L Morgan Lee is the first trans performer nominated for a Tony Award

“A Strange Loop” actress made history this week

Another awards show, another barrier broken.

On the heels of Ariana DeBose at the Oscars and Michaela Jaé Rodriguez at the Emmys, another LGBTQ2S+ star has made history with awards recognition; this time for the Tony Awards. Nominations for the annual celebration of all things Broadway dropped Monday, with some history-making in tow. 

Every week in “The Buzz,” we catch you up on what’s hot and happening in the world of pop culture, whether that’s young queer relationships rekindling, casting news or awards chatter. 

Here’s what you missed this week in queer and trans pop culture. 

→ L Morgan Lee made history Monday. The star of A Strange Loop was nominated for the 2022 Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her performance as Thought 1 in the breakout Broadway show. 

Lee is the first openly trans performer to ever be nominated for a Tony Award in the ceremony’s 75-year history. 

“My mind isn’t processing that this is real,” Lee said in a statement following the announcement. “I can’t stop crying. To specifically be a trans actress in the company of these incredible women that I respect and have enjoyed for many years…. This nomination is SO much bigger than me. I hope someone will see this moment and feel like they can go on. No matter what the world, or school, or people tell them they are ‘supposed’ to be, how they are ‘supposed’ to sound, that they will keep striving to love and embrace the fullest version of who they are. That they can safely find breath in choosing truth. That they will keep studying and working and dreaming the biggest dreams.”

 

A Strange Loop is Lee’s Broadway debut. Written by Michael R. Jackson, the show follows Usher, a Black queer man who is writing a musical about a Black queer man writing a musical while grappling with his thoughts and personal demons. Its original off-Broadway production, which also featured Lee, won the Pulitzer Prize in 2020 (making Lee the first openly trans actor to originate a role in a Pulitzer-winning piece of theatre.)

The Broadway show garnered 11 nominations in total, including for Best Musical. 

The Tony Awards ceremony will take place on June 12. Freshly minted Oscar-winner and longtime Broadway star Ariana DeBose will host. Check out the fill list of nominations here

→ In vital breaking news, JoJo Siwa confirmed she’s back with first love Kylie Prew.

https://twitter.com/itsjojosiwa/status/1522331577472192513?s=20&t=aJYc2FqbChKAXwn5SQcdzQ

For those keeping up, Siwa was linked to Prew upon her coming out as queer in early 2021. The pair broke it off after several months, pledging to remain friends. But like any good baby dyke, Siwa found her way back to her ex. You know what they say: life finds a way.

Selling Sunset fan favourite Chrishell Stause has confirmed that she is dating non-binary musician G Flip.

“I think I was probably as surprised as anyone. Nothing’s really changed for me, I’m still really attracted to masculine energy and a good human,” Stause said during the show’s recent reunion episode hosted by Tan France. “I hear people talk about these things and they’re like I knew from a young age. But that’s not me. I’m just … I’m very open to good energy.”

Drag Race judge Ross Matthews got married! Matthews tied the knot with Wellington García in Mexico this weekend, with Drew Barrymore serving as flower girl.

Heartstopper stars Joe Locke and Kit Connor spoke to NBC Out about their characters’ tender love story.

“A lot of queer representation over time and currently, it’s very dark and gritty and just an overwhelmingly pessimistic view,” Connor said. “So to have a show where it’s just very positive, [with] a generally positive outlook on life and being a queer teen, I think that’s an extremely important thing.… It’s a show that younger audiences can watch with their family and their parents and that can lead to very important conversations between parents and their children. I think that it just basically brings societies steps closer to normalizing being queer.”

→ Hop in your Chrysler that’s as big as a whale and get ready to set sail: the B-52s are headed on one last goodbye tour.

→ Janelle Monáe is set to star as bi icon Josephine Baker in a new A24 TV series. 

“I can’t wait to transform into the iconic performer, American hero, glamorous bi-con, goddess, intellect, global humanitarian and SPY that is [Baker],” Monáe wrote on Instagram.

This saga of a queer Grey’s Anatomy writer who lied about pretty much everything in her life to get her fake cancer life story on the show is almost too wild to believe, but it’s true! It happened!

Grace and Frankie sailed off into the sunset with the blessing of literal angel Dolly Parton. 

→ Here’s what reality competition shows like Big Brother can learn about queer representation from The Circle

Senior editor Mel Woods is an English-speaking Vancouver-based writer and audio producer and a former associate editor with HuffPost Canada. A proud prairie queer and ranch dressing expert, their work has also appeared in Vice, Slate, the Tyee, the CBC, the Globe and Mail and the Walrus.

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