichael Show, will make his SNL hosting debut tomorrow after his special airs tonight on HBO.