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HomeEntertainmentJennifer Lawrence Fetes Orville Peck, Mocks Mike Pence at GLAAD Awards

Jennifer Lawrence Fetes Orville Peck, Mocks Mike Pence at GLAAD Awards

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On Saturday (May 11), there was only one show on planet Earth that could boast more queer energy than the Eurovision Song Contest, and that was the 2024 GLAAD Media Awards in New York City at the Midtown Hilton Hotel.

And not unlike this year’s Eurovision in Malmö, Sweden, the event was not without protestors. A small group of protestors accusing Israel of genocide against the Palestinian people picketed outside the hotel’s entrance during the 35th annual GLAAD Media Awards; more notably, at the top of the show itself, one attendee interrupted the opening monologue by host Ross Matthews to repeatedly declare “GLAAD is complicit in genocide” before being escorted out.

“That was uncomfy for everybody,” Matthews said after a pause. “But you know what? We have to fight for everyone’s rights – and that’s one of them.”

While the Israel-Hamas War didn’t come up again that night, politics were still central to the GLAAD Media Awards, as always. New York Attorney General Letitia James made an appearance to celebrate LGBTQ New Yorkers and speak out for trans rights; GLAAD President Sarah Kate Ellis urged attendees to use their “platform and privilege” to ensure that the next U.S. president will be a human who values LGBTQ rights — and warned that the Supreme Court “will roll back our legal marriages like they rolled back Roe v. Wade” in a powerful, fiery speech; and one very famous Oscar winner took a couple of hilarious pot shots at a former U.S. vice president during the show.

Jennifer Lawrence (rocking a Veronica Lake haircut) appeared to celebrate “my favorite musician and good friend Orville Peck,” who was receiving the Vito Russo Award (named after the late activist and author of The Celluloid Closet) at the 2024 GLAAD Media Awards.

“I love seeing so many humans who can top their field while still being power bottoms,” Lawrence cracked. Talking about her love for the gay community, Lawrence said she once fell in love with a gay man, but soon realized her advances were for naught. “Conversion therapy doesn’t work,” she said. “Did you hear me, Mike Pence? I said conversion therapy is not real – even though you think it worked on you.”

Accepting the award, Peck talked about being a singer-songwriter in a genre that’s not always been the most open to the LGBTQ community. “I’m one of many of us here who have felt excluded or held back because of who we are,” Peck said, adding that queer people nevertheless manage to “turn tragedy into art, humor and culture.”

Peck also spoke on the “responsibility for visibility” when it comes to all minority communities and what it means to the next generation “to allow some kid in a small town who loves country music to see themselves in me or Mickey Guyton or T.J. Osborne.”

Earlier in the night, Jennifer Hudson – who already has an EGOT – added another award to her trophy room when she hit the stage to accept the GLAAD for outstanding variety or talk show episode, for an episode of The Jennifer Hudson Show in which she surprised HIV activist Ian Haddock (of the Normal Anomaly Initiative) with $10,000.

After a fundraising portion that raised more than $350,000, Loren Allred took the stage to perform an emotional version of “Never Enough” from The Greatest Showman, as well as the upbeat “Come Alive.” The latter was a duet, with Scott Hoying (of Pentatonix and Superfruit) joining her on the lightly funky vocal showcase.

Toward the end of the night, Billboard (and Billboard‘s Pride Editor Stephen Daw) were honored when GLAAD named Billboard‘s 2023 Pride Issue cover story the outstanding print article of the year. The (now award-winning) article, written by Daw, is a wide-ranging, in-depth interview with Maren Morris and four drag artists about the proliferation of drag bans in the United States. You can read it here.

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