The 2009 Out 100

11.16.2009

By Noah Michelson

Photos: Jason Bell

Today's the day: we're revealing the complete and -- if we don't mind saying so ourselves -- absolutely stunning school days–themed 2009 Out 100, shot by renowned photographer Jason Bell and comprised of the 100 gay, lesbian, and trans people who have made a meaningful impact in their communities and on mainstream culture in the last 12 months.

There's no strict entry criterion for being in the 100. We salute the brave (like Lt. Dan Choi), marvel at the new confident out stars (Adam Lambert), thank our allies (Cyndi Lauper), and recognize the tremendous achievements of the major players who are proud of who they are (Wanda Sykes and Rob Marshall). We also included the bravest young voices, the dedicated campaigners, the openly gay politicians and lobbyists who've brought us so far. And we celebrate the directors, the writers, the Broadway producers and stars, like Neil Patrick Harris, who have shaped popular art and culture. More than that, we thank ordinary LGBT people who have done extraordinary things. And, fittingly, after the moguls, the advocates, the agitators, and the tastemakers, we stand humbled by a class from the Hetrick-Martin Institute's Harvey Milk School. We are honored to bring you the 2009 Out 100. This year's theme is a gentle nod to the days that shaped, delighted, and terrified us all and made us who we are today -- school days.

The December/January Out 100 issue is on newsstands now and you can see the full portfolio at Out.com.

You can also read the first half of our exclusive interview with Adam Lambert. The American Idol star gives us a play-by-play from the center of Fox’s PR storm, gets graphic
about just how far curiosity can carry you, and talks about
his taste in men (hint: “pretty” is pretty important):

Out: How do you describe your sexuality?
Adam Lambert: I think one of the
things about the gay community that’s really interesting is that while
people own their homosexuality, there is a strange aversion to letting
the masculine and the feminine exist within you in a balanced way. And
for me, personally, I feel I have a very strong masculine side, and I
also have a very strong feminine side. And a lot of people are scared
to live in that gray area. There’s boys out in Boystown that are either
really fem or really butch. It’s at the extremes. I love
when I meet people that are just kind of comfortable being both. And
they don’t have to identify being really butch or really fem. Why? Why
would you have to?

And also, if you’re one of these, then you must be attracted to the other. Are you attracted to guys like you?
I
don’t even know anymore. I think when I was younger, I could box in
what my sexuality was about, what’s my type and all that. But as I’ve
gotten older, and just learned more about myself and the world, it’s
not really about type anymore. I mean, if someone’s hot, they’re hot.
If someone’s interesting, they’re interesting. If you have an energy
and a chemistry with someone, then you have chemistry. Done. You can’t
really define that or explain it. It just is. You just meet people and you click, or you don’t. You know? [Pauses.] Although -- I like pretty boys.

[Laughs.] What kind of pretty?
Pretty. Pretty is pretty. And I’m generally drawn to [guys who are] younger than me. Generally…but there are exceptions.

To read the first full half (we'll have part two up tomorrow), head over to Out.com.

Previously > The 2009 Out 100: Tony Kushner

Tags: Popnography
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