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THE UK'S BEST-SELLING & ATTITUDE.CO.

UK
AWARD-WINNING GAY MAGAZINE SUMMER 2015 £4.85

FROM THE WILL YOUNG


CHOCOL ATE ON SEX ED IN
SCHOOLS , USELESS
FACTORY POLITICIANS AND
TO BATES JOINING GRINDR

MOTEL COLIN FARRELL


WHY HE WANTS
IRELAND TO VOTE
YES TO MARRIAGE
SCREAM QUEENS
THE GAY APPEAL
OF HORROR
AMERICAN TV ICON
ANDY COHEN
CAN WE REALLY
TRUST THE TORIES?
A COLD , HARD LOOK
AT THE NUMBERS

FREDDIE'S
ONE,
TWO, 05

COMING FOR YOU


9 771353 187045

WE GO PSYCHO FOR FREDDIE HIGHMORE


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64
summer 2015 • attitude.co.uk

a newly single
will young talks
grindr and politics

6 36 121
editor’s
letter &
Inbox

features active
Aljaz Skorjanec
freddie Highmore Real bodies
the former child star talks us dR christian
through his psychotic turn in
bates motel

10
horror: the gay fascination
horror journo Sean abley on why we
get our kicks from scary movies
EDIT can we trust the tories?
THE A-LIST Things we like this month formerly a party of extreme
Joe stone is on it homophobia, are the tories
135
97
the rules of music festivals really a changed party? style
gadgets equal marriage for ireland
paul flynn is over it as the world’s first referendum CONTEXT
Paris is burning on equal marriage approaches, we IAIN DALE
culture club shortbus look at how ireland has changed R U Coming out? Readers’ stories
music & Film Reviews why can’t we win eurovision? trend camouflage life lessons patrick gale
BGF stock aitken waterman experts, enthusiasts and shopping adidas truly madly deeply long-term couples
andy cohen conchita Wurst analyse where Grooming JO MALONE property industrial revolution
Gratuitous nudity nat weller the uk is going wrong story sportswear how gay are you? alexandra burke

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Parka
£40

T W E N T Y F O U R | S E V E N | S T Y L E

BOOHOO.indd 5 15/04/2015 11:23:29


Ah, isn’t Freddie Highmore a cutie pie? We noticed him in Section 28 in 1988, they have also, for the last 20 years,
the surprisingly great Psycho spin off Bates Motel, where he voted consistently to DENY you equal rights; many of
plays the baby psycho killer (aww) Norman Bates – as you them MPs who want your vote today.
do – opposite one of our favourite actresses Vera Farmiga. When we interviewed David Cameron before he became
Freddie got his big break in Finding Neverland opposite Prime Minister in 2009 he told us that the party was now
Kate Winslet, Johnny Depp and Dustin Hoffman – as you a party of LGBT equality. He pushed through marriage
do – and then won the Golden Ticket to get his very own to his credit, but no thanks to his party. Equal marriage
Chocolate Factory – as you do – and kissed a boy – as you provoked a huge amount of opposition from all areas of
actually do – when he played the young culinary diva the Conservative party, from MPs and commentariat to
Nigel Slater in BBC’s Toast. We’re very happy to have him ground level supporters and – when push came to shove
on the cover of Attitude. – more than half of the Tory MPs voted against same sex
Horror has always had a specific appeal for many of marriage. Compare that to more than 88% of Labour and
us. Psycho has queer resonance: A sexually frustrated Lib Dem MPs who voted for it. This mirrors the constant
loner with a somewhat unhealthy relationship (just a bit) Conservative attacks on gay equality legislation over the
with his mother – a character who, it eventually became last 20 years where they have overwhelmingly voted
clear, was played by a bisexual actor; Anthony Perkins. against us literally every single time.
Horror addresses the undoable and unsayable, often I know many of our readers who vote Conservative – we
centred around sexuality. As a teen I loved Halloween and A are a broad church and indeed I don’t think any other gay
Nightmare on Elm Street, not because I wanted to kill people, magazine has a monthly conservative writer like we do
but because on some subconscious level, I connected with in Iain Dale – but to believe that the Conservative Party is
the desire for revenge on a mainstream society that had suddenly as gay supportive as the others is simply not true.
isolated me. We asked writer, director, actor Sean Abley, Someone in the office said we owe the Prime Minister for
author of Out In The Dark and writer of the infamous Gay of marriage but with that logic we owe the Labour party for
The Dead blog to explore this further. equalising the age of consent, scrapping the armed forces
We have a whole bunch of exclusives in this issue. There’s ban and Section 28, bringing in the anti-discrimination
Will Young’s only gay press interview for his great new act and Civil Partnerships – all of which the majority of
album, and we meet Colin Farrell’s gay brother Eamon Conservative MPs opposed.
who explains why his movie star sibling is so passionate Like I say, it’s up to you who you vote for but it’s
about Ireland’s referendum and equal marriage. We take a important that we all know the facts when the country goes
look at what is going on as the country goes to the polls. to the polls on May 7th. So we have a look at the numbers
Talking of votes (and horror, for that matter) by the time and then two writers from opposing sides of the spectrum
you read this we’ll be about to go to the polls *SCREAMS* give us their opinion. And of course you could vote Lib
THANK YOU GOD, IT’S ALMOST OVER, *coughs* Dem, Green, SNP, Plaid Cymru, UKIP or others if you so
excuse me – to bring in a new government in the United desire. Make up your own mind. See you next month.
Kingdom. I’ve noticed many people – especially young
people – over the last few years who seem to think that
because David Cameron brought in same sex marriage
that there is now an equal playing field between the parties
when it comes to LGBT people. I’m not telling you who to
vote for, that’s your business, but it’s important to know
matthew todd Editor
the uk’s best-selling gay magazine
the facts – that not only did the Conservative party bring @attitudemag
in the most homophobic legislation of modern times in @Mrmatthewtodd

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CONTRIBUTORS
PAUL JORDAN
Also known as Dr Eurovision, Paul
Editor MATTHEW TODD matthew.todd@attitude.co.uk
is a regular commentator on the
Eurovision Song Contest and has Associate Editor CHRISTIAN GUILTENANE christian.guiltenane@attitude.co.uk
attended the event since 2000, having
also been a guest on the BBC3 semi- Art Director DAVID GRAHAM david.graham@attitude.co.uk
final shows. In 2011 he obtained his
PhD from the University of Glasgow Fashion & Grooming Director JOSEPH KOCHARIAN joseph.kocharian@attitude.co.uk

and in 2014 he published his book, Editor at Large PARIS LEES paris.lees@attitude.co.uk
The Modern Fairy Tale: Nation Branding,
National Identity and the Eurovision Designer LUCY HENDEL lucy.hendel@attitude.co.uk
Song Contest in Estonia. Follow him
on Twitter @dreurovision Editorial Assistant & Senior Staff Writer BEN KELLY ben.kelly@attitude.co.uk

Sub Editor AARON TOUMAZOU aaron.toumazou@attitude.co.uk

MARK CANT Assistant Staff Writer WILL STROUDE assistant@attitude.co.uk


Mark is a beauty and fashion Fashion Assistant NICK BYAM nick.byam@attitude.co.uk
photographer who lives and works
in London shooting some of the Web Editor NICK BOND nick.bond@attitude.co.uk
biggest stars in the world today for
internationally renowned magazines Web Reporter JOSH HAIGH
and brands. We kept Mark very
Books Editor WILL DAVIS will.davis@attitude.co.uk
busy in this issue, calling on him to
photograph the leading man of Bates Senior Contributing Editors
Motel Freddie Highmore for our cover,
SIMON EDGE / PAUL FLYNN / PHILIP REAY-SMITH / TIM TEEMAN
as well as our sports-themed main
fashion shoot with the gorgeous model Interns JOAO ANDRADE / KEVIN LONG / CRAIG LEE
of the moment, Miroslav Cech. Mark CASEY WATERS / LIZZIE REID
likes Scotch, but not scotch eggs.

Commercial Manager
SEAN ABLEY ANDY GODDARD andy.goddard@attitude.co.uk 020 7608 6305
Sean Abley is a playwright,
screenwriter, novelist and horror Senior Sales Account Manager
journalist. His writing has appeared MARCUS JAMES marcus.james@attitude.co.uk 020 7608 6364
in Fangoria, The Advocate, Unzipped
Senior Sales Account Manager
and ShockTilYouDrop.com. In this issue,
JAMIE BOYLE jamie.boyle@attitude.co.uk 020 7608 6351
Sean writes about the fascinating
appeal of horror movies for gay Digital Account Manager
men. He is currently working on HYWEL KENNEDY hywel.kennedy@attitude.co.uk 020 7608 6398
the novelisation of the film The Disco
Exorcist, but in the meantime check Events Director ANNE-MARIE BRACKEN
out his latest book Out in the Dark:
Interviews with Gay Horror Filmmakers,
Actors and Authors.
ATTITUDE MEDIA LTD
Managing Director MIKE BUCKLEY mike.buckley@attitude.co.uk

ON THE COVER Editorial Director MATTHEW TODD


Chairman JUSTIN SANDERS Next issue
available
Finance Director VINCE NICHOLLS to download
Web Development ADAM OSBORN adam.osborn@attitude.co.uk
May 22

Subscriptions Enquiries In shops


attitude@warnersgroup.co.uk 01778 392005 May 27

Warners Subscription Department


Freepost, PE211, Bourne, Lincolnshire PE10 9BR

Attitude Magazine 33 Pear Tree Street, London EC1V 3AG attitude@attitude.co.uk

Copyright © Attitude Media Ltd 2015 all rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be
reproduced in whole or in part without the written permission of the publishers. Unsolicited
contributions must be accompanied by a stamped addressed envelope if they are to be returned.
We cannot accept responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts and photographs or for material
lost or damaged in the post. Letters submitted to Attitude or its editors are assumed to be
intended for publication in whole or in part. The mention or appearance or likeness of any
person or organisation in articles or advertising in this publication is not to be taken as
any indication of sexual, social or political orientation of such persons or organisations.
freddie wears top by dior homme, photography: mark cant, Newstrade distribution by Seymour Distribution Limited, 2 East Poultry Avenue, London EC1A 9PT.
fashion: joseph kocharian Tel 020 7429 4000. Published by Attitude Media Ltd. Printed by Benham Goodhead Print Limited

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C O N TA C T T I N Y U R L . C O M / FA C E B O O K A T T I T U D E
READERS’ TWEETS
THE MAG T W I T T E R . C O M /AT T I T U D E M A G
AT T I T U D E@ AT T I T U D E . C O . U K
3 3 P E A R T R E E S T R E E T, F I N S B U R Y, L O N D O N E C 1 V 3 A G
@OblaKickinIn
WARNING: @adamlambert cover shoot on
@AttitudeMag will self-combust in your hands
from pure hotness! #GhostTown

TheHeatedDebate
AS ELECTRO VELVET HEAD TO VIENNA, WE ASK:
WILL THE UK EVER WIN EUROVISION AGAIN? @TaysunBerry
Reading @MarkusFeehily interview in
@AttitudeMag made me feel a little less
alone in my #depression. Kudos, Markus,
for speaking honestly.

@Fiskitoo
@MarkusFeehily The more I read
@AttitudeMag’s interview the more I
feel I want to hug you and the more
I admire that inner-strength.

@BarbP11
@AttitudeMag LOVED Adam’s interview
and the Mad Men article too!

No because they keep putting in In a word, yes. Lena’s Satellite in @Sudipta_Sharmin


rubbish acts! Not like in the 60s 2010 showed the right song can Whooooaaaaa @MarkusFeehily &
when chart topping acts did the win it for a Western European act. @adamlambert are in the same issue!
Loving it @AttitudeMag!!
job – Lulu and Sandie Shaw to JAMES, LONDON
name just two iconic voices.
But do we really care enough? I think that ship sailed for us a
PAUL, BELFAST long time ago...
FILIP, NOTTINGHAM @glamberlicious
@AttitudeMag are pretty fucking awesome.
We can if we send a decent act, Gonna get me an annual subscription
we just need a selection show! Yes, it might be a while though. because they’re so nice!
Internal selection does not really In the meantime Sweden will
seem to work for us. have regular victories, and quite
ANTHONY, NORWICH rightly so. It’s lazy to blame it
on politics – Conchita didn’t @barbls23
Tony Blair put an end to Europe win because of politics, nor @AttitudeMag @adamlambert looks so
liking us when he illegally did Loreen. In 2009 we had a gorgeous and what a great, insightful
invaded Iraq. The Blue song from public selection process, Europe interview! Mega talent and realness!
a couple of years ago was great, gave us plenty of points and we Winning combination!
but it’s so political. Even if we sent came fifth. With the right song
Adele we still wouldn’t win as we can do well.
they would all just vote for their ED, LONDON @VillyKassiou
neighbours or the novelty act. @AttitudeMag Thank you so much for having
JOHN, HARROGATE Nope. Still enjoy watching the the one & only @MarkusFeehily. Such an
honest interview. He’s an inspiration.
show but it’s not likely that we
We will win Eurovision again will win again.
when we send a great song with NATHAN, BRIGHTON
a strong performance. We also
need to put in more effort. The Yes! 14 different countries
‘it’s all political/nobody likes won in the last 14 years. What THE ARCHIVE
us’ argument is wrong – we did they have in common? I S S U E 1 3 5, J U LY 2 0 0 5
send mediocre entries and get Impactful, visual, anthemic
ROCK HARD
mediocre results. Europe can’t songs, not politics.
be that anti-UK, considering COINNEACH, LONDON We got down with Razorlight frontman Johnny Borrell
in our Rock Special ten years (!) ago, as we prepared
British artists dominate most
for the onslaught of inoffensive indie pop that was
European charts. I refuse to That’s not the question we should
extinguished with the rise of Gaga circa 2008. We also
believe that ‘Still In Love With be asking! We should be asking, chatted to then-Eastenders star Jake Maskall about coming
You’ was the BBC’s best option. ‘Who gives a shit!’ out. The former Mr Danny Moon can currently be seen
JAKE, GENEVA DAMIAN, HUCKNALL playing bisexual Prince Cyrus in E!’s The Royals, FYI.

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Film / TV / Music
Opinion / news
Performance
Books / Boys

andy cohen: grand daddy of american tv PG.22>>

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LIST
THE THINGS WE LOVE THIS MONTH
WORDS: WILL STROUDE
& JOSEPH KOCHARIAN

↑EVENTS

PRIDE SEASON STARTS


↓THEATRE

IN THE DEAD OF NIGHT The window of acceptability for feather boas, morning drinking and crushing regrets officially
Playwright Claudio Macor has brought the classic dark, steamy opens this month as pride season kicks off, with events in Exeter, Birmingham and Bradford finally
atmosphere of 1930 & 40s Hollywood noir to the stage – without the heralding the start of summer (and, like, politics and stuff. We’re being ironic, double bluff etc.)
social prudery and censorship of the era. It’s all murder, power and Birmingham Pride takes place Spring Bank Holiday weekend, May 23-24. birminghampride.com
sexually-liberated eroticism in this tale of a shady South American town
which flirts with scandal and destruction at the end of World War II.
In the Dead of Night is at the Landor Theatre, London, from April 22
– May 17. Call the box office on 020 7737 7276. landortheatre.co.uk

↑FILM

PITCH PLEASE
The sequel to 2012’s hilarious sleeper hit Pitch Perfect promises to be every bit as riotous and
ridiculous as the original, with all the cast returning for more acapella fracas as the Barden Bellas
fight to save the group from dissolution. In cinemas from May 15. pitchperfectmovie.com

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EDIT_A LIST
←fashion

ad i das x y-3 re ad y for re d cl a y


The French Open is upon us (May 19 – June 7) and French pro Jo Wilfried
Tsonga will be wearing the new adidas tennis x Y-3 collaboration in his bid
to win the red clay Grandslam. The collection is a perfect fusion between
performance and fashion.
#ImpactTheGame. adidas.com and Y-3.com

←fashion

Diesel Zipproundd
trainers
Whether it’s a stud, a rip, or a clothing
patch, Diesel love a bit of detailing,
and this time they’ve focused their
attention on the biker zip on their
restyled ‘zipproundd’ sneaker boot.
The zip runs all the way around the
shoe, fitting in perfectly with Diesel
←tour DNA’s biker concept.

An evening with
Available in red, black and white
from mid-May. diesel.com

D avid Seda ris


Don’t miss your chance to see gay best-
selling author David Sedaris bring his
self-deprecating autobiographical tales
to life in front of a live audience this
month, as the literary funnyman and
BBC Radio 4 star takes his brand of
sharp, warm humour up and down the
country with a 17-date UK and Ireland
book tour. An evening with David
Sedaris tours the UK May 30 – June
15. davidsedaristickets.co.uk

↓dvd

O r a nge Is the N ew Bl a ck
Litchfield Penitentiary’s finest females will be returning to Netflix for an
eagerly-anticipated third outing in June, but if you’re still to get aboard the
OITNB bandwagon there’s just enough time to get up to date with the release
of the season two box set this month.
Orange Is the New Black Season 2 is released on DVD and Blu-Ray on May 18

↑fashion

R ework I t
M&S’s popular menswear brand Autograph has been reworked to fuse tailoring
with casual-wear. The collection sees bold blue tailor-fitted suits mixed with
trainers, geometric print knits and jogging bottoms. So much more than just a suit.
All styles will be available in store and online at marksandspencer.com

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EDIT_OPINION

YEARS AND YEARS


So nice. :-)

JOKES ABOUT ERECTIONS,


SWING VOTES & HUNG
Joe Stone
IS ON IT
PARLIAMENTS
twitter @Joe_Stone_
It’s what the haters expect of us. AND
WHY NOT MO-FOS. (QUADRUPLE
BLUFF WITH CHERRIES ON)

PEPPA PIG FOR PM


If the media wants it they’ll make ham THE SIX COMMANDMENTS OF GAY SOCIAL NETWORKING
sure (Ed – damn sure)
they’ll get it…
Guys, I think it’s high time that we mention, terrible manners. Obviously
NICK JONAS did some housekeeping regarding it’s fine to have sexual preferences,
We were there first, our communal approach to social we all do, but it’s equally easy not to
munchkins. Only has the best single in networking. I know the whole point is be a dick about them. It is your social
140,000 years – Jealous. We’re sure he to make celebrities of us all, enabling responsibility never to fuck anyone
says ‘Fuck me, fuck me’ on one of the
each other to live in under the mass with any of the above on their profile
remixes. #IfYouInsist
delusion that the whole world finds (‘no offence, it’s just not what I’m into’).
THE HILLARY us as fascinating as we find ourselves. THOU SHALT NOT DOCUMENT ‘LEG DAYS’
Something fun to do while There’s no point in complaining about People who bang on about going
the world ends. something which is, fundamentally, a to the gym are the worst. Actually,
catalyst for narcissism (anyone who they’re the second worst, after people
DAVID DIMBLEBY
Hot. Go on, say ‘hommer-sex-schewell’
claims they haven’t scrolled through who photograph their progress,
like they do in BBC posh land. Go on, we their own pictures, trying to guess alongside #ArmDays and #LegDays
like it. You’re allowed. #Fuzzy what a stranger would make of their captions. As far as I’m concerned, if
life, is lying.) Believe me, I’m just as you have arms and legs, every day is

UP
unbearable as the rest of you... BUT an arms/legs day.
we have to draw the line somewhere. THOU SHALT NOT USE CHARITABLE
WORKS AS A SMOKE SCREEN

DOWN
I suggest we start by following these
six commandments... It’s interesting isn’t it, how some
THOU SHALT NOT HASHTAG GAY ON AS FAR AS gay guys become unusually
INSTAGRAM charitably minded when there’s an
I’M CONCERNED,
Look, I’m as thirsty for attention as interconnected opportunity to show
THE MEDIA the next Instagrammer, but every
IF YOU HAVE off all that aforementioned work in
Brainwashed nation, much? time I see a homosexual captioning ARMS AND LEGS, the gym – whether that’s by tipping
THEY MUST BE STOPPED.
his pictures #Gay a part of me withers EVERY DAY IS AN a bucket of ice water over their naked
DAVID STARKEY and dies. It’s embarrassing and ARMS/LEGS DAY torso, or putting their cock in a sock.
ACTUALLY the gay Katie Hopkins. reductive, not to mention desperate. It’s especially interesting when
Button it sister. Let the pain out. It Besides, surely any vague prestige they forget to include the donation
is clearly fucking IMMENSE girrrl. associated with potential extra likes text number, or any reference to the
#HectorProjector is immediately voided when they’ve relevant charity, or to actually send
PIZZA JOKES been harvested from the kind of any money. Almost as if they don’t
Gay people do eat Pizza. Not at weddings, mouth-breathers who browse the gay actually care about cancer, and just
but we do eat pizza. Can we just deal with hashtag. Unacceptable. Same goes for wanted everyone to see their pecs.
that. Stop with the ‘Which queen would #Instagay #GayBoy and – obviously – THOU SHALT NOT SAY ‘ICYMI’
be seen dead eating a pizza/staying in a #GayFollow. In case you didn’t know, ICYMI is
B&B/on a bus? lines’. SOOOO0 90s
THOU SHALT NOT BE A GRINDR DOUCHEBAG an acronym for ‘In case you missed
PEOPLE WITH DOGS In case you haven’t already, take the it’, used when re-posting something
That don’t smile when you coo at them. time to visit douchebagsofgrindr.com to which didn’t receive the desired
FUCK THAT SHIT. see the worst that gay culture has to traction the first time. Unfortunately,
offer – a stew of racism, body fascism we didn’t miss it, we just weren’t that
BRUCE JENNER
and self-hating homophobia which interested. Life’s hard.
CHASING
Leave her alone. will be a familiar sight to anyone THOU SHALT NOT POST INSPIRATIONAL
who’s ever stumbled across a profile QUOTES
ARGUING ABOUT insisting on: ‘no femmes, no fatties, Come on guys, we’re better than this.
POPSTARS ONLINE no Asians, no blacks, masc only, my You know we are. (There are rare
No point, really. Waste of life. No, really.
age or younger.’ It’s a depressing exceptions to this rule, including Geri
Open your curtains. Look: Air. Sky.
Trees. Birdies. Outsideness. Flapjacks. indicator of how the internet age has Halliwell: ‘I’m famous enough that the
Feel it, embrace it. You are not a cave bat. helped to replace a culture of sexual paparazzi want to sit outside my house.
Madonna does not care. #TruthHurts freedom with segregation – not to They don’t sit outside Mel C’s house.’)

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EDIT_GADGETS

Gadgets
FESTIVALS
FROM PORTABLE CHARGERS TO CASES THAT
TURN YOUR PHONE INTO AN INSTANT CAMERA,
GET READY FOR A SUMMER OF LOVE...
WORDS BY STUART MILES, FOUNDER OF POCKET-LINT.COM

PRYNT
Prynt (pronounced print) is a case that allows you to turn your
smartphone into an instant camera just like a Polaroid. Perfect
for sharing festival photos with new friends, it doesn’t need Wi-
Fi or Bluetooth to work so perfect for when you’re standing in the
middle of a muddy field. PRE-ORDER FOR £90, PRYNTCASES.COM

SOULRA RUGGED RUKUS


A Bear Grylls-esque, all-terrain solar-powered, splash
proof, knock proof, lightweight, wireless Bluetooth
travel speaker that sounds superb - but does so much
more than just play music. It also features a USB output
to charge your smartphone on the go with a simple one-
touch Bluetooth pairing, while just five hours of sunlight
will provide eight hours of music playtime.
£89.99, SOULRACORP.COM

LOMO’INSTANT BOSTON
EDITION
If you want to ditch battery-powered
tech altogether, this 35mm camera
package from Lomography comes
with three lenses and loads of features
to make even Instagram photos look
dull. Setting options include unlimited
multiple exposures, four colour
flash gels, B setting for infinite long
exposures and much more.
£129, LOMOGRAPHY.COM

TYLT ENERGI TRAVEL 6K


This 6,000mAh capacity portable battery gives you enough
to charge your phone around three times from a single charge
of its battery, and comes with a built in micro-USB cable and
the ability to quickly swap the plug for when you go abroad.
£29.99, TYLT.COM

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EDIT_THE RULES

THE RULES: FESTIVALS

YOU’LL ALWAYS ARRIVE BUT YOU’LL ALWAYS ACCEPT NOTHING


FEELING LIKE THIS… LEAVE FEELING LIKE LESS THAN DIAMOND
THIS ENCRUSTED WELLIES

AND IT’S A LONG WAY IT AIN’T OVER TILL BEING SUNBURNED AND
TO A SHOWER, SO GET THE BIG TITTED LADY HUNGOVER AT THE SAME
DOWN AND DIRTY AT PLAYS THE BENNY HILL TIME IS THE WORST
YOUR PERIL THEME!

THREE DAYS IN AND SAME APPLIES FOR IF YOU’RE THAT DICK ON


YOU ARE DEFINITELY BEING MEGA ORGANISED SOMEONE’S SHOULDERS,
TOO SMELLY FOR SEX AND EQUIPPED #HATRED EVERYONE HATES YOU

WORDS: BEN KELLY

DOWNLOAD
THE TABLET EDITION OF
ATTITUDE
ATTITUDE. WITH A MOVING
COVER, EXTRA PHOTO GALLERIES,
INTERACTIVE MUSIC, FILM AND TV
REVIEWS, AND MUCH, MUCH MORE

257_EDIT_THE RULES#.indd 16 14/04/2015 12:54:07


Paris BURNING
EDIT_OPINION

PETTY HOMOPHOBES OF THE WORLD, LET US EAT CAKE!


A little quiz for you: what four- homosexuality is an affront to their

FRANCOFILES
letter word, starting with ‘C’, is the religious beliefs. Famously a Pizza
thing I most enjoy putting in my joint said it would refuse to cater a
mouth? A clue you say? It’s got a ‘K’ same sex wedding.
THIS MONTH: in it. Oh for goodness sake, it’s cake What else are the bigots trying
JAMES HUNG OUT WITH ELTON. you filthy pups. The sticky stuff has to spoil for us? Well, if you’re
GO JAMES! become an unlikely political weapon, transgender and happen to live in a
and bakeries political battleground. handful of States in the US, they don’t
Not just any cake though: seditious, even want you to take a pee in peace.
homosexual, blasphemous cake, Lawmakers in Kentucky, Florida and –

MERYL TO like the Bert and Ernie confection


that’s been causing a commotion
yes – Texas are currently considering
legislation that will punish trans

PLAY MERCURY in Northern Ireland for over a year


now – perhaps the most ridiculous
people who use the ‘wrong’ bathroom.
They could get a fine or, worst-case
controversy around baked goods since scenario, arrested. It’s all based on that
Marie Antoinette told all those poor old lie that trans people are somehow
old French paupers to just suck it up. sexually deviant, a threat to lovely
It all started when a man called non-trans people, from which women
Gareth Lee asked for a cake to be and children must be protected.
decorated with the Sesame Street And doesn’t it just seem really, really
characters Bert and Ernie alongside mean? It’s like being back at school
the logo for ‘Queerspace’ group and and having the bullies think up ways
After plans for Sacha Baron
the slogan ‘Support Gay Marriage’, in that they can exclude the queer kids.
Cohen to play Freddie Mercury
honour of Andrew Muir – Northern No, you can’t have any cake! No, you’re
fell through for the fifth Ireland’s first openly gay mayor. not coming in these toilets! No,
time, the production team have For who could complain about Bert we’re not playing with you!
decided enough is enough, and and Ernie and a bit of fondant icing, I don’t mean to detract from
released a statement saying, eh? Ashers, the bakers. That’s who. all the truly serious crap
“we’ll just have to get Turns out it’s run by evangelical that’s still happening to gay
Meryl Streep.” The 65-year-old Christians. Nightmare! people, but in the West, bigots
appears set to play the The situation has now gone all are starting to look increasingly
showman in a movie spanning the way to the courts with the pathetic. Good. In the past, the
his life. She has already been bakers saying it’s an infringement enemies of gay and trans people
measured up for a crown and of their religious beliefs – and were just as mean and petty, but the
is learning about the infamous the guys still wanting their cake! difference was that they had much
hanky codes. An inside source I’ve no idea if the powers that be more power over us. Back then they
said, “She’s played fierce will decide that Christian bakers could throw us in mental hospitals
queens many times now, from are compelled to ice pro-gay and prisons and stop us from finding
propaganda onto Victoria sponges work, marrying or having children.
The Devil Wears Prada to The
from now on, but the icing aficionado In Britain, at least, we’ve won every
Iron Lady, but this will be her
in me prays they’ll be forced to with major ideological argument and
biggest challenge yet.” As her
gritted teeth. This all feeds in to a secured our human rights. As
star turn in Mamma Mia showed, much bigger debate raging in the inspiring veteran activist Maureen
Meryl will be more than capable States right now about so-called Duffy told the crowd at last year’s
of doing all her own vocals ‘religious freedom’ exemptions from Attitude Awards, though, we can’t
too, in addition to yet another equality laws. The American state of hang our boots up just yet. When we
legendary accent. When asked Indiana is seeking to allow religious finally win the right to have whatever
for a comment, Meryl simply people to discriminate against icing we want on our cakes, well,
said, “Ayyyyy-oh, darling!” gay people if they want to because that’ll be the icing on the cake.

17

257_EDIT_PARIS LEES#.indd 17 14/04/2015 14:31:28


EDIT_OPINION

TOP TV Paul Flynn


IS OVER IT
this month
■ TERRESTRIAL:
CHANNEL 4’S ALTERNATIVE ELECTION NIGHT
If Dimbleby nods off over on BBC, and
Kay Burley has run out of venom on CUCUMBER EXPLORED GAY LIFE IN A WAY THAT'S NEVER BEEN DONE BEFORE
Sky, you’ll be in for a few laughs at least
as the holy trinity of Jimmy Carr, David About halfway into its run, I came our laptops when someone puts
Mitchell and Charlie Brooker lead up the to a conclusion of sorts about Cucumber, their specs on to do so. Once the
Channel 4 coverage. the divisive gay sex drama that Russell dream-state that our lives were going
There’s even an T Davies persuaded onto national to carouse around with the hot
Election Come Dine primetime TV. There were lots of loud, bounce of Michael Tolliver’s in Tales
With Me with unsettled rants about the show from its of the City took root, the feel-good,
Edwina Currie and target audience. Because it was a comfy gay fairy-tale felt set in stone.
Brian Paddick. programme covering an area that isn’t But that was a story that needed to be
usually covered anywhere in the told in the 70s. It’s almost half a
■ CABLE: GAME OF THRONES mainstream, this was to be expected. century later now and Russell T
Season 5 of everyone’s favourite fantasy But the vitriol started to bother me. I Davies is the closest Britain has got to
drama is arriving on Sky Atlantic this despise that gay male voice that slashes unearthing an Armistead Maupin of
month, with the plot devised from George the windpipe of every interesting, its own; a chronicler of gay life exactly
R. R. Martin’s fourth blossoming conversation as it opens in tune with his moment, telling
and fifth novels. Look up. Now this was becoming collective. stories from the inside.
out for cameos from So that was my conclusion: Are we Once the uncurious wall of
Jonathan Pryce, Mark really this stupid? complainants disappears, I suspect
Gatiss and Hannah In some convoluted way, the Cucumber will be regarded as
Waddingham. initial reaction to Cucumber echoed something of a minor-key classic.
exactly what it was saying – that Then we will wow at the fact that
■ ONLINE: GRACE AND FRANKIE there is a gaping chasm between the GAY SEX MIGHT Davies got half a million Britons in
So you gorged on Kimmy Schmidt all at told gay male experience and the felt LOOK LESS LIKE front of their telly to watch a gay man
once? So did we. Luckily Netflix’s latest one. As a conceptual broadside, that THE SHADOWY get clobbered to death with a golf club
original comedy Grace and Frankie is wins for me. Then Russell began to SILHOUETTE OF in his search to feel desirable one
premiering in full on May 8, with Jane really pile the layers on, talking in HEATH LEDGER Thursday night in early 2015. How
Fonda and Lily Tomlin starring as two brutal, stark new language. That ROGERING JAKE many of the screeching Facebook
rivals brought together after their husbands gay men who see themselves as the GYLENHAAL IN massive have done that?
elope with each other. Made by the creators good ones can be petty, mean, vitriolic A TEPEE There’s that fantastic line from
of Friends, this is definitely one for us! and disloyal. That copping off with the Shelagh Delaney play, A Taste
someone who identifies as straight of Honey. “Whatever people say I
isn’t a victory lap taken for the team am. That’s exactly what I’m not.”
but just another deeply-rooted For 20 years now, Russell Davies
anxiety action. That a new generation has been at the coalface of brilliant
may emerge for whom ‘gay’ is not storytelling. For me, with Cucumber
interesting. That gay sex, in and he joins the ranks of Delaney. This
of itself, is not all that sexy and was provocative, hard and provincial.
might look less like the shadowy It dared to say we are not as sexy
silhouette of Heath Ledger rogering as we think we are. We are not as
■ BOX SET: CUCUMBER/BANANA Jake Gyllenhaal in a tepee on a metropolitan as we say we are.
Russell T Davies’ Channel 4 dramas can picturesque Texan mountaintop and Sometimes, anchorless, we get
now be enjoyed together, in a box set more like a bald man with weak scared and we are right to be scared.
for less than £20, so you can relive the shoulders getting a wank off Before Cucumber, I thought of Russell
story of Henry and Lance, mull over your somebody he’s not even bothered to as a gay Richard Curtis figure, a
favourite Banana work out whether he particularly full-hearted romantic with an
subplot, and likes or not. That stuff. enviable habit for finding circuitously
freeze frame These are dismal subjects to stare at. happy endings. Cucumber finishes
that Freddie Fox But that doesn’t mean gay audiences all that. His dark side is even more
kitchen sex scene. should turn away, having hissy fits on thrilling still.

