Ma Vie En Rose

Leslie Jordan's new one man show, My Trip Down the Pink Carpet, premiered at Gay Fest in New York City and this week comes to the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center. The show chronicles his journey to celebrity status with a slightly colorful twist

BY Mike Diamond

May 09 2008 11:00 PM ET

Jordan was a huge
consumer of popular entertainment. Seeing the effete
Truman Capote on The Tonight Show With Johnny
Carson
and Paul Lynde on Hollywood Squares
provoked an interesting response: "I was fascinated
….and deeply repulsed." This internalized
homophobia would manifest itself in various ways over
the ensuing years, both in Jordan’s career and in his
personal life. While he was in his 20s, he lived in an
apartment without mirrors so that he'd avoid
accidentally catching his own nelly reflection staring
back at him.

In 1982, Jordan
arrived in Hollywood. He was already in his late
20s -- not the most opportune age for a 5-foot-4 man
whose walk has been described as "Bette Midler onstage
with a touch of Ruth Gordon." Jordan began to get
work as an actor, albeit largely in bit parts. Over
the years he has worked with some of showbiz’s
biggest names (he does a priceless bit involving Faye
Dunaway channeling Tennessee Williams) as well as some
stars on the rise (George Clooney was a lovable
jokester; Boy George, with whom Jordan did a Japanese sake
commercial was "a tad mean spirited…evil"). Whether
rhapsodizing about one-time costar Mark Harmon ("a
god!") or recounting buying panties for Beverly
D’Angelo in Drop, Texas ("about seven miles from
where Christ lost his shoes"), Jordan manages to infuse each
yarn with a potent mix of self-deprecation, arch
cattiness, and an unmistakable joy just to be in the
business of show (endearingly peppering his monologue
with "ya’ll" -- a country boy through and
through).

Tags: Theater

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