Theatre

Broadway legend Harvey Fierstein doesn’t know if he’s a man or a woman: ‘I don’t know who I am’

Nola Ojomu February 24, 2022
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Broadway legend Harvey Fierstein

Broadway icon Harvey Fierstein (Getty Images/Bruce Glikas)

Broadway icon Harvey Fierstein has revealed that he’s “still confused as to whether I’m a man or a woman”.

The Kinky Boots playwright opened up about his ongoing reflections about gender identity in an interview with People magazine about his new memoir I Was Better Last Night.

The Hairspray star recalled often feeling that he wasn’t meant to be a male body as he mused: “I’m still confused as to whether I’m a man or a woman. I don’t have answers for anybody else ’cause I don’t have answers for myself.

“When I was a kid, I was attracted to men. I didn’t feel like a boy was supposed to feel. Then I found out about gay. So that was enough for me for then.”

Harvey Fierstein carries "the torch" from the Second Stage Tony Kiser Theater to the Helen Hayes Theater where it debuted 36 years ago as Harvey Fierstein's iconic play "Torch Song" announces its broadway transfer on February 20, 2018 in New York City.
Harvey Fierstein carries “the torch” at Helen Hayes Theater in February 2018 (Bruce Glikas/Bruce Glikas/WireImage)

He continued: “I don’t know who I am. You wanna tell me who I am?… But let’s put it this way, I don’t think I’ve missed anything by not making up my mind.”

However, there is one term the 69-year-old isn’t fond of using as Fierstein explained he wouldn’t define himself as non-binary.

“No two of us are the same, not any of us,” he explained before adding that we would be better off seeing one another as individuals.

Indeed, the celebrated actor is to continue figuring things out as he told the publication: “I’m 69-years-old, and still everything’s possible.

“I can get up tomorrow if I wanted to, and shave really close and put on a bunch of makeup and walk around my town and see what that’s like. Having done drag as many years as I’ve done drag, I know it’s a lot of f**king work to be pretty.”

The trailblazing actor, whose work has centred around gender-bending and defying traditional stereotypes, made his debut as the playwright and star of Torch Song Trilogy – about a gay drag performer in search of love and acceptance.

According to Playbill, the production earned him the first two of his six Tony awards with Fierstein going on to cement his place in entertainment history as an actor and playwright.

In 2016, Fierstein gained his much-deserved star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame alongside Kinky Boots collaborator and pop icon Cyndi Lauper.

More: Broadway, gender identity, Harvey Fierstein

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