18

257_EDIT_PAUL FLYNN#.indd 18 14/04/2015 12:56:13


words: Joe Passmore and joseph kocharian EDIT_film reviews

4/5

Far from the Madding Crowd


C arey M ulligan , M ichael S heen , T om S turridge
Thomas Vinterberg’s Far From the Madding Crowd takes
us back to Victorian England, where Carey Mulligan’s
Bathsheba Everdene stands strong against the lure of
three different suitors and the threat of relinquished
independence. This adaptation of a Thomas Hardy
classic has been given the dark romantic treatment,
with grand sweeping shots of rolling landscapes and
formidable weather, with themes of love bubbling
lustily throughout, all bathed in a golden light.
Vintergberg has assembled a platinum cast, too:
Mulligan is stoic and strong-willed as Everdene;
Matthias Schoenaerts’ Gabriel Oak is a silent yet robust
beast; Michael Sheen draws out audience pity as the
rich but lonely Boldwood and Sturridge’s recklessly
charismatic soldier charms his way into your affections.
Each are solid components of a beautiful piece of
cinema, with grit and power in equal measure. jk
R eleased on M ay 1 st

4/5

The Falling 4/5


M asie W illiams , M axine P eake , F lorence P ugh
In a British girls school in the late 60s, a mysterious
sickness epidemic seemingly takes control of its students;
Avengers: Age of Ultron
S carlett J ohansson , A aron T aylor -J ohnson , C hris E vans , C hris H emsworth , R obert D owney J r
yet the school’s authorities put it down to the behaviour The gang are back together, but not for very long, as Iron Man/Tony Stark's A.I creation
of the intelligent yet disturbed Lydia (Maisie Williams). turns on the team and humanity. Add in a rather buff Aaron Taylor Johnson (minus
While there’s something deeply troubling bubbling at points for his dyed blonde weave) and Elizabeth Olsen as Quicksilver, complete with
the surface, it remains an entrancing and alluring watch her best Russian accent for a robust action thriller with all the trimmings we've come
throughout. This is a film with perhaps too many ideas, to expect from the Marvel franchise formula. This film gets a little more personal, but
rather than too few, but the ambience of this drama is keeps all your favourite touches, including Scarlet Johansson (who has not been given
entirely unique. Maisie Williams (Game of Thrones) gives her own stand alone film in the franchise, which looks set to keep going until 2018)
a chilling performance as Lydia. While, director Morley grabbing the scenes she is given. jk
shows great promise in his sophomore feature film. jp R eleased on M ay 1 st
R eleased on A pril 24 th

3/5 Reese Witherspoon, Arnold Oceng,


Ger Duany
The Good Lie 3/5
Three Sudanese men escape the
horrors of the ongoing civil war
in their homeland, taking refuge
in Kansas. Employment agency

The New Girlfriend worker – Carrie, played by an


irritable Reese Weatherspoon, takes
R omain D uris , A naïs D emoustier , I sild L e B esco on the difficult task of finding them
After losing her childhood best friend, Claire (Anaïs jobs. Performances here are solid
Demoustier) goes to check in on Laura’s (Isild Le throughout and there is plenty of
Besco) widowed husband (Romain Duris). Upon this substance for a great drama, with the
impromtu visit Claire finds David dressed in his late opening sequences in Sudan being
wife’s clothes. Though making a confident move at especially poignant and provoking.
observing common LGBT ideologies, the drama here However, an overly American and
plays out too much like a frivolous soap opera. There often too syrupy script act as a
are still moments of poignancy and humour, as well hindrance to what could almost
as interesting commentaries on gender, sexuality and have been a powerful, honest and
labelling, but The New Girlfriend just misses the mark. jp gritty drama. jp
R eleased on M ay 22 nd R eleased on A pril 24 th

19

257_EDIT_FILM REVIEWS#.indd 19 15/04/2015 11:11


EDIT_MUSIC REVIEWS WORDS: BEN KELLY

9/10 7/10 5/10

JERMAIN JACKMAN
BRANDON FLOWERS
T HE D ESIRED E FFECT / V ERTIGO
WILL YOUNG
85% P ROOF / I SLAND R ECORDS
J ERMAIN J ACKMAN / P OLYDOR
It’s third time lucky at giving a winner of
The Voice a winning career, and Jermain
The second solo album from The Killers’ We’re always keen for the success of a has delivered an album that’s both
frontman is one of the best pop albums Will Young album, since he and we go middle-aged and middle of the road,
of 2015 so far, and has inspired levels of back a long time, but we were a tad thrown falling somewhere between late-teen
approval in the Attitude office not seen upon first hearing his comeback single Jacksons and Luther Vandross; with a
since Swifty’s 1989; Flowers too has stuck Love Revolution. It’s a foot-stomping, few attempts to line up alongside Sam
to straight-up, easily accessible pop Motown-esque track built on Tomcraft’s Smith. To his credit, he’s co-written
harking back to music of the 80s. 2002 hit Loneliness, which finds Will in most of it and the vocals melt like a bar
The Haim-inspired, bass-pulsing much the same territory as he himself was of Galaxy chocolate, but there’s little
single Can’t Deny My Love is a good in that same year. Reader, we fretted. But evidence this will do any better than the
indicator for the rest of the album – big the rest of the album tells a different story. past two forgotten winners.
anthemic tracks which are lyrically Elsewhere, he’s writing more honestly,
flippant but serious on pop. On big epic about his own life and loves, following
sing-a-longs like Come True and Digging
Up The Heat, Flowers is undeniably
channelling Springsteen; singing about
on the same musical path as his previous
album Echoes, with that album’s producer
Jim Eliot – whose work with Ellie Goulding
8/10
highways and money trouble over also hints through. Will channels the
acoustic drum beats, piano and pop epic synth-pop of Hurts on Brave Man and
horns. On Between Me And You he even Like A River, without sounding try-hard,
sounds like The Boss as he sings “These
hours I’m working aren’t nearly enough/
and both songs are among the most
personal lyrically. Joy is a track that FRANKIE KNUCKLES
Chasing every dollar, girl is this what I recalls Kylie’s All The Lovers – and with H OUSE M ASTERS F RANKIE K NUCKLES /
was born to do?” Tribute is also paid to about as much lyrical content – but it’s a D EFECTED R ECORDS
the camp electro-pop on which Flowers fun pop song all the same. Thank You is a This album is the culmination of a
was raised, with backing vocals from Neil track that’s got the feel of a modern Take project that began in February 2014,
Tennant, and a sample of Bronski Beat’s That doing some old school Beatles, and with Frankie hand-selecting what he
Smalltown Boy on I Can Change. it’s on point for Will. wanted to include on a retrospective
Easily remembered melodies and The album hangs together well, and release of his career. Following his
lyrics make for a glorious run of perfect is a good solid offering from Will after a untimely death, it’s going out as
pop songs, on a ten-track album, the couple of years away, but it doesn’t smash planned, filled with the classic songs
likes of which we never thought we’d the mould from which we’re used to he put his hands to, plus his various
see again (you can listen to it twice over hearing his music cast. Nevertheless, it’s remixes. It’s a collection of some of the
and Rebel Heart would still be going): A become a regular fixture on the Attitude best house music of the late 80s and
further breakthrough solo moment for iPod, and we’re very happy to see this great early 90s. Better still, all proceeds go
a man who we can safely say is not just British male back on the scene alongside to the Frankie Knuckles Fund and the
a pretty face. newbies like Sheeran and Smith. Elton John AIDS Foundation.

WHAT SHOULD ZAYN MALIK DO NEXT? WHO IS TIDAL FOR?

% %

▀ 5% MOODY R&B-TINGED SOLO ALBUM


▀ 10% (HOMO)EROTICALLY-CHARGED ▀ 5% EMERGING ARTISTS
TELL-ALL AUTOBIOGRAPHY ▀ 5% #FORALL
▀ 85% PORN ▀ 90% BLUE IVY’S COLLEGE FUND

20

257_EDIT_MUSIC REVIEWS#.indd 20 15/04/2015 14:38


PECCA PICS.indd 21 15/04/2015 11:27:11
ANDY Shirt by
Burton

COHEN
America’s only gay late night talk show host
pays a fleeting visit to see Attitude in London
22
Photography: Leon Csernohlavek / Styling: Nick Byam / Words: Ben Kelly

257_FEAT_ANDY COHEN#.indd 22 14/04/2015 14:11:17


andy cohen_ATTITUDE

S
tripping from tuxedo to dressing gown in a suite at London’s Andaz Hotel, I suggest that Andy
Cohen may like some privacy. “Relax,” he says brashly, “I’m not shy, I’m American!” And indeed
it’s in his USA homeland where TV mogul Andy Cohen can consider himself a huge star. He hosts
his own late night talk show Watch What Happens: Live, he’s the creator, executive producer and all round
ringmaster of the popular Real Housewives franchise, and his high flying New York socialite ways are
well documented on his social media accounts as well as his book The Andy Cohen Diaries: A Deep Look at
a Shallow Year. But here in London – where he’s come to see ‘friend’ Ralph Fiennes on the stage, to dine
with Joan Collins, and crucially, to talk to Attitude – he still enjoys some levels of anonymity. “I went out
last night and it was interesting being in London. Some people knew who I was, some people didn’t, and
it was very fun, it was very... refreshing,” he grins. Bubbly and chatty with everyone on set, and happy to
take well positioned selfies, Andy is clearly someone who delights in his work, and every aspect of it. As
we sit down for a chat he asks me gleefully, “Are you a ginge?!” expressing his preference for red tops.
Sadly Andy, I’m not, but there’s a copy of RED HOT in the post with your name on it.

Do you know London well? did that come about as an initial idea?
I love London. I came out of the closet in Someone came to us at Bravo, which was the
London. I was studying abroad here when I channel I was in charge of programming,
was in college. Our flat was in Earls Court, and said “I have these neighbours and their
and I thought there’s no way I’m going to boobs are bigger and their hair is blonder
be able to stay in the closet if I’m here, and I and they have huge houses, and they’re
came out. It was a great time. unlike anything you’ve ever seen before,”
Who did you tell? and we said well that sounds intriguing, and
I told my friend Amanda, who’s still one of we just shot some footage of them and then
my best friends to this day. She’s a shrink tried to figure out what to do with them. It
now, which makes sense. was the beginning of The Real Housewives of
Your show, ‘Watch What Happens: Live’, Orange County, and in my mind I thought,
is a lot more fun than most other U.S. talk ‘Well this could be like a modern soap
shows right? opera,’ and that’s really what it’s become. It’s
Way more fun! It’s the only live show on late become a water cooler churn in the United
night in America, it’s totally spontaneous, States, and around the world, and it’s really
and there’s something really dangerous become this kind of, cultural lightning rod.
about it. These huge stars come on and feel How much of it is staged?
like they’re not really on TV because it’s in It’s real. We cast very highly volatile,
this teeny little room and we just get them to emotional, driven, opinionated women, and
reveal crazy shit about themselves. because of that, they go to town!
A lot of them are your friends, too. And you sit down with them at the end of the
It started with my friends doing me favours season and they all have it out with each other.
and coming on the show to get it established Yes, I do, exactly. It’s really fun.
– like Sarah Jessica Parker, Liam Neeson, What’s the most vicious you’ve ever
Anderson Cooper – and now it’s really seen them get?
legitimately famous people who I’ve never You know sometimes it just gets really
met before. personal about their family. The show works
Who’s been your favourite guest? so well because it’s all people who have long
Maybe Oprah or Cher. histories with each other. So it’s not just
It’s weird when you see Oprah as a guest isn’t it? throwing people together in a Big Brother
Yeah it is, but she’s a great guest. She’s house and seeing what happens.
very engaging. Talk show hosts make great And it kind of led to your cameo in Lady
guests. Always. Gaga’s video for G.U.Y. didn’t it? What were
You’re also behind ‘The Real Housewives’ you meant to be, God?
franchise, which is hugely popular here. How Yes, I was Zeus! God of everything. She

23

257_FEAT_ANDY COHEN#.indd 23 14/04/2015 14:11:49


ANDY COHEN_ATTITUDE

‘WHEN I WAS YOUNGER


directed me, it was fun. She’s a huge Real Yes, and I’m executive producer of my own
Housewives fan, and she was great, she’s been show too, so the buck stops with me. I love it.
a guest on my show. In the UK Graham Norton is similar in that
That was a big video, and she kind of did it
off her own back didn’t she?
respect, he has his production company too.
Absolutely. And he’s an influence on me IF I WANTED TO GET A
She did, it was a huge video, and she put
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills in that
because he has an ‘anything goes’ attitude on
his show, and I always admired him for years. DRINK I WOULD GO TO
A GAY BAR ALONE, BUT
video too. Though our gay TV hosts in this country still
But you didn’t shoot on set at the Hearst tend to be quite flamboyant...

NOW I DON’T DO THAT


mansion did you? Well I’m not exactly Clint Eastwood!
No, she set up a set for me, because I wasn’t No, but guys like you and Anderson Cooper,
able to make the actual shoot, and I did it in you’re seen to be a bit more butch.
a sound stage in Los Angeles. It was cool,
she was very cool.
I can be caught in a dainty moment! Almost
every episode! Don’t get me wrong, you BECAUSE I FEEL SELF
So although you’re a TV host, you’re also
running the business behind the scenes.
Yes, I have been a TV producer for 25 years,
know, it’s a great honour being the only gay
late night TV host in America, but being gay
doesn’t define me, it’s just part of who I am.
CONSCIOUS ABOUT IT’
it’s only been the last seven or eight that I’ve That being said I hide nothing on my show,
been in front of the camera, so it’s been a and if you watch my show regularly, I drool
crazy transition for me. My life has totally over guys and talk about men and dating and
changed over the last few years. I objectify them, so there’s an honesty and an
And I guess as a producer you have the authenticity with the way I present who I am
power and control that you don’t get being on the show that I think is certainly different
just a presenter? from anything that is on TV in America.

Dressing gown
by Zimmerelli
at MR PORTER

24

257_FEAT_ANDY COHEN#.indd 24 14/04/2015 14:12:15


Shirt by Burton;
bow tie by M&S

25

257_FEAT_ANDY COHEN#.indd 25 14/04/2015 14:12:36


26

257_FEAT_ANDY COHEN#.indd 26 14/04/2015 14:12:57


ANDY COHEN_ATTITUDE
And how does America respond to it? He is, he’s famous. He has 120,000 56-year-old woman. So it’s everyone else’s
Really well. You know, the people who I Instagram followers! He’s got a great problem with that, it’s not hers.
think have a weird response to me are gay Instagram. It’s my hobby! Do you think there’s ageism in the gay
people. Some gay people. Whenever there’s I follow lots of dog Instagrams, but they’re community?
something about me on a gay website, they not as prolific as his. I do, although... I don’t know, because I think
love to comment on it, “Oh he’s such a queen, Well thank you, he has a big platform. I people like a daddy a little bit.
he’s a bottom, he’s this, he’s that.” bring him out at the end of all my shows too. Are you a daddy?
Is any of that true? So he’s the man in your life? I might be. Yeah, I think I am. [laughs] I’ve
What? Am I a queen? Am I a bottom? I can He is the man in my life, I’m single. got no problem with it.
be queeny... I’m a top! The response has been What’s it like dating as Andy Cohen – What were your thoughts on Russell Tovey’s
great though. I’ve actually had a really nice because it must be hard when you’re a big comments about masculinity?
response. I’ve gone on these big book tours name, especially in the gay world. My thoughts are that people in this world
and it’s cool to meet young gay guys who Well, when I was younger if I wanted to get a are just waiting to be offended, and this is a
live in America and watch me and say, “Oh drink I would go to a gay bar alone, but now proudly out gay actor who is talking about
it’s cool watching another gay guy just being I don’t do that because I feel self conscious his experience of feeling – for whatever
himself on TV”, that means a lot to me. about it. Other than that, for me it’s normal. reason or another – as we’ve all felt, that we
Let’s talk about your books, ‘The Andy Cohen I don’t think of myself in terms of, ‘Oh I’m had to fit in, and that was his experience,
Diaries’. It’s kind of an homage to ‘The Andy famous’. I mean, I’m not Madonna! and I don’t think it was him saying that he
Warhol Diaries’, right? Do you like Rebel Heart? didn’t welcome all kinds of people, I think
Right, I have two books. You’re a young I do, I listened to it like 20 times on the plane that it was grossly overblown.
fella so I’m glad you know about The Warhol over here yesterday and I love it. You don’t accept this implied notion that
Diaries, and that was the inspiration for It’s a difficult one isn’t it... there’s a ‘right way to be gay’?
my book, I thought, ‘Wow here I am living It is a difficult one, but like everything, No I don’t. What I gathered from it was
in New York, going to these parties, and the more you listen to it, the more you he was talking about his own experience,
travelling around the world, and meeting understand it, and there is some really feeling for whatever reason, that he had to
these people that I never dreamed I would melodic beautiful stuff on there that I’m butch it up to fit in.
and hanging out with them,’ and I thought, connecting to. Living For Love is not my You’re always someone’s type in the gay
‘This could be cool to do a year in my life,’ favourite. community aren’t you?
and it’s a little Bridget Jones’ Diary, I date, I How did you feel about her fall at the Yeah, you are. Look, it’s a cruel little pond
fall in love with the dog, I kind of hob nob, BRIT Awards? we all swim in, but everyone has a type. Some
and it’s fun, I love the book. I just feel like there is a crazy ageism thing gay people like really skinny guys, some
It’s funny because with social media, people going on with Madonna, where if she people like twinks, some people like bears, fat
are following your lifestyle in real time, but falls people are making fun of her, ‘she’s guys. There’s something for everyone.
there’s still a missing art of letter and diary a grandma,’ ‘she’s an old lady,’ but she’s You and Anderson are one and the same in
writing nowadays. Madonna. You know? I find it gross the way that respect.
Totally, and it’s great. You know, you can put people are saying she shouldn’t dress this What? We’re both daddies? We’re both
down what you were really thinking. Look, way, or she shouldn’t be putting out this silver guys? We are! He’s my good mate. We

STYLIST ASSISTED BY YASMIN WALKER AND JOAO ANDRADE / GROOMING AND HAIR BY NIBRAS USING CLARINS AND OJON
I’m highly active on social media, but I’m kind of music. She’s Madonna. You can’t have a great time. He and I are going on tour
also highly edited. And part of the reason tell Madonna not to be Madonna. She is the together, starting this month, in Boston. We
is that people are just waiting to jump on one who is redefining what it means to be a travel extensively together actually. We’re
everything you say. I keep telling my bosses, doing a speaking tour soon. But yes, we’re
“I am one tweet away from getting fired.” both daddies.
Isn’t everyone? Who gets more attention, you or him?
Yes! Everyone is. Because I’m going to be Well when he takes his hat off, it looks like
in the back of a cab drunk some night and he’s Katniss Everdeen, girl on fire, because
I’m going to tweet something horribly his hair is so silver. He is very hard to miss.
inappropriate, and it’s all going to come You’re very well put together now, but I’ve
crashing down on me. seen some old pictures with little afros, long
You share a lot about your dog on social media. curly hair...
Yes, Wacha, he’s two and half. I know, terrible. I thought I looked good!
And you rescued him? Do you feel you’ve got better looking
I did, I found him online, I fell in love with with age?
him. It was like Grindr for a guy and a I think I look better now than I ever did,
puppy. But I didn’t fuck the dog of course! thankfully. I’d rather have it be that than the
He’s great, he’s so cute, I love him. He’s a mix opposite. I can’t believe what I looked like
between a beagle and a foxhound. He’s got when I look at old pictures. Yeah, I looked
great disposition, and he’s a good guy. He pretty bad. Now I have great suits, I love my
sleeps with me, we cuddle, it’s lovely. suits, that’s my style. You gotta keep it tight
And he’s actually famous in his own right. if you’re on TV every night!

Suit by M&S Collection; shirt


by Burton; bow tie by M&S 27

257_FEAT_ANDY COHEN#.indd 27 14/04/2015 14:13:25


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OB.indd 28 15/04/2015 11:29:31


BIG GAY
FOLLOWING
WORDS: MARK LINDORES

KYLIE WAS
THE DARLING
OF THE LABEL

STOCK AITKEN WATERMAN


TO CELEBRATE THEIR 30TH ANNIVERSARY, THE HITMAKERS HAVE REMASTERED THE FOUR ALBUMS THEY MADE WITH THEIR MOST
SUCCESSFUL ARTIST, KYLIE MINOGUE. WE TAKE A LOOK BACK AT HOW THE LABEL DEFINED THE SOUND OF THE MID-1980S
In the 27 years since Kylie Minogue released I Should Be So Lucky, Stock Aitken Waterman-produced albums have been given the
she has performed the track in a myriad of styles, from torch song deluxe edition treatment, digitally remastered and packed with
to techno rave-up to reciting the lyrics at the Poetry Olympics (in remixes, B-sides and videos.
trackie bottoms and trainers with a face scrubbed free of make-up, “These really are the definitive versions of the Kylie albums,” says
no less). However, it is the moment she climbed into a bubble bath Pete Waterman. “Everything we did with Kylie is on these reissues,
to recreate the now iconic scene from the song’s video on her Kiss there is nothing else left. We don’t have any unreleased demos of any
Me Once tour that will go down as the definitive live rendition of the artist because we never did them – that isn’t how we worked.
song. Remaining faithful to the original version, the performance We wrote the song specifically for them, recorded it, then put it out.
was an unabashed love letter to Kylie’s apprenticeship at Stock We didn’t have time to write songs we weren’t going to use.”
Aitken Waterman’s Hit Factory, where, under the guidance of the As well as the wealth of material contained on the CDs, the
chart-topping triumvirate, she was veered to becoming the pop reissues feature bonus DVDs featuring scarce TV performances –
icon we know and love today. the ultimate souvenir of the retro-Kylie experience and, says Pete,
To mark the 30th anniversary of the Hit Factory, Kylie’s four an integral part of the Stock Aitken Waterman phenomenon.
WKEN MCKAY/REX

29

257_EDIT_BGF_SAW.indd 29 14/04/2015 14:27:33


November 1984 and steadily
climbed the charts before
hitting No.1 in March 1985,
kick-starting a cacophony of
smash hits for Stock Aitken
Waterman, with each usurping
the success of its predecessor,
and firmly establishing them as
a pop powerhouse. The chart-
dominating trio would go on
to write and produce over 100
Top 40 singles and sell over 60
million records.
“Just as had happened

William Lovelace/Daily Mail/Rex


with Dead Or Alive, we were
approached by Bananarama
because they wanted elements
from them.” says Mike. “That
set the way forward for us.
But I was keen not to be too
repetitive and Princess, a soul
singer, was our next hit. But
“Those performances were memorablia dance orientation was always
from the Stock
hugely important to our going to figure in our records.”
aitken waterman
success,” says Pete. “That was archives Having enjoyed a run of hits
how people found out about the in the early 1980s, Bananarama
songs – they heard them on the were struggling to maintain their
radio or saw them on Top Of The momentum and turned to Stock
Pops or the Saturday morning Aitken Waterman to revitalise
TV shows, then went out and their sound. “They were unsure
bought the record. The music of who they were when they
industry today is vastly different releases, they explored gay “The elements from Hi-NRG came to us,” Mike recalls. “I had
to what it was then. There was no subculture further, teaming up that we put into Hazell’s tracks a strong directional sense for
social media – those shows were with Divine for You Think You’re and how we incorporated them them. We got the first album
like the Twitter of their day.” A Man, which became their into a full-on pop song were past them without too much
The Stock Aitken Waterman first Top 20 hit. Along with what Pete Burns loved. He was debate following the first couple
story began in 1984 when Mike Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s keen to do a similar thing.” of hits because we were able to
Stock and Matt Aitken, a pair of seminal anthem, Relax, the song Dead Or Alive had been point to our records as highly
songwriters/musicians who had helped to propel the sound of working on their second album successful, so they couldn’t put
been touring the working men’s the underground to the top of when Pete Burns heard the up much argument.”
club scene for years, approached the charts. They followed Divine Stock Aitken Waterman tracks The huge success of Venus
Pete Waterman, a DJ/producer with Hazell Dean’s Whatever I Do and decided they were the determined the direction
who had recently enjoyed (Wherever I Go), which became the logical sound choice for the Bananarama were to head
success with acts including first song written and produced “glittery disco record” he had in next. Deciding to work
Musical Youth and Nik Kershaw, by Stock Aitken Waterman to hit in mind. He presented them exclusively with Stock Aitken
to form a writing/production the Top 10 and established their with a demo tape containing Waterman on their subsequent
company which would provide trademark sound. four tracks, one of which was album, Wow!, the sessions were
songs to a roster of artists. Their “Most examples of Hi-NRG the now-infamous You Spin Me fraught, with the girls frustrated
business model was loosely were short on song,” recalls Round (Like A Record). at the lack of control they were
based on the legendary Tamla Mike Stock. “I was keen to “As soon as I heard the demo being afforded. They were also
Motown record label of the bring structured songs into the I knew it was a No.1 hit,” says said to feel that Stock Aitken
1960s. Waterman loved the idea style. We saw the club scene Pete Waterman. “There was Waterman were spreading
and started to seek out talent to as a genuine way to reach a magic about it. We had been themselves too thinly, thanks to a
write and produce for. people who might buy records. fighting to make a living and burgeoning roster of new artists
Inspired by the music that Pete We took forward some of the make a name for ourselves including Mel & Kim, Rick
was playing in the underground dance elements into the more and Pete Burns walked in with Astley, Sinitta and Samantha Fox.
gay clubs, the trio decided that poppy projects. After Hazell a piece of gold and asked us to By 1987, Stock Aitken
Hi-NRG would form the basis Dean’s song, Dead Or Alive shine it for him. Of course we Waterman had become an
for their sound. After the flop of approached us and were really were going to do it!” unstoppable force in pop music
the first Stock Aitken Waterman keen to work with us. The song was released in with their newly acquired Hit

30

257_EDIT_BGF_SAW.indd 30 14/04/2015 14:27:58


Factory Studios the epicentre of making her the Hit Factory’s Stock Aitken Waterman music. Taking everyday people
Planet Pop. They had developed most successful export. repeated their soap star-to- and making them overnight
a sound unique to them – What is obvious from the pop star transformation with sensations was frowned upon
outwardly happy music with reissue of Kylie’s first four Jason Donovan. With the UK and a vitriolic backlash ensued.
songs often addressing doomed albums is how big the leap was, gripped by Neighbours-mania “It became so predictable,”
relationships and unrequited both musically and stylistically – Kylie and Jason’s characters, says Mike. “The music press
love, which perfectly struck the between Enjoy Yourself and Charlene and Scott’s wedding would hate all our records, but
balance between chart smash Rhythm Of Love. Though it has was watched by 21 million the public still bought them!
and club classic. The songs were been claimed this was the viewers – Stock Aitken Sometimes it verged on the
particularly beloved by teen girls result of Kylie’s relationship Waterman were inundated hysterical. From our perspective,
and gay men – an audience that with Michael Hutchence –and with orders for the Kylie & the songs had passion and
has remained loyal to this day. certainly style-wise she had Jason Christmas duet, despite belief, but we were slowly being
“I think it’s the story in the transformed herself from Barbie the fact no such thing had marginalised by an industry
song the gay fanbase are drawn to Barbarella – Mike is keen to been planned. When store which was dismantling itself.
to, “ says Mike. “I never intend dispel the myth that her private orders exceeded 600,000 In so doing it dismantled the
to just catch the gay market as life was dictating her output. copies, they succumbed to connection the public had with
that would be condescending. “The story that Better The Devil public pressure and wrote and real pop music.”
But the emotional attachment to Despite the criticisms leveled at
tunes and storylines is far more them, Stock Aitken Waterman’s
powerful than a dance beat on its success continued throughout
own. I can seriously be moved
by songs, but I can only move
my feet to a beat. We worked best
the credentials 1989 – their most successful year.
As well as new acts such as Sonia
and Big Fun and established acts
when we combined beats, tunes Date of birth: such as Cliff Richard and Donna
and lyrics. It was, after all, our 15th January 1947 Summer turned to the trio to
first principle. Structured songs Place of birth: revitalise their careers.
with dance beats.” Stoke Heath, Warwickshire As the 1990s dawned and
“It was Techno Disco – that’s worked with: music tastes changed with the
how we saw ourselves,” recalls Kylie Minogue, Jason Donovan, advent of grunge and hip-hop,
Pete. “What we were basically Sonia, Donna Summer, Steps Stock Aitken Waterman’s
doing was playing Motown Best known for: popularity took a major dip.
songs on the latest technology. Producing hits with co- With the exception of Kylie,
We realised that if we were Producers Mike Stock and Matt their songs were no longer the
serious about competing Aitken. Also hosting cult show smash hits they had once been.
against Trevor Horn and all The Hitman and Her The pressure of maintaining an
his brilliant records, we had Least known for: eight-year stronghold at the top
to have the latest technology.” His fascination for railways of the charts took its toll and
Although almost everything BGF status: Stock Aitken Waterman split.
they put their names to was Producing such camp classics Following the disbandment
a guaranteed hit, Pete was as Divine’s You Think You’re of Britain’s most successful
perplexed when labels refused A Man and Kylie’s Better the songwriting/production team
to sign his next protégée, Kylie, Devil You Know of all time, they all remain
on account of her coming from active in the music industry.
a TV soap. Pete went on to enjoy great
“Every single label we went You Know was a direct result recorded Especially For You in success with Steps, while Mike
to passed on Kylie,” says Pete. of Kylie’s awakened sexuality time for Christmas 1988. The produced hits for Scooch and
“No one ever said anything with Hutchence is nonsense,” song went on to sell over one Robson & Jerome. Although
bad about her or the song, it laughs Mike. “Matt Aitken and million copies and catapulted it is 30 years since the Hit
was the fact she was a TV star. I had Kylie’s transformation all Jason onto the bedroom walls Factory opened for business,
Everybody said you couldn’t planned. We knew we had to of teenage girls and sexually they remain as passionate
turn a TV star into a pop star. grow her up. We went from I confused boys across the UK. about music as they ever have.
They flat-out refused.” Should Be So Lucky to Shocked and Although the success of Mike has recently worked
The snub was the catalyst for Better The Devil You Know in about Kylie and Jason had become with Attitude favourite Shayne
the creation of PWL Records, 18 months. We knew nothing of the biggest thing to hit Stock Ward on his comeback album.
a label founded so they could her relationship with Michael, Aitken Waterman, PWL’s “It was a dream for me,” he says.
sign and release any records and Kylie did not attempt to steer decision to capitalise on the “Shayne is great to work with.
they liked. I Should Be So Lucky the direction of our output.” pre-teen market cost them The more talented the singer,
was the label’s first release and Buoyed by Kylie’s success their credibility. By 1989, the easier they are to work with.
the first of 19 Top 20 hit singles and revelling in the chance they were criticised for their He’s focused and delivers the
and four Top 10 albums, to silence their naysayers, production-line approach to pop song. What more could I want?”

