Like his character, the actor and singer had to reconcile his religious faith and his gender identity growing up, and he’s been vocal about how that dichotomy informed his work as an artist. In March, he provided feature vocals for the re-issued version of "Stronger", a song by Clean Bandit. He played the character Unique Adams, a transgender student. After the success and the release of his debut extended play Power and his tour with Adam Lambert, Newell headed back in the studio. Newell’s talents are manifold. As many as 50 percent of Millennials consider gender to exist on a spectrum, not a binary. In 2015, Newell embarked on a series of cover songs and collaborations. Click to copy. Copied to clipboard. She made her 1 million dollar fortune with Glee, Geography Club, The Glee Project. On June 3, 2016, he released his first single outside of his recent project, entitled "Need Somebody". Once that backstory is delivered, Mo shifts from being Zoey’s mentor to being her best friend, and the audience gets the pleasure of seeing a gender-fluid series regular character explore love, life, and loss in ways that we haven’t seen on a broadcast drama before. ", “My aunt, who was the minister of music, was like, ‘Alex is gonna sing,’ and sent a note over to him. Alex Newell Is Too Busy Slaying Broadway To Worry About Gender The out "Glee" star talks about playing Mother Earth in "Once on this Island," fangirling over Lea … Newell has dodged clumsy, ill-fitting, and often arbitrary gender assignations since childhood. He was cast in the role of Wade "Unique" Adams, a male-to-female transgender teenager. “‘Aren’t you Black?’ Or, ‘Why is your voice so high? The role broke Newell out of suburban anonymity in Massachusetts, where he crafted his voice in his church’s choir and navigated gender and sexual identity in his personal life. My voice has always been naturally extremely high, for no apparent reason,” he laughs. In the years since, Newell has made a name for himself as a recording artist. “You’re telling me that I am, so I guess I am,” Newell said, reflecting on people’s presumptions. “‘Why do you talk that way?’” Newell recalled, listing the questions his peers posed to him when he was young. “I always had jelly on my hips and a swish in my step,” Newell told me with a knowing glance. It was also revealed that it was going to be produced by Adam Anders. Newell, along with the rest of the cast, received a nomination for a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series in 2012, but lost to Modern Family. '”, Newell’s turn as Asaka reflects his own complex identity, as well: He often looks and sounds “feminine.” “I’ve gone through it so much now that everything is in a hetero mindset, and it's going to be that way until we break down the wall of what everything is,” he said, pointing out the way that society views gender as a binary. In 2015, Netflix's cult sci-fi series Sense8 featured a transgender character, Nomi, as one of the eight leads. Finally, for Christmas, Newell released a cover of the song "O Come All Ye Faithful". The musician is currently single, her starsign is Leo and she is now 28 years of age. “Drag is a way of expressing myself,” he said. He is known for his roles as Unique Adams on the Fox musical series Glee and Mo on Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist.He also starred as Asaka in the Broadway revival of Once on This Island at the Circle in the Square Theater in 2018. “My gender and sexuality don’t define who I am and neither does what I wear.” Although Newell didn’t win The Glee Project, he eventually became a series regular on Glee. , Newell identifies as a gender nonconforming man, and in May 2020 said he relates to his character Mo in Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist, who is genderfluid. After conquering Broadway and television, Alex Newell is turning his attention back to the dance floor. Alex Newell. He’s best known for portraying the first openly transgender high school student on American television: Unique Adams, who appeared on Glee in 2012 after Newell was first runner-up on The Glee Project. The musical Newell appears in, Once on This Island, is about a peasant girl’s pursuit of love in the colonialism-ravaged Caribbean Sea. “There’s nothing that I could have hidden, honestly. And sometimes, I’m like, ‘I’m a trans poser!’” Newell said. “I don’t know what else I can be.”