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GAY TIMES 503
As we stride forward into a new year - and indeed, a new decade - there is plenty of vibrant, groundbreaking and diverse queer talent coming through.
For our first issue of 2020, we are celebrating all of the best queer music, film, television, drag and steps towards greater LGBTQ rights we can look forward to in the year ahead.
Our Queer Guide to 2020 is led by two next-gen stars who are breaking new ground and have become beacons of light for a new generation of LGBTQ people.
When Sex Education first launched on Netflix in January last year, not even the cast themselves anticipated the huge impact it would have. Netflix was so pleased with it they released the streaming numbers which, at 40 million for its first few weeks available, was huge for this new twist on a British teen drama.
Ncuti Gatwa plays Eric Effiong in the show, an openly gay black teen who brightens up the screen during every scene he’s in. When asked why he thinks Sex Education had the impact it did, Ncuti told his co-star Connor Swindells: “I think because it has a lot of heart to it and a lot of truth to it. And like I said, it’s tackling issues that don’t commonly get tackled, and we’re starting conversations about things that get made taboo for no reason.”
He’s not wrong. A new generation of young queer people that are coming through crave and demand authenticity – and our art is thriving more for it. Which brings us to our second cover star. Girl In Red – real name Marie Ulven – is an indie-pop artist barely two years into her career, but has amassed a passionate following.
She’s the antithesis of manufactured pop artists of generations past; there’s no massive label behind her, she has full control over her music, and is very clear as to how she wants to be presented and what she wants to say. In short, she cuts through the bullshit. “I don’t have to show my songs to anyone, I don’t have someone on the sidelines saying, ‘Oh, this is sad and gay, we need a hit’,” she told us. “I don’t have anyone defining me.” It’s refreshing energy that is clearly resonating with audiences.
Elsewhere in the issue we talk with breakthrough pop force L Devine on her fantastic year and what lies ahead in 2020, internet Glamazon Miles Jai spills the T on the current social media climate, drag chameleon Alexis Stone talks to us about her boudry-pushing social stunts, we speak with Malaysia’s first openly gay popstar alextbh about being a role model, and get to know rising supermodel and activist Leyna Bloom as she continues to take the fashion world by storm.
UK cover price: £5.95