Kylie’s four PWL albums are out now from cherryred.co.uk / the live show, A LIFE IN SONG: PETE WATERMAN is on July 29

31

257_EDIT_BGF_SAW#@.indd 31 15/04/2015 15:30


THIS Gratuitous
MONTH
PICTURES
of

257_EDIT_GRATUITOUS NAKED#.indd 32
NA T
W EL L E R TAKING THEIR
THE ALL-SINGING SON OF C LOTHES O FF
A R O CK LEG END TALK S S EX
someone
to
S
A
F
promote
E sex

14/04/2015 14:09:16
HIV FACTS

257_EDIT_GRATUITOUS NAKED#.indd 33
KNOW YOUR STATUS AS
HIV
F A C T S LEFT UNTREATED HIV
TURNS INTO AIDS.
HIV CAN ENTER YOUR
BLOODSTREAM THROUGH BODILY FLUIDS
SUCH AS BLOOD, CUM OR ANAL MUCUS.
GAY AND BISEXUAL MEN ARE AT
HIGHER RISK OF GETTING HIV.
MOST GAY AND BISEXUAL MEN WITH
HIV GET IT BY HAVING ANAL SEX
WITHOUT A CONDOM. GET TESTED AT
WORDS
LEAST ONCE A YEAR. YOU CANNOT C H R I S T I A N
TELL IF SOMEONE IS HIV NEGATIVE G U I L T E N A N E
FROM HOW THEY LOOK OR JUST
PHOTOGRAPHY
BECAUSE THEY SAY THEY ARE. K E V I N M C D A I D
1/3 OF GAY MEN WITH HIV DON'T
MAKE UP
KNOW THEY HAVE IT SO ALWAYS E L E N A D I A Z
USE A CONDOM!

Singer and model Natt is not shy. No sooner has he arrived when I feel tempted to be veg out and have a carb-fest, I'm like remember that those who bully or troll are deeply unhappy,
at our studio has he whipped off his clothes and hit the floor ‘Noooo Nat, get up! Look at Zac's abs!’ I call it Gymspiration. insecure and unfulfilled people. I've learned the hard way
to pump his pecs. Here, the dashing son of mod rock legend WHAT KIND OF UNDERWEAR MAKES YOU FEEL SEXY by retaliating and 'flying off the handle' at people, but when
Paul Weller shares some of his most intimate thoughts. It's sexier to wear none... I look closer I see that those people are projecting their own
ASIDE FROM US WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON TO suffering on other people.
DO YOU THINK PEOPLE TAKE SEX TOO SERIOUSLY? SEE YOU NAKED? DO YOU THINK GAY PEOPLE ARE ADEQUATELY TAUGHT
Yes! Sex is very important but I find if there is too much Probably my hetro manager Gary who was on this shoot, ABOUT SAFE SEX?
emphasis on it, it can be a turn off. which would have grossed him out, but I’m sure he'll get me People see safe sex as a bit of a drag in the heat of the
WHAT’S THE KINKIEST THING YOU'VE EVER DONE? back by over-sharing about his sex life; it's a bit like hearing moment – get over it! It is so important. I’d rather fumble
I’ve dabbled but it's nothing I’m going to be sharing today... your dad or brother talk about sex... around strapping one on than have a lifetime of treating a
I want to do the airplane bathroom thing one day. BULLYING IS STILL AN ISSUE FOR MANY GAY KIDS. potentially life-threatening illness.
IS THERE A CELEBRITY BODY YOU ASPIRE TO? WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE THEM? HAVE YOU ALWAYS PRACTISED SAFE SEX?
Hands down, Brad Pitt in Fight Club! And Zac Efron. Find support and try to stay strong because I promise that Yes, but I’m human. I’ve had close calls, but the bigger
Sometimes I set my screensaver to a picture of him topless so it does get better. You must ultimately live for you. Try to picture always kicks in and I’ve always stayed safe.

H E L P L I N E S The Terrence Higgins Trust tht.org.uk THT Direct 0808 802 1221 10am – 8pm Monday to Friday GMFA gmfa.org.uk London Lesbian and Gay Switchboard llgs.org.uk
Lesbian and Gay Foundation (Manchester) lgf.org.uk LGBT Scotland lgbt-helpline-scotland.org.uk LGBT Ireland lgbt.ie LGBT Northern Ireland lgbtni.org Pace Health pacehealth.org.uk

33
EDIT_SAFE SEX

If alcohol or drugs are causing you a problem and/or are making it hard to have safe sex: talktofrank.org

14/04/2015 14:09:37
With

CULTURE CLUB tweets


@MattCainWriter

Matt Cain
@innocenteyes26
@jaybrannan is a great actor...
and you get to see him naked! ;)
THE ICONIC GAY FILM WITH
UNSIMULATED SEX SCENES WASN’T @liammachin
ShortBus made me disgusted
JUST ABOUT ROMPING, IT ALSO by sexuality & want to jump into
POSED SOME THOUGHT-PROVOKING the orgy scene all at the same
time. I’m cured now.
QUESTIONS STILL RELEVANT AS EVER
@AlexJCall

SHORTBUS
I made some straight friends
watch it at a party once. They connect, and a gay couple
were quite shocked! who are struggling with the
challenges of monogamy – but
@annatation
Some of it’s great, but the wary of the implications of
main women characters felt opening up their relationship.
really stereotyped/cartoonish While not all of the characters
compared to the men in Shortbus are gay, the film as a
whole is infused with the queer
@ian_mannly
I LOVE #shortbus. It’s an sensibility of writer/director
incredibly human film that John Cameron Mitchell. Like
just happens to have actual it or not, a sexual openness
From Basic Instinct to Fifty Shades of it unsimulated. graphic sex in. is one of the qualities most
of Grey, we’ve all grown blasé The film’s plot revolves around people associate with gay men,
@ian_mannly
about the lure of sex at the a group of misfits and outsiders It’s hilarious, it’s beautiful, has possibly because we’re defined
cinema. But Shortbus takes the who frequent Shortbus, a New great complex characters and by what we do in bed in the
graphic representation of sex York sex salon named after someone sings ‘Star Spangled first place. Let’s be honest, lots
in film to a whole other level. It the American version of the Banner’ up someone else’s bum! of us are happy to play up to
What’s not to like?!
opens by intercutting scenes in ‘special bus’ that transports this by regaling our straight
which a dominatrix abuses her disabled children to school. @adora_boy friends with souped-up stories
male slave, a straight couple has The mistress of the club is drag Jay Brannan. That is all. of our wild sexual encounters.
comically athletic sex, and a gay performance artist Justin Bond And how many of us have
man films himself sucking his and regulars include a sex @Michael_Jon gone through with a sexual
Definitely one of my fave
own dick. This is followed by therapist who’s never had an gay films of all time! The experience simply because we
an endless onslaught of sexual orgasm, a dominatrix who finds unsimulated sex scenes really know it’ll make a good anecdote?
activity of all descriptions, most it impossible to emotionally awoke me sexually... As a source of this kind of

book previews
I DON’T CARE EXPOSÉ KISS & MAKE UP
BY PETE JORDI WOOD BY PAUL ILETT BY CARL STANLEY
I Don’t Care is the first Set in the world of Britain’s The debut from former
instalment in the Midnight bestselling tabloid The nightclub devotee and
Wonders series, based on Daily Ear, Exposé is about make-up artist to the stars
Pete Jordi Wood’s Channel 4 a young actor who seems Carl Stanley is a fascinating
drama starring Iwan Rheon to have it all: Looks, fame coming-of-age memoir
and Paloma Faith. Focusing and adoration. However, focusing on his relationship
on Luke, a gay carer in after building up a store of with his manic-depressive
Cornwall who receives a day grudges against The Daily mother, set against 80s
off from caring for his mother Ear, he sets about exposing New Romantic club culture.
as a birthday present with secrets of the paper’s staff. Examining the character
extraordinary consequences. A timely tale of tabloid traits we inherit in our adult
A fairytale inspired by the culture – sure to appeal to lives, this is set to be a gritty
author’s own experiences. celebrity readers especially. and hilarious autobiography.

34 BOOK PREVIEWS BY WILL DAVIS

257_EDIT_CULTURE CLUB_BOOKS#.indd 34 14/04/2015 15:53:36


EDIT_culture club
outrageous sexual humour, New York’s electrical supply.
Shortbus really delivers. From A sudden blackout like the one
its opening scene it’s crammed that hit the city in 2003 forces
with jokes about manginas the characters to stop and think
and tops and bottoms, and the about what’s been powering
lengths the sex therapist goes them through life and to switch
to in order to experience her off their systems and start again.
first orgasm are hilarious. One Once each of them has done so
of my favourite scenes involves they emerge with a new insight
an awkward gay threesome that into their sexuality and are
descends into a performance of able to use this to access their
The Star Spangled Banner that’s inner capacity to experience
like nothing you’ve ever seen. happiness.
But the film also has several So Shortbus reveals itself to be
moving moments, such as a thought-provoking exploration
when the former mayor of New of the intersection between
York shares his story of living sex and love rather than just
snap stills/rex

through the AIDS crisis. And, a romp of relentless raunch.


as the gay couple evolves into While it doesn’t leave us
a threeway relationship and a with any concrete message
disturbing darkness descends, it or philosophy, it does raise
becomes obvious that all of the lots of interesting questions
characters are just looking to along the way. And if, like me,
feel any kind of strong emotions you’ve been guilty of putting
in a city shattered by 9/11. We sexual activity at the heart
gradually realise that all of them of your quest for happiness,
are broken in some way, just like you might just find these are
Clockwise: Attitude’s Shortbus questions you’ve already started
cover in 2006; Paul Dawson; one of to ask yourself.
the film’s tamer scenes...

fact
• Released in the UK autumn 2006
• The film was cast through open auditions
on a website that attracted 500,000 hits

file
and was written following two years of
improvisation workshops
• John Cameron Mitchell previously wrote,
directed and starred in Hedwig and the
Angry Inch
• He plays cameo roles in Shortbus having
snap stills/rex

gay sex during an orgy and performing oral


sex on a woman

classic read
The Winner of the Authors’ Club Best First the incorrigible wit and be involved in his
Novel Award in 2011, London Triptych by infamous trial; secondly, in the 1950s, there
Jonathon Kemp is a powerhouse of a first novel, is Colin Read, an artist who loves to depict
and already regarded by many as a gay classic. male nudes, but who is frightened of his own
Paralleling the treatment Michael sexuality and struggles to keep it suppressed;
Cunningham applied to Virginia Woolf and thirdly and finally there is David, a prison
her seminal Mrs Dalloway, Kemp takes as his convict in the modern day, recounting his
subject Oscar Wilde and his tragic and epic own latter day De Profundis, revealing the act
love letter, De Profundis, written to Lord of betrayal by his lover that led to his lonely
Alfred Douglas after Wilde was imprisoned incarcerated fate.
for gross indecency. Kemp gives us three Beautifully invoking Oscar Wilde and his
compelling narratives in three different writing, London Triptych is a highly evocative
London Triptych ages. First we have Jack Rose, a London rent and stunningly written debut, exploring gay
by Jonathon Kemp boy in the 1890s who is just getting to grips sexuality and its psychological and social
with his trade – and who is destined to meet demarcations over the course of a century.

35

257_EDIT_CULTURE CLUB_BOOKS#.indd 35 14/04/2015 15:53:51


freddie highmore_ATTITUDE

psycho, killer
TAKING ON norman IN BATES MOTEL AND EARNING HIS STRIPES AS AN ATTITUDE PIN-UP,
THE FREDDIE HIGHMORE OF TODAY IS A FAR CRY FROM INNOCENT LITTLE CHARLIE BUCKET

Freddie wears top and


jeans both by Whistles

257_FEAT_FREDDIE#@.indd 36 15/04/2015 15:32


Freddie wears sweatshirt by McQ by
Alexander McQueen at Harvey Nichols

257_FEAT_FREDDIE#.indd 37 14/04/2015 16:39


Freddie wears jacket by
Hardy Amies at MR PORTER;
t shirt by Paul Smith

38

257_FEAT_FREDDIE#.indd 38 14/04/2015 16:39


FREDDIE HIGHMORE_ATTITUDE
t the age of 23 and with a slew of blockbuster
movies under his belt, you could say Freddie
Highmore is something of a Hollywood veteran.
Eighteen years in the business, the wavy-haired
former child actor has played opposite some of the
biggest names in acting, from Kate Winslet and
Helena Bonham Carter to Dustin Hoffman, Guy
Pearce and Johnny Depp, in films as diverse as
Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Finding Neverland
and most recently the hit TV series Bates Motel, as
the formidable Norman Bates.
With this impressive body of work, we’d expected
the young British actor to arrive on set masked
behind oversized sunglasses and an obscenely
large entourage, with an even bigger ego in tow. But
when Freddie appears on set (on time, might we
add) he’s a far stretch from what you’d imagine a
boy with his career to be like.
Clad in a baggy jumper and skinny black jeans, he
is the epitome of the boy next door. Quietly sweet-
looking and bookish – you could walk past him in
the street without casting a second look.
But that is all about to change. Today is the day
Mr Highmore can shake his child actor rep. Today,
Freddie will become a cover star pin-up.
When we guide him through racks of designer
garms, Freddie’s face lights up with excitement and
he tells us that he’s happy to let us go to town on
him. Music to our ears!
So with no further ado, our team gets to work on
Freddie, transforming him – Cinderella-like – into the dashing young
chap you see on these pages.
As it turns out, the transformation isn’t that hard. With our cracking
team slicking his wavy locks to one side, Freddie’s babyface becomes
mature, masculine and sexy in an instant. And in spite of his general
reticence, he gives some incredible face the moment he steps in front
of the camera, helped by those dark, penetrating eyes that made him a
shoe in to play the young Norman Bates
The result? He’s almost unrecognisable. We wager that from this
moment on, Hollywood will see Freddie in a totally different way,
deluging him with film roles usually reserved for the likes of Zac Efron
and Dave Franco.
When we sit down to chat, the exquisitely mannered Freddie is
as excited as we are to talk all things Bates Motel, as well as the rise
and overwhelming power of social media, his reluctance to become
a sex symbol and how we can all bring about a bit of social change
with education.

We’re three seasons in to Bates Motel – you must be so pleased


with how it’s being received?
Becoming a part of a story so well known and so well loved, you don’t
want to mess it up. But having our show set in the present day and
going back to see what it was that turned Norman psychotic, we felt
free to bring in our own interpretations and not be restricted by the
original source material. From my point of view, I never attempted
to mimic what Anthony Perkins did in the movie; however he was
obviously an amazing source of inspiration upon which to build.
It must be hard not to fall into those Anthony Perkins trappings.
Did you see the remake?
Yes, Gus Van Sant did a shot-by-shot remake, didn’t he? That was
bizarre. An interesting project, you could say! Isn’t there only one

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scene that is different? The one where Norman’s peeking through You appear to be a very sweet, gentle man, do you have a dark
the hole and… er... side?
Enjoying what he’s seeing. Only when I am watching or playing football, that’s when my dark
[laughs] Yes! side comes out. The latter stages of this season for Arsenal have
This is a great, meaty role to establish yourself as an adult been a happy time so far.
actor. You can’t get more ‘adult’ than a classic serial killer. You’ve been acting for 18 years, has it been an easy transition
To be honest, I never thought the transition from child actor to getting to where you are now? We read so much about young
adult actor would be problematic. I just assumed as I got older I stars like Lindsay Lohan and Macaulay Culkin who struggle
would play older characters. And the great thing about being on a to deal with growing up in the industry…
long-running television show like Bates Motel is that you can see the A lot of it is because I had a supportive family growing up. Between
development of the characters. At the start, Norman is a normal boy, making films, I would go back to ordinary school in London instead
and we watch him grow into the character we know. of home schooling. I didn’t go to school in Los Angeles, where it
Did you throw yourself into the world of serial killers when must be harder to maintain that distinction between a normal life
you first got the role? and film work. I wasn’t defined as an actor in London. And going to
Well, I looked into the life of serial killer Ed Gein, who inspired the uni studying foreign languages rather than drama helped to keep
book on which Psycho was based. Max [Thieriot] – who plays my me grounded.
brother in the show – and I were both keen to take a close look at Every teen rebels at some point, have you had any tough
Ed Gein’s real life. Gein actually had a brother, who wasn’t in the times growing up?
Hitchcock film, but it adds an extra layer to Bates Motel. To be honest, there have been no real moments where I was
Why do you think we have a incredibly angsty. Especially not on
fascination with serial killers? Freddie wears top by Dior Homme a film set. I always felt lucky to do it.
What’s interesting with Norman in It was an active choice as opposed to
particular is that watching the show, being forced into doing it which would
you know from the outset what’s going probably have made me rebel. But I
to happen at the end. We all know what enjoyed it and wanted to do it. People
Norman is going to turn into, but in often discover their rebellious side when
Bates Motel you find out why he does they are fighting against authority, but
what he does. There’s a fascination from for me, acting was the opposite. It was
speculating on how different life could something that was great and I loved. I
have been for someone like Norman in worked very hard but it would be wrong
altered circumstances. Would Norman to say it was unpleasantly tough or it
have gone down the path of serial killer caused me grief.
if his previous life had been happier? Well, you seem very put together.
Would he have been able to get past It’s all worked out so far! At the end of
his psychological problems and lived school and my second year at Cambridge
happily ever after? I didn’t really do any acting except
Did you speak to anyone about voice-work. When I was doing GCSEs
what makes a serial killer? and A-levels I prioritised my academic
I read a lot about people who have work. It was only in my third year at
committed murders to understand Cambridge University whilst studying
why they did what they did. I recently languages abroad that I was able to fit in
watched Louis Theroux’s show about the time to do Bates Motel.
inmates on death row, investigating at And your time at Cambridge wasn’t
what point these people are culpable for all debauchery like in The Riot Club?
what they do. Is Norman responsible for his actions because he’s I wouldn’t say it was crazily wild. I certainly never saw anything as
suffering from an illness? And to what extent does that mean we debauched as The Riot Club. Term times were intense and went by
should support or even empathise with him? That’s the tragedy of so quickly. You look back and think you wish you could have done
Bates Motel; the first two seasons we see a Norman who is lovable more. Every day was crammed. Two eight-week terms, a four-week
and redeemable. The interesting shift in season three is that we see term and then exams.
Norman become aware of what he is capable of and manipulating You must have done some bad things?
others, and them reacting to him now they know that he has these I’m not sure to what extent students do bad things at Cambridge or
blackouts. any uni today. Define bad? I’m not sure how far that myth extends.
The scary thing about the Norman Bates’ of this world, But I had great, wild times with people.
as opposed to the Freddy Krugers, is that Norman could Can you remember them?
be living next door to you. Yes I can, well most of them anyway, I think!
Yes. Norman’s this normal guy to start with, then various In that case they weren’t that wild! Do you get people making
things happen to him. I try to play against what people expect. a beeline for you these days?
If everyone could spot who the serial killer was in their town, it In general I am a trusting person but I have never been badly tricked
would be incredibly easy to put a halt to it. But it’s usually the case in that way, yet. No one at university saw me as an actor. I guess they
that when you look back people say, ‘Yes, they were a bit odd, but may have seen films I’d done but we never made a big deal of it.
never that odd.’ Has playing Norman made you more sexy to people?

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Freddie wears top by Whistles

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freddie
adam lambert_ATTITUDE
highmore_ATTITUDE
Freddie wears leather jacket by
Fendi; t-shirt by Lyle & Scott by
Jonathan Saunders; jeans by Hugo

‘It’s always odd for friends


to see you do sex scenes. But
it’s odder with your parents’
[laughs] I’m not sure about that, but I’m
not the innocent ten year old boy people
knew me as anymore.
I would hope not.
But I can’t imagine anyone wanting
to jump into bed with Norman Bates.
Certainly not the shower!
But everyone loves a bad boy.
I would advise people to stay away from
Norman. Especially women.
As long as people don’t think you’re
like Norman in real life. You are
quiet and nice.
So is Norman!
And like him, you’re very close to
your mother too [she’s his agent] –
though nowhere near as Norman is
portrayed to be.
No, not at all. It’s actually funny
watching the show with my parents.
It’s always odd for friends and other
people to see you do sex scenes. But it’s
odder with your parents because they’re
thinking, ‘We really do not want to be
watching our son having sex.’ And it’s
even worse when your real mother is
watching you saying ‘Hello Mother’ to a
screen mum in a sexual way! But we just
laugh about it.
Well, it could be worse. Imagine
you were in a Fifty Shades-type film!
Poor Melanie Griffith said she didn’t
want to see her daughter Dakota
Johnson in it.

Freddie in charlie and the chocolate factory (2005)

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freddie highmore_ATTITUDE

Freddie wears jacket by Diesel


Black Gold; shirt by Marc Jacobs

‘it’s important to have


positive role models
in the public so that
people can more easily
gain confidence to freely
express themselves’
[mimicking Melanie Griffith] “I don’t want to see my He was such a nice guy. I haven’t seen him for a while but Helena
daughter’s breasts!” [Bonham Carter], he and I do keep in touch. We’ve said we’re going
Was this the first time you had to shoot sexual scenes? to get together and cook something for him. He must get sick of
I mean, it’s never been particularly full on with Norman yet. The cooking for other people.
thing is though, Norman’s not the most attractive person. Maybe in Do you always try to keep in touch with your cast mates?
a quirky way, he seems to do remarkably well in White Pine Bay. It’s tricky. When a film comes to an end, that’s the worst thing. You
Maybe they like the sinister glint in your eyes. You also did a get close to people then after four months of being together, it’s a
TV film in which you played chef Nigel Slater in which we saw complete rupture and you go off on separate projects. You can’t
you kissing a guy. keep in touch with everyone. I see Helena Bonham Carter more
Yes, it wasn’t different from any other kiss. Kissing a guy is like as we live near each other in North London. We have a very jokey
kissing a girl on camera. You’re playing a role. And anyway there’s relationship. I have worked with her a few times. One of the first
the mechanics. Often you’re worrying about doing something at things we did was Women Talking Dirty. I was five or six and I played
a certain moment to match what you did in the previous take or her son in that. So another mother figure! [laughs]
you’re trying to stay in the right set-light, and of course there’s a You look very different in this shoot – are you ready to
whole crew watching only inches from you. become a pin up?
Did Nigel tell you any stories about coming out? I have never thought about it. I think in a way, being judged as a
His book spoke a lot more in depth about that than we did together. sex symbol and being famous almost go hand in hand but it is not

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GREEN & CO.indd 45 15/04/2015 11:31:48


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something I have ever sought. It’s tricky because these Freddie wears top and suit
days success relies on promoting the film or the show more jacket both by Dior Homme
and more, and promoting the actors via Twitter and social
media, which I am not on. There is more and more pressure
on actors to try to embrace a public social media presence.
But I am still holding out.
Jeremy Irvine said recently that at auditions he gets
asked how many Twitter followers he has.
Yes, social media has become nearly as important as the
product itself. It’s all about how many people you can get
to tweet and to contact to get them to watch it tonight. It’s a
brilliant resource, but it invades your personal life if you do
it honestly. If you open that door, it is hard to shut it when
you want to. It’s like, if you go to an Arsenal game or have
an evening with friends and you tweet a picture then you’re
putting your private life out there and you can’t complain
when people want to pry further.
But social media seems to rule our lives. There’s less
interactivity. Would you consider online dating?
Well, I do know someone for whom it worked. Again, it’s a
brilliant resource. Why knock it? Especially when people
are finding love through it.
The more you take on these big roles, the more
famous you will become. Are you prepared for that?
Well, who knows about the future but there are some
actors who have managed to be successful and not
necessarily be so in the public eye. Take Johnny Depp,
he’s a world-wide public figure but manages to remain
a relatively private person.
Bates Motel has a big gay fanbase. Does that mean you
get asked to participate in any LGBT support?
In the past I was more often asked to support children’s
charities! In some ways, change is best started with
yourself. You and your friends not just being aware of
what you believe in but standing up for it. If a situation
arises that you don’t agree with – like someone making a
joke at the expense of the LGBT community – you have to
speak up for it: Hopefully remain friendly but don’t let the
moment go by. Alongside the headline big actions, it’s those
countless smaller choices that we all make that will bring
about change. When I was at school, that phrase ‘you’re so
gay’ suggesting weakness was commonplace and kind of
acceptable – but at uni it was happily not used. Maybe that
kind of thing is the real positive education of going off to
university! I don’t think people are born homophobic – at
least, I hope not.
We live in cosmopolitan London, but outside of the
capital life might not be as happy.
Sadly, I think you’re right that big cities do welcome
diversity more. Maybe familiarity has taken away the fear.
That’s why it’s important to have positive role models in
the public so that people can more easily gain confidence
to freely express themselves. Actually, there is a phrase I’m
not wholly comfortable with: ‘More tolerant’. Surely, it’s not
about tolerating others as if they were a noisy neighbour,
or that bloke on the tube with B.O? It’s about accepting
that we’re all unique and that the world’s genuinely richer Hair by Tom Berry
because of it. I’d also like to state that no-one should safely using Bumble & Bumble
accept a Norman Bates as their motel manager! Make up by Rhea Le Riche
Bates Motel season 3 is shown Wednesday nights using NARS
at 9pm on Universal Channel. Fashion Assitant: Nick Byam

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T
he link between homosexuality and horror
films has been debated rigorously and
endlessly in books, blog posts and film
classes for almost as long as gay people have gone to
the movies. What is it about a genre filled with sex,
violence and heightened performances that appeals
so strongly to queer men?
There are those who feel the tropes of the horror
genre are analogous to the struggles, wants and
aspirations of the gay community. And there are
those who point to the pure entertainment aspect
that appeals to all audiences while pooh-poohing
the queer connection with a “Well, who wouldn’t
want to be Carrie?” rationale.
From an entertainment point of view this
affinity makes total sense, especially for certain
specific horror genre skews (much like the LGBT
community, horror is a rainbow of many colours).
For instance, revenge fantasies. Who didn’t feel
different in high school? Who didn’t want to burn
their bullies to death at the prom? Wouldn’t that
have felt great? Wistful late at night scenarios
about offing the local A-holes or the cruel captain
of the football team (or fucking him, but that’s a
different genre…) are made flesh in movies like
Carrie, Jennifer’s Body, Tamara (written by out
screenwriter Jeffrey Reddick) and, God help us, I
Spit On Your Grave.
The slashers of the 80s started out as gritty indie
grindhouse fare (see the original Friday the 13th,
Maniac, etc.) then, courtesy of the major studios,
morphed into big menus of people you want to
see, which is not necessarily a bad thing. For a
community under-represented on screen, and
under-appreciated in life, watching those gaggles
of guys and gals butchered as they perform those
disgusting heterosexual sex acts can be a tonic. And
let’s be honest – boobies are kind of fun.
The ‘final girl’ phenomenon certainly speaks
to our community as well. The final girl isn’t the
slut, or the bitch, or the bitch’s best friend, nor is
she always the virgin; she’s the survivor. She isn’t
magical like Carrie White; she’s an ordinary girl
in extraordinary circumstances. Think Jamie Lee
Curtis in Halloween (1978), or Jennifer Love Hewitt in
I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997), or in the
most meta of meta movies, Neve Campbell’s Sidney
Prescott in Scream (1996); girls using all their smarts
to outsmart the masked killer, aka the ultimate bully.
When we watch the late Marilyn Burns, covered
in blood, escaping in the back of a pick-up truck,
maniacally laughing at Leatherface’s attempts to catch
up in the final moments of Texas Chainsaw Massacre
(1974), we can’t help but think, ‘Been there, honey.’

American horror writer As far as identifying with our captors, one could
argue the affinity for any genre would be the
and blogger Sean Abley looks opportunity to see oneself, yet we’re so infrequently
out and proud in horror films, and too frequently
at the relationship between gay in and ashamed, one wonders where the appeal

people and film’s darkest genre


lies. Perhaps it’s comforting to see those coded
images, proof that we do exist, albeit in a less than

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scream queens_ATTITUDE
spectacular way. Maybe time allows
us to enjoy those old films with the
Jesse and co-star Robert Rusler’s
‘Grady’ (including a sleepover in their Your favourite
gay murderer, the queer victim or the
sensitive red herring knowing that we’re
allowed to demand more in 2015.
underwear) and quotes like, “He’s inside
me and he wants to take me again!” and
you have a queer horror film for the ages.
horror films
As we look to the past, on the far end Eventually, the homo movie audience ■ Rob Caffrey [Facebook]
of the ‘Is he or isn’t he?’ scale we have started demanding more and ‘the gay I’ve always loved horror. The genre
Psycho (1960). There are those who best friend’ arrived. In the romantic leaves a much bigger mark on your mind.
theorise Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpiece comedy the GBF is a shoulder to cry Carrie was always my favourite. I felt
has a queer element, finely parsing on while the leading lady figures out a connection because I too was being
Anthony Perkins’ performance as she actually is beautiful and attractive bullied. Another favourite has always
Norman Bates for any sign of homo to the man of both their dreams; in the been Child’s Play, which was the first
tendencies, but in my opinion this is an drama the GBF lives next door and is horror I saw. My grandmother put it on
example of academic overreach. Yes, his very concerned when the leading lady’s for me because she knew I liked dolls...
sexuality and gender expression could baby goes missing; and in the horror film
fall somewhere on the queer spectrum he’s fodder for the body count, while the ■ @anorderlymess
– he is driven to adopt the persona (and leading lady (if she’s a final girl) skips House of Wax, because of Paris Hilton’s
outfit) of his mother and kill the naked away, wiser for the experience, and more Oscar-worthy performance.
pretty girl the moment he’s sexually importantly, not dead.
attracted to her. In queer director Gus Sometimes the gay best friend got cut ■ Craig Pearson [Facebook]
Van Sant’s pointless 1998 remake, Vince to fabulous ribbons because he was, Love horror films. I obviously love
Vaughn’s Norman actually masturbates indeed, gay. Whether implicit in the Hellbent purely because it’s a gay
while spying on Marion (Anne Heche) dialogue, or implied by the film, gay slasher film and it was very refreshing
before slaughtering her. But having accessories have traditionally been to see a different genre for a gay film.
problems relating to women doesn’t expendable. In The Eyes of Laura Mars
make one gay, nor does struggling with (1978), Faye Dunaway literally sends her ■ @ooooooohmatron
gender issues. Certainly in the well- gay best friend to his death by asking 28 Days Later when he has that
crafted Bates Motel TV series, Norman him to dress in her clothes and act as a shave, HELLO!
is played more as a garden variety decoy, even though she knows a killer
schizophrenic with mommy issues than is stalking her. (Her lesbian model co- ■ Fred Vermeulen [Facebook]
a teen struggling with sexuality and workers suffer the same fate). Sorry gay I love the old school slashers. Scream,
gender... So far. best friend, but you understand, right? I Know What You Did Last Summer,
A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Ms. Mars and her heterosexual male Halloween. I think the appeal is a strong
Revenge (1985), on the other hand, takes colleagues are much more important female character surviving against all odds.
the sub out of subtext and hands the and the audience can identify with them,
audience a classroom-ready Queer Film whereas your sassy antics make them ■ @cabinclassboy
Studies 101 lesson plan. Out star Mark think uncomfortable thoughts (often Halloween for me. Came out the same
Patton (NOES2’s ‘Jesse’) stood fast with about themselves). year I was born, plus who doesn’t love
his assertion the film is basically a gay In a mark of true equality, sometimes Jamie Lee Curtis?
love story, and after years of denials the gay best friend dies because he’s
the filmmakers finally admitted he was equally inconvenient as the straight ■ John Oh Cantos Lanuza [Facebook]
right. How anyone involved thought a supporting line-up. In out writer/director I think the creativity and the exaggeration
nightmare involving the protagonist Don Mancini’s Bride of Chucky (the fourth of the characters are some of the things
picking up his gym teacher in a leather instalment of the Child’s Play franchise) the that catch our attention… the possibility
bar, then watching him flogged to death gay best friend is unceremoniously hit by that someday the entire community
naked in the gym shower by Freddy a truck and vaporised. But in this case, would accept us and that other entities
could be considered anything but gay, the gay best friend wasn’t killed because are real and coexist with us in the world.
gay, gay is beyond this writer. Add he was gay – he was killed because he
the homoerotic relationship between wasn’t Katherine Heigl or Nick Stabile. ■ Sherry Mitchell [Facebook]
Hellraiser… It was one of the first horror
movies I saw with a strong female
character that didn’t scream and fail.

