Deborah Gibson: Still Electric


By Bob Merrick

Do you think a member of an active boy band could ever come out?

I think pretty much every boy band has a gay member anyway so I wish they would! The idea of a boy band is that there is one boy for everyone, so they should purposely hire one gay member!

I can see the headline now: 'Debbie Gibson On Crusade to Out Boy Band Members!' Do you think our society will ever be able to embrace an openly out pop princess?

I swear, sometimes I wish I was a lesbian just so I could be your poster child! I hope so. Now that would be cool! I mean, really, who cares? The whole romantic fantasy of your pop crush is just that: a fantasy. So what's the difference if they're gay or straight? I was in love with George Michael and he was never gonna love me back whether he's gay or straight, but I can still be in love with him!

Well said. You fought off the Playboy offers for years. What made you finally change your mind?

I was truly not even thinking about the nudity. That's what made me want to do it. I thought, I know that I'm a free spirit but no one else knows. I mean, being in the theater and changing in the wings'you can only remain modest for so long!

So you actually found it liberating?

It was my version of skydiving!

Speaking of body issues, the tabloids are reporting that you are dating fellow Grease-alum Lorenzo Lamas. Isn't that a lot of pressure from the man who determined who was 'Hot or Not'?

[Laughing] I'm so far from the 'hot chick' anyway, so it doesn't matter. People like me for other reasons. A personality will never require Botox!

I'm dying to know. Has he ever taken out his laser pen on you?

I'm getting him on the other line to ask him what that means. I didn't watch the show. He said he gets asked all the time if he has one, but he doesn't! It's so funny 'cause he is such a warm and evolved man'not at all the guy with the laser pen!

You hit it big at 17. How do you think you would've handled success had the media been like it is today?

I would have hated it. I still get told, 'To have a hit record, you have to lose weight, hit the red carpet in a trendy dress, and date a young, hot actor.' How about making great music?

Excellent question! When can we expect more great music out of you?

I recently met a fab writer/producer named Neal Pogue. He has worked with too many hot acts to name'Google him. He and I are collaborating and planning on turning some heads. So I am working on new stuff and as soon as I feel I have the undeniable hits, I will release it. I don't want to cash in on the kitsch factor and live off my past. I am still young and ready to compete with the 'it' girls.

And in the meantime, you will be playing Nellie in the Fresno Grand Opera's stage revival of South Pacific. What is your dream Broadway role?

Well, this is one of them. I can be caught many an afternoon alone in my house belting 'Cockeyed Optimist'! But my dream is to revive They're Playing Our Song.

If you were to look into a crystal ball that tells the future, what is Deborah Gibson doing at 50?

Honey'that's not that far off! I would say VEGAS!

OK, it's late and I am going to let you go to bed, but before I do, there's something I've got to know. Do you still have your hat collection, and whatever became of the infamous bolero-style hat?

Ha! It's in storage. I recently threw out a ton of clothing but I still kept all of my tour costumes. I'm a sentimental fool!

For more information on Deborah's upcoming shows and appearances, visit