California's passage of the same-sex marriage ban
Proposition 8 was a recurring theme running through
Cracked Xmas 11, the annual holiday fund-raiser for
the teen help line the Trevor Project.
Held at Los
Angeles's Wiltern Theater, the December 7 event
brought thousands out for what the Trevor Project
describes as its annual "evening of irreverent
comedy, music, and awards." One of the
charity's main fund-raisers, Cracked Xmas helps
the Trevor Project maintain its 24-7 crisis and
suicide prevention hotline for LGBTQ youths. Since its
inception in 1998, Trevor has taken over 100,000 phone
After opening the
show with a performance from the traveling production
of the Tony Award-winning Spring Awakening,
comedian Wanda Sykes was introduced by Kath &
Kim stars Selma Blair and Mikey Day.
recently came out at a post-election Prop. 8 protest in Las
Vegas, got a standing ovation when she came onstage.
"It's like you've never seen a black
lesbian before," Sykes quipped.
During a stand-up
routine that referenced everything from Michelle
Obama's "nice butt" to Sykes's
own battle with her stomach roll ("I call her
Esther," Sykes said, "my Esther roll"),
the comedian touched on Prop. 8. Sykes ridiculed the
arguments put forth by Prop. 8 supporters that banning
same-sex marriage was necessary to protect traditional
marriage that needs protecting is ours," she said to
cheers from the audience. "Churches need to
stick to church business," Sykes added,
apparently referencing the Mormon Church and other religious
organizations that were big Prop. 8 supporters. "Why
don't you buy food kitchens pork and
Bravo reality TV
stars Rachel Zoe and her assistant Brad helped out
during an onstage auction with packages that included a
Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams $10,000 shopping spree,
round-trip tickets to Australia from Qantas Airlines,
and a day of celebrity styling from Zoe. As the auction
finished, presenter Anne Hathaway took the stage and added
an unexpected auction item: herself. Hathaway said she
had decided on the spot to offer to host a night
on the town, during which she would get the
highest bidder "shitfaced." After some fevered
bidding, Hathaway sold for $12,000.
really nice for me," she said.
Scrubs star Sarah Chalke presented Lifetime
Networks with the Trevor Hope Award, accepted by Lifetime
executive JoAnn Alfano, who gave Chalke props for
appearing as the "pretty Mormon girl" in
Marc Shaiman's recent Internet sensation Prop.
8: The Musical. Alfano spoke of Lifetime's
commitment to inclusive programming, including the
upcoming TV movie Prayers for Bobby, an adaptation of
the Leroy Aarons book profiling Mary Griffith, a
religious woman who became an LGBT activist after her
gay son Bobby committed suicide. Alfano spoke of her
own recent marriage to her partner of 14 years ("it
was a very long engagement") and her belief
that "Bobby Griffith might be alive today" if
Trevor had existed when Griffith was contemplating killing
Pop star Fantasia
also performed, having a roadie help her out of her
high heels so that she could come off the stage and dance
with audience members while she sang "Purple
Rain." Fantasia finished up her set with an a
capella version of Willie Nelson's "You Were
Always on My Mind."
Leslie Jordan talked about his experiences growing up in
Tennessee as the son of a U.S. Army lieutenant colonel. In
contrasting his father's military persona to his
own, Jordan said, "I fell out of the womb
and into my mother's heels." He
recalled a Christmas when all he wanted was a
bride doll. He explained that years later his mother
told him his father, who initially refused to buy the doll,
spent hours on Christmas Eve searching for one. When
Jordan saw the doll on Christmas morning, he
reported, "I squatted on the floor and
to the stage to present Sigourney Weaver with the
Trevor Life Award. The Oscar-nominated actress stars in
Lifetime's Prayers for Bobby, which Weaver
said was a powerful learning experience, because she
discovered many close gay friends still have
complicated relationships with their own families.
the Griffith family for sharing their story with the
world. "They thought they were doing the right
thing," Weaver said, noting that the Griffiths'
church had told them their son would burn in a lake of
fire for being gay. "That's Christianity for
you," she said.
story still has resonance today, Weaver said. "Prop.
8 showed all of us the roots of this kind of ignorance
and bigotry." While Weaver spoke about the
larger issue of Prop. 8, she noted she had been
thinking about Bobby Griffith during the evening's
ceremonies: "I think he would have had a
wonderful time being here."