■ @betterusername
Alien. There’s Queer appeal in the sense
that it goes against the gender norm.

■ Richard Healy [Facebook]


Glitter…. Mariah’s acting doesn’t get
Neve Campbell in Scream 4 (2011) much scarier.
October Moon (2005)

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The Academic’s view


Dr Harry M Benshoff,
Associate Professor
of Media and Arts,
University of North
Texas and author of
Monsters in the Closet:
Homosexuality and the Gay horror Hellbent (2004)
Horror Film, on why he Wolves of Kromer (1998)
thinks horror has such
Although homoerotic content can be directed by F. W. Murnau, a gay German.
a strong LGBT appeal
found peppered throughout the history of From James Whale (Frankenstein, The Bride
I think it has to do with the the medium, prolific out writer/director of Frankenstein, The Invisible Man) up through
fact that horror films always David DeCoteau was the first filmmaker Clive Barker (Hellraiser) and beyond, gay
centre on a battle between what brave enough to gay up the indie horror men have created some of the most iconic,
is supposedly normal and that landscape in an ongoing, methodical way. shocking images fed to us via film.
which is allegedly monstrous. Beginning with Voodoo Academy (2000) and And let’s not forget television, where
The monstrous, to put it in The Brotherhood (2001) (and its five sequels), arguably some of the most innovative
psychoanalytic terms, is the DeCoteau cast hot, young dudes as his leads, writing is being presented of late. Hannibal
ego’s ‘Other’, i.e. those things and created scenes that typically involved in particular pushes the boundaries of
– fears, desires, urges, and magic ceremonies requiring them to rub oil subject matter and is being rewarded with
impulses – routinely repressed on their own – and each others’ – barely- a large gay following. The partnership of
from consciousness. Here I am clad bodies. DeCoteau has made dozens of the titular cannibal (strangely handsome
paraphrasing the work of famed these soft-core extravaganzas over the last 15 Danish daddy Mads Mikkelsen) and
horror scholar Robin Wood, years, and continues to do so, but sadly still Hugh Dancy’s Will Graham, is a slow boil
who theorised in the 1970s hedges his bets by labelling them ‘horror of simmering homoerotic tension and
that the horror film is society’s movies for girls.’ Real girls, gents. Don’t get delectable side-eye. Out showrunner Bryan
collective nightmare: The things too excited. Fuller’s take on the popular anti-hero is
it represses/oppresses in daily However, during the late 90s someone exquisite in execution, especially in its
life come back to haunt it in the figured out that gay guys went to movies too executions. Hannibal Lecter’s meticulously
horror genre. Thus, if white and indeed, had a lust for the dark side. True extravagant lifestyle appeals to those of
Western patriarchal capitalism is blue gay horror films began popping up in us who enjoy the finer things in life (or
figured within culture as normal, the crowded indie landscape. Although The aspire to) and who doesn’t like a man who
then everything that it excludes Wolves of Kromer (1998) presented gay men can cook? Gay comedian Scott Thompson
or represses – children, women in wolves clothing, Paul Etheredge-Ouzts’s ups the gay ante, although his character’s
and female sexualities, queer Hellbent (2004) was the first widely seen sexuality is a non-issue.
sexualities, non-white and non- film crammed full to bursting with gay Which brings us to American Horror Story.
capitalist ways of being – end up characters ready for the slaughter. Set in While there isn’t a lot specifically gay
comprising Western culture’s West Hollywood (naturally) on Halloween about the show, what the series lacks in gay
depictions of the monstrous. night, Hellbent follows four friends (three gay content it makes up for in gay aesthetic;
To put it in accessible terms, I and one bisexual) as they drink, cruise, and everything is shiny, sharp, arch, and the
think queer audiences tend to fall victim to a hot maniac with a big bulge suffering is backbreakingly artistic. The
like the horror film because they and a sharp scythe. Finally we were getting show is designed within an inch of its life,
can and do easily identify with cut up just like our straight friends! and the performances are so purposefully
the monster who is out to topple Hellbent lead to a boom in ultra low-budget camp they make us pitch a tent. The
white heteronormative culture. gay horror flicks, like October Moon (2005), precision with which gay co-creator Ryan
In classical horror films the Creatures from the Pink Lagoon (2006) and Murphy – whose latest horror series Scream
monster must be destroyed at Bruce LaBruce’s twisted hardcore zombie Queens debuts this year – doles out the
the end, unlike in more recent opus, Otto; or Up With Dead People (2007). drama harkens back to the specificity of
horror (and of course in fantasy For better or worse, we were finally seeing Italian horror maestro Dario Argento. For
or sci-fi one can be different in a ourselves murdered on the screen in a years remake rumours have pirouetted
million ways without necessarily context of which we approved. around Argento’s ballet school/witches
being monstrous). All of these Regardless of the psychological positioning coven masterpiece, Suspiria (1977), and
genres create spaces more or of the films themselves, behind the scenes judging by Murphy’s strange predilections,
less welcoming to queer queer men have contributed to the genre he may be the perfect choice to helm this
spectators in ways that more since the inception of the medium. Nosferatu, reimagining and give it even more gay curb
realistic genres do not. the Dracula knock-off released in 1922, was appeal than the original.

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ARE we
election special_ATTITUDE

SAFE WITH
THe TORIES?
Five years ago David Cameron gave his first gay
press interview to Attitude in which he said the
Conservative party was no longer the party of extreme
homophobia, something that defined them for the 25
years previous in which they opposed all efforts to bring
about LGBT equality. Prime Minister David Cameron
pushed through equal marriage, but what’s the real
story about the rest of the party he
leads? Are we now safe with the
Conservatives? Attitude takes a hard
look at the numbers.
By Simon Edge

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election special_ATTITUDE

O
n May 7th Britain goes to the white, urban rural, straight or gay.” But is
polls in a general election that true? Cameron stuck to his word with
different from any in living equal marriage, pushing through the new
memory. Five years ago we law despite there being a huge amount of
saw the death of two-party politics when opposition – from within his own party.
the Lib Dems performed well enough One yardstick of how much less divisive
to wield the balance of power between sexuality is nowadays is the number
Labour and the Conservatives. This time of out MPs. Twenty years ago it was
we are witnessing the death of three- easy to know who all the gay MPs were
party politics, as the Greens and UKIP because there were so few. Each of them
stir things up on the left and right while represented a new milestone: first to come
the Scottish National Party seems poised out; first Tory to come out after being
to make massive gains at the expense outed; first Tory to come out with no threat
of Labour north of the border and Plaid of outing; first to be elected after standing
Cymru are giving them a run for their as an out candidate. (Chris Smith, Michael
money in Wales. Brown, Alan Duncan and Stephen Twigg/
If you support the smaller parties, this Ben Bradshaw, since you ask.) Today at
makes everything more exciting than usual. my count there are 25 out LGBT MPs,
If any pundit claims to know the result, some of them familiar, some so obscure
they’re probably not much of a pundit. half their constituents wouldn’t be able to
It’s also the first general election for at name them. (There are even more LGBT
least 25 years where there isn’t a major people standing as prospective MPs at this
equality issue at stake. Stonewall has election.) Surprisingly by far the largest
been doing its best to lay out a stall, number are Tories. There are 13 out gay,
calling for LGBT-friendly sex education bisexual or lesbian Conservative MPs,
at primary and secondary level, a new compared with nine for Labour and three
hate crime banning homophobic bullying, for the Lib Dems. That roughly matches
the inclusion of the size of the parties,
LGBT equality ‘Just 49 percent of but it’s still a remarkable
as a criterion for
international aid Tory MPs backed progression from the era
when deeply closeted Britain’s first openly gay male MP,
and a review on
laws affecting trans
gay marriage. Tory MPs had ‘lavender
marriages’ of convenience
Labour’s Chris Smith, speaking
at Londons anti-Clause 28 (later
people. But none
of these make for a
So much for and lived in dread of their
blue-rinsed party faithful
Secton 28) rally, February 1988

key battleground detoxifying the finding them out.


splitting the Nevertheless,
various parties, as Nasty Party’ differences endure
happened with rows over the ‘promotion’ between the parties, revealed not so
of homosexuality in the 80s, the repeal much in the attitudes of their leaders
of homophobic laws in the 90s and early but by those of their backbenchers and
Noughties, and same-sex marriage in 2013. party members. Pockets of diehard
So if you’re energised by this election, homophobia remain, offering a glimpse
that may be because you have strong views of the bigoted traditions they come from
about the cuts or the deficit; you may be and showing that reform still has some
horrified by Nigel Farage or excited by the way to go. Despite the fact that David
Green surge; or you may have a lifelong Cameron pushed through equal marriage,
affiliation to one or other of the main two fewer than half of Tory MPs supported it.
parties. But it seems that many people This is in direct contrast to both Labour
are less likely than they were at previous and the Lib Dems whose MPs supported it
elections to be strongly driven by gay overwhelmingly. There were three different Conservative Prime Minister
issues. With the exception of UKIP, all the votes in the House of Commons. A total of Margaret Thatcher giving her
national parties are officially pro-equality 148 Conservative MPs voted in favour on at 1987 Conference speech where she
these days and in any case, there are no least one occasion, while 141 voted against attacked Labour councils’ anti-
legislative battles brewing where it’s likely – including the future Equalities Secretary homophobic bullying policies:
to matter. When Attitude interviewed the Nicky Morgan – and 14 abstained. That “Children who need to be taught to
leader of the Conservatives in 2010, David means just 49 percent backed gay marriage. respect traditional moral values”
Cameron told us that within the Tory So much for detoxifying the Nasty Party. she said, “are being taught that they
party there was now “a shared consensus The opponents this time round were have an inalienable right to be gay…
bedrock view that this is a party for equal reasonably polite in their rhetoric, with These children are being cheated of
rights whether you are male, female, black, most of the stupidest quotes about the end a sound start in life, yes cheated!”

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HOW mps VOTED:
Equal marriage

Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013


dnv- 7%
no- 9% dnv (DID NOT VOTE)

L a bour
Thousands of LGBT people protest in London at the Tory’s hated homophobic
Section 28, February 1988
yes- 84%
of marriage/the family/civilisation-as- be an intolerance of evil.” She wasn’t
we-know-it coming from church groups speaking against the firebombing but
and leaders rather than MPs. But it wasn’t in support of it. Significantly, nobody in
always so good-mannered. It’s only 30
years since the horrific homophobia that
Tory high command sought to rein her
in. Quite the opposite: less than a month
dnv- 13%
the Tory party and the right wing press later, she was made a dame.
fanned as a way of turning people away By that stage, Margaret Thatcher had yes- 42%
from the Labour party. In 1987 Leader of already played the gay card to win a
the Tory group on South Staffordshire third term. Her party issued crudely no- 45%
District Council called for 90 percent of homophobic ads during the 1987 election
gay men to be sent to the gas chamber to
curb the AIDS epidemic. Councillor Bill
campaign taunting the ‘Labour Camp’ over
their supposed support for gay rights, and
Con servative
Brownhill said, “I should shoot them all… in a party conference speech a few months
We must find a way of stopping these after victory she complained: “Children
gays going round yet we are making who need to be taught to respect traditional
heroes of some of these people and some moral values are being taught that they
of them are even being knighted.” And have an inalienable right to be gay… These
dnv- 13%
in December 1987, when Labour’s Chris
Smith mentioned in Parliament that
children are being cheated of a sound start
in life.” That heralded the most vicious
no- 7%
the offices of the London paper Capital legislative attack on gay people since the yes- 80%
Gay had been firebombed, the Tory Labouchère Amendment of 1885, which
backbencher MP Elaine Kellett-Bowman
called out, “Quite right too.” She later
had criminalised homosexuality in the
first place. Responding to reports in the
L ibera l D e mo c r ats
defended her remark, saying she was Tory-supporting Sun about a harmless
“quite prepared to affirm that there should book about gay parenting called Jenny Lives

HOW mps VOTED: equality act


Equality Act 2006

y es - 15% Libera l D em oc r ats


dnv- 26%
dnv - 42% dnv- 48%
n o - 43% no- 3% yes- 71% yes - 46%
Co n servati v e L a bour no- 6%

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election special_ATTITUDE

how mps voted: civil partnerships


Civil Partnership Act 2004

L ibera l D em o c r ats
y es - 26% dnv- 26%
dnv- 25%
dnv - 50% n o - 1%
n o - 24% yes- 73% yes - 75%
no- 0%
Cons ervati v e L a bour

how mps
voted:
Gender recognition

Gender Recognition Act 2004

y es - 12%
Gay people protest

n o - 24% against Section 28 in


Amsterdam, 1988 as
dnv - 64% the Queen visits

Conservati v e
‘In 1987 Leader of the Tory group on South Staffordshire
District Council called for 90 percent of gay men to be sent
to the gas chamber to curb the AIDS epidemic. Councillor
Bill Brownhill said “I should shoot them all…’’’
dnv - 29%
With Eric and Martin, David Wilshire, the John Major, during which time the gay
y es - 71% Tory MP who introduced the notorious community waged a massive campaign
no- 0% Section 28 of the Local Government to equalise the age of consent, winning
Act, complained that “homosexuality is only a partial victory with a reduction
Labour being promoted at the ratepayers’ [local from 21 to 18 due to opposition from Tory
taxpayers’] expense, and the traditional MPs. The election of New Labour in 1997
family as we know it is under attack.” at last enabled the gradual dismantling
His new law – passed with government- of Britain’s anti-gay laws. In each case
backing – banned local councils from these reforms passed smoothly through
‘promoting’ homosexuality. Even the House of Commons, where Labour
L ibe ral Dem o cr ats though no prosecution was ever brought
under this measure, its effects included
overhwhelmingly supported gay equality,
but faced opposition from Conservatives
dnv - 35% convincing some teachers that they were
breaking the law if they stepped in to
especially in the House of Lords, where
the Tories still outnumbered everyone
prevent homophobic bullying. That’s one of else. Baroness Thatcher herself returned
no- 0% y es - 65% the reasons why teachers have not felt able in her dotage to vote against LGBT
to stamp out the use of the word ‘gay’ as a equality in votes in November 2000,
playground synonym for ‘rubbish’. October 2002, July 2003, November 2004
After Thatcher left there were five and January 2008. Markedly, when it
more years of Conservativism under came to Labour’s vote to attempt to repeal

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BE AN ATHELETE.indd 59 15/04/2015 11:36:07
election special_ATTITUDE
how mps voted: REPEAL OF SECTION 28
Local Government Act 2003

yes - 14%
dnv- 25% dnv- 28%
dnv- 41% yes- 74%
n o - 45% n o - 1% n o - 0%
yes - 72%
Co n s ervative l ab o ur liberal dem o crats

how mps voted: SAME-SEX ADOPTION


Adoption and Children Act 2002

dnv- 17%
William Hague, Conservative Leader of yes- 5% dnv- 24%
the Commons, who in 2000 when he dnv- 21% yes- 71% n o - 0%
n o - 5% yes- 83%
was party leader opposed the Labour n o - 74%
government’s plans to repeal Section l abo ur liberal demo crats
Co ns ervative
28 and wrote in the Daily Mail ‘The
government is showing contempt for the
views of most parents and taxpayers. We
will oppose them at every stage.’ how mps voted: equal AGE OF CONSENT 1999
Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2000
Section 28 in 2000 Baroness Thatcher sat yes- 5%
next to the woman leading the Conservatives libe ral demo crats
successful effort to stop it. dnv- 30% dnv- 30% dnv- 33%
The Labour leadership put its weight yes- 66% yes- 60%
n o - 65% n o - 4%
behind gay equality and the vast majority n o - 7%
Co ns ervative l abo ur
of its MPs did too, though not unanimously.
In 1994, 39 Labour MPs voted against an
equal age of consent, including leading
frontbenchers David Blunkett and Ann Taylor,
while a handful voted against any reduction at
all, including future speaker Michael Martin. It is consistent with the party’s past record, But they too are strongly pro-equality.
A larger number sat the whole vote out, not tending to vote more solidly in favour of gay When the Scottish Assembly legalised
actually voting against equality but refusing rights measures than Labour. For example no same-sex marriage a year later, the measure
to vote for any reform of the cruel law. This Lib Dem MP voted against repealing Section was backed by 88 percent of SNP members
homophobic rump on the Labour benches 28 in 2003, and every Lib Dem MP who voted of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs), compared
continued to oppose equality throughout the was in favour of civil partnerships in 2004 – with 87 percent Labour, 100 percent Lib
Blair and Brown years and plenty of them neither of which you can say for the Labour Dem and Green, and again, just 47 percent
are still there. While 229 Labour MPs voted Party. of the Tories (including their lesbian leader
in favour of equal marriage on at least one But to get back to where we started, this Ruth Davidson) supporting gay marriage.
occasion, 24 voted against and five didn’t year we have far more than three parties And what of the antis? If you want to
vote. Senior opponents included former to choose from and it’s revealing to look at make sure you’re not voting for an explicitly
Cabinet ministers Paul Murphy and Stephen the smaller outfits’ voting record on gay homophobic party, your main danger of
Timms, an East London MP who enjoys marriage. Plaid Cymru, the Greens, Respect doing so is in Northern Ireland, where the
Labour’s biggest majority. (If you live in his and Northern Ireland’s Alliance and SDLP ruling Democratic Unionist Party voted
constituency, you may like to know that he all had a 100 percent record albeit with unanimously against marriage, as did the
is being challenged by an out lesbian Green a much smaller number of MPs: all three Independent unionist Sylvia Hermon. And
candidate at this election, Tamsin Omond.) Plaid MPs voting in favour, while the other finally of course there’s UKIP, whose leader
Despite this group it means that 89 percent four parties each have one MP. disgusted half the nation by playing politics
of the Labour party’s MPs supported the The outsiders are Sinn Fein, who don’t with the lives of some of the most vulnerable
measure as opposed to just 49% of Tory MPs. attend the House of Commons on principle immigrants to this country, those infected
For the Lib Dems, 52 MPs voted in favour on at and therefore never vote – although they with HIV, at the leaders’ debates.
least one occasion while four voted against and led the attempts to legalise gay marriage Given that UKIP campaigned explicitly
two didn’t vote at all (although one of these, in the Northern Ireland assembly – and against gay marriage while the measure
Jenny Willott, was on maternity leave and is the Scottish National Party, whose six was going through Parliament, taunting
otherwise a strong supporter.) That means 91 Westminster MPs didn’t vote because the the Conservatives for losing touch with
percent of the available MPs were in favour. measure only affected England and Wales. the traditional views of their grass-roots

60

257_FEAT_VOTING HISTORY#.indd 60 15/04/2015 15:42


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MANCHESTER 1.indd 61 15/04/2015 11:37:32


election special_ATTITUDE
supporters and offering a refuge for
outspoken homophobes, it’s quite a
surprise to look at the voting record
of the party’s only two MPs. UKIP by-
election winners Douglas Carswell and
Mark Reckless didn’t sit for Farage’s
party when equal marriage was going
through the Commons, but they did
take part in the vote in their previous
capacity as Conservative backbenchers.
While Carswell opposed it, Reckless
voted in favour. This is, of course
because there is only two of them, but
statistically, at 50%, it means they are
one point ahead of the Tories.
But that’s a rogue result, based on the
fact that the sample – two MPs – is tiny.
If you polled UKIP’s parliamentary
candidates in the 624 (out of 650) seats Above: February 1988: Brookside actor Stifyn
in which they’re standing, it’s a fair Parri, Ian McKellen and Peter Tatchell lead the
bet that well over 90 percent of them Manchester demonstration against the Tory
would have opposed gay marriage party’s proposed Clause 27 amendment which
while it was going through Parliament would become the hated Section 28.
and a large number would want the Right: Conservative Nicky Morgan – current
measure repealed. The party’s only Secretary of State for Education and Equalities
openly gay MEP, David Coburn, says Minister who voted against equal marriage.
same-sex marriage is “false bollocks” Below: The fight against Tory support of Section
supported only by “equality Nazis” 28 continued into the new millennium. Protesters
which “makes a mockery of the holy at the 1999 London Pride March
sacrament of marriage… and is just for
some queen who wants to dress up in
a bridal frock and in a big moustache
and dance up the aisle to the Village
People.” Small wonder that Tom
Booker, chair of the UKIP LGBT group,
resigned from the party in February
saying he couldn’t defend it any more.
It’s important to be vigilant against
this lot. If any party yearns to turn
back the clock and undo all the
advances we have made in securing
equality, it’s UKIP. But the good
news is that they have virtually no
chance of doing it. Their homophobic
pronouncements don’t just disgust these battles know that politicians didn’t become
gay people: for most heterosexuals enlightened of their own accord. Gay rights became
too, their bigoted anti-gay utterances a mainstream political concern thanks to the
are one of the main reasons they are unflinching pressure of LGBT people: a handful
so widely reviled. And that’s really of activists at first, building pressure groups on
worth celebrating: whereas once shoestring budgets, gradually maturing into fully
homophobia was a vote-winner, now fledged lobby groups which employed the smartest
it’s an out-and-out vote-loser. people to take their arguments into the corridors of
As a final thought, we should power. Those lobbyists were sustained by donations
remember how that came about. from ordinary LGBT people, whose own day-to-
Those of us who have lived through day openness – coming out at work, to families, to
neighbours, and winning respect and acceptance for
All figures taken from doing so – was what really changed the world.
Publicwhip.org.uk So that’s an uplifting message as you head for the Lesbian protesters disrupt the live
*DNV denotes ‘Did not vote’,
including registered abstentions ballot box. Politicians may aspire to change the world, BBC Six O’clock News in 1988 to
and MPs who were not in parliament but when something really needs changing, it’s people protest against the Conservative
when the vote was taken.
power that actually makes them do it. parties homophobic Section 28 law

62

257_FEAT_VOTING HISTORY#.indd 62 15/04/2015 14:47


ARE WE SAFE WITH
THE CONSERVATIVE PARTY?
YES
YES, SAYS IAIN DALE, WRITER, LBC 97.3FM
BROADCASTER AND CONSERVATIVE BLOGGER
NO, SAYS ELEANOR MARGOLIS, JOURNALIST, AUTHOR
OF LEZ MISERABLE NEW STATESMAN COLUMN NO
The suggestion that you’re letting the For too many people, both gay and straight, the
side down if you’re gay and you vote coalition’s legalisation of same-sex marriage in
Conservative is so plainly preposterous the UK represents a final victory in the battle for
that I’m almost embarrassed to even have gay rights. It would be unfair to argue that David
to address it. How many gay people really Cameron didn’t put his fusty Tory bum on the line
decide their vote based purely on a political to secure that legislation. It’s unsurprising that
party’s record on one issue, I wonder. Yes, over half the Conservatives voted against the bill,
the Tories historically haven’t exactly been social reform never really having been their thing.
that gay-friendly but unless you’re so blinkered to the fact that And for this exact reason, the Same Sex Couples Act was a complete
parties and individuals can change, then you’ll have noticed how anomaly. For LGBT people to vote Tory in May based purely on the
David Cameron has been hugely successful in leading his party party’s altogether lukewarm support for equal marriage would be
to a position where there is scarcely a tissue paper between the more than a little reckless. I’m not sure if I’ll ever take the Tories up on
position of his party compared to the other two on gay issues. In their kind offer of getting lesbian married. I’m glad it’s there, don’t get
his first big conference speech after winning his party’s leadership me wrong, and I was more than ready to pop a bottle of Moët (Okay,
he laid down the gauntlet to his party by making clear his support very cheap cava. Okay, Lambrini) when the bill was officially passed
for gay marriage. in 2013. At the same time, I wasn’t ready to kick back and let the
I’m not suggesting you should vote for him based on that record of new right-wing saviours of gay people get on with whatever the hell
leadership and it’s not my role to urge you to vote for any particular they like. When we trace the history of LGBT rights in the UK, the
party, but I am saying you should ignore any siren voices who try to overwhelming majority of their proponents have been on the Left. It
persuade you that the Tory Party hasn’t made progress – and fast – was a Labour government that first decriminalised homosexuality in
on gay issues. 1967. Subsequently, Labour governments have repealed the insidious
In the last Parliament the Tories had more openly gay MPs Section 28, matched the age of consent for same-sex couples to that of
than any other party. I’m told they also have more openly gay straight ones and introduced civil partnerships.
candidates standing at this election than any other party, which Meanwhile, equal marriage aside for a second, the Conservatives
ought to tell you something. Cameron took the lead on forcing equal have done nothing but hinder progress. And it’s vital for us to
marriage legislation through the Commons. Yes, too many Tory recognise that this legion of straight, white Etonians isn’t, all of a
MPs voted against it, but that was more out of religious conviction sudden, gay-friendly. Let’s not forget the real harm that austerity has
than anti-gay bigotry. done. Homelessness and poor mental health, for example, are issues
Ask how many Tory MPs would now vote to reverse the law on that affect a disproportionate number of non-heteros. Trans people in
civil partnerships and I’d like to think the answer would be a big fat particular face an elevated risk of becoming homeless. So it wouldn’t
zero. In fact, I’m sure it would be. Ah, but what about Section 28 and be too farfetched to assume that Tory cuts to social housing, benefits
Thatcher, Tory critics spit. Well, it was 30 years ago, and what few and mental health services will have had devastating affects on the
people remember is that there were quite a few Labour MPs who more vulnerable members of the LGBT community. It might even
supported it too, not to mention the odd Liberal. That doesn’t make be said that equal marriage was, although an important milestone in
it right, but let’s live for today and celebrate the fact that virtually the gay rights movement, a distraction from real issues. Cameron, in
all Tory candidates at this election would be happy to celebrate gay many ways, has quite patronisingly managed to beguile a chunk of
equality before the law. the LGBT community by waving about a glittery piece of legislation,
Whisper this, but many gay people will vote for UKIP. Shock! while backhandedly doing away with the welfare state.
Horror! A recent poll for Pink News showed that the so-called gay Now we’ve secured equal marriage, we need to focus on the next
vote has changed a lot since 2010 and the way gay people vote more frontier. A big part of this will be tackling everyday homophobia and
or less mirrors the rest of the population. I call that progress. addressing the urgent issue of anti-gay bullying in schools. And it’s
Ninety-nine percent of gay people in this country will decide their Labour, not the Conservatives, who are willing to make this happen.
vote in exactly the same way as their straight counterparts, and isn’t It’s Labour who have suggested including same-sex relationships in
that exactly how it should be? Which party will run the economy children’s sex education programmes. This is a policy that could do a
best? Which party will do most for me and my family? Which great deal to de-stigmatise gay and trans kids to their classmates.
party will best protect the NHS and our schools? Which party will The introduction of equal marriage has proven the existence of
offer a fair policy on immigration? Those are the key issues which socially liberal Conservatives. Now that this minority momentarily
will decide this election, not which party did something bad to gay detoxified the Tory brand and provided gay people with a new right, we
people in 1988. need to wave them goodbye before they start dragging us backwards.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> THE GENERAL ELECTION IS ON MAY 7 <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

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257_FEAT_VOTING HISTORY#.indd 63 15/04/2015 14:29


W I L Lwi th a ne w al bu m
ou r favo ur it e po p
YO U N G
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Words: CHRISTIAN GUILTENANE
Photography: Tom Van Schelven
d ap ps

64

257_FEAT_WILL YOUNG#.indd 64 15/04/2015 11:05


WILL YOUNG_ATTITUDE

65

257_FEAT_WILL YOUNG#.indd 65 15/04/2015 11:06


WILL YOUNG_ATTITUDE
There’s something quite extraordinary normally it’s a year and a half! that people can watch, and big acts put
about Will Young. Fourteen years on from So it was easier this time? on amazing performances. Rihanna’s
winning TV talent show Pop Idol, he’s not It’s been a while since the last album so performance of Diamonds on The X Factor
only still making music, he’s critically I wasn’t sure if I wanted to write, and when it rained on her was art. It was
acclaimed for it! Quite something, when considered singing other people’s songs. incredible. I just thought, ‘Wow!’ I think you
you consider the cut-throat industry he’s But that didn’t feel right. So I hooked up can find excitement via social media now.
working in. with Biff [Richard Stannard] and started But it’s a different experience. It’s group-
But that’s the thing with Will: Even back writing. With this album, I wanted to do sharing in a different way.
in 2001, we knew there was something something with less blinkered eyes. A lot of That’s the great thing about social media.
special about him, and not just because of his my previous stuff was introspective and I’m Yes, and the good thing is you can take more
unique voice and the courage he displayed in a different place now. I have more of an control as an artist. You don’t have to rely
in standing up to then fledgling TV meanie understanding of myself and people now. on the TVs that aren’t there anymore. If you
Simon Cowell. He had that special something. Are you given free-reign or do you have label can’t get on a radio station then you have
That much talked about ‘je ne sais quoi’. bosses looking over your shoulder? YouTube or Vevo to showcase your work. I
Musically, he’s never put a foot wrong (yes, No, we are a team. It’s actually a myth that mean, I have just shot a video for a song that
we are kindly ignoring that ill-conceived, there are these ‘bosses’. It’s not the case with won’t be a single. [Will presents a picture
corporate-sanctioned Long and Winding Road me. I have David Joseph and Darkus at the of himself stripped to the waist, shrouded
duet with Gareth), and his forays into acting label who let me get on with it. Darkus was in a sheer veil] Island have embraced that
(Mrs Henderson Presents, Bedlam and Cabaret) like, “Well, you know, I could have A&R’d side of me. I love creating characters and
and even political activism have been done the record, but you have done that for me.” performance art. Making videos has become
with aplomb. He has no ego. I think he had confidence in a big thing again. You don’t have to spend
This is the TV talent show winner who not me when he started to hear the songs. Which lots of money on videos. I remember a while
only came out as gay at the very start of his was great because at first I wasn’t sure. When ago budgets were squeezed so much and
career – which in 2002 was a BIG deal and you get good feedback it’s great, but it’s only a Sony said, “Do we need to do a video?” And
almost unheard of – but was also asked to I was like, “But I love making videos!” Now
debate on Question Time and appear opposite they realise how powerful videos are these
the ferocious (and then rather dashing)
Jeremy Paxman. ‘I remember on the days and have splashed out again because
they know people can share them. Back in
When I meet Will at Bush Hall near
his home in west London, I do so with Pop Idol tour, someone the day they were just shown on TV, there
wasn’t a link. Now it’s straight out there.
trepidation. Although I’d heard he was a
doll from everyone who’s met him, he later wrote ‘Faggot’ in the Social media appears to be an important
feature of almost every industry now.
confesses that wasn’t always the case when,
during a dark year, he went through a patch lift. Someone tried I don’t think I was wise to it to start with. In
fact, I think I was terrified of it. I don’t know

wiping it off but I


“where [he] wasn’t very nice.” why. Now I can do things like shoot a video
When he greets me he narrows his eyes: that isn’t for a single. It’s a whole different

said, ‘No, I am going


“We’ve met before, haven’t we?” he says, world. My video for Love Revolution was
smiling warmly. Having been a tough and available the minute it was on radio. I like

t o w i p e i t o ff . ’ I t
cynical journo for nearly 15 years, I am well the fact I can go out and film it and put it out
aware of that celebrity standard of flattery there with a blogger or an online magazine.

was all very filmic’


in return for a lovely write up. But he’s It’s almost 14 years since you came out,
right. We have met, albeit only for a fleeting but what you did back then really was
“Hello” at a booze-fuelled after-show party, amazing. Your coming out opened the door
just hours after he triumphed on Pop Idol for other popstars to feel strong enough to
all those years ago. When reminded he marker and I am drawing on the experience come out at their peak, like Mark Feehily.
politely acknowledges it (though I’m still of everyone at the record company. It wasn’t a conscious thing. But it was
not convinced he remembers, and why You say your earlier songs were introspective. something that I am very proud of. I’m
should he?) before fondly looking back at his Do you feel like you’ve given away lot of really proud that I stayed true to myself
triumphant night and sharing stories about yourself in your music? and didn’t do anything different. I don’t
a mutual show producer friend. That’s what being a songwriter is about. I think I’ve ever said it before but it is one
But today isn’t about looking back. don’t think about it, it just comes out. You of my proudest moments and I feel quite
Will has a new album to talk about, have to give yourself to the song otherwise emotional now that I think about it. I have
85% Proof, and has a lot to say about the it’s just frothy shit. It has to have layers. done a lot for young LGBT people over the
ever-changing world we live in, from politics That’s what it has to be in any field of art. years and if that is a way of giving them
and homophobia to dating and sex... You’ve been around for a long time now. someone to look up to, whether it’s me or
Will, you never disappoint, but this album Do you still have the same excitement about Sam Smith or whoever, then that’s great! I
really is a corker. the music industry? didn’t have that when I was growing up.
Thank you, that’s very nice of you to say. I think you find the excitement in different I heard the news of your coming out in a
I’ve really enjoyed the process. I basically ways. I always loved CD:UK and Top of kebab shop in Angel on the radio.
did it in five sessions, starting in June and the Pops, but now they’re gone. Now you A kebab shop? I love that! [laughs]
finishing in August, which was fast for me – have shows like The Voice and The X Factor It was just so amazing to hear!

