Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Operatically Speaking

Where did this notion come from that all gay men are obsessed with opera? I'm a gay man, and I like opera, but most of my gay male friends have never been and have no great interest in going. So where did this opera/gay men connection come from? BG

From the gay-oriented but essentially mainstream movie Philadelphia, in which Tom Hanks played a gay man who loved opera, and even described a scene from Umberto Giordano's masterpiece Andrea Chenier while Maria Callas sang the aria in the background. I like opera myself, but you're absolutely right that most of my gay male friends have no great interest in it. Ditto for musical comedies. Some gay men -- like some straight men and gay and straight women -- are into the arts because their parents were, and they grew up surrounded by culture. My parents went to see every Broadway show -- musical or not -- that was produced, and my mother and grandfather were major opera fans. Of course younger men in general tend to be more in tune with popular music, such as rock, rap, and hip hop, but there are exceptions.

For more on gay men and the arts, click here.

See you at the opera, baby!

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