LBT Bites for the Week of Feb. 15, 2017

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Talulah-Eve Brown

Check out the latest in lesbian, bisexual and transgender news!

 

Lesbian - Pop Artist Says Pulse Changed View on Being Out

(SFGN) Newly minted pop-star Shura’s debut album “Nothing’s Real” was released last year. And the artist has been an out lesbian since she was 16. The artist, went viral in 2015 after appearing in the music video for “Touch” which featured male and female same-sex kisses. It received more than 27 million views on YouTube. But Shura says it was the shooting at Pulse Orlando that made her reevaluate her views on what it means to be out, the Advocate reports

"Post-Orlando, things definitely changed in my brain on whether it was important or not that I was out, and giving visibility to the community," the 25-year-old English singer said.

"I've never had to think about it before," she says. "I've been out since I was 16, but in terms of people being conscious that I was gay in the music world, it's only been a year, even though I never felt like I was ever hiding and it never really came up, so it was never really something that I thought about."

After the Orlando shooting, Shura says she found herself attending protests with her brother. This is how she first met up with musicians and activists Tegan and Sara, later joining them on their U.S. tour. Shura says the pair have helped her examine what it is to be out and in the public eye, and that it’s an ongoing conversation. "You have to challenge yourself about the choices you make as an artist," she says. Shura will perform at Coachella in April.

 

Bisexual - Human Rights Campaign Honors Westworld Star with Visibility Award

(SFGN) The Human Rights Campaign honored Evan Rachel Wood with their 2017 Visibility Award on Feb.7, GayStarNews reports. Wood received the honor with a 15 minute thank you speech, reflecting on her childhood as a tomboy, realizing her attraction to women.

“I felt something that I couldn’t explain. And it was something that made my throat close up and my stomach clench. Something that made my mouth go dry and my pulse race,” she said.

“And it was something so simple, yet so terrifying. I thought women were beautiful and I realized I had always thought women were beautiful.”

Wood described how anti-LGBT hate speech influenced her to remain silent, until she heard another actor describe themselves as bisexual. 

“The word didn’t make me feel marginalized,” she said.

“It made me feel less crazy. It made me feel less alone. It gave me hope.”

Wood has also spoken out on how she has overcome surviving rape two times, and having attempted suicide. 

“Because of the voices I listened to, because of the people I identified with, the films I watched, the music I had heard, because of words like ‘bisexual’ and the doors that it opened, I’m still here,” she said.

“And I didn’t miss out on the most beautiful thing I’ve seen yet, and that was my son…

Visibility creates hope. And to be here today and to have the opportunity to take off the mask and be honest about who I am and what I have experienced is pretty indescribable.”

You can view Wood’s speech at: https://youtu.be/6xLYTun4KaU

 

Transgender - Britain’s Next Top Model Has First Ever Trans Contestant

(SFGN) Reality television in the United Kingdom just took another step toward LGBT inclusivity.

Britain’s Next Top Model revealed transgender model Talulah-Eve Brown will be joining the show as a contestant.

“I never thought a girl like me would find a place on a show like this and compete against such beautiful girls. But I guess all you have to do is believe! Life isn't about finding a label that fits you best. Life is about finding you!,” she wrote on Instagram.

The 22-year-old model won Miss Transgender UK Birmingham back in 2015.

Despite being known as the first trans BNTM contestant, Brown told The Mirror that gender identity should not be relevant.

"I don't think people should be made to specify what gender they identify with,” she said. “It doesn't matter. We all deserve equal respect regardless."

Britain’s Next Top Model airs in March. 


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