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It was a big deal! And it was scary. The next
day I was walking out of my flat and it was
like that scene in Notting Hill. There was
a sea of photographers waiting outside. I
felt so nervous because this was uncharted
territory. I remember shopping in the
supermarket and suddenly thinking, ‘Fuck,
everyone could know I was gay’ and I had a
panic attack because of it.
So coming out was stressful?
It was in a way. I experienced a bit of
homophobia too. I remember on the Pop
Idol tour, someone wrote ‘Faggot’ in the lift.
Someone tried wiping it off but I said, ‘No, I
am going to wipe it off.’ It was all very filmic.
Then there was another time I was getting
a sandwich from a café and this girl – this
really nasty girl, it turned out – wanted me
to meet her mum. When I said I couldn’t
because a car was waiting for me outside
she suddenly shouted at me, “Is it because
I’m a woman?” and I snapped back, “No it’s
because you’re a cunt.”
Blimey!
You never think you’re going to hear
homophobia from a woman. I am proud of
what I did. I’m glad that now it’s not a big
deal if you’re gay. Sam Smith can talk about
it or not talk about it. People just don’t seem
to care anymore, do they?
You made it easy. But those
announcements are still necessary. Away
from the cities there are closeted boys who
need people like Tom Daley.
Sure, it’s great, and he’s a sportsman.
In London we’re so used to diversity
but we live in a time where
homophobic bullying is still rife.
I had a Twitter war thing with
Nicky Morgan recently because
she refused to meet me. I thought,
‘Fuck this’: I copied in The Sun,
The Independent and The Times and
then she got back to me in half an
hour, which I thought was highly
insulting. Then it took another six
weeks to see me and she only did
because I kept telling her I would
stand outside her department
with a sandwich board saying
that 41% of LGBT people have

67

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EVAN DAVIS_ATTITUDE

attempted to or thought about killing homophobic and saying homophobic things. HIV rates in young people has doubled.
themselves, 55% will experience some form It’s about educating people that their misuse I think the problem is people have dropped
of bullying, while 99% find the word gay of the word gay is offensive to me and they off because they think we dealt with
derogatoryand damaging. Now we have don’t realise it. So if we educate people, they the problem of HIV. Medication is more
gay marriage – brilliant. And we have more grow up to be more liberal and LGBT people advanced, you can lead a full life now.
legal rights – great. But there are young don’t grow up screwed up for the rest of So people don’t think it’s as important
kids who need our help. We need to focus their lives. anymore. The thing with sex education is
on education. It’s outrageous! For me the But where do we find this education? that it was always about wearing a condom
use of the word ‘gay’ as a derogatory term On TV, you see artists and actors who to not get pregnant. It was never wear a
is terrible – if someone used a racist term or are openly gay. In school you don’t. Head condom to protect yourself from getting
anti-religious comment people would jump teachers seem not to give a toss about these an STD. So people believe condoms are all
on it and rightfully so. It’s about teaching issues and kids don’t get any sex education. about pregnancy and not STDs, for straight
people who don’t know what they’re saying Staff don’t feel empowered. They get no or gay relationships. All you have to say in
about the hurt they cause. There was this back-up from local authorities or direction schools is that you have to use condoms to
dickhead who wrote an article who said from government about how to deal with not get HIV. How is that more specific to gay
that he wasn’t being homophobic but I gay issues in schools. people? The action is still the same.
said there’s a difference between being It’s terrible when you consider that the rise in Remember the icebergs in the adverts in the

68

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WILL YOUNG_ATTITUDE
Marriage special so many readers told us that with, and that is a great thing.
it was nice to read about gay men in love. It’s important for celebrities to normalise
Yes, love. It’s all about love. Love is love, those aspects of life.
that’s why people want to get together and It’s a hard thing to do. People as humans
make declarations of their love. Gay people aren’t encouraged to see emotion as
just want to be like everyone else. Forget all equal. I’m feeling sad is not seen in the
that religious shit – but don’t get me started same way as being happy. Depression can
on Catholicism. be crippling, and there are different levels
With the election fast approaching, why do you of depression. You can be depressed if you
think young people are disillusioned by politics? drop an egg, though you’d be overreacting.
I don’t actually think they are disillusioned. You can be depressed because you have
I think older people are. Younger people can bipolar, like I have. Or if you have low self-
be politically motivated. A friend of mine esteem, which I have also had to deal with.
recently said to me that she was pleased to Depression is such a broad term. Talking
see her daughter questioning things. I think about it and owning it is really important.
it’s important to constantly question things. If people talk about their problems, others
Politics and voting is a way of doing that. can relate, and that can only be a good
It’s making a statement. Start as you mean thing. Stephen Fry started that – he was
to go on. That’s why I studied politics – even incredible.
though I got a 2.2 – but I didn’t do any work. Indeed. On a lighter note, are you seeing
I wanted to go out into the world and know anyone at the minute?
the basics of how it all worked. We live in Sadly romance isn’t going well. My ex-
democracy and we can change things, unlike boyfriend Jesse has just gone back to
so many other countries... America. He was the best relationship I ever
What do you make of our uncharismatic had. He was going back for visa reasons and
politicians and the rise of UKIP and Farage? neither of us wanted to do long-distance. We
Some politicians don’t come across as are still great friends. We had such a great
human. That said, I met a Sports and time. He taught me a lot. He was my first
Culture minister recently. She was amazing. adult relationship. It happens when you
She had a twinkle in her eye and she was get to your thirties. I see all my pals getting
so passionate. I told her it was so nice to see engaged now and having kids.
that! Others are dead-eyed because they are Are you an easy boyfriend?
terrified about what they say. Where’s their I certainly wasn’t, but then I never went for
passion? I think the system takes it out of easy people. Now I know a lot more about
them. They become a pastiche of themselves. myself – about communicating. Jesse was
At least Farage is passionate, but he’s just American so he was good at that. Americans
a bit ‘pub landlord’. Maybe that’s why the have emotional intelligence.
public seem to relate to him more. But an act It must have been heart-breaking to end it
alone doesn’t make a politician. for logistical reasons.
I always feel when MPs speak in public No, not really. That was just the way it was.
everything seems so stage-managed... I knew it was going to happen. It was very
I remember meeting Tony Benn – what a adult. We are great friends. We still have that
dude. He was on Question Time once and was friendship – it was a year we were together.
asked about his party doing stuff. And he Do you use dating apps?
80s? It scared the nation silly. said, “That’s New Labour – I don’t know what I never did before because of being famous,
Oh, I don’t remember those. they’re doing.” Tony was passionate, even if but I feel differently now.
Oh Will, you’re so young! When did you get he did have some questionable policies for It could startle a lot of people if your face
your education? gay rights looking back. Politicians I meet popped up.
I found out when I was working with a speak waffle. I had a meeting with Nicky It’s not just going to people’s door. I know
charity when I got to uni. I was 20, I didn’t Morgan and Michael Gove and came away someone who is getting married after
really know about it. It’s a scary thing. like I had been eating smoke for half an hour. meeting online. There are so many ways
Over the past 20 years there have been so I came away with nothing. of people getting together. There are
many changes in the LGBT world. What have How do you feel about the likes of TOWIE stars smorgasbords of everything you are looking
been the landmarks for you? being perceived as role models. for. I think I shall become more liberated
People coming out in the music industry is To be honest they’re not on my radar, but I with the idea. If you want a shag you can get
a big thing. There are more openly gay MPs often get told that I just potter around in my one, as long it’s safe and it’s coming from the
and actors. We have more legal rights. Legal own world. That said, you have someone right place. As long as you know yourself
partnerships and marriage are amazing. like Charlie King, who I have met a couple of and you know what you’re getting into,
When my two friends got married I realised times, using his fame for good. He has found then there’s no harm. But I’m probably very
what a big deal it was. a voice and is really brave opening up about conservative.
When Attitude published its Love & coming out and the depression he dealt Will’s album 85% Proof is out May 25.

69

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ireland_ATTITUDE

Road
The

to

Equal
marriage
70

257_FEAT_IRELAND#.indd 70 15/04/2015 11:36


On May 22nd, Ireland is holding the
world’s first referendum on same-sex
marriage. Traditionally one of the
most conservative Catholic countries
in the world, who only decriminalised
homosexuality in 1993, Ireland is a
curious candidate for this accolade, and
yet opinion polls show the ‘Yes’ campaign
enjoys a healthy lead of well over 70%.
Ben Kelly takes a look at how it came to be...

‘M
arriage may be contracted in accordance with manifested itself as complete silence. “In those days the word gay
law by two persons without distinction as to was never spoken, or printed in the newspapers. The only time
their sex.’ This is the line the government of the anything squeaked out was when there were whispers of very
Republic of Ireland have proposed adding to the unsavoury law cases – people being sent to jail and asylums.
country’s constitution, which would enable gay couples to marry. I thought I was more or less on my own, and it was absolutely
But as a republic with a constitution, it’s necessary for the people horrendous.” Despite being well educated and highly cultured,
to ratify this statement in a national vote, and that referendum he didn’t hear about the Stonewall riots of 1969 until years later,
is fast approaching on May 22nd. Falling just one day before the but gained inspiration from an article he read about gay rights
Eurovision Song Contest, a delightful gay serendipity means the two in Holland, and from getting in touch with the Campaign for
sets of results will roll in together. Homosexual Equality, who were holding meetings in England.
Upon its creation in 1937, the Republic of Ireland went from “It was of no earthly use for me living in Ireland, but it did signal
the hands of Britain straight into the clutches of the Catholic that there were others.”
Church, and anti-gay laws that had been left over from the days of While social revolutions erupted around the world in the late
colonialism weren’t about to be reversed by the new government. 1960s, a quiet one began in Ireland too. The advent of new and
Its constitution put the traditional family at the heart of society accessible birth control led the Vatican to publish Humanae
and afforded no place for thorny issues like divorce, abortion, Vitae in 1968, which reaffirmed it to be against Church law. Tom
contraception or homosexuality. The process of updating this has Inglis, a Professor of Sociology at University College Dublin
been a long social and legal journey, but today – despite the Church’s believes this caused a huge break in public obedience to the
continued opposition – every single party in Ireland’s parliament Church. “The influence of the Catholic Church’s attitude to sexuality
supports same-sex marriage, and public support has remained began to decline at this point, and women – particularly mothers
around 75% for the past two years. In contrast, the issue divided – began to distance themselves from the teachings of the Catholic
parties at Westminster, and UK opinion polls showed only around Church.” Slowly, across the 1970s, people also began to question
55% of the public supported the measure when it was introduced in the Church’s lead on other issues, like divorce, abortion and
the summer of 2013. More striking yet is the juxtaposition of the UK crucially, homosexuality.
having decriminalised homosexuality in 1967, while Ireland only got Senator Norris also believes at this point, the mood of the Irish
around to it in 1993. Gay rights may have accelerated in the past two people was already a fair bit warmer than the statutes on the books.
decades there, but the years before that were bleak – with economic “I think Irish people by and large were fairly compassionate and
depression, and a Church which dominated social morality. tolerant anyway – to use those awful words. And before there was
Today, Senator David Norris is one of Ireland’s most revered any sign of gay rights in Ireland, a plurality of people thought the
political figures, in particular for his work on gay rights, but in the criminal laws were wrong and should be removed.” Nevertheless,
1950s and 1960s, he was an isolated young man in a country that when Norris began the Campaign for Homosexual Law Reform in
had no place for him. He told me how the culture of homophobia the 1970s, with the aim of decriminalising homosexuality, it was still

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ireland_ATTITUDE
a largely taboo subject to be advocating publicly. impact on the rest of culture – whereas divorce and abortion would
Norris’ campaign led to a case at the Supreme Court in 1983, to maybe more so.”
challenge the 19th century UK laws which criminalised homosexual Born in the year homosexuality was legalised, Sinn Fein’s Fintan
acts, and had since been repealed in England, Wales, Scotland and Warfield has seen the country’s social attitudes move in his lifetime,
Northern Ireland. The court rejected his case, citing the ‘Christian and at 22, he became the youngest Mayor of South Dublin, a
and democratic nature of the Irish state’ and the need to protect position he currently maintains. “There were a couple of things on
public health and the institution of marriage. Not one to be easily TV around the time I was going to school” he recalls. “I think the
discouraged, Norris went to the European Court of Human Rights, programme was called Growing Up Gay, and I remember watching my
quite literally taking on the government in the Norris v. Ireland case of mum having a positive reaction to that, and bringing that positive
1988. This time, he won. The ECHR ruled that these laws violated its reaction to the dinner table. She unknowingly raised an issue that
Convention, which guarantees the right to privacy in personal affairs. was very relevant to me.”
It took five more years before decriminalisation was realised in 1993, He watched in 2010 as the Irish government introduced civil
but fittingly, it was signed off by President Mary Robinson, who had partnerships, but explains why equalising marriage remains crucial.
represented Norris as a barrister and Senior Counsel at the ECHR. “There are 160 differences at the moment between civil partnerships
The year before, in an unprecedented move, Robinson invited 34 and marriage – one such example is the family home, which has a
representatives of the gay and lesbian communities to her official cherished place in the constitution. In civil partnerships, the home
presidential residence to promote her support for them. In her is just a ‘shared home’, and that equates to student digs. So, largely,
memoir Everybody Matters, she describes her surprise and sadness across the board, a need was identified for a referendum on the issue.”
that after a pleasant day for all, most of them shied away from having The referendum was announced at the end of 2013, for spring 2015,
an official photograph taken at the end. They weren’t out to their and both sides have been working hard to secure victory ever since.
families. Even the most powerful advocate for the gay community The first face off came unexpectedly when drag performer Panti
was unaware of the isolation they felt in their private lives. Bliss discussed homophobia in Irish media and society during a TV
Socially, things did start to pick up around the time of legalisation, appearance. Those named – a handful of journalists, and a powerful
and continued to do so throughout the ‘Celtic Tiger’ days of the Catholic lobbying group called the Iona Institute – took legal action
1990s – a period of economic and cultural boom for Ireland, during against RTE and Panti, who told me it got political there and then.
which the wealth of the average citizen quadrupled within 15 years, “They couldn’t have people going on TV calling them homophobes,
and the country’s place within Europe helped shift its attitudes because there’s going to be a referendum, and they realised that if
forward in line with its peers on the continent. Professor Inglis, people were to say ‘Oh you would say that, you’re a homophobe,’
finds it odd that gay rights jumped forward, ahead of divorce then their argument is kind of over.”
(legalised in 1996) and abortion (still illegal in Ireland). “I think RTE paid out 85,000 Euro in damages, and in doing so ignited
there is this belief that because it’s a minority, it wouldn’t really disapproval from the public, who felt the state broadcaster shouldn’t

Thousands march
in the streets of
Dublin in the March
For Marriage,
August 2014

‘A Yes vote would send a powerful message of positivity


to even the most repressed, conservative, religious
countries – including the one across its border – that
they can hope and aspire towards equality too’
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AXEL_WATERFORD_DEAD OF NIGHT.indd 73 15/04/2015 11:39:11


ireland_ATTITUDE
have to appease anti-equality figures who were offended at being whose son or daughter is gay, and in a way it’s about accepting them into
called homophobes. Professor Inglis believes that where once the the community, accepting their children, and it’s part and parcel of the
Catholic Church was the conscience of Irish society, over the past idea of Ireland being as much a society as it is one large community.”
20 years, the role gradually shifted to the media to point people in One of the main consequences of a Yes vote would be a further
the right direction; but ‘Pantigate’ was a further watershed moment. widening of the gap between the Catholic Church and the state.
“That section of the media took a traditional Catholic When the Church threatened excommunication for
view, and they were increasingly seen as being out of members of the government who voted for an abortion
sync with a modern, urban, cosmopolitan view.” If the law in 2013, the Taoiseach Enda Kenny made a clear
state broadcaster was going to distinction between his private religion and his
appease people like the Iona Leo Varadkar public duty. “I am proud to stand here as a public
Institute, the public weren’t representative, as a Taoiseach who happens to be
going to support it. a Catholic but not a Catholic Taoiseach”, he said
That’s not to say that to the Irish parliament. “A Taoiseach for all of the
those in the No camp
‘I’d like the people, that’s my job.” The Church has slowly lost
were discredited – referendum to any remaining claim to a moral authority on the Irish
far from it. The pass because people through the revelations of historic abuse in the
very mention of I’d like to be an past 15 years. The issue of gay marriage could really bring
the Iona Institute
equal citizen about that final divorce; while a change in the abortion
is enough to make law would hammer a final nail in the coffin.
Senator Norris’ blood
in my own A further consequence to consider – particularly
boil. “They’ve gone country’ here in the UK – is
from strength to strength. Fintan Warfield the effect a Yes vote
They’re financed, it’s said, will have on Northern
by huge amounts of money from Domino’s Pizza Ireland, which could
and other American sources of income. They’ve ‘There are soon find itself as the
established themselves as a charity, even though only jurisdiction on
they’re a political campaigning group. They’re not
160 differences the British Isles
a charity at all, and they’ve managed to get away with at the moment where same sex
that. It’s dreadful.” He also doesn’t believe that the Yes between civil marriage is not
campaign is safe from the confusion and fear the partnerships yet legal. The DUP
group is stirring up. Crucially, both sides of the and marriage’ – an historically
argument must be given equal airtime during an homophobic party
Irish referendum campaign, meaning every founded by the Rev Ian
debate could be chipping away at the Yes camp’s Paisley and rooted in his
lead. “I don’t believe these huge figures, not for Free Presbyterian Church –
a moment, and the gay community have blocked same sex marriage three times, after it
would be ill advised to take them at Senator was tabled by their Sinn Fein government partners in
face value. It most certainly is not
in the bag, and those people in the
David Norris the Belfast Assembly. With no hope left for legislative
progress, the Assembly may find themselves being taken
Iona Institute are trying as hard as they can in order to to court as a means of securing equality.
stop it going through, and they could well succeed.” He Patrick Corrigan, from Northern Ireland’s Amnesty
has joked on Twitter though, that after a lifetime of ‘People are International told me he felt these politicians were out
campaigning, he’s looking forward to ‘retiring as a trying as hard as of step with most ordinary people. “When this block
homosexual’ professionally, if the Yes vote passes. they can in order on equal marriage is taken alongside attempts by
Spirits were lifted at the start of the year when government ministers to block adoption by gay
the Fine Gael Health Minister, Leo Varadkar
to stop it going couples, and the refusal to publish a long-overdue
became the most high profile politician in the through, and sexual orientation strategy, it seems some politicians
country to come out. Speaking on RTE Radio in they could well wish to make Northern Ireland a ‘cold house’ for the
January he said the impending referendum had succeed’ LGBT community.” However, he still seems positive,
moved him to speak up, on what was his 36th birthday. and affirms “Amnesty International is determined that,
“I was thinking about the arguments that I might whether through Stormont or through the courts, everyone
make, and all the arguments that I was going to make were kind of in Northern Ireland will be treated as equal citizens.”
detached. What I really want to say is that I’d like the referendum to In less than four weeks, Ireland has the opportunity to make
pass because I’d like to be an equal citizen in my own country.” His history, not just for itself, but on a global scale. A Yes vote would
reception was overwhelmingly positive, and will have sent ripples send a powerful message of positivity to even the most repressed,
of awareness across a very small country of 4.6 million, where he conservative, religious countries – including the one across its border
may well be the only gay person known to many people. Professor – that they can hope and aspire towards equality too. And while some
Inglis believes the size of the country has had a big impact socially feel the equality of the gay community shouldn’t be left to the mercy of
on the acceptance of homosexuality. “In the same way that you public opinion, there would be a certain beauty in same sex marriage
could say in Ireland that everybody knows somebody who has been being chosen not behind the closed doors of a parliament, but openly
touched by cancer, increasingly everybody knows of somebody and publicly, through the ballots cast by millions of fellow citizens.

74

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European Soul

The New Album Out Now

Includes singles ‘Lighten Up’ and ‘Waiting For Your Lover’

“Great big fun dancefloor hits” DIY “A sunny slab of Indie Disco!” NME
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citizenscitizens.com

SONY.indd 75 15/04/2015 13:03:42


hey
brother
COlin Farrell backs his brother Eamonn and his husband
Steven Mannion to push through equal marriage in ireland
Words: Christian Guiltenane / Photography: Aaron McGrath
startraks photo/rex

Eamonn and Colin Farrell

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257_FEAT_EAMON FARRELL#.indd 76 15/04/2015 14:11


eamonn farrell_ATTITUDE

W
hile it would seem that young and
old Irish citizens have been coming
together to fight for marriage
equality, the campaign has for as
long time been given a big boost
by Hollywood superstar Colin
Farrell, who recently took the time to pen
an open letter celebrating his gay brother
Eamonn and his husband Steven Mannion’s
relationship and expressing how unfair it
was that the pair had been forced to travel
overseas to get married. “My brother Eamonn
didn’t choose to be gay. Yes, he chose to wear
eyeliner to school and that probably wasn’t
the most pragmatic response to the daily
torture he experienced at the hands of school
bullies,” Colin wrote last November. “The
fact that my brother had to leave Ireland to
have his dream of being married become
real is insane. INSANE. It’s time to right the
scales of justice here: to sign up and register
to vote next year so that each individual’s
voice can be heard.”
On the eve of the referendum, Attitude
joined Colin’s brother Eamonn and his
artist husband Steven at their home in
Dublin to hear how they felt about having
to get married away from their friends and
family, how Colin has been a rock and why
achieving this new legislation will have a registrar for deaths, births and marriages. difficult to be part of an often marginalised
massive impact on gay Irish youth. I asked him very clearly to marry me, in minority group living in Ireland. I really
Ireland someday, when we were able to. do think that most people don’t want that.
It’s not long now until the referendum takes Unfortunately I couldn’t wait as long as it Most people want society, human rights and
place. How life-changing do you think it will has taken so we went to Vancouver and got equality to develop and grow.
it be if passed? married there. There’s been phenomenal support from Irish
Life will not really change for us as a couple What difference do you think having people of all ages. Has that surprised you?
at all. We are married already and our marriage will make to the way gay men and Not at all. We have become a very inclusive
Canadian marriage will be recognised almost women are viewed by general society? society really, especially in the last couple of
immediately as a civil Irish marriage. The day I think in the next 50 years we will look back years. We’ve had to stick together very much
after we got married in Vancouver six years and our kids and grandkids will ask us if through adversity, through recent mass
ago, I woke up and looked out the window we remembered when it was not legal for immigration and through the recession. I
of our hotel and said to Steven, “Oh look, same sex couples to get married. They will think people now see that a question which
the world is still there, everything looks be shocked! We can look back ourselves to relates to two people wanting their love to be
the same, all those right-wing, anti-equal somewhere as close as 1967 and think that recognised by their society is actually not a
marriage types were wrong. We haven’t in certain parts of the United States a white bad thing. We have a campaign running in
caused the destruction of civilization!” And person could not marry a black person. Now Ireland called Call Your Grandparents and
so it will be when the referendum passes in we are shocked that society could ever think it’s available on YouTube. If you need to have
Ireland. All will go on as if nothing happened, that such blatant racism was okay. There a good cry – a happy cry into your glass of
and LGBT people will have the same rights as will come a time when being gay will be as Chablis some night – have a look at it. It’s
every other couple to get married. uninteresting as being a brunette, and that truly magical. It’s a series of videos of young
Is it important for you and Steven to be seen day can’t come quickly enough. LGBT people calling their grandparents and
as married in your own home country? And what impact do you think it will have for asking them how they will be voting in the
We were married in Canada but getting a Ireland’s younger gay people? referendum. It totally backs up the idea that
civil partnership in Ireland wasn’t for me. It will be huge. It will be a recognition of people who have a gay person in their lives
That’s why we went away. I had always their relationships as equal and inclusive. would never even dream of voting against
dreamed of getting married. I used to rob The passing of the referendum is a yes equal marriage. It’s a total no-brainer. We
one of my sister’s doll houses and my two for us all; it’s a yes to us being a fully also have Straight Up for Equality, which is
action men lived in it together... seriously! recognised part of Irish society. We need to straight people coming out in support of the
And when I proposed to Steven I asked him say yes and move forward with our lives as referendum, changing their Facebook profile
to someday marry me. Not to civil partner LGBT people. Saying no would be moving pictures to equals signs.
me, or register our relationship with the backwards to a time when it was very Take us back to when you came out. Was that

77

257_FEAT_EAMON FARRELL#.indd 77 15/04/2015 14:11


eamonn farrell_ATTITUDE

I am very proud of
a difficult process in such a strictly
Catholic country?
Well I was never in. I’ve never had a

colin in everything he
girlfriend, I’ve never even kissed a girl. I
wanted to marry a guy called Rory in my
class at school when I was 12 years old.
There was no question in my mind ever
that I would marry someone one day, and does. It is gre at that
he can speak out because
that someone would be a man. So coming
out was a non-event for me and I was lucky
enough within my family to be supported

he’s in a position for


totally. It always makes me smile when
I say that. They had no option but to be
supportive... I was not for changing!

so many people to hear


How did people outside your family react?
As we say in Dublin, I often got a real hiding.
I was bashed, and I was verbally abused.
I did arrive home bloodied and I was the
victim of homophobic bullying, but I was
never a ‘victim’. I often felt as sorry for the
w h a t h e h a s t o s ay
for happiness in my own life and to try and Do you think that without marriage, gay men
make the world a kinder, more accepting have enjoyed more unrestricted lifestyles?
place for everyone. I think that as LGBT people in society have
Did it ever become too much to handle? become more visible, the idea of the hedonistic
It often became too much to handle and pink pound-flashing lifestyle of gay people is
when I think back there is one thing I would now outdated. A lot of us have always been
say to the ten-year-old me, or the 12-year- striving for that one long-term relationship,
old or the 15-year-old me. Talk to someone. and to that end, marriage provides us with a
I spoke to no one about what was going on wonderful goal to aim towards.
until I was 16. Not one word. I would make How did you and Steven meet?
excuses for ripped and bloodied clothes. I We met in a nightclub in Dublin. It was a great
would divert attention from trying to get night, and it really was love at first sight.
out of gym class or football matches. And How did your families take to one another?
I would hide any weakness I felt behind a Both of our parents are divorced so we really
rather robust and flamboyant personality. only had our mams to get around, and that
When I did speak to my teachers they were was easy. We are very close to our mother-
so upset and so shocked that I had put up in-laws. They are more like friends to us
with eight years of abuse and had not gone than anything else.
to them. I guess I also didn’t want to show When did you realise that this relationship
any weakness. Because I was gay and I was for keeps?
was openly so in a hugely homophobic I am 15 years older than Steven, so when we
bullies as I did for myself; more so actually. environment, I had to almost promote met he was 22 and I was 37. I was not out
I thought they just didn’t get what life is myself more to go ‘Hey, this is okay.’ I looking for love at all, it just happened. I had
about! I thought how miserable they must don’t know if I even believed that myself. kissed a lot of frogs and he was my Prince
be, needing to do this to me, how they must Sometimes when I think of how full on I Charming from day one.
be hiding their own demons and must have was, I’d probably have bullied myself! When was marriage mentioned?
very little happiness in their own lives. Was Colin a good brother in this time? We were in New York for a few days and I
Was it a terrible period for you? He was incredibly supportive, he always had planned the whole thing. I had booked
It was really awful, yes, and when Colin is. My whole family are. But Colin is the an appointment with a jewellers in the
spoke about it, it really brought me right youngest so the reversal of roles was always Jewellery District so one day I snuck off and
back to the way I used to feel. I may not more pronounced. He would mind me and got the ring. We went ice skating in Central
remember exactly what someone said or he would try and talk to me. Even when Park and it was there I asked Steven to
did to me, but I remember exactly how they he was nine. He would ask was everything marry me. I had done the whole honourable
made me feel. If I drive even close by the okay and did I need to talk about anything. thing the night before by calling his mam
school I used to attend where the majority of He has always had an old soul. We have and asking for his hand in marriage. She
the bullying happened I feel physically sick, spent our lives – the four of us – looking was so thrilled and of course gave her
still to this day. And that’s how I felt every after each other. It’s like a pendulum, and I total blessing. We had never spoken about
day when I was walking towards it. It was guess that’s why family is so important. It marriage but it is something I wanted from
a really crappy part of my childhood, but provides the equilibrium of comfort. It is a very early part of our relationship. We had
it motivates everything I do in my life now. particularly hard at the moment with them been together for three years and the time
It motivates me to help other kids, to strive all living in Los Angeles, even my mam. felt right. I remember exactly the words I

78

257_FEAT_EAMON FARRELL#.indd 78 15/04/2015 14:11


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eamonn farrell_ATTITUDE

asked because they were so important and stopped a passing jogger to act as a witness I am very proud of him in everything
so politically loaded. I asked him to marry for us, and it turned out that she had been he does. It is great that he can speak out
me someday, somewhere we are allowed to married to her girlfriend by the same because he’s in a position for so many people
get married. That’s only six short years ago, registrar five years earlier. to hear what he has to say. But personally, it
and I had no idea when marriage equality Was there an element of frustration when it is very empowering to have someone who
would ever be legal in Ireland, so although sounded like equal marriage was coming to knows you so well say, “You deserve this.
I was proposing, it was with the very sad Ireland then? So close, yet so far! This is bullshit and we need to change the
stipulation that it would be as soon as we There is an opposition at home to equal law in our country.”
were allowed. That time is almost upon us. marriage which I find very hard to take. Are kids the next thing on the agenda for
So what made you go overseas? I find it unusual that people could be so you and Steven?
I just needed our relationship recognised interested in my relationship with Steven, No, kids are not on the agenda! Family is
somewhere in the world. For that week in and in what we do in bed, because basically the most important thing, we care about
Canada after we were married we were the that’s what it comes down to. Ireland is the all families, we value all families, we
exact same as every other committed, in first country in the world to have a public respect all families in all their different
love, married couple. When we returned to vote on same sex marriage. In every other forms, shapes, colours and genders. We
Ireland we reverted back to being unequal jurisdiction the legislators have changed embrace family as the building block of
citizens, which was sad at the time. the law to introduce it. We have a wonderful society. My family is not the same as yours
How did you plan your wedding? opportunity in Ireland to show the world and yours is not the same as mine, but the
It was very simple really. I researched all the how we as a nation care about our citizens. defence and protection of your family is
countries where we could get married and All of our citizens. We have a chance to say as important to me as the protection and
what the legal requirements were. Most of to every gay person that they are equally defence of my own. All are important,
them had citizenship issues and residential legitimate and equally important, and you all are wonderful and all are equal. I just
requirements. In Canada we could get our have an equal role to play in the next phase want to get on with my life, to bother no
licence one day and get married the next. of the magical story of Ireland. one and be married to Steven until it’s time
I found a registrar and we took a taxi to You must be very proud that your brother for him to throw my ashes over the beach
Stanley Park and got married there. We has weighed in on the cause? near our home.

