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BWW Interviews: 'Gays for GLEE' Sensation Jeigh Madjus Talks to BWW

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Jeigh Madjus is the Toronto sensation currently gaining popularity after entering a competition on YouTube to participate on the hugely successful television show Glee. His video rendition of Jennifer Hudson's "Love You I Do" has received over 27,000 hits - quite the feat when you consider the average audition video receives only about 700.


In the video, Jeigh's "character" pines for the love of Kurt Hummel (played by Chris Colfer) while crooning the popular song and staring at pictures hung up in a high school locker. Termed "Gays for Glee" the video sky rocketed in popularity after Perez Hilton and The Advocate both tweeted about it.
Jeigh was kind enough to talk with BWW about his recent popularity, the cult phenomenon that is Glee and what he hopes to do next:

Your Glee video entry has taken off very quickly - how do you feel about your sudden rise to success?

When I found out that it was gaining popularity, I was overwhelmed with happiness. However, I don't feel that I'm a success yet. I have a lot of dreams and aspirations that I'm working very hard to achieve. With the attention this video has received, I want to work even harder to make those dreams come true. Recording, being on Broadway, TV and even design are some of my goals for the future. I also try to never let anything get to my head - must be the over analytical Virgo in me. And I'm ALWAYS thinking about my next move.


In a way, you have become a bit of a champion for homosexual rights and advocacy. It all started with Perez Hilton (and others) referring to you and the video by using the term "Gays for Glee". Is that something you are comfortable with?

The term "Gays for Glee" was actually coined by my cousin, Maya Washington, who is working with me to promote the video. It was that email subject title that got Perez's attention, which started all of this. As far as "champion for homosexuals" goes, I do feel that it would be more realistic to have more homosexual characters on the show. The fact that Kurt is apparently the only homosexual on the show (or in the school and town) seems a bit odd to me. However, I am from Toronto and went to a Performing Arts high school where I studied Music Theatre, so my high school experience was likely a bit different.

If I had my choice, I would prefer to be called the "champion for fighting to get what you want in life!"

Since you are being regarded as an openly gay man and a fan of Glee and musicals, do you have any advice for young people who might be struggling to come out or chase after their dreams while dealing with their sexuality?


Knowing who you are and being true to yourself gives you the freedom to work towards your dreams. There can be so much external baggage that needs to be left at the door when you are performing. Being comfortable in your own skin enables you to do that, and to be open to whatever role you're playing. It's that clarity that is necessary, no matter what sexual orientation you may be. A friend once said to me, "Just do you," and I try to live it every day.


There has been a lot of press recently concerning the controversy over gay actors playing straight roles after an article ran in Newsweek criticizing gay actors who play straight roles (among them Jonathan Groff in the role of Jesse on Glee) Many Broadway actors specifically have spoken out against the article - what are your feelings on the subject?


A generalization like that is unfair and rude. Acting is acting. Your personal life has nothing to do with it. You may draw from personal experiences that may aid in your emotions for a role, but you're playing a character, it's not reality TV. So, who you are as a person shouldn't matter. People get hired for the job because, hopefully, they're right for it and can act it. There will always be an opinion over whether or not an actor is believable in the role, but that is about the art form, and shouldn't be about a person's sexuality. It's one person's view or interpretation and therefore open to criticism or praise.


On a lighter note, have you been a fan of Glee from the beginning?

 
From the beginning I was hooked. Anything about music and singing gets my attention and the fact that the show is HILARIOUS made me an instant fan.


Who is your favourite character and why?

Jane Lynch's character, Coach Sue Sylvester, is my favourite. I've loved her work since seeing her in the Christopher Guest movies. Everything she says on the show is so cruel and offensive, but ridiculously funny.


Can we do a Top 5 List from Glee? Run down your Top 5 songs that they have done and your Top 5 mash-ups or duets?

Top 5 Songs (in no particular order) 
Bust Your Windows
Vogue
I'll Stand By You
Hate On Me
Total Eclipse of the Heart

Top 5 Mash-Ups/Duets (in no particular order)

Physical
I Dreamed A Dream
Hello
Borderline/ Open Your Heart
4 Minutes


Beyond the Glee hype, if you could pick One Dream role to do on Broadway (past or present) what would it be?


For a really long time (this was WAY before the musical actually came out) I wanted to be Flounder in Little Mermaid. I had the concept thought up already; he'd be a soul singing teenager and get to sing a solo song or maybe a duet with Ariel. My dream was crushed, but I've since moved onto Mowgli in The Jungle Book, if it ever comes out. Or Kim in the all male version of Miss Saigon! Haha!


Watch Jeigh's YouTube Video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A3WBa7IchvU

For more information on the Glee Audition Tape Contest, please visit the official website: http://www.fox.com/glee/audition/


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