When asked Sunday night during an interview with Filipino talk show host Boy Abunda on The Buzz if she is a lesbian, Pempengco replied in her native language Tagalog, "Yes ... I am."
Explaining that she chose to share the news on the popular show, Pempengco said, "I have deep gratitude for the Filipinos because they are the ones who know who I really am. ... I don't know what the problem is because for me, there is no problem with that. So now I ask for forgiveness from those who don't understand. And those who cannot accept. I apologize: I understand you."
"To those who could accept, and who could accept me, thank you very, very much," she continued. "I just want to say to all of you that I feel very light – that I can leave the house knowing I am not hiding anything."
"I love myself, that's why I'm able to do this," she said, teary-eyed.
The singer, 21, first rose to international fame via YouTube after Ellen DeGeneres discovered her on the video sharing site and invited her to perform on her show in 2007.
She has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show and has performed with Céline Dion, Andrea Bocelli and more.
Pempengco made her debut as Sunshine Corazon during the second season of Glee, playing a foreign exchange student from the Philippines.