80

257_FEAT_EAMON FARRELL#.indd 80 15/04/2015 14:11


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BIRMINGHAM PRIDE.indd 81 15/04/2015 11:40:35


NUL
EUROVISION SPECIAL_ATTITUDE

POINTS? AS THE 60TH EUROVISION SONG CONTEST APPROACHES, WE ASK


WHETHER OR NOT THE UK CAN REIGN SUPREME AGAIN. WE’VE WON
FIVE TIMES, COME RUNNER UP 15, BUT IN RECENT YEARS WE’VE
BEEN A LAUGHING STOCK, AND THIS YEAR’S ENTRY ELECTRO VELVET
DOESN’T LOOK LIKE THEY WILL FARE ANY BETTER. WE ASK
THE EURO EXPERTS HOW WE CAN CLAW BACK SUCCESS...
WORDS: CHRISTIAN GUILTENANE

82

257_FEAT_EUROVISON#.indd 82 15/04/2015 11:23


EVAN DAVIS_ATTITUDE

PAUL JORDAN [DR EUROVISION]


“Europe hates us!”
“We’ll never win because of politics!”
“It’s Eastern Europe’s fault!”
These are just some of the explanations
that are put forward for the UK doing
badly when it comes to Eurovision. It’s
fair to say that we’ve not exactly set the
scoreboard alight over the past decade or so. Gone are the
glory days of when the UK was a force to be reckoned with
on the Eurovision stage. The UK hasn’t won the contest since
1997, narrowly missing out on the double in 1998. Since then we
haven’t really come close to winning again. Over the past 15 years
we have only been in the top five twice and have finished last three
times including the dreaded nul points in 2003. So where did it all
go wrong? Is there any truth in the arguments that we are disliked
by our European cousins?
The short answer is no.
Arguments that Europe doesn’t like the UK and that the voting
is political are largely misinformed and fail to take account of
the major changes that have taken place in Eurovision. The
contest is bigger than ever, nearly 40 countries compete every
year. The UK isn’t the only country who hasn’t fared well in the Blu e
modern Eurovision era; the difference is that other countries don’t
consistently bleat about how they’re hated. points for simply turning up. When other countries are making
Language is also an issue. Before 1999 the UK, Ireland and Malta an effort, putting in credible acts, we enter failed pop stars, ageing
were the only countries permitted to sing in English, providing us crooners and grown men dancing with schoolgirls. Our biggest
with a massive advantage. Since free language was introduced, the chance in recent years was 2011 with Blue. However a poor
majority of countries opt to sing in English, putting everyone on a performance on the Friday night when the juries were voting
more equal playing field. meant that we limped home in 11th place. That said, the UK
The rise of the public vote has highlighted voting patterns, and yes came fifth in the public vote. Not too shabby for a country that’s
there is neighbourly voting. However that has always been the case apparently hated.
in Eurovision with juries as well as the public. The UK and Ireland There’s an argument that our music industry doesn’t need the
are just as guilty of this as anyone else. We gave 12 points to Ireland contest as much as other countries. Perhaps that’s true but Eurovision
in 2011 not because of politics but because Jedward were known here still generates hits, the 2012 winner Euphoria was huge, reaching
and were popular. Why is it okay for us to vote for our neighbour number three in the UK charts. We are missing an opportunity here.
and not, say, Serbia for Croatia? If Germany can win, as they did in 2010, then the UK can too.
The turnout for European elections is usually poor. Do we really Austria waited nearly 50 years for its second victory and Portugal
think that people across Europe are sitting at home thinking politics which first entered in 1964 has never even made the top five. And
on a Saturday night and casting their votes accordingly? Unlikely. let’s face it, most of us love a handsome Portugueezer!
The sad truth is that we’ve just not been good enough. It’s worth remembering that we still have the strongest overall
When we put in the effort, like we did in 2009, we are rewarded. record with five wins and a record 15 second places, it’s time to stop
When it comes to Eurovision it’s almost like we feel we deserve moaning and face the music!

E U R OV IS IO N ’S G AY ACTS W HO CHANGED T HE WORL D


Gay people have always been part of Eurovision, but these five
broke down international boundaries and caused controversy.

Dana Marija Serifovic Conchita Tatu (Russia) Krista (Finland)


International (Serbia) (Austria) So they weren’t In 2013, the
(Israel) The 2007 out 2014’s sassy gay, but back Finnish singer
1998’s first and proud drag queen with in 2003 they kissed a girl
transgender Gypsy lesbian face fuzz who kept the world on stage to
winner received who ignored the faced the wrath gripped with a support same sex
death threats jibes and stole of homophobic tease of a snog marriage. Turkey
from Israelis. the show! Russian leaders. on stage. went ballistic.
Scooch

83

257_FEAT_EUROVISON#.indd 83 15/04/2015 11:23


EUROVISION SPECIAL_ATTITUDE

SARAH CAWOOD UK FACTS KARL BATTERBEE


[FORMER EUROVISION [EDITOR OF SCANDIPOP.CO.UK]
PRESENTER) In order for the UK

W IN N E R S
to start doing well at
So here we are again, Eurovision again, it
on the cusp of yet needs a song selection

3 17
another anticlimactic process that the voting
Eurovision with the UK RUNNERS UP public can get behind,
being represented by a
band they don’t know IN THIRD PLACE and in which artists
and songwriters would want to compete

13
singing a song they For inspiration, the UK should look to the
didn’t choose. The BBC really are intent on Swedes, who have now mastered the format.
never hosting Eurovision again aren’t they? In Sweden their Melodifestivalen competition
You only have to glance across social media is not just the biggest television event of the

NIL
on Eurovision night to see that the UK LOVE year (its ratings continually exceeding that
THIS SHIT and the event itself remains one of of Eurovision, by far) but the most prolific

POINTS
the highest rated shows the BBC has, so why pop music event of every year too. It’s a six
do they keep getting the process of choosing week contest: Four heats, a semi-final, and
who represents us so woefully wrong? a final. In terms of media saturation, it is

TO P 10 S
The BBC seem obsessed with either sending to Sweden annually what the X Factor is to
faded superstars (Bonnie Tyler and Engelbert the UK. It’s become such a big event now
Humperdink) or PWL wannabes woefully that the fact the eventual winner will go to
out of touch with the times (Josh Dubovie
LAST PLACES Eurovision is pretty much an after-thought,
singing a Pete Waterman B-side, and Scooch). being more a showcase of Swedish pop
The only real contender in recent years for artists and their music.
me has been Blue. Great band, great song and With the press coverage and the ratings
what’s more: they had a European fan base. Gina G so high, winning isn’t really the most
The BBC could do worse than look to the important thing to a lot of artists. They
Swedish model for tips. The Swedes take just want their songs to be played on the
Eurovision VERY seriously and it shows radio, exposure for their new albums, and
in their track record: Since their first win a heightened public profile, leading to more
with ABBA 40 years ago, they have notched bookings in the twelve months until the next
up the highest number of victories of any batch of 28 artists the following year. In the
country other than Ireland and, in the last four Swedish pop music world, there’s really no
years, have finished in the top three on three bigger exposure than Melodifestivalen. As a
occasions, winning once. The UK hasn’t SEEN direct result, the Swedish music industry
the top three since 2002. 13. Long. Years. Ago. would suffer enormously if Melodifestivalen
So what do they do differently? Well, for were to suddenly cease to be. Melodifestivalen
starters they have an X Factor style TV show has launched national superstars like
with ten songs voted on by international Loreen, Eric Saade, and Ace
juries and the Swedish public. If half the Wilder, and revived the
battle is choosing a catchy song sung flagging careers of Måns
by an unforgettable performer then Zelmerlöw, Alcazar, and Darin.
there’s no wonder that Sweden keep It’s a format that the UK could
winning: The public are behind both benefit from. The winner of a UK
artist and song before they even Melodifestivalen getting to represent
step foot on a plane. their country at Eurovision could perhaps
Oh and while it’s true that be one of a few different prizes afforded to
sometimes it seems like neighbouring states them, with something bigger on offer too.
seem to be biased, these days that has more to With established artists then scoring radio
do with the fact that culturally, they prefer the hits, and up-and-comers gaining success on
same thing, than any Iron Curtain nonsense. the charts, it’s a national selection process
So there we have it, for what it’s worth: that the country could get behind every
Cawood’s guide to winning Eurovision. year. And with that, there would be more
Now if only we could get the bigwigs at public goodwill than ever before to see each
the BBC to listen to the common nationally selected winner do the UK
REX
sense happening down here. proud at the Eurovision Song Contest.
Oh and good luck Electro Velvet. This year’s Swedish scandipop.co.uk
You’re gonna need it... entry Mans Zelmerlow

84

257_FEAT_EUROVISON#.indd 84 15/04/2015 11:23


JAY ASTON
[BUCKS FIZZ]
The Eurovision Song
Contest is hugely
different now to how
it was when we won
back in 1981. There
are so many different
countries with so many
flavours of musicality that it’s hard for the
millions of viewers to, er, make their mind up.
I think the UK has always viewed the show
as cheesy, while the other countries take it
seriously. For them, it’s like the Olympics

ALEX GOLDBERG [VOICEOVER AND EUROVISION FAN]


and they just don’t understand us. I think
to some degree, that’s why they don’t vote
for us; because we’re not on the same page.
Perhaps if we changed our attitude it’d make I am an American but have lived here for many years. My first
a difference. When Jade Ewen entered back Eurovision experience was back in 2005, when Popstars: The Rivals
in 2009 with Andrew Lloyd Webber’s song cast-off Javine represented the UK. Now I mean no shade aimed at
we came fifth, because all the other countries Miss Hylton when I say that as a Eurovision virgin, I just DID NOT
thought, ‘Ooh, they’re taking it seriously!’ get why the British entry sounded like a Turkish knock-off. I found it
I think we need to send established stars. quite painful to watch.
We’ve got some of the biggest acts on the And so to 2007. You sent the fabulously camp Scooch. This was
planet, like Ed Sheeran for example, but we ridiculous and colourful and perfectly encapsulated the eccentric side of Britain that I’ve
can’t seem to convince the really good acts come to love in my time here. Personally I’d like to see a lot more of this. 2008 was when Sir
to take part! Mainly because it’s Eurovision. Terry had enough and threw in the towel after a desperate looking Andy Abraham sent the
Bucks Fizz were put together especially for UK to the Eurovision trash heap again.
the competition. It was about the song, the After sending a string of nobodies, musical theatre supremo Andrew Lloyd Webber
look and the routine. When we won it was a was asked to write the British entry. Amazing! Lord Lloyd-Webber is world-famous and
moment of pure joy. respected in Europe, and along with newbie singer Jade Ewen, they came fifth. But the
Success is down to those individuals main grab was – shock horror – A GOOD SONG.
choosing the song and the act. I’m not sure 2010 to 2014 were a ghastly blur. You called upon another big songwriter (Pete Waterman,
how this year’s UK entry Electro Velvet will 2010), but if the song is DRIVEL it just won’t work. Blue in 2011, Engelbert in 2012 and
fare. It’s certainly fun, and has a nice novelty Bonnie in 2013 – all huge, respected names, but their songs were all either lacklustre or dated.
‘Gatsby’ element, but I don’t think it’s a great Newbie Molly in 2014 was an attempt at finding a fresh artist, but a low-energy performance
song. That said, it’s probably the best I’ve held her back. This year’s entry, Electro Velvet? Well I don’t even know where to begin.
seen for a while, in terms of hopes for a win. I love the UK. Your pop music is unmatched, you’re the wittiest nation on earth and
It’s very hard to predict. you’ve got thousands of singers and songwriters at your disposal. Why not use the talent
It’s great that Australia are involved this you have to pull off your sixth win? You can chortle at Poland’s busty butter churners and
year, because they were massive fans of take home the trophy. No need to cry politics when no one votes for you.
Bucks Fizz. Making Your Mind Up was number Alex Harris Goldberg is an American expat in London. You can hear him in-between telly shows on
one for about seven weeks over there. The More4, E4 & 4Seven. Eurovision fan since 2005, attendee since 2007.
bonus is that we might actually get some
more votes, because they love us!
It’s hard to get enthusiastic about our Bonnie Tyler, Andy
chances considering the way it has gone in Abraham, Daz
recent years, but we have to win again one Sampson, Jade Ewen
day. By the law of averages we will
win again. Whether we’ll all be
alive to see the day is
another matter.
Jay is currently touring
with Bucks Fizz bandmates
Cheryl Baker, Mike Nolan
and their guest vocalist Bobby
McVay (who entered the Eurovision
Song Contest in 1983 with Sweet Dreams
jayaston.co.uk / formerlyofbucksfizz.co.uk

85

257_FEAT_EUROVISON#.indd 85 15/04/2015 11:23


EUROVISION
EUROVISION
SPECIAL_ATTITUDE
SPECIAL_ATTITUDE

JOSH JAMES (DUBOVIE) Did you feel a lot of pressure on your


shoulders with a duff song?
festivals and events, with a crowd of 19,000
in Sweden with Anderson Berglund. Next

[2002 EUROVISION ENTRY] Once I’d managed to convincingly persuade


myself that I had to be positive no matter
minute I’m twiddling my thumbs awaiting
orders from Pete Waterman and my
You represented us in 2002 with Pete what, I didn’t feel any pressure at all. manager Steve Crosby... Regardless, I believe
Waterman’s That Sounds Good To Me. Besides, I was 19 and this was my biggest everything happens for a reason and it has
When you heard the song for the first break, who was I to argue with the likes of all lead me to this point. Watch this space is
time, what did you think? Pete Waterman and the BBC? all I’m saying.
I can’t tell you how underwhelming my The song wasn’t a popular choice with Why do you think the UK hasn’t done
first listen of the track was... Nevertheless, fans. Did you go to Eurovision with a well in recent years?
I had a job to do and was going to give heavy heart? The UK have one of the best music
it 100% whatever happened. I was just It was pretty tough at times because like my industries in the whole world, yet we seem
happy for the opportunity. Obviously, like audition, I felt that another song would’ve to be sending music over that we think the
every contestant, the dream was to win not only suited my voice better, but suited Eurovision fans ‘might like’. Why don’t we
Eurovision. the competition better too. You can’t blame send the music that we’re good at! For some
the fans for their opinions though, especially reason we can’t get our asses out of the 80s
when they matched mine! but everyone else around us is evolving.
What was the show itself like? Do you think we take it seriously
The competition itself was incredible. I enough?
had the best time out there! Interviews, I think we want to. But word on the street is,
performances, parties etc. People think we couldn’t even afford to host Eurovision
it’s massively bitchy but for the most part, if we won. Just speculation, but interesting
everyone was awesome. Don’t get me wrong, nevertheless. I do think it’s strange we’re not
there was one country who were extremely using our full potential. Maybe one day...
unapproachable. They were so adamant Should there be a show like
they were going to win, they actually hired Melodifestivalen?
out a stadium in their home country before I think it is a great idea and would really get
the competition had even started... the UK behind our entry. However I’m not
How did you feel when you saw the sure if that will help us on the field. We just
song wasn’t getting much love? need to keep being positive and believing
I think we all knew what was going that we can win.
to happen. But we just laughed it Should the public have more of a say?
off. In all fairness we were so surprised The public aren’t stupid, they know
every time we actually got a point that we what they want. Unfortunately not all of
celebrated as if it were 12! them vote so it’s pretty hard to get an idea
How was life after Eurovision? of the whole public’s views. That said, I
For the most part, it was great, but also guess it would be better to have the option
confusing. One minute I’m singing at in the first place.
REX

CONCHITA WURST [EUROVISION WINNER 2014]


We’ve been thinking about the UK’s chances and whether we’ll ever win again, and whether we
take it seriously enough. What are your tips for what makes a great Eurovision entry?
Well to be completely honest, the Austrians didn’t take it seriously either. The gay community is always
excited about the show but the media and national broadcasters always thought, ‘Oh, we won’t win’, and
so we – Austria – didn’t for 48 years. Rise Like a Phoenix, it’s not a commercial song, it’s not a song which
wouldn’t be played on the radio if I hadn’t won Eurovision, so I guess for me the key is do whatever you
have to do; you have to enjoy it. You have to deliver the kind of music you are interested in. We had this
meeting thinking, ‘Maybe we should take this song on because it’s more for the radio stations, it’s more
like a pop song,’ but then Rise Like a Phoenix came in and I said “I’m sorry everybody, we have to start all
over again because this is the song,” and this is what we did.
A lot of people say that the UK will never do well because we’re not liked. Do you get a sense of that?
Everybody loves the UK! We had the same way of thinking. We also thought that it was a political thing,
that Austria’s too small, nobody cares about us, blah blah blah... and then I won. That’s it. I think it can
happen if there is the right moment, the right artist, the right song, the right performance – it could
happen. That’s basically it. Just try, try, try and you will win again, as we won again after 48 years.
Read more from Conchita at attitude.co.uk

86

257_FEAT_EUROVISON#.indd 86 15/04/2015 11:25


At this very moment two
young lovers are beaming
in the Vienna sunshine.
When are you going to
have your day in the sun?

WWW.VIENNA.INFO

Gloriette in the Schönbrunn Palace Gardens

VIENNA.indd 87 15/04/2015 11:41:30


B E Y O U R
P R I D E
S E L F
ATTITUDE GREAT
GREAT GREAT LATE SELFIE GREAT
PRIDE NIGHT’S FREE WI-FI
LOCATIONS BREAKFAST CHECKOUT STICK WEEKENDS
GUIDE SLEEP

CELEBRATE THE PRIDE SEASON WITH US!


1 MAY - 30 SEPTEMBER
However you like to spend your weekend, we’ve got an exclusive Attitude digital Pride guide
to keep you in the know and a selfie stick on hand for an unforgettable weekend!
We’re proud to be celebrating the Pride season with you.

Choose from over 55 hotels across the UK in destinations that give you the weekend you want – towns, cities and countryside.
MarriottWeekends.co.uk/Pride Share your photos #PrideSelf

MARRIOTT.indd
CSM073 88 Attitude advert aw.indd 1
WeekendPride 15/04/2015 11:42:33
14/04/2015 13:13
Let The Music Play
words: AARON TOUMAZOU attitude_festivals

Summer is fast approaching, so it’s time to fetch your tent out of the shed and get prepping for festival
season. Here we chat to your favourite new musicians about their festival experiences, and run through our
pick of this season’s best musical weekenders, from UK staples to holidays with a soundtrack, and if you’re
precious about muddy shoes and a bit of b.o, we’ve thrown in some nifty non-camping offerings too

Glastonbury in the
uk
The unlikely Saturday night
headline announcement of
Kanye West might have sparked a bit
of controversy, but you’re more likely
to bump into any one of the Attitude
team dancing ALL DAY to Yeezus than
moshing out to Foo Fighters. And anyway,
they could announce the dog that Dolly
Parton nearly adopted last year as the
Sunday night pyramid stage slot and it’d
still be this summer’s hot ticket.
Where is it? Worthy Farm, Glastonbury, Somerset
W hen is it ? 24-28 J une
B est for ? K anye , general atmosphere & mud
glastonburyfestivals . co . uk

V Festival

YEARS & YEARS


V unashamedly devotes itself to
mainstream pop, with artists like Calvin
Harris, Paloma Faith, Ellie Goulding, Sam
Smith, Olly Murs and even Tom Jones.
If you fancy a jig in the mud to all your
chart favourites of the last year, this is the
festival for you. They’re also introducing
The breakthrough band of the year are releasing their debut album early this a host of new dance acts and up-and-
summer and will proceed to wow crowds at music festivals from Devon to Helsinki coming DJs, and will bring back their much
loved comedy tent which has hosted the
What was the first ever music festival we had to perform and I thought I was gonna likes of Alan Carr and Tim Minchin before.
you went to? pass out. I really don’t recommend two days of W here is it ? H ighlands P ark , C helmsford
I went to this festival called Glade, which is a partying before playing at a festival. I thought I and W eston P ark
drum & bass festival, when I was 17 or 16. It was was gonna die. But I made it through. W hen is it ? 22 - 23 A ugust
really messy; I got horrendously wasted and left Which festival are you most excited to play B est for ? P op
after one day. this summer? V festival . com
What’s the best item to take to a festival? Glastonbury, for sure. It’s legendary, it’s iconic.
Tissues? Just take tissues. Because if you’re ever I’ve never been. We’re doing Flow in Finland
caught short, you have tissues. this year too, which is going to be sick. All
What’s your best festival experience? those Scandi festivals are SO cool. There’s one
Secret Garden Party last year was really fun. called Way Out West as well. They’re all the
We played on the last day but we went for the BEST line ups.
whole weekend. Y ears & Y ears debut album C ommunion is out early
What’s your worst festival experience? summer . R ead our in - depth interview with frontman
Ermmm, day three at Secret Garden Party, when O lly A lexander on attitude . co . uk

89

257_EDIT_FESTIVALS_PRIDE#.indd 89 15/04/2015 09:42:22


attitude_festivals

HUDSON TAYLOR

Flow outside
The Irish brotherly folk duo have just released Helsinki’s urban music and arts
festival features an unrivalled line- the uk non
their debut album Singing For Strangers and will
be doing the rounds of UK and European festivals
up including old school legends The Great Escape camping
and topical newcomers in abundance, from The Great Escape in lovely
this summer. Here we chat to Harry (left) the Pet Shop Boys and Beck to Major Lazer, sunny Brighton is fast overtaking
Years & Years and scandi artists like Tove its Stateside equivalent South by
What was the first music festival you went to? Lo. The event is one of a kind, taking place Southwest as the premiere festival
The first one I went to was Oxygen festival in at a defunct Suvilahti power plant and its for emerging artists, descended on by
Ireland. It’s not going anymore but it was, at industrial surroundings in downtown industry execs and music lovers in
the time, a huge festival. The first year I went I Helsinki’s immediate vicinity, showcasing equal measure. This year it celebrates
saw Kings of Leon and Eminem, it was a great visual arts, film screenings, talks, design its ten year anniversary with a line-up
mismatch of stuff. and world-spanning cuisine on top of that including a bunch of new R&B girls
What’s your must-have item to take to a insane line-up. we’re championing (Seinabo Sey, Ibeyi,
festival with you? W here is it ? H elsinki , F inland Kelela and Lion Babe) among many
Well it’s obvious: Wellies. Although, if you’re W hen is it ? 14-16 A ugust other exciting talents who are sure to
going to do wellies, make sure you’ve got long B est for ? EVERYTHING be on your radar in the near future.
socks. If you’re walking around festivals in flowfestival . com W here is it ? B righton
wellies and no socks, you don’t realise but W hen is it ? 14-16 M ay
you rub all the hair off your legs. You get that B est for ? U p and comers
friction rub. I woke up one morning and thought greatescapefestival . com
someone had jokingly shaved my legs.
What’s your best ever festival experience?
That’s gotta be when we played at Glastonbury
last year. There was that big electrical storm.
Rudimental were on the pyramid stage while
little Hudson Taylor were over in the Avalon
stage. Because of this electrical storm every single
stage had to shut down and, harking back to our
busking days, we did it with no microphones. We

Radio 1's Big Weekend


just hopped down to the middle of the crowd and
played a few songs while we were waiting for the
storm to pass over. Who’d pass up the chance to see Taylor
What about your worst festival experience? Swift in Norwich? This month in
Hmmm, I generally have a pretty good buzz at Earham Park, just off the grounds of
a festival. It wouldn’t be anything that bad. Any the University of East Anglia, Tay-tay
time it rains and you’re not wearing the right headlines Radio 1’s annual extravaganza

Benicassim
clothes, that’s a bummer, but at the same time, alongside Florence + the Machine,
sometimes it rains and you just embrace it, and who’ll be showcasing her new album, as
you dance around like a mad lad. Get your Brit-pop on in the Recinto de well as Attitude favourites Years & Years
Which festival are you most looking forward Benicassim, where Blur headline among and many, many more.
to playing most this year? acts like The Prodigy, Jamie T and Noel W here is it ? E arlham P ark , N orwich
We’re at a good few, with more announcements Gallagher’s High Flying Birds. There’ll W hen is it ? 23-24 M ay
to come I’m sure. We’re playing Benicassim in be no need for wellies (or Kayaks a la B est for ? T aylor S wift
Spain which is exciting, and there’s a few little Glastonbury 2014) in this almost rain-free bbc . co . uk
ones in London here and there. coastal climate. By day you can swim and
H udson T aylor ’ s debut album S inging F or S trangers sunbathe till your hearts content, and by
is out now . H arry also kindly requested we credit night an incredible line-up of Brit classics
their track D on ’ t T ell M e , which they ’ d like to (as well as some more worldy, alt acts) will
dedicate to the LGBT community . K eep an eye out for have you dancing the night away.
H arry ’ s extended interview on attitude . co . uk where W here is it ? R ecinto de B enicassim , S pain
he chats about the I rish E qual M arriage R eferendum W hen is it ? 16-19 J uly
in M ay and what it means for his lesbian sister . B est for ? S un
fiberfib . com

90

257_EDIT_FESTIVALS_PRIDE#.indd 90 15/04/2015 15:59


CARDIFF PRIDE.indd 91 15/04/2015 11:48:31
Summer of Love
attitude_festivals words: WILL STROUDE

dON'T LIMIT YOURSELF TO THE LOCAL THIS YEAR: AS PRIDE SEASON BEGINS, WE BRING
YOU A TASTE OF WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THE BEST EVENTS ON OFFER AROUND THE COUNTRY

THIS MONTH:
BIRMINGHAM PRIDE (May 23-24)
It’s Britain’s perpetually underrated second city,
but the Brummies do pride with the best of them,
boasting the country’s biggest two day LGBT festival
and more canals (and boys, probably) than Venice. As
well as being home to some world-class art venues
such as Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and
The Waterhall Gallery, the likes of Cadbury World,
Drayton Manor Theme Park and West Midlands Safari
Park are all on hand for a day excursion – and that’s
before you even get to pride itself. Poignantly lead this
year by the real-life members of Lesbians and Gays
Support the Miners – the subject of last year’s BAFTA-
winning Pride – the march kicks things off on Saturday
lunchtime before a host of big name acts keep the party
going across the four stages on offer in the village,
including the Nightingale Main Stage and predictably
riotous Cabaret Tent, which will be graced this year
by acts including notorious Drag Queens of London star
Baga Chipz. As for that chart-topping line-up, you can
expect to see the likes of Jess ‘Rather Be’ Glynne, Union
J, Example, Marvin Humes’ post-JLS group LuvBug
and rare The Voice success story Becky Hill, who’ll be
playing the Chic Dance Arena alongside star DJs like
Chris Lorenzo to keep you going ‘til the early hours.
B irmingham P ride 2015 takes place S aturday 23 –
S unday 24 M ay . birminghampride . com

Birmingham where
to stay
Forest of Arden
Marriott Hotel Marriott Hotel &
Country Club
Centrally located in the heart
of the city, Birmingham
Marriott Hotel is just a 20 If your #PrideSelf demands
minute walk from all the a bit more space between the
action in the gay village and raucous and the relaxing,
the perfect base if you’ve got the Forest of Arden Marriott
an action-packed weekend Hotel & Country Club is the
of festivities in mind. One perfect rural bolt-hole for
of the few Brum hotels when the hotpants and angel
with onsite parking, the wings reach critical mass.
luxuriously kitted four-star Nestled in the stunning
rooms have high-speed Warwickshire countryside,
internet access for those even the late-nighter crowd
Instagrammed memories won’t be out on a limb, with
and all include king-size beds, meaning extra space for you and any the elegant four-star country resort just a 20 quid cab ride from the city
potential, erm, guests. With hearty grub at the West 12 Bar & Grill and on- centre. As well as boasting two 18-hole golf courses, an esteemed golf
site leisure facilities including fitness centre, indoor pool and spa to treat academy and tennis courts, you’ll have full use of the swimming pool,
yourself to throughout the day, you’ll be rested and recuperated enough to sauna, steam room and fully equipped fitness centre to help you unwind
hit the town and main stage night after night. after a hard day’s march.
M arriott W eekends . co . uk /P ride M arriott W eekends . co . uk /P ride

92

257_EDIT_FESTIVALS_PRIDE#.indd 92 15/04/2015 15:59


ATTITUDE_ADVERTORIAL

BE YOUR #PRIDESELF I
t’s that time of the year already, when
men and women up and down the
land join together to march for a
better tomorrow/consume a year’s
supply of Lambrini by midday

WITH ATTITUDE AND MARRIOTT


(delete as appropriate) – but whatever
way you do it, prides are rightly earning
their status as some of the UK’s best music
events, with the country’s biggest artists
on display at a fraction of the festival
cost. To ensure you can make the most of
your weekend – whether it’s the politics,
partying or a peaceful retreat – Marriott
Hotels are offering an exclusive Attitude
Pride Package to ensure you can be your
#PrideSelf wherever you choose to spend
your summer breaks. With city hotels at
the heart of the action or rural retreats to
escape to with your other half, don’t limit
yourself to your local this year and get out
to see what else is on offer: If you want to
explore some of the UK’s best cities, there’s
no better time to do it than through the
rainbow-tinted spectacles of pride. Marriott
and Attitude’s Pride Package comes with
all the little perks and extras that’ll ensure
you can live your pride weekend to the full:
an overnight complete with an Attitude
and Marriott Pride Guide; a selfie stick
and free wi-fi to ensure you can capture
and share every minute of the action, and
finally late check-out, so you can make the
most of a weekend lie-in for two (or enjoy
the necessary recovery period from the
night before...) However you do Pride, it’s
message has always been to be yourself,
and with Marriott’s selection of luxurious
hotels and sites across the country, you can
be your #PrideSelf however you choose to
spend it.
Marriott’s exclusive Attitude Pride package runs
May 1st to September 31st. To find out which
hotels are taking part head to MarriottWeekends.
co.uk/Pride.