. It was exclusively released onto iTunes and Apple Music on June 3 and released onto other platforms several days later. In 2017, Newell made his Broadway debut playing the role of Asaka in the revival of Once on This Island. Check out Alex Newell's new video for "Boy, You Can Keep It" below: By Stephen Daw. On a day this past spring, the singer and actor Alex Newell perched on the edge of an old sofa in a cavernous brick building in Brooklyn, wearing a tight dress. After controling Broadway in addition to television, Alex Newell is changing his focus back to the dance floor covering. During the arc, he asserted himself as an out gay man. Dec 23, 2017 - The revival starring Lea Salonga, Alex Newell and Merle Dandridge brings new life to the 1990 musical. He points to problems that exist within (and well beyond) the Black community, where the lightness of your skin can play a role in how you are perceived by one another. On 20-8-1992 Alex Newell (nickname: Alex) was born in Lynn, Massachusetts, United States. The opportunity is especially meaningful to Newell because he has struggled, as with gender, to find where he fits within a Black identity. Or was it the passable or not passable: Did you pass for white or did you not pass for white? Alex Newell Partner Zeke Thomas Alex is gay by sexuality and he is dating his long term boyfriend Zeke Thomas. His original song "This Ain't Over", released in January 2016, was warmly welcomed by the media. Newell, who is gay, gender-nonconforming and uses the pronouns “he” and “him,” had a lot of real-life experience to draw from when it came to playing Mo. Während sein Charakter Wade Adamstransgener ist…  Newell's performance was described as "bold", with "remarkable restraint and powerful vocals.". Earlier in his life, Newell struggled to understand his place when other people told him he wasn’t the right kind of man or the right kind of Black person. Alex Newell released his first EP, "Power," just a month ago. “To speak on something that's so racial—especially something that's so interracial—of, like, a divide that's happening in my own culture, where just because you’re a little lighter than me, or you are lighter than me, you think that your life is that much better than mine is,” Newell said, reflecting on his experience as a dark skinned Black man.  Eventually, he became the series’ first runner-up.  Later in the same month, he produced a disco-house stylization of Robin S.'s single "Show Me Love" together with Russian DJ Matvey Emerson. Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist stars Jane Levy, Skylar Astin, Alex Newell, John Clarence Stewart, Peter Gallagher, and Mary Steenburgen with Lauren Graham as a special guest star. Alex Eugene Newell (born August 20, 1992) is an American actor and singer. Newell stars as Mo, a sassy gender-nonconforming neighbor who becomes the first of Zoey’s friends to catch on to her newfound superpower. But I, and my family, have been a pillar of this church, and I’m not going anywhere.” He held his ground. She came in for Mo [Zoey’s neighbor, played by gender-fluid actor Alex Newell], and everybody remembered her when we were casting [Zoey’s sister-in-law] Emily," says Ulrich. I mean.”, There are just some days when he brings “her” out, and others when he doesn’t. To bring [this] to light to a community that doesn't really understand that most days—whether that be the white community or even sometimes the Black community who just wants to turn a blind eye to it—it’s amazing, it’s wonderful to get to do that.”, “I’m so taboo in my own African American community that they don’t even see me as Black sometimes,” Newell told me. For Pop Star and Actor Alex Newell, Gender Is Anything But Obvious “I’m me, and I have to look out for myself.  Nevertheless, the producers were so impressed that they decided to bring him on Glee for two episodes. Without the gimmicks of manufactured radio pop, Newell manages to serve This Ain’t Over with pure talent." It features the likes of Britney Spears, Gwen Stefani, Meghan Trainor, Troye Sivan, Selena Gomez, Kacey Musgraves, Mary J. Blige, Jason Derulo, Imagine Dragons, Jennifer Lopez, Adam Lambert, Tyler Glenn, P!NK, MNEK, RuPaul, Mary Lambert and Nate Ruess. ", "From 'Glee' to BTD: Alex Newell plans to steal the show", "Alex Newell of 'Glee' talks Coachella, shoes before performing at St. Pete Pride", "Kerry Washington, 'Glee' Star Alex Newell Bring Down the House at the GLAAD Awards", "MusicNews – Watch: Clean Bandit's new video, 'Stronger' – entertainment.ie", "This 'Glee' Star Is Kind Of Slaying The House Revival Game Right Now", "Alex Newell's Pop Career Is Just Beginning on Euphoric Lead Single, 'This Ain't Over, "Alex Newell Will Join Adam Lambert on Tour", "Get a First Look at Once on This Island on Broadway | Playbill", "Catch Alex