PEOPLE has an exclusive bonus feature from the Glee – The Complete Series DVD/Blu-ray, which shows the high school reunion-like gathering on the McKinley High School auditorium stage set. The clip shows series-long cast members (Lea Michele, Matthew Morrison, Kevin McHale) and other fan favorites (Darren Criss, Heather Morris, Amber Riley) sharing their final thoughts as they say goodbye to the song-and-dance phenomenon that made them household names.
At the top of the tribute, Criss admits, “Emotions are pretty tender today,” and says he’s “just trying to take in as much as possible.”
Emmy winner Jane Lynch – who told PEOPLE in February that the last day “was waterworks” – paraphrases her character’s moving speech from the finale: “Sue Sylvester saw the glee club originally as a place where cowardly losers go to sing away their troubles, and then she learned otherwise – that it’s a place where people can come and feel safe and accepted and loved. It’s a place where you have, like, the arms of love around you. That’s how I see it. That’s how Jane [makes a ‘C’ with her hand] sees it.”
Adds Harry Shum Jr., “It was a nice feeling to know that we accomplished all this. Now it’s time to let it go and move on, even though we’ve built this incredible family.”
For Mike O’Malley, a working TV actor for nearly 25 years who earned an Emmy nomination for portrayal salt-of-the-earth dad Burt Hummel, “What’s really wonderful about it is, watching everyone, and they understand that their lives were immeasurably changed.”
Morrison, a newlywed who has returned to his roots on Broadway since Glee‘s curtain call, says his time on the show was “a real honor, and I can’t believe it’s over. I will have this series to show my kids one day.”
“I couldn’t be more proud of everyone here,” she says. “Rachel said we passed the legacy on, and we really … we won.”
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Glee – The Complete Series hits stores on May 19.