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I had never even kissed a boy at that point, and he threatened to pull me out of the school. IACONO: He thought the performing arts high school was turning me gay! IACONO: Yes, but there were just as many closeted gays as open ones. IACONO: I think it will give straight people an inside look at how gay people feel in these situations. I think your typical high-school straight kid nowadays is not the straight guy of yesterday. VISCO: I wanted to ask you about your childhood—I read you had leukemia for a while, which must have been really difficult.
I tried to come out after my freshman year of high school, and my dad found an email between me and this other boy. I was doing a play in New York, it was gay-centric, and Musto goes “Oh, so you’re out now? Much like PPAS, even though it was a performing arts high school, people still weren’t comfortable with it. VISCO: In the film, the gay best friend is arm candy for these girls, but in some places of course that’s not at all the case! VISCO: Do you feel like you’re 100 percent healthy now or do you feel more fragile as a result? VISCO: Did having that experience change your consciousness of life?
Most younger gay guys that I know never had to formally come out.
They came out of the womb and they were little faggots and they grew up and everyone acknowledged they were little faggots and they went on, and that’s it.
17: Do you have tips for our readers for how to get through that stuff? 17: What is the funniest thing that has happened on set? PI: RJ inevitably does have some kind of sexual encounter, but it was one of the last days of shooting and I had to wear a nude color banana hammock all day and nothing else. Jayson Blair who plays the jock on the show were actually living together even though we play enemies on the show.
PI: I would say to stop gravitating toward things that other people tell you to like or that you should like and find your own turn-ons and wave your freak flag. They kept giving me the robe in between takes, but like I said toward the end I was just walking around and bending over and it was basically the tiniest little piece of fabric covering up my sugarlumps. The guy who plays my friend Miles on the show is also a great guy.
We bumped into Iacono at nightlife diva Susanne Bartsch’s Tuesday night party at the Soho Grand, and later met over a late-afternoon round of gin and tonics and appetizers at Vinus and Marc, a trendy new wine bar on the Upper East Side. VISCO: Did you feel you fit in when you were in high school? I had a couple “on the DL” hookups, and by the time I officially came out to him when I was 20 years old—right after he didn’t really have a choice. Performing has always been the one thing that I always really loved, and one of the things that I was ever good at especially as a kid—I wasn’t an academic person, I wasn’t a sports person. IACONO: During two and a half years of chemotherapy, I never lost my hair!
indicative in a change in the attitudes of young people about being gay? By the time I hit my junior year, I had sort of found my voice and realized that my father’s political values were not mine—he’s a Republican. When I became less enthusiastic and not acting like myself, my mother sensed something was up. They diagnosed it as mono at first, and then a couple blood tests later figured out it was leukemia. There were two or three months before I came back to school, and then I was in and out between treatments and performing. IACONO: It felt like I was the only person to ever have cancer. There was this enormous outpouring of love and support. IACONO: I was obviously frightened, but I didn’t think I was going to die.
(Eventually, RJ does tell that one girl, Jenny.)Check out an old trailer for the show to evoke memories of Iacono.
I’m happy to be that person so kids won’t have to grow up and be afraid of their sexuality and this won’t be an issue.” On the whole, he struck a rather optimistic note about the future struggle for equal rights.
“I believe that in 100 years, none of us will be having to identify ourselves as gay, straight, bi, or otherwise,” he said.
I said, “Of course.” I didn’t think I’d be coming out. My father found an email correspondence of me planning a date with another male student, very innocent. I was just coming to terms with the fact that I was bisexual, which culturally I do identify with as a gay man — I am attracted to girls, I’m just attracted to guys much more. Paul’s conclusion: “All these litte homos need to stop killing themselves because it does get better!
I went to the Professional Performing Arts school in Manhattan. I had to feign heterosexuality for a couple of years. I was older and able to address it from a different perspective.