On May 5 2019, the Associated Press released an article covering Madonna’s emotional speech at the GLAAD Awards the previous night:
NEW YORK (AP) — Madonna, a pioneer for gay rights, accepted the Advocate for Change Award at the 2019 with a rousing speech that went from playful to emotional, bringing the audience to its feet.
The 60-year-old pop icon turned heads as she walked to her table at the Hilton Midtown in New York on Saturday night, before taking the stage to celebrate her three decades of advocacy work in the LGBTQ community.
“Why have I always fought for change? That’s a hard question to answer. It’s like trying to explain the importance of reading or the need to love. Growing up I always felt like an outsider, like I didn’t fit in. It wasn’t because I didn’t shave under my armpits, I just didn’t fit in, OK,” she said. “The first gay man I ever met was named Christopher Flynn. He was my ballet teacher in high school and he was the first person that believed in me, that made me feel special as a dancer, as an artist and as a human being. I know this sounds trivial and superficial, but he was the first man to tell me I was beautiful.”
Madonna went on to say Flynn took her to her first gay club in Detroit, and that the evening changed her life.
“For the first time I saw men kissing men, girls dressed like boys, boys wearing hot pants, insane, incredible dancing and a kind of freedom and joy and happiness that I had never seen before,” she said. “I finally felt like I was not alone, that it was OK to be different and to not be like everybody else. And that after all, I was not a freak. I felt at home, and it gave me hope.”
Madonna also said Flynn pushed her to leave Michigan and go to New York to pursue her dreams. And when she arrived in the Big Apple in 1977, she was in awe with all New York had to offer — diversity, creativity — but she also learned about the AIDS epidemic.
“The plague that moved in like a black cloud over New York City and in a blink of an eye,” she said and snapped her fingers, “took out all of my friends.”
“After I lost my best friend and roommate Martin Burgoyne and then Keith Haring — happy birthday Keith — I decided to take up the bull horn and really fight back,” she added.Gay
Madonna, teary-eyed from her seat, received the award from Anderson Cooper, Mykki Blanco and Rosie O’Donnell, who gave a powerful speech about how Madonna helped her become more comfortable in her own skin.
“So here I was — VG, very gay — dating a man and I went to Madonna for advice,” said O’Donnell, who co-starred in 1992′s A League of Their Own with the singer. “I was questioning and unsure, my gay life was blossoming but I didn’t quite know what to do. And she told me, ‘Rosie, just follow your heart’ — advice I still follow to this day.”
The multi-hour GLAAD event also gave awards to Andy Cohen, the FX series Pose and The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story, Samantha Bee, the film Boy Erased, CNN’s Don Lemon and R&B singer Janelle Monae. The event will air on Logo on May 12.
Despite winning seven Grammys, two Golden Globes and countless other honors, Madonna said getting GLAAD’s Advocate for Change Award has a special place in her heart.
“Because it’s recognition of years and years of work that I’ve done over three decades. It’s not anything superficial,” Madonna said in an interview with The Associated Press after receiving her honor. “It means something to me because I put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into all the work that I’ve done over the years advocating for change.”
On December 28 1992, Madonna was named one of the 25 Most Intriguing People In The World For 1992 by People magazine.
Here’s what People had to say about Madonna in 1992:
The Movies! The Album! The Naughty Pictures! Once Again Madonna Was Everywhere, Shouting, “Look at Me—Every Inch of Me!”
Intriguing: suggests an air of mystery. Madonna: does everything in public but floss her teeth.
Intriguing: wrapped in enigma. Madonna: not wrapped in anything.
Intriguing: means doesn’t appear on-camera in romantic encounters with Evian water bottles. Madonna: does.
OK—so what’s so intriguing about somebody who lets you know that her lovers require a five-cent deposit?
For one thing, she made ya look. Consider Sex, the photo book in which she had her picture taken doing everything but blushing. Besides proving that a naked Madonna could arch backward over a pinball machine without mussing her hair, it also pushed the envelope out to the size of a circus tent. And when the crowds came pouring in, there she was at center ring, cracking her whip.
It only served her purposes that Sex earned sniffy reviews like “The Empress Has No Clothes” and that it was banned in places such as Japan and Ireland. Coming on the heels of her summer film hit, A League of Their Own, the fuss over her book helped to launch her new album, Erotica, and primed the movie audience for her next assault on their sensibilities, Body of Evidence. Her success at getting the world to subsidize her sexual preoccupations—to say nothing of her mammoth self-absorption—is what makes her worth the $60 million deal she cut this year with Time Warner (the parent company of PEOPLE). Madonna is not the first star to find the bucks in buck nakedness. But no one before her has capitalized so well on human willingness to have our fears and desires repackaged and sold back to us.
Yet this most public of women still strains to be a mystery. This year she went through more faces than Lon Chaney—one minute in Baby Jane pigtails, a cupcake from hell; the next in sour milkmaid gear, Heidi with a mean streak. Her changing gallery of faces is one reason that she’s a sex symbol who inspires a lot of heavy breathing from intellectuals. One landmark of the 1992 publishing list—The Madonna Connection: Representational Politics, Sub-cultural Identities and Cultural Theory. You didn’t get this sort of thing for Petula Clark.
But does she really throw such a mysterious light on our culture? More likely it’s just the glinting gears of a giant publicity machine. Yet the sheer magnitude of her achievement in that regard is, well, intriguing. And the grinding of those gears is surely too loud to be ignored. “I’m a revolutionary,” she once sighed. “And yes. it’s a burden.”
Sometimes it’s a burden for her, we sigh in return, and sometimes for us.
Madonna was a busy woman in 1992! What did you enjoy most? A League Of Their Own? This Used To Be My Playground? Erotica? Sex? Body Of Evidence?
On August 8 1992, Madonna’s This Used to Be My Playground (and the theme song for A League of Their Own) hit number-one on the Billboard Hot 100 in the USA, becoming Madonna’s tenth chart-topping single, breaking her tie with Whitney Houston to become the female artist with the most number-one singles at that time.
The song was written and produced by Madonna and Shep Pettibone, and recorded prior to final sessions for Madonna’s 1992 studio album Erotica. As with most of Pettibone’s songwriting collaborations with Madonna, Tony Shimkin was later added as co-writer of the song.
On October 16 2012, the 20th Anniversary of A League Of Their Own was released on Blu-ray. The 20th Anniversary edition includes 15 deleted scenes, an exclusive documentary and the music video for Madonna’s This Used To Be My Playground.