93

257_ADVERTORIAL_MARRIOTT APPROVED.indd 93 15/04/2015 14:41:36


Best of theRest
ATTITUDE_FESTIVALS

PRIDE IN LONDON (JUNE 27) NORTHERN PRIDE (JULY 17-19)


It’s up there with the world-beaters and remains the capital’s biggest As well as being one of the best prides you’ll find on these shores,
one day event, with a quarter of a million people turning out for Pride in Newcastle’s resident LGBT event is also one of Attitude’s favourite things:
London 2014 – figures no doubt explained by the fact Sinitta used it as an free. And if that doesn’t get you firing up the confetti cannon then frankly
opportunity to debut her first original material since 1997. With a ‘Heroes’ there’s no hope left for you. This year the Geordies are putting on a
theme and rainbow-clad parade route passing some of the world’s most three-day ‘One Love’-themed spectacular, with headline performances by
iconic landmarks before ending in a monumental party in Trafalgar Belinda Carlisle and B*Witched and a line-up including former X Factor
Square, if you’ve yet to experience the buzz that is Pride in London, this finalists Lucy Spraggan, Misha B and Joseph Whelan. As well as the
is the year. You can even spend Sunday recovering at Pride in the Park music, a host of food outlets, stalls and themed zones will be open at the
as live entertainment, community stalls, sports events and, who knows, Town Moor, and if you’re yet to visit Newcastle’s Pink Triangle, the pubs
maybe even good weather descend on Vauxhall for the afternoon. and clubs will be hosting additional events throughout the weekend.
PRIDEINLONDON . ORG NORTHERN - PRIDE . COM

PRIDE CYRMU/CARDIFF MARDI GRAS (AUGUST 15) MANCHESTER PRIDE (AUGUST 28-31)
The official pride fest of the west returns to Cooper’s Field this year, The perfect summer swansong, the UK’s biggest pride festival outside
exactly three decades after a grand total of 30 people took part in the the capital takes place each year over August Bank Holiday weekend,
city’s first ever march in 1985. The event’s transformation shows just meaning four days and three nights of partying as Canal Street
how far we’ve come, and while this year’s line-up is still to be announced, transforms into carnival central for The Big Weekend. Celebrating its
last year’s roster of Misha B, Stooshe, Eternal and Britain’s Got Talent- 25th anniversary, this year’s event is already shaping up to be the best
winning boyband Collabro promises exciting things to come. Highlights ever, with pop legends Texas already confirmed to headline and bags
from 2014 included the boys covering Let It Go and making a girl in the more acts to be announced. Given the likes of All Saints, Anastacia, MKS,
front row cry with unfettered joy: If that’s not the true meaning of pride Steps, Sugababes and Kelis have all graced the main stage over the last
we don’t know what is. few years, expect big things for 2015.
PRIDECYMRU . CO . UK MANCHESTERPRIDE . COM

94

257_EDIT_FESTIVALS_PRIDE#.indd 94 15/04/2015 15:59


SA L E NOW
E T S ON
TICK
The BIG Weekend
Friday 28 - Monday 31 August 2015
Tickets & further info at manchesterpride.com
Raising money for LGBT and HIV charities
and organisations in Greater Manchester
manchesterpride Registered charity 1117848

MANCHESTER 2.indd 95 15/04/2015 14:40:49


19TH JULY
FRIDAY 17TH
2015
TO SUNDAY
19TH JULY
2015

PUT PRIDEE IN YOUR


R BUSSINESSS AND
D ENG
GAGE WITH
H THEE LGB
BT CO
OMMUNITY
WELCOME TO NEWCASTLE PRIDE 2015 – A YEAR IN WHICH WE CELEBRATE ONE LOVE.

PJoin us for the biggest free LGBT festival the North East has ever seen!
Following the success of last year’s pride celebration, which welcomed Here are some great facts about last year’s event:

PUT RIDE ETown


IN Moor
YOUR R BUSSINESSS AND D ENG GAGE WITH H THEE LGB BT CO
OMMU
65,000 people from across the region, UK and overseas, Newcastle • The festival ran from 5th July to 4th August and included a gallery
Pride is back and the event will be even bigger than before. exhibition, two film screenings, talks, five social events, Paws with

Newcastle & Newcastle’s Vibrant Gay Scene


This year we’ll be staging a mega three day celebration with eight Pride (family pet show which attracted over 2000 people), and the

Upgrad
satellite events running throughout the months of July and August – our
biggest and most ambitious festival ever. It will be welcoming, loud and
main event – Newcastle Pride - which ran for three days

e to
BELINDA CARLISLE B*WITCHED
• 65,000 people engaged with the festival

Golden C
proud and offers the perfect opportunity for organisations to get involved
• The estimated economic impact to the region was £7.8million

ircle
and engage with the LGBT community and our allies.

WELCOME TO NEWCASTLE PRIDE 2015 – A YEAR IN WHICH WE CELEBRATE VIP Marq ONE LOVE.
• In PR terms (based on a six month campaign including print,
Our theme this year is ‘One Love’ as we commemorate 45 years since
broadcast and month-long FM broadcast on Pride Radio ) we

uee
the first Pride event was staged in New York following the Stonewall
generated £1million in positive awareness
Riots. This marked the turning point for gay rights around the world and

Following theLUCY SPRAGGAN KITTY BRUCKNELL MISHA B HereJOSEPH WHELAN


we’ll be reflecting on this important milestone with a number of satellite • 87% of those who attend travelled from the Northeast with visitors

success of last year’s pride celebration, which welcomed are some great facts about last year’s event:
events, printed material, a parade featuring replicas of banners from
pride events over the decades and main stage speeches.
from throughout the UK including York, London, Brighton, Glasgow,
Bradford, Edinburgh, Belfast, Aberdeen, Birmingham, Liverpool and

Main Stage Acts Health Zone Family Zone Dance Tent• The festival ranTent
Women’s
Manchester
65,000 people from across the region, UK and overseas, Newcastle
This unique celebration, hosted by the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and
Transgender community, welcomes all the community as we come
from 5th July to 4th August and included a
together and celebrate the rich diversity Newcastle and the North East
• 8% stayed in a hotel – generating over 4,500 sleepers. Hotels
included: Jurys Inn, Holiday Inn, Sandman Signature, Grey Street,

PrideBear
is back and
Zone the event will
Fun Fair be even bigger than
Market Stalls before. Food Outlets & Bars Cabaret
exhibition, two Tent talks, five social events, Paw
film screenings,
has to offer. It’s about sharing ideas, learning from one another, changing
perceptions, promoting health and wellbeing, celebrating diversity,
Hotel Indigo, Hilton, Roomzzz, New Northumbria Hotel, The County
Thistle, Copthorne, Sleeperz, Royal Station Hotel
raising awareness and, of course, having lots of fun. • 7,000 people marched through Newcastle as part of the Pride Parade
This year we’ll be staging a mega three day celebration with eight
And many more! Check website for details... Pride (family
It’s also a fantastic opportunity for businesses, charities and
organisations to get involved.
pet show which attracted over 2000 people), a
• 5,000 people engaged with our satellite events
• 94% rated the festival Excellent/Good
satellite events running throughout the months of July and August – our main event – Newcastle Pride - which ran for three days
DETACH & DISPLAY

DETACH & DISPLAY

DETACH & DISPLAY

THIS YEAR WE HOPE TO INCREASE OUR • 310 people were screened for STI’s – ranging from Chlamydia to HIV
ATTENDANCE FURTHER WITH A BIGGER • 200 people attended the first candle lit vigil to end Newcastle Pride
biggest and most ambitious festival ever. It will be welcoming, loud and
THIS POSTER

THIS POSTER

THIS POSTER

• 65,000 people engaged with the festival


*figures based on 728 completed surveys
AND MORE DIVERSE CELEBRATION.
www.northern-pride.com www.northern-pride.com
proud and offers the perfect opportunity for organisations to get involved design
• The estimated economic impact to the region was £7.8milli
and engage with the LGBT community and our allies.
• In PR terms (based on a six month campaign including print
Our theme this year is ‘One Love’ as we commemorate 45 years since

Cinq&Sept
broadcast and month-long FM broadcast on Pride Radio ) w
the first Pride event was staged in New York following the Stonewall
generated £1million in positive awareness
Riots. This marked the turning point for gay rights around the world and
we’ll be reflecting on this important milestone with a number of satellite • 87% of those who attend travelled from the Northeast with
GAY GUESTHOUSE SOUTH OF FRANCE
events, printed material, a parade featuring replicas of banners from from throughout the UK including York, London, Brighton, Gl
pride events over the decades and main stage speeches. Bradford, Edinburgh, Belfast, Aberdeen, Birmingham, Liverp
Manchester
This unique celebration, hosted by the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and
Transgender community, welcomes all the community as we come • 8% stayed in a hotel – generating over 4,500 sleepers. Hot
together and celebrate the rich diversity Newcastle and the North East included: Jurys Inn, Holiday Inn, Sandman Signature, Grey S
has to offer. It’s about sharing ideas, learning from one another, changing Hotel Indigo, Hilton, Roomzzz, New Northumbria Hotel, The C
perceptions, promoting health and wellbeing, celebrating diversity, Thistle, Copthorne, Sleeperz, Royal Station Hotel
raising awareness and, of course, having lots of fun. • 7,000 people marched through Newcastle as part of the Pride
It’s also a fantastic opportunity for businesses, charities and • 5,000 people engaged with our satellite events
organisations to get involved. • 94% rated the festival Excellent/Good
THIS YEAR WE HOPE TO Hosts INCREASEAlex & Greg
OUR • 310 people were screened for STI’s – ranging from Chlamydi
ATTENDANCE FURTHER WITH A BIGGER • 200 people attended the first candle lit vigil to end Newcast
*figures based on 728 completed surveys
AND MORE DIVERSE CELEBRATION.

Six elegant self-catering suites in a 300 year-old mansion.


25mins from Mediterranean beaches. Enjoy superb restaurants,
wine tasting and garden parties. Relax and make new friends.

cinqetsept.com

Briefs_97x129.indd 1 14/04/2015 13:05


NORTHERN PRIDE_CINQ_EMG.indd 96 15/04/2015 11:51:44
Attitude.co.uk/Style • @Attitudestyle
Lyle & Scott X Jonathan Saunders
We loved it the first time around, but the strength of this
collaboration shows no sign of slacking in its second season.
Lyle & Scott and Jonathan Saunders have created a
26-piece collection, taking inspiration from Shane
Meadows’ Stone Roses: Made of Stone, with a
sports lux aesthetic and bold stripes,
something of a signature of Saunders.
The collection is Italian-made,
with pieces including bomber
jackets, jumpers and knitted polo
shirts with contrast collars.
Paint splatter-print tops and
footwear add a bit of chaos to
the orderly stripes.
The graphic patterns
and mixing and matching
of prints in frivolous
colours jigsaw together
to showcase the best both
brands have to offer.
We’re big fans.
Lyleandscott.com

Photographer: Mark Cant


Fashion and words: Joseph Kocharian
Hair: tom berry using BUmble & bumble
make up: rhea le riche using MAC
model: George hammond at amck models

257_STYLE_OPENER#.indd 97 14/04/2015 14:18:42


trend_ATTITUDE

Camouflage
with a-listers ben
stiller and owen wilson
championing camo on this
season’s valentino catwalk,
camouflage is back in a big
way, and it no longer has to
adhere to the earthy colour
paletTE that we’ve become so
used to...
Photography:
Mark Cant
Fashion and words:
Joseph Kocharian

Contrasting colours
work well for this
trend, but choose
your hues carefully
to make sure they at
least complement one
another.

Jacket by Markus
Lupfer, £455; jeans
by Rufskin, £129

Total
look:
£584

Hair: Tom Berry using


Bumble & Bumble / Make
up: Rhea Le Riche using
MAC Cosmetics /
Model: Christopher at
Nevs Models / Styling
Assistant: Nick Byam

98

257_STYLE_TREND#.indd 98 14/04/2015 16:44


Polo shirt by
Lyle & Scott,
Camouflage shorts £65; shorts by
by Asos, £20 H&M, £24.99

TOTAL TOTAL
LOOK: LOOK:
£20 £89.99

If you go for the traditional colour palette, mix it up a bit Mixing a subtle print with a block colour can be a good
with a different print, like these pixalated camo shorts. way to introduce some boldness to your wardrobe.

FINISH THE LOOK


CLOTHES, BAGS AND ACCESSORIES
ARE ALL COVERED IN CAMO. PICK
YOUR COLOURWAY AND COMMIT TO IT

Valentino shorts, £285


Eastpak backpack, £40 Havianas flip flops, £20
at matches fashion

99

257_STYLE_TREND#.indd 99 14/04/2015 16:45


ATTITUDE_STYLE

TROLLEY Y-3 have combined adidas’


iconic three-stripe panels with
rubber detailing on hawaiian

DASH
print t-shirts this season, in
keeping with their focus on
all things subcultural

ADIDAS
Adidas have made a
name for themselves
as the kings of
collaboarations,
having partnered with
Raf Simons, Rick
Owens, Juun.J and
various celebrities
including Pharrell.
There’s always
something exciting
going down in
Adidas towers.

adidas x juun.j Promdel 80s Hi JJ, £225 Y-3 FS Backpack, £180

Spring/summer 15
is the first season
collaborating with
Korean designer
Juun.J. They have
updated the adidas
Superstar by
deconstructing the
well known three
stripes to give a
minimalist style,
available in low and
high-cut versions
Porsche design sport by Adidas Y-3 Yohji Boost trainer, £210
Windblocker Jacket, £300

PHOTOGRAPHY: DAVID MARQUEZ/ EDIT & WORDS: JOSEPH KOCHARIAN / ASSISTANT: NICK BYAM

100

257_STYLE_SHOPPING#.indd 100 14/04/2015 14:15:59


Adidas and
its various
collaborations
can be found at
Selfridges, Dover
Street Market and
Matches Fashion,
or online at
adidasx.com,
adidas.co.uk and
Y-3store.com

porsche design Sport by adidas Y-3 Hawaii SS Shirt, £285


Colorblock Pique, £100

Adidas Originals
have teamed up with pop
superhuman Pharrell
Williams. The iconic
trainers are available
in 50 colours, it’s a
footwear rainbow!
The floral pattern Y-3
are using this season
is called the pulmeria
print, which is more
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frangipani flower adidas originals = Pharrell Williams
adidas by Raf Simons Bounce trainer, Supercolor trainer, £67
£355

Posche Design
Sport by adidas
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exclusive BOUNCE
technology, with car-
inspired suspension
that converts
vertical impact into
Y-3 Surfer Stripe Tank, £65
Porsche Design Sport by adidas Bounce:
S3 trainer, £295
forward propulsion

101

257_STYLE_SHOPPING#.indd 101 14/04/2015 14:16:35


STYLE_GROOMING

JO MALONE
You might not know this,
but Jo Malone London’s
products- that’s everything
from colognes to fragrances to
candles- are all unisex. Their
scents are crafted with the 1
2
perfect balance of floral and
spice ingredients so that both
men and women can enjoy
them. Their latest fragrance
Incense & Cedrat Cologne
Intense is no exception-
definitely catering for the men.
To make it, Jo Malone London
researched the sap of the
Omani frankinsense tree, then
used nature print technology
to replicate the sap to remain
environmentally conscious.
With plenty of beautifully 3
blended fragrances to choose
from, we encourage you to
take a trip into your nearest
Jo Malone store and find your
signature Jo Malone fragrance.
Incense & Cedrat Cologne
Intense is out in June ‘15.
jomalone.com

Photography David marquez


Edit & words by Joseph Kocharian

1. Jo Malone London Amber & Lavender Cologne, £82


2. Jo Malone London Oud & Bergamot Dry Body Oil, £48
3. Jo Malone London Pomegranate Noir Bath Oil, £50
4. Jo Malone London Dark Amber & Ginger Lily Scented Home Candle, £48
5. Jo Malone London Incense & Cedrat Cologne Intense, £105

102

257_STYLE_GROOMING_CRUSH#.indd 102 14/04/2015 14:21:12


MR PORTER AND COS HAVE TEAMED UP TO BRING YOU ‘THE MODERN
TRAVELLER’ – A WARDROBE THAT’LL GET YOU FROM A-TO-B IN STYLE

T
his summer, Cos and MR PORTER have created a capsule
collection for the modern man who gets around. The limited
edition 23-piece collection features plenty of styles, from slim-cut
single-breasted tailoring, swim shorts, footwear and even luggage.
Cos’ head of menswear design Martin Andersson said they wanted
to create a collection “where the tailored suit can take you from a
business meeting in NYC to an art gallery opening in the evening.’
Not every crush has to be unattainable; with reasonable price points,
this is a collection full of staples for a wardrobe on the move.
The Modern Traveller Collection will launch on May 7 on
MRPORTER.COM, in selected COS stores and cosstores.com

Shoes, £59
Bag, £115

Patterned shirt,
£49; shorts, £69; Photography: Mark Cant / Fashion & words: Joseph Kocharian
shoes, £59 Hair: Tom Berry using Bumble & Bumble / Make up: Rhea Le Riche
using MAC / Model: George at AMCK models

FENDI MONSTER LOUIS VUITTON GOES ON HOLIDAY


Everyone in fashionland has been talking Louis Vuitton has got literary this season, launching two new travel titles:
about these little creatures - Fendi’s men’s A
‘ rctic’ by Blaise Drummond and ‘Edinburgh’ by Floc’h. The Louis Vuitton
accessories have expanded their hugely travel book series that these are a part of offer a new vision on travel
popular Monster Design range. You from both established and young talents from the fields of fashion, comic
may have seen their playful backpacks illustrators and contemporary artists. They look at both natural and urban
in our last issue, but they have gone desitnations, and for £38 each they make rather nice coffee table books.
on to do wallets and keyrings, too. louisvuitton.com
(some even have little haircuts!)
fendi.com

103

257_STYLE_GROOMING_CRUSH#.indd 103 14/04/2015 14:21:46


Meet me at
the bleAchers upgrade your sportswear

104

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 104 14/04/2015 10:14


Photography: mark cant Fashion: Joseph Kocharian
This page: t-shirt by River Island, £28; briefs by D.Hedral, €29; trainers by Lacoste, £65; socks by sockshop, £10
Opposite: Sweatshirt by Emporio Armani, £1375

105

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 105 14/04/2015 10:15


This page: Jumper, by Lacoste Live, £135; shorts, by Lacoste, £60
Opposite: Shirt, £400; shorts, £315 both by DSquared2

106

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 106 14/04/2015 10:15


107

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 107 14/04/2015 10:15


Tyler wears blazer, £564;
trousers, £317 both by
Vivienne Westwood, polo
neck by John Varvatos,
£225, shoes by River
Island, £45

108

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 108 14/04/2015 10:15


This page: Shirt by Topman, £25; shorts by Asos, £22; trainers by adidas at Office, £69.99; socks by sockshop, £10
Opposite: Jacket by Farah, £65; shorts by Marc by Marc Jacobs at MR PORTER, £120

with Wimbledon just around the corner, a head-


to-toe white outfit can look on point. add
extra panels to give your outfit a modern edge
109

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 109 14/04/2015 10:15


T-shirt stylist’s own from Gotta Have It Vintage Boutique; from $35; briefs by D.Hedral, €29

110

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 110 14/04/2015 10:15


111

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 111 14/04/2015 10:16


This page: Hooded jumper by Marc Jacobs, €3025
Opposite: White polo with bands, €420; small round plexi earrings, €245 both by Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci

Keep your sportwear simple. strong lines and contrasting


colours bring a sports-luxe feel to your outfit
112

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 112 14/04/2015 10:17


113

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 113 14/04/2015 10:17


Vests and mesh
are a good way
of keeping you cool
whilst working out

Tyler wears black coat with tone and tone


on band details on body, €3200; white shirt
with black band details on body, €490;
black Bermuda with white rubber bands
on belt; €350, Black poplin tie, €120; Low
COMMANDO boots in black grained leather
with white laces and lacing and cross detail
at the back, €995, black wig cap; small
round plexi earrings 16mm, €245 all by
Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci

114

257_STYLE_FASHION#@.indd 114 15/04/2015 16:07


This page: Tank top by Louis Vuitton, £550; shorts by T by Alexander Wang, £125
Opposite: Net t-shirt, £212; jogging bottoms, £230; boxer shorts, £45 all by Versace

115

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 115 14/04/2015 10:17


Tyler wears black coat with tone and tone
on band details on body, €3200; white shirt
with black band details on body, €490;
black Bermuda with white rubber bands
on belt; €350, Black poplin tie, €120; Low
COMMANDO boots in black grained leather
with white laces and lacing and cross detail
at the back, €995, black wig cap; small
round plexi earrings 16mm, €245 all by
Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci

116

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 116 14/04/2015 10:17


Jogging bottoms by Adidas, £35

117

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 117 14/04/2015 10:17


Gilet by La Perla,
£720; shorts by
Marc by Marc
Jacobs, at Harvey
Nichols £120

stockists
Adidas at Office office.co.uk
Adidas by Juun. J adidadasX.com
Adidas by Raf Simons adidasX.com
Adidas Orginals = Pharrell Williams adidas.co.uk/supercolor
ASOS asos.com
Boohoo FIT boohoo.com
Burton burton.co.uk
D. Hedral dhedral.com
Diesel Black Gold store.diesel.com
Dior Homme dior.com
DSquared2 dsquared2.com
Eastpak eastpak.com
Emporio Armani armani.com
Farah farah.co.uk
Fendi fendi.com
Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci givenchy.com
H&M hm.com
Hardy Aimes at MR PORTER mrporter.com
Havaianas havaianas-store.com
HUGO hugoboss.com
La Perla laperla.com
Lacoste lacoste.com
Lacoste Live lacoste.com/live
Louis Vuitton uk.louisvuitton.com
Lyle & Scott by Jonathan Saunders lyleandscott.com
Lyle & Scott lyleandscott.com Hair:
M&S Collection marksandspencer.com Tom Berry using Bumble & Bumble
M&S marksandspencer.com Make up:
Marc by Marc Jacobs at Harvey Nichols harveynichols.com
Rhea Le Riche using MAC Cosmetics
Marc Jacobs marcjacobs.com
Model:
Markus Lupfer markuslupfer.com
McQ at Harvey Nichols harveynichols.com Miroslav Cech at
Paul Smith paulsmith.co.uk Premier Model Management
Porsche Design Sport adidas.co.uk/porsche_design_sport_ Styling assistants:
by_adidas Nick Byam and Yasmin Walker
River Island riverisland.com Photography assistant:
Rufskin rufskin.com Jacob Snyman
Sockshop sockshop.co.uk
T by Alexander Wang alexanderwang.com
Topman topman.com
Valentino at Matches Fashion matchesfashion.com
Versace uk.versace.com
Whistles whistles.com
Y-3 Y-3.com
Zimmerelli at MR PORTER mrporter.com

118

257_STYLE_FASHION#.indd 118 14/04/2015 12:20:49


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VITABIOTICS.indd 119 15/04/2015 11:52:40


LA MUSCLE.indd 120 15/04/2015 15:44
EXERCISE
NUTRITION
SPORTS
ADVICE

OPINION
DATING
REAL LIFE
PROPERTY

JUST DANCE RELATIONSHIPS


TRAVEL

aljaz skorjanek
GOING OUT

PG.126

ALL CLOTHES
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257_ACTIVE_OPENER#.indd 121 14/04/2015 12:42:43


>>>>>> ATTITUDE / ACTIVE THE CLINIC

THE CLINIC
with Dr Christian
&
Our health expert
Dr Christian Jessen
answers your
medical queries

Got a problem, want answers? • Email drchristian@attitude.co.uk

There’s been a lot in the news at the gym. Sweating is a sign of an


recently about preventative effective workout but combating it in
the
probe
HIV drugs such as PrEP and a medical sense is tricky. I think the
Truvada, but do they really prevent simple answer is to buy him some
HIV and are they safe to use? good, sweet-smelling deodorant and
Harrison, London to encourage him to shower straight
after working out rather than
Firstly, the term ‘PrEP’ stands waiting until he gets home to do so.
for ‘pre-exposure prophylaxis’, Regularly wash gym gear too as
which is a new HIV prevention sweat, along with dead skin cells,
method, while Truvada is one of the can cling to the material and allow
Didn’t
PrEP drugs currently available in know? the smell to linger.
the US and currently undergoing
trials in the UK. PrEP involves Hyperhidrosis Recently I’ve been catching my
taking antiretroviral drugs in boyfriend watching porn on Body Dysmorphic Disorder
Hyperhidrosis
situations where you feel you may be is a common quite a regular basis. Should I be
at risk from contracting the disease. condition worried that his online habits could Body dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)
The drugs work by preventing HIV which causes a affect his sex drive and our sex life? is a personal subject for me
from establishing a permanent hold person to sweat Matt, Edinburgh as I suffered from it Myself
or infection in the body. It is highly excessively. for a long time. An anxiety
Commonly affected
effective but it has to be taken Unfortunately I would say that disorder related to body image,
areas include the
consistently in order for it to be armpits, palms only you can answer this. If BDD causes the sufferer to
effective. So far, there have been no of your hands, your sex life does seem to be affected believe they need to conceal
significant safety concerns with soles of your by your partner’s solitary activities non-existent flaws. Often
PrEP medication. The most common feet, face, chest then clearly this is an issue you may linked to low self-esteem,
side effects are an upset stomach, and groin. It has want to talk to him about. However, I bullying and perfectionism,
loss of appetite and sleep problems been estimated to will say that masturbation and men with BDD can spend many
but these tend to resolve after a affect between watching porn are completely hours thinking negatively about
one and three in
month of regularly taking. There normal and harmless pastimes for their appearance, build or body
every 100 people
have been concerns about drug in the UK. most men. Of course, there is cause size, which can often lead to
resistance developing in people on for concern if watching porn eating disorders or obsessive
PrEP should they become HIV becomes a regular, frequent or fitness regimes. My own BDD
positive at some stage, but new obsessive habit. Porn becomes was linked to being a skinny
testing methods and sensible clinical problematic when it directly teenager at school so I started
advice can help avoid this happening. interferes with you and your aggressively working out. Many
partner’s sex life or daily routine. If people do not seek help because
My boyfriend sweats you are not able to have sex without they think it will be shrugged
excessively at the gym, and watching porn – or would simply off as a trivial vanity. This
sometimes if it’s hot he comes home prefer to – then this could be a sign can result in depression in
smelling awful. What can cause this of a more serious underlying some cases. Treatment typically
and how can it be helped? problem. It is worth seeking involves psychotherapies such
Jordan, Cork specialist advice when these kinds as cognitive behavioural
of problems arise, so to speak. therapy or medication. I would
Let me just clarify this: always advise specialist
Sweating at the gym is an support from a doctor who is
entirely universal thing. I would be D r Ch r i s t i an i s o n T w i t te r : well-versed in the condition.
more concerned was he not sweating @doctorchristian

122

257_ACTIVE_CLINIC#.indd 122 14/04/2015 16:38:06


USN.indd 123 15/04/2015 11:53:36
>>>>>> attitude / ACTIVE HIV

H IV D I A R I E S
The day-to-day strugle HIV-positive people have with
sticking to their prescribed Anti-Retroviral Therapy
HAART – It should be called Highly I struggle with discipline. I rebel against Kristian Johns,
34, living with
Annoying Anti-Retroviral Therapy in authority, and that’s what those pills become HIV since 2002
my book, because that’s what it is to me: to me. A hard taskmaster, forcing me to do
Annoying. Yes, it’s saved my life and I’m something I resent, practically begging me
being an ungrateful bastard, and yes, plenty to disobey. They don’t call it a regime for
of people breeze through HAART without nothing. I have HIV, I take pills every day,
side-effects, but I’m not one of them. From the and some days, it’s just fucking tiring.
day-to-day (a constant case of the runs, which So I don’t take them. It’s as simple as that.
kind of puts a dampener on the old sex life, And for 24 hours, I feel ‘normal’. It’s hard to
chronic insomnia and night sweats) to the describe, that feeling of not being bound to
slightly more worrying (a cholesterol reading them for a day. It’s freeing. I don’t spend half
of 7.5, prostate problems and liver function my day rushing to the toilet and back. My
that would make an alcoholic feel grateful) head feels clear and I can think. I sleep
those little bastards give me constant grief. better. Perhaps it’s not all down to the
And the problem is, when the drawbacks medication; perhaps there’s a certain
are more immediate and visible than the calm that comes with the false sense of
benefits, that’s when stubbornness comes control my act of defiance gives me, but
into play. Perhaps I’m alone, but I call it ‘pill all I’ll say is that there’s a lot to be said
fatigue’. It’s when you get out of bed, schlep for normality; even if that normality is
to wherever you keep your pills, grab a glass somewhat false.
of water/milk/champagne/whatever and Let’s just get one thing straight: I’m not
then think to yourself, ‘I just don’t WANT advocating nonadherence. It’s stupid
to take them today.’ and it’ll only end up causing hassles
So that’s what I do. I get stubborn, and I don’t further down the line. But I’m not a
iF YOU WANT TO FIND OUT WHERE YOU CAN GET TESTED GO TO tht.org.uk/sexual-health OR CALL 0808 802 1221

take my pills. And it’s stupid. But this is the politician, I’m not a doctor. I hesitate
real world, and sometimes in the real world, even to call myself a spokesperson,
we don’t do what we’re supposed to do, we do especially since I’m writing this column
what we want to do. And that’s probably why I at midnight on a Sunday, wearing nothing
ended up with HIV in the first place. but a crappy pair of grey jogging bottoms,
Logic tells you that the pills keep you bad hair and glasses, with a bag of pic ‘n’
healthy, that they keep the levels of virus mix to keep me company. I’m the man on the
down to undetectable levels in your body so it street, and this is how I feel.
doesn’t get the chance to nuke your immune So I’ve taken myself to the doctor to talk
system from the inside-out. Logic tells you about it. I’ve laid out how the pills are
that if you skip your pills, it runs the risk making me feel, and I’ve been honest about
of the virus mutating into a drug resistant my adherence to them. The nice thing about
strain, and then you’re TRULY fucked. living in 2015 is that we’re not limited to just
Logic says that you’re not just putting a handful of treatment options. There are
yourself at risk, you’re putting the people new drugs and new classes of drugs hitting
you have sex with at risk too. But when the shelves all the time, and if you’re not
that pill fatigue hits, and all you can hear in getting on with them, if you’re struggling –
your head is that little voice saying, “Throw or like me, just plain resenting them – there
them back in the bottle and have a day off,” I are other alternatives. You don’t need to put
can’t ignore it. I wave goodbye to reason and up with crappy side-effects.
logic, and just do what I fucking well want to It’s been a week on the new meds so far.
for a change. Too early to tell if the day-to-day annoyances
You may think it arrogant and childish. are on their way out or not. But
Truth is, you’d be right, but I’d bet money for the first time in a long while,
that few positive people on HAART haven’t I feel something I haven’t felt
had the thought cross their mind at times, with regards to chucking pills
even if they have the mental self-discipline down my neck every day. I think
not to act on it. I’m not one of those people. they call it hope.

