UPDATE: More BWW Readers Weigh In On Darren Criss' Apology for Recent Caitlyn Jenner Comment
As BWW reported earlier today, HEDWIG's Darren Criss apologized on his Facebook page for a recent comment he made, in character, about 'I Am Cait' star Caitlyn Jenner during a performance of the show. According to audience members, the wisecrack came during the segment when Hedwig discusses her signature fragrance, "Atrocity". Speaking about Jenner, the 28-year-old reportedly joked, "Man, woman, man, woman, woman, man, Bruce Jenner, whatever you are."
Today, Criss posted on Facebook: "I want to sincerely apologize to Caitlyn Jenner, all transgender people, and anyone who was offended for my words on stage during Tuesday evening's performance. In no way do the remarks reflect my personal belief system or my support for transgender people. However, I do realize the severity of the comment and the weight that words can carry and for that, I take full responsibility. I commend Caitlyn on her strength and for spreading acceptance around the globe. I have been and remain a proud and unwavering ally of the LGBTQIA community, and will continue to walk alongside my friends on the road to full equality and acceptance."
BroadwayWorld readers have since shared their reaction to the incident, weighing in on BWW's Facebook page. Several of their responses follow:
Robert Jason Damien Clark Wow. Would have thought he'd have more empathy. Amazing. And he's playing Hedwig. Go figure...
Christopher Ehlers Within the context of the play, it's an entirely appropriate comment for Hedwig to have made. Hedwig would resent Caitlin for her success and for her fame. Move along. This is ridiculous.
Andrew Ritsig Short answer: no. Long answer: Darren Criss is a firm and committed supporter of LGBT rights. There is no reason to get upset about a joke like that when there is clearly no ill will or hatred behind it. Pick your battles people, going after every silly joke gets you nowhere.
Em Lowry I think people who aren't trans have a lot of nerve deciding what is and isn't hurtful to the trans community. Jokes like that are why she stayed in the closest til her mid 60s. Shame on you for finding humour in her struggle.
Andi Fatora I think broadway has full access to these kind of topics...they are jokes ppl need to calm down...it was a chacter making a joke about current entertainment media coverage
Suzanne Tidwell Do actors portraying Nazis or killers or bigots apologize for what their characters say on stage? I am sad that he felt as if he needed to do this. It's a character. In a play.
Bridget Adams-King He didn't say it his character who is an "angry" offensive character said it. Although I understand why he felt a need to apologize it was unnecessary because he was simply in character. No offense should be taken. Darren didn't say it Hedwig did.
Amanda Hendsbee I think it depends on the context.
Beto Flores Torres Since when Caitlyn Jenner became something like the prophet on middle eastern? Come on, it was Hedwig, like that time NPH's Hedwig said the F word to someone. Can't believe that a comment by his character is deleting years of what he has done for LGBT rights and support since the moment he stepped on the media spotlight.
Patti Brinkley Any hurtful jokes or comments are not any different from bullying. If we try to control bullying then condone hurtful words as funny, what are we teaching?
Jeffery Wines An actor in character is how I see it.
Kathie Turner What would don rickles do?
Donna Meyler it was said as part of the show . Hedwig is offensive -Darren Criss is not. I have been a fan Darrens for years and of musical theather even longer. I saw the show 2 weeks ago the joke was in it he ad libbed that part but it is a show based on ad libbing.
James Winer Drag queens are supposed to be offensive and politically incorrect. That's part of what makes them so much fun to watch!
Jay Vanderwoude Hedwig makes no apologies
Larissa McCarty Darren shouldn't have had to apologize but it goes to show what a class act he is that he felt the need to! Love him!
Alan Duran No. She put herself in the public spotlight. Sick of the PC queens. Quit taking yourself so seriously.
R.l. Procter Please stop the PC madness
AJ Thomson He's an artist. He shouldn't have to explain himself.
Nicole Dodge Really??? Nobody is off limits for jokes!! That has never changed in he decades of shows & comedians. If you do something that captures attention...then there will be a joke about it...this should come as NO SURPRISE!!! Darren Criss is amazing! ? ?
David Carroll If no one had taken to twitter, if the show had stayed in house the way theatre should then only a handful of people would have faked there outrage rather then thousands that were nowhere near NYC on the night. More proof that Americans don't have the culture for Broadway.
Oscar Selby Hedwig sais offensive things. She doesn't care what others think. Darren, while i don't know him personally and seen only bits of his work does care. And that point is made even more evident by his apology.
Maizy Perdue Didn't Darren also throw a girl's phone at her at the curtain call because she didn't stand up and clap for him? That wasn't Hedwig, that was Darren acting like a diva.
Maria Saraswati It was Hedwig... not Darren... it was meant to be inappropriate.
Darren doesn't have a prejudice bone in his body...
Lisa Reeve Neyens Nope. Celebrity sort of signs up for it...
Christopher J Goerss Caitlyn herself in her interview said, you have to laugh about this... There is really nothing else to do but laugh.
Patrick Loya No because if that's rhe case then all jokes would be offensive. Somene is always offended byt something. If someone doesn't like it then they don't have to see the show
Avi Duvdevani "I like my coffee the way I like my women, without a penis!"
James N. OSullivan No one is immune to ribbing. Get over yourselves, people.
Jessica Mitchell-Judd It is totally a Hedwig comment. It fits the show.
Vini Costanzo That was not offensive. Lighten up