Newell, Skylar Astin, and More in Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist, Premiering January 7", "Soundtrack For Martin Scorsese's HBO Series 'Vinyl' Includes Otis Redding, The Meters, Edgar Winter, Foghat, More", "Upfronts 2016: Your Guide to Fall Pilots That Didn't Make the Cut", "Alex Newell Won't Fit into Your Mold, But He Might Squeeze into Your Shoes", "Alex Newell Lives His Truth in NBC's Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist", https://twitter.com/thealexnewell/status/1349422427009212416?s=21, "Alex Newell: Chart History - Dance/Electronic Albums", "Alex Newell: Chart History - Heatseekers Albums", "Alex Newell: Chart History - Hot Dance/Electronic Songs", "Alex Newell: Chart History - Dance Club Songs", "Critics Choice TV Awards: 'The Crown,' 'Ozark' Lead Noms With 6 Apiece", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Alex_Newell&oldid=1001536980, Bishop Fenwick High School (Peabody, Massachusetts) alumni, Participants in American reality television series, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles with unsourced statements from October 2019, Official website different in Wikidata and Wikipedia, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Episode: "Hot Blood, Hot Thoughts, Hot Deeds", This page was last edited on 20 January 2021, at 03:26. Newell was accepted into the Berklee College of Music for fall 2012, but he decided instead to move to Los Angeles t… The connection grows stronger on a series Alex Newell was born on August 20, 1992 in Lynn, Massachusetts, USA. For many, especially Black LGTBQIA+ youth , coming out can be even harder as they reconcile multiple and intersecting identities, on top of the biggest challenge of coming out to their families. “I’m in the limbo of life.” It’s something to celebrate. Newell had few models for that. Citing Donna Summer, Chaka Khan, and Beyoncé among his influences, singer and actor Alex Newell broke through with the recurring role of Wade "Unique" Adams on the Fox musical comedy series Glee. Though Newell was young, still uncertain of who he was or why his gender should inform his role in his family, he was pressured to fill a role in the absence of his father. After all, as a fiery kid in church choir, Newell was not about to let some lesser singer steal any church-choir solos from him. As I see it, it is precisely because Newell does not pin himself to any label that he has so much power. “I remember the shift: It’s all fun and games for me to sing the song until I say I’m gay,” Newell said. For young people today, this way of life is reflective of their gendered truths. “I question myself [about] that all the time,” he told me. After playing a trans girl on season 3 of the TV hit series, Glee, Newell has found a place for Later that same month, the song was released again, featuring vocals from Jess Glynne. Newell used drag as a way to stand out on the show. “And so it’s like, when I get married and have kids, I know that I'm going to be the mother figure.  Over the summer, he worked with the British electro duo Blonde by featuring vocals in their single "All Cried Out".  His father, a deacon, died of cancer when he was six years old, at which point his mother raised him as a single parent.  The EP will be released on February 19 via Big Beat.. 2/12/2020. By Curtis M. Wong Also, the earnings from its first week of sales were to be donated to the Trevor Project.  He goes by all pronouns. "I don't know what it's like to own up to being a man. ‘Stop crying. Whether recording in the studio, performing on Broadway, or appearing on television, he instantly connects.  As a singer, Newell has released tracks with Clean Bandit, Blonde, and The Knocks. More information How ‘Once on This Island’ Redefines Gender and Race With Broadway Revival (Exclusive) The revival starring Lea Salonga, Alex Newell and Merle Dandridge brings new life to the 1990 musical. After controling Broadway in addition to television, Alex Newell is changing his focus back to the dance floor covering. Alex Newell doesn’t just demand attention with his boisterous personality, he is innately always at the center of it. He then began to collaborate with the US electroduo The Knocks on the song "Collect My Love", "a soaring disco standout" where he reached "staggering heights. SEE Jane Levy Interview: ‘Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist’ "Stronger" did not enter the Ultratop 50, but peaked at number 79 on the Flemish Ultratip chart. If kids want to go and do that, that is them expressing who they are. 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