124

257_ACTIVE_HIV KRISTIAN#.indd 124 14/04/2015 12:40:36


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PROTEIN DYNAMICS.indd 125 15/04/2015 12:45:47


>>>>>> attitude / ACTIVE aljaz skorjanec

All clothes
and shoes by
boohooFIT

dance off
25-year-old Aljaz Skorjanec
is the Strictly Come Dancing
heartthrob who waltzed Abbey
Clancy to success. Now he’s
showing us his moves
Words ben kelly
Photography Simon Taylor
Styling Nick Byam

126

257_ACTIVE_FEATURE#.indd 126 14/04/2015 12:33:54


Where are you from in the world Aljaz?
I’m originally from Slovenia. I’ve lived
here for just over two years now.
How did you get into dancing?
Well I started when I was five and signed
myself into dance school. I progressed
from there and carried it on for 13 years.
I’ve had loads of support from my family,
especially financially. I was 19-time
winning national champion in Ballroom, Latin
and Ten Dance. By 18, I wanted to hang my
dancing shoes in the corner for a little
while and didn’t really want to go back.
Then a job offer for a Broadway show in
Australia called Burn the Floor came my way.
I went to the audition in London and from
that day I never returned home. I went on a
world tour for three years and ended up in
London’s West End. At that moment, I knew
that the show was going to close. There were
producers that came to our show who were
from Strictly and they approached me to ask
if I would participate in their show.
Is that your career peak so far?
Competing all around Europe was a big part
of my career, but what stays in my head is
winning Strictly. I never imagined being
on the show, and winning it even less so.
It was a dream come true.
You’ve got to be very fit to be a
professional dancer haven’t you?
It’s more of an art than it is a sport
but you do need to stay fit so you’re not
restricting yourself from getting better.
Strictly is only four months every season,
so you’ve just caught me off-season
– thank you very much! I’ve only just
started my training for next year.
You say you’re in Strictly season, is jeans in three different colours, the like my body is struggling to function
that all you need or do you have to go same shirt in five different colours and after long periods off. I’m now monitoring
to the gym as well? a couple of jackets. I’m not really good when I eat and how I eat. I have very
When I’m in season, I don’t go to the gym. at experimental shopping. bad habits when it comes to food but I’m
Everything is day-to-day so it’s really When you are actually training for getting healthier.
hard to plan any workout sessions. But when Strictly, what is the schedule like? Surely you need to eat a lot of calories?
the season is off we have to visit a gym. It depends on your partner’s job. You have I always have a happy meal once a week and
How often do you go? to work around their schedule so you might I’m not good with salads. I’ll always have
I haven’t been to the gym in the last year. work in the mornings, evenings or even both. a bit of chocolate to boost my energy.
Some people like to aim for the masculine With Abbey last year, we trained for eight Do you like your body?
look, but that’s not for me. Getting too big hours a day. We’ve added something this year Your body can always be better but I
would restrict my dancing, so I just take where we rehearse in Birmingham for four think we live in a world where people are
care of myself by doing my own exercises. days, then come back, do the show, and then obsessing over body image. I don’t want
You’ve got to look good for those really professionals get a Sunday off. But that’s to change myself too much.
tight outfits on Strictly, haven’t you? when we choreograph our routines for the What do you look for in a dance partner?
Sometimes you get to the outfit room following week. So there are no days off as It’s important to get along with your
and almost start running. We have an long as you stay in the competition. But partner because you spend so much time
incredible team of people that take care you’re so caught in the bubble, it doesn’t together. I admire patience. If you
of the costumes and I trust them 100%. I’m really matter how busy you are. work at things slowly, it will get done
not normally one for sparkles on a casual What kind of food and drink do you eventually. I even have it tattooed on me,
Wednesday, but for Strictly I don’t mind. have when training? ‘shorter is the longest way’. I also love
What do you usually wear? I drink loads of water but I’ve never hard working partners who don’t mind being
I’m a very plain guy. I have the same watched what I eat. I’m 25 now and I feel told what to do.

127

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ALJAZ SKORJANEC ACTIVE / ATTITUDE<<<<<<

FIT FASHION
CAROLINE EVANS, DESIGN DIRECTOR
AT BOOHOO SAID: “WE HAVE ALWAYS
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STYLING ASSISTANT: MARK-ASHLEY DUPÉ

131

257_ACTIVE_FEATURE#.indd 131 14/04/2015 12:35:20


>>>>>>ATTITUDE / ACTIVE LIFESTYLE
OPEN UP

REAL BODIES
ABOUT
YOUR Diet
BODY I try to be as healthy as I can and I
think my diet is actually pretty decent.
I will always have a protein breakfast in
the morning. I’ll eat a salad at lunch
and dinner is usually something along the
lines of tuna and jacket potatoes.

G u ilt y Plea s u r e s 120cals


RE D W IN E
si ng
I like the odd le gl as s

Darren Merchant, glass of wine


and I like
43, Sales Order pizza. Sometimes

Administrator 285cals Ben and Jerry’s


ice-cream too.
PI ZZ A Two for £4
pl ai n sl ic
e deals are hard
I thought doing ‘Real to pass up.
Bodies’ would be
something different,
a little challenge for
myself. I wanted to
push my limits. I’m
doing this today for
the older generation.
We don’t always get
a look in. My body
has changed a lot – I
was heavier when I
was younger – so it’s
an acknowledgment
of that.

IDEAL
HEIGHT/WEIGHT MAN

6’0
11.4stone
I guess it would be
Dan Osborne, the guy
159.6 pounds
from TOWIE. He’s
got a really good body.
His build is great in
that he’s not overly
muscly but he’s not
PHOTOGRAPHY: JOSEPH SINCLAIR

skinny either; a perfect


middle-ground so
to speak. I wouldn’t
WORDS: KEVIN LONG

complain about looking


like him... Or being
with him.
132

257_ACTIVE_REAL BODIES#.indd 132 15/04/2015 10:01:30


Manscaping
I trim. I use a trimmer to trim my chest
mostly as I think it just makes it cleaner. I
wouldn’t shave or wax my legs or anything
like that. I think guys should be guys. Of
course, I give the pubic area a trim as well;
that kind of goes without saying.

Top Body Product


I can’t remember the exact name of it but I’m
using a Boots moisturiser at the moment,
which I use daily. I always moisturise
straight after the shower when I’m at the
gym just to make sure my skin is clean and
fresh after the workout and hot shower.

Clothes
I dress to fit my shape. I like slim jeans, 8 Motivational
quite a relaxed look. I like t-shirts and polo-
shirts. I pay more attention to how I dress
tips in
now that I’ve lost weight. association
with USN
Lean-8’
Quick Questions
1 Set yourself goals...
Do you feel that there’s I would have to say it has. It is essential to help remain motivated and ensure you
pressure on gay men to It’s definitely improving challenge yourself. Remember to keep your goals realistic, and
look great from porn and since I’ve lost the weight and achievable end use timelines.
dating apps? started going to the gym. 2 Keep track of your progress...
People definitely look for Do you feel comfortable Take progress pictures, and have them around, put them up on
certain things when it comes naked? your fridge to remind you how far you have come.
to online dating and dating No, not at all.
apps. Guys almost have a Have you struggled with
3 Work out with others...
A training partner/group can be a huge motivational boost. A
‘character’ of what they want accepting your body image? bit of healthy competition and the support goes a long way.
already built up in their I think if you join a gym,
head, and they expect guys it’s definitely good for both 4 Be prepared...
to fit this mould. People tick your physical and mental Plan your meals, that way you can keep yourself from the
temptation and on track for your goals.
off things like ‘the ideal six health. Setting yourself
pack’. In my own experience these goals and achieving 5 Schedule your chest meals...
using them, it has come down them are essential to What better way to reward yourself for all your hard work! And
to age and older guys usually realising this and growing to motivate you to work harder!
wanting to date 19/20-year- to accept your body. In my 6 Take advice...
olds. As a community we are case, I wasn’t happy with Speak to your gym/trainer, they can help you if you are feeling
rather fascinated with the how I looked so by taking like you need a boost, and push you forward.
physical appearance. that first step and joining
Would you post shirtless a gym it helped transform
7 Make your workout and meals creative...
If you are looking forward to training and your meals, then you
selfies or anything similar my body image and how I will look forward to doing it! What better motivation!
to this on social media? viewed myself.
I have done. Mostly on What do you find more 8 Importantly have fun...
Instagram, but yeah, I have terrifying? Going out on Your goals, training and nutrition are important, but remember
it’s all about balance. Take time to have fun with your friends
posted one or two. It’s not the gay scene or going to
and enjoy yourself!
something I do regularly the gym?
though. I was bigger when I The gay scene, definitely.
was younger so it’s more for At the gym you can whack
my own self-esteem. your iPod on and ignore
Has your body image everybody but that’s not the
impacted on your sex life? case on the scene.

257_ACTIVE_REAL BODIES#.indd 133 15/04/2015 10:02:02


attitude_advertorial

Going Below the Belt with


TV trainer Matt Miller
He’s an ex ballet dancer
with a bionic leg who
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and star of Channel
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between workouts...
We hear you are part bionic?
[laughs] I got injured playing American
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You are an international super heavyweight
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Growing up, my parents encouraged Matt loves Below
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You have achieved some amazing results,
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I only take on personal clients who are of draconian diets or workout plans. It’s
properly willing to make dramatic change called California Shape Up and you can check
and up for turning themselves over to me. out a sneak preview on YouTube now.
Probably the wackiest was someone who did Can you quickly tell if a potential client has
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two months of training they just wanted to Usually yes, but sometimes people are truly
ask me out! (I am married, by the way, so it good liars. I once had a client who was not
was a no-go!) budging after six months of work on her gym
You are a fan of Below the Belt Grooming. Can and diet. Some time after we parted ways,
you tell us what you like about these skincare because I did not feel her money was being
products and why they work for you? well spent for the results we were getting, I
I am so on the go between my fitness saw her as a participant on Secret Eaters.
activities, clients and meetings that I can’t Which celebrities would you like to get your
possibly shower after each, and sometimes hands on?
I simply like to wait and shower in my own Right now I would like to have a proper go
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followed by Fresh & Dry, a couple of times hand and Bruce Jenner who is just plainly in
a day, post-exercise and it make a massive need of a whole new body!
difference to how I feel, even knowing that I Visit broga.uk.com for a schedule of Matt’s
am actually desperate for a proper wash. classes.
You have a new TV show coming this summer btbgrooming.co.uk

134

257_ADVERTORIAL_BELOW THE BELT APPROVED.indd 134 15/04/2015 11:56:27


REAL LIFE

WE LOOK AT HOW YOU TACKLED


THE WHOLE COMING OUT THING
TOM DINGLEY, 28, GREENWICH,
PHOTOGRAPHER
Fear played a large part in my
adolescence. I understood what my
feelings were, but I just assumed
when I reached 18 I would simply
move away, somewhere over the
rainbow where it wouldn’t matter.
But age 19 and 20 came and went and
I still hadn’t addressed my sexuality. I
had never had a girlfriend and avoided
social situations – I was painfully shy
– but I was comfortable with the front
I put on for family and close friends.
In hindsight I should have given them
more credit, but my fear was greater not of sadness, but of pure relief. My
than my trust in them. mum finally knew and she loved me
I had a different persona online. I the same, and assured me my dad
found I could easily talk to guys, would too. I agreed I would tell him
albeit via a faceless profile. I talked to the very next day.
a few guys but never met any of them, I don’t know why I was more scared
or even sent a photo. The fear of being of telling my dad, I just was. Mum and
recognised was too strong. I managed Laura were both there to give me
to strike up a friendship with one support. My eyes welled with tears as I
particular man, Paul. We emailed began to talk, but my dad sat calmly by
each other a lot and he seemed and let me take my time. I said the same
genuinely supportive of my situation. three words: “I’m not straight.” He
But I was still too afraid to meet him. I replied with, “Are you happy? Because
convinced myself it would be identity that’s all the matters,” he didn’t need to
suicide. After some time and lots of felt a greater need to come out. I finally say anything else. I couldn’t have
coaxing, we finally arranged to meet. confided in my two closest friends, wished for a better outcome. Life would
Luckily I saw no one I knew nor did Nicola and Jessica, who I felt already carry on as normal – nothing had
anyone pay us any undue attention. had an inkling – neither were shocked, changed, they just knew something
During this time I joined the local and both were loving and supportive. about me they didn’t know before.
gym and started running. It was at ALL THREE Spurred on by this, the next person to Five years on and Paul is now my best
the gym I noticed someone who I was OF US BROKE tell was my sister Laura. I’ve always friend and I am engaged to Steve. I
immediately attracted to. Using my DOWN IN been close to Laura and knew she couldn’t feel more loved by my family,
new-found confidence (bolstered by TEARS, NOT would be fine with it. Of course she and I honestly couldn’t be happier.
meeting Paul), I wrote my email OF SADNESS, was, we became closer than ever before. I think it’s important to let people
address on a piece of paper and gave BUT OF PURE The final hurdle remained: my coming out know that although it may
it to him. To my great surprise, I RELIEF parents. At the time I was living at seem hard, and although they may feel
quickly received an email from Steve. home but, as luck would have it, Paul isolated, there are so many people in
After much to-ing and fro-ing (as needed a house-sitter for a couple of the LGBT community who are happy
with Paul) we arranged to meet, as weeks. It presented the perfect and optimistic about the future. My
friends, in Soho (which was far opportunity as I had space away from current photographic project,
outside my comfort zone). We had a home should I need it. I invited my #Outcome, focuses on the ‘coming out’
wonderful afternoon together and I mum over to Paul’s, and Laura came journey LGBT people go through and
asked him out on a date. too. Through many tears and shows there are countless opportunities
As the weeks passed we went on lots stomach-churning nerves, I managed out there for everyone, no matter who
of dates. I hardly spent a weekend at to utter the words “I’m not straight.” they are or where they’ve come from.
home. But with each passing week I All three of us broke down in tears, tomdingleyphotography.com

• For more coming out stories visit rucomingout.com


135

257_CONTEXT_R U Coming Out#.indd 135 14/04/2015 12:47:53


OPINION

Iain Dale
He hadn’t told anyone. Not even his agent.
It was going to be done on his own terms. IMAGINING HOW A GAY Four weeks later…
It had been a momentous month. The praise,
Adam Ranger hadn’t told his mother what FOOTBALLER MIGHT the almost entirely positive reaction from

COME OUT IN 2015


he was about to do, nor his gossipy sister. his own teammates who had lined up after
They would all find out like the rest of the training and done a collective moonie while
country. Had he told any one of them, he pissing themselves laughing. The phone calls
knew they would come out with all sorts from other players, his England teammates
of reasons why he shouldn’t go ahead with had been a mixture of hilarious, emotional and
what he knew would affect him for the highly charged. Tears were shed.
rest of his life. You see, Adam Ranger, star Three other international players followed
England central defender, was about to Adam’s lead in the week after he came out to
announce to the world he was gay. the world. A dozen lower league players did
He knew the risks. He was prepared for too. And all to an ever increasing shrug of
the media storm that would no doubt engulf the shoulders.
him. People who do something ‘first’ always In his first game after the video release on
become renowned. Adam was prepared for YouTube Adam ran out at Upton Park, a
that – what he didn’t want to become was difficult place for an opposition player at the
‘notorious’. He calculated that if he did it, best of times, to a standing ovation from most
others would follow suit. He knew that in of the crowd. He hadn’t bargained for that
every dressing room up and down the land and for a moment lost his composure. As the
there were men like him. Indeed, he knew of applause died down a chant started from the
one Premier League team where four of Bobby Moore Stand of “Does your boyfriend
the starting eleven were gay. It wasn’t know you’re here?” Adam laughed,
as if anyone was particularly secret grabbed the hand of one of his teammates
any longer. People just knew, but and bowed. The applause restarted.
rarely said anything. Yes, there were problems. He knew
Adam had thought long there would be. His agent was furious
and hard about how to do it. with him. “You’ve jeopardised all your
Press conference? No. Too commercial contracts,” he fumed. Adam
uncontrollable. Newspaper suspected the very opposite would
exclusive. No. The other be true. And he was right. The offers
newspapers would be angry flooded in. “We want you to be the face
and seek to trash him. TV or of our company,” said the chief exec of
radio? Maybe, but would he get a major clothing brand. And there was
the time to say what he wanted more. Lots more.
to say? Would he be able to Back in the room…
control the editing? Probably And that’s how I’d like to think
not. No, Adam decided to ‘do a things would be if a professional
Tom Daley’ and record his own footballer took that great leap.
YouTube video.
After training one day, he He knew Okay, I might be writing with
rose tinted spectacles, but I
went down to PC World and
bought a video camera and that in every genuinely think it would be a lot
more like this scenario than it
tripod. “Alright, Adam?” said
the sales assistant. “Got the girls
dressing room was for Justin Fashanu 25 years
ago. I have no idea how many
coming round, have we? He joshed,
with a deliberate wink. “Yeah,
up and down professional footballers read
Attitude. Probably more than
something like that,” smiled Adam. the land there you think. But if there’s only

were men
“If only you knew, mate,” he thought one, think about the trail you
to himself. would blaze. Think about what

like him
He went home, set up the camera and kind of example you would set,
looked straight into the lens. “I’m Adam not just to your fellow footballers
Ranger. I play for England. And I’ve got but everyone else. Be proud of who you
something I want to tell you…” are. And tell the world.

136

257_CONTEXT_OPINION IAIN DALE#.indd 136 14/04/2015 12:47:02


real life

TrulyMadlyDeeply

Paul Gregory, 38 John Darby, 49


We first started chatting on Growlr. I was beginning to get a bit If I could put together an identikit of my ideal man, it would
disillusioned with the app because everyone seemed to be after definitely be Paul. I knew we were going to be in it for the long haul
one thing. I wanted more. I wanted a relationship, not just the from the moment we met, I’d never been more certain of anything in
physicality. Just chatting to John on Growlr, I felt a connection. my life. The biggest milestone in our relationship has probably been
We eventually lost contact on the app, as you do, but we finally our move away from Manchester, relocating in Torquay, where we’d
met by chance on a night out in the Gay Village in Manchester. I holidayed a couple of times together. Each of us agreed it felt like our
could feel someone staring at me from the corner of the pub and more natural environment. Aside from our writing, we’re members
it was him. We got chatting, in person this time, and we just of the National Tust and we like to watch cheesy old movies together
clicked. It felt right. That was January of last year and we’ve been on the couch, or chill out and watch anything that features Alex
together ever since. It was instant attraction. Neither of us have Polizzi – she’s my favourite. The only time we really spend apart is
the perfect body, or what everyone else would class as perfect, but at work; we’re pretty much manacled as one. Paul gets on great with
we were both drawn to each other straight away. I suppose we look my family, and why wouldn’t he? He is so easy to get on with and we
pretty similar: Chunky bears with beards, piercings and tattoos. have close contact, especially with my sister who also attends our
I love all the small things we do together, the quiet times when we writing class. She even penned a poem about me finding happiness
can chat about what the future holds. We enjoy writing poetry through my relationship with him, which was sweet. We’d like to
together and performing it for others – we’re both members of the be married one day. It would probably be a Devonshire wedding
same script writing group and we’re in the middle of planning our with cream teas in abundance and Torquay palm trees in the
first book together, which is really exciting. background. We just have to find suits big enough to fit us.
if you want to feature on Truly Madly Deeply email a photo and a few words to aaron.toumazou@attitude.co.uk
As told to AARON TOUMAZOU / photography: Jason Thompson

137

257_CONTEXT_TMD#.indd 137 14/04/2015 12:49:34


REAL LIFE

THE BEAUTY OF THE NOVEL IS I’M VERY LUCKY MY


I’M CONFIDENT IN MY ABILITY HUSBAND AIDAN IS EQUALLY
TO DRAW YOU IN, PUT YOU IN A INTROVERTED AND STRANGE
PLACE YOU’VE NEVER BEEN
SO HE DOES UNDERSTAND
BEFORE AND JUST TELL YOU A
STORY YOU JUST HAVE TO
WHEN I’M WORKING ON A
KNOW. I HAVE AN UNLIMITED NOVEL I WILL BECOME
BUDGET ON THE PAGE. SORT OF ABSENT.

I like the reader to have to do a bit of work because I think


if they do a bit of work they somehow become implicated in the
story and more directly involved.
My new novel is based on a mystery I WAS BORN OUT. I WAS A
in my own family, which is my great VERY CAMP CHILD, IT WAS
BLINDINGLY OBVIOUS BUT
grandfather Harry Cane who one day, for
I OFFICIALLY CAME OUT BY
no reason whatsoever, left his wife and GIVING MY MOTHER MY FIRST
children and went to Canada to become a NOVEL TO READ - WHICH
farmer. I’ve taken the story and made him WAS A VERY GAY NOVEL -
gay. It’s a western, but it’s a gay western. WHEN I WAS 21.

Nowadays we have everything. On one hand we can get married but at the same
time technology is handing us the ability to have more sexual experiences than
ever before. We’re being pulled in two different directions at once.

I think we need to be offered much YOU HEAR FRIENDS OVER


better protection. It’s getting better AND OVER AGAIN SAYING
in London, Manchester and ‘OH I’VE TAKEN GRINDR
Brighton but when you go outside OFF MY PHONE’ BECAUSE
to the big provinces where I live IT’S JUST GOT TOO MUCH,
gay people don’t feel safe – not BUT THEN THEY GO BACK,
really – gay teenagers are still SO IT’S CLEARLY LIKE A
getting beaten up and bullied. LITTLE ADDICTION.
Cherish your friendships. The great gay gift is friendships – it
comes from when gay visibility wasn’t that high. When you met
another gay person growing up, my God, you hung on to them.
AS T O L D T O B E N K ELLY / PHOTOGRAPHY: LEON CSERNO HLAVEK

138

257_CONTEXT_LIFE LESSONS#.indd 138 14/04/2015 12:45:08


Life
Lessons
PATRICK GALE

PATRICK GALE IS A
NOVELIST WHOSE LATEST
BOOK A PLACE CALLED
WINTER IS ABOUT AN
ENGLISHMAN WHO MOVES
TO CANADA IN THE EARLY
20TH CENTURY TO BECOME
A FARMER, AND EMBARKS
UPON A GAY AFFAIR.

139

257_CONTEXT_LIFE LESSONS#.indd 139 14/04/2015 12:45:29


relationship expert joe kort

My boyfriend is getting controlling


and raised his fist to me
Dear Joe
I have been with my boyfriend for the past nine months or so. The
beginning was great, we hit if off well and everything looked promising,
but in the last few months he’s changed and has become really critical
of me. He puts me down in front of friends, when I tell him I don’t like it
he tells me I am just imagining things and being too sensitive. When we
make plans he’s often late or doesn’t even show, and if I complain he tells
me he is upset that I do the same thing – which isn’t true. Lately he has
been accusing me of being on Grindr and hooking up with other guys,
which is absolutely not true. Things came to a head last week when he
grabbed my phone from me after I received a text. I tried to grab it back
but he shoved me and showed me his fist in anger while shouting at me.
He didn’t hit me but it terrified me. I get on with him like no one else
when things are good but I feel bullied by him. What should I do?
Matty, Rochdale

Hi Matty
Everyone’s relationships are good in the beginning, so that is not
surprising: Anyone can put their best foot forward and showing their best
face. That is the easy part. It’s not an indication of who that person truly is.
I don’t like the warning signs that I am seeing in your story. In my that he can take whatever he wants from you. You had every right to have
opinion you are with an emotionally – and potentially physically – abusive an immediate reaction and him showing you a fist means only one thing,
guy. He doesn’t sound like he feels accountable for his behaviour at all and and that is that eventually he is going to hit you.
you are taking on most – if not all – of the blame for them. All of these things are signs of what we call ‘grooming’, where a
Emotional manipulation is when a partner turns what you say about perpetrator starts out with small verbal assaults and ‘mind fucks’ his
him back onto you. Your boyfriend does this when you tell him you don’t victim by turning the accountability of problems and conflicts onto their
like how he treats you in front of your friends, him blaming you for being partner and then threatens to harm, but doesn’t until the day comes that he
“too sensitive” rather than taking responsibility for his own actions. He does physically abuse his partner.
is the one who is late for events and denies it and turns it around on you. Sometimes people get themselves involved with these people because
These are very bad signs. they have their own histories of being treated this way either by adults
Perhaps the most troubling fact is that he raised a fist to you. This is a from their childhood or from past partners which had similar issues that
major red flag and danger sign. I recommend you get individual therapy were unresolved. Is this true for you? If so, now is the time to break the
immediately or go to a Domestic Violence Shelter. While he has not hit cycle and get some help.
you yet, he is undoubtedly on the continuum of what power, control and It is also common for people to end these relationships but then go
emotional abuse look like. back because the partner makes them feel guilty and crazy, making
He is engaging in what we call in the field of psychotherapy, ‘Gaslighting’. them believe that nothing was wrong in the relationship. Sometimes the
Gaslighting was originally a stage play transformed into a movie in breakups and makeups occur a number of times before the victim finally
which a man attempts to make a woman go crazy by denying her reality finds the nerve to completely end the relationship.
and manipulating her environment. She notices things are different but You need to decide what your boundaries are. In other words, how much
he denies they are in order to prompt her toward insanity so that he can worse do the signs need to get before you really do leave? What would it
marry her and take all of her money. Gaslighting is a form of mental abuse take for him to go against a value that you hold dear that would be the last
in which information is twisted, spun and selectively omitted to favour the straw? Knowing this is important so that you recognise that you do have
abuser, or false information is presented with the intent of making victims limits and that you won’t tolerate something in particular. Some people
doubt their own instincts, memories and perceptions. The whole goal is to decide that last straw is if he comes after the children, if he breaks a bone,
cause disorientation and to make them question their own reality. puts you at risk for HIV and more. Then the decision is easier for them.
There is also a possibility he has Narcissist Personality Disorder (NPD). Even if he never lays a hand on you, what he is doing to you emotionally
A person with NPD has an inflated sense of their own importance, a and psychologically is enough to be called domestic violence. It is worse
deep need for attention and admiration, and a strong sense of entitlement. to be emotionally abused because the bruises remain invisible and no one
They believe they are superior and have little regard for the feelings of can see them, not even you.
others. The narcissist views people as objects and possessions which What are your bottom lines?
can feed their needs. Narcissistic abuse is insidious because the abuse is
covert, cunning and indirect.
There are signs in your boyfriend’s behaviour of ownership and Dr Joe Kort is a licensed clinical social worker and
entitlement. Abusive men may feel justified in the abusive behaviour board-certified sexologist. He is also the author of
because they have a sense of entitlement or ownership over their partner. 10 Smart Things Gay Men Can Do to Improve their Lives
Him taking your phone without asking shows signs of his entitlement, joekort.com

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property

For a home that means


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benefits of the Industrial


Revolution centuries
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your living room is the relocate, with packages
icing on the cake. Just starting at £5 per
a stones’ throw from week. bystored.com
Liverpool Street and Old
t h e fa c t s
Street stations, this is a • Shoreditch, E1
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U r b a n S p a ce s
020 7251 4000

W ORDS : a a r o n toumazou

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thailand

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Well fear not, because a brand new
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looking for a fun and refined gay travel “No travel experience is truly complete • Breakfast
experience in a tropical paradise. without cultural discovery and personal • Access to premier open-air beach clubs
The trip, from April 3 – 9 2016, will be open rejuvenation. Having fun is definitely exclusive to TropOut guests
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dedicated TropOut hub at Nikki Beach, the to join guided small group journeys with Whether you go with your partner, a few
ultimate spot for relaxation and personal fellow TropOut guests to further uncover friends, or for a little time out by yourself,
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257_CONTEXT_THAILAND#.indd 142 15/04/2015 14:07


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how gay are you?

How much is too much for a haircut? three days it was that bad, but thank God I’m

how gay is No more than 15 quid babes. It shouldn’t be


more than that, although I know it is. Babes, I’ll
okay. I had to carry on the show because it was
near the end, but I couldn’t even stand up.

ALEXANDRA
be straight with you: I don’t like paying for stuff. 4/5 If Madonna’s heard of Velcro we’ll
1/5 Britney didn’t want to pay for a haircut swallow this magazine whole.

BURKE
either and we all know how that turned out.
You collaborated with Pitbull on All Night
What’s your idea of a top night out? Long. What is it about him that’s so
So start it off at my house. I’m thinking weirdly appealing?
She’s making a pop champagne, music on full blast... and I always Well I think it’s the fact he wears a suit and

comeback and following tell people, ‘If you’re going to drink you
need to eat,’ so I’d start off with a nice dinner
wears it so well. And the way he carries
himself, he’s got a very sexy way of being.
in the footsteps of at mine, which I’d cook personally, or if I I think that’s what’s probably attractive.
Beverley Knight and couldn’t be bothered we’d go to the local in my 2/5 Not the ringing endorsement we were
Whitney in a UK tour village... [some time later] ...and no one sits hoping for tbh. Is it just us?

of The Bodyguard – but down. I don’t like people who sit down. You
have to stand up. If you’re going to come out Who is your favourite Beckham and why?
will we be saving all with me you have to dance. As much as I fancy David and have done
our love for the Burke? 1/5 No sitting down? We were almost since I was ten, I would have to say Victoria,
horizontal by the end of this. because when I met her she was really
sweet. I spent most of a flight to L.A. chatting
You’re currently starring in The Bodyguard, to her and it was a great experience because
but have you ever copped off with a member I’m such a big fan still to this day of the Spice
of your own security team? Girls. If you follow me on Snapchat, last
NO WAY. That’s crazy. No sweetheart, I week I did a whole dedication to them.
don’t do that. Nuh-uh. I ain’t gonna mix that 5/5 Britain 2015: A world in which dick pics
business with pleasure. Oh no. No way. are interspersed with videos of Alexandra
0/5 Prude. Burke singing Love Thing on her patio

You appeared on BBC One’s Star for a Night as What is the gayest thing about you?
a 12-year-old but lost to Joss Stone. How did Probably that the one place in London I
you celebrate her public fall from grace? always love to perform is G-A-Y. I don’t give
Noooo, she’s my friend! I know she’s still a flying hoot, I’d perform there five times a
making music cos she’s in the studio year if I could! I always stay and party after.
recording another album. I’m not sure who My gay fans are absolutely hilarious and
she’s currently signed to – but no, I never so intense. I think they’re amazing but my
made any fun of anything to do with that, family are like, ‘Oh my god they’re crazy!’
because she’s my friend. 3/5 Like every boyfriend we’ve ever taken
3/5 ‘She’s my friend’ *questions existence home to mum and dad, tbh
of record deal*
Is size important?
You cried at the sight of Jane McDonald on Not at all. Not at all. To me what matters is,
that same show. Did you enjoy that more ‘Is it a nice person or not?’
than your cry with Beyoncé? 4/5 For assigning personhood to genitalia

52% gay
Oh no, on stage with Beyoncé darling, that was
the most satisfying cry. I don’t tend to watch it
that often because it still makes my eyes water
to be honest with you. My family watched it
the other day and we watch it together every
so often, but not all the time, no. Alex might appear to be living the gay
3/5 it’s playing on a loop in the living lifestyle with Spice Girls Snapchats,
room, isn’t it? Beyoncé-induced tears and intense men you
can’t quite shake off, but a true gay man
Do you remember what you were doing would commit to a role in The Bodyguard by
when Madonna fell off stage? jumping on the nearest bouncer with a head
I was performing. I really thought she should set. #method. • Alexandra’s EP Renegade is
have used Velcro. I feel for her. The other day I out now. She is currently touring the UK
got kicked in the head on stage by my leading in The Bodyguard. thebodyguardmusical.com
man. The doctors told me not to perform for

WORD s : will stroude

146

257_CONTEXT_HOW GAY#.indd 146 14/04/2015 10:18


K i t c h e n s s i n c e 1 9 8 1

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HALCYON.indd
Halcyon 147
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11/03/2013 11:21
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