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Marriage Equality

6 Celebs Who Have Performed Marriages for Same-Sex Couples

6 Celebs Who Have Performed Marriages for Same-Sex Couples


Joan Rivers, Lady Gaga, and Benedict Cumberbatch have all made queer couples' weddings complete.

With the Supreme Court and Ninth Circuit and God knows who else legalizing marriage equality lately, it's only a matter of time before the entire country is free to marry whoever they like. And with that expansion in freedom will come ever more elaborate ceremonies, with the occasional celebrity guest.

As it happens, high-profile celebrities have already started lending their talents to queer wedding ceremonies, in some cases just moments after marriage is legalized. We've compiled a few of our favorite famous-person wedding officiants below.

Conan O'Brien
One of the most memorable celebrity weddings was when Conan O'Brien officiated the marriage of his costume designer and his partner just a few days after New York legalized same-sex marriage in 2011. The ceremony doesn't feel like a TV stunt at all -- instead, it comes off as a sincere, genuine celebration for two guys surrounded by family and friends in a setting that means a lot to them. (But can we please declare a moratorium on the phrase "you are my everything" in vows?)

Ian McKellen
OK, so this wasn't technically a wedding between gay people -- Sir Ian officiated the marriage of his close friend Sir Patrick Stewart to Sunny Ozell in 2013. But McKellen is iconic enough that any wedding he attends automatically becomes a gay wedding, no matter the gender of the couple. That goes double given that McKellen actually performed the ceremony. Besides, the two great actors are chummy enough that they could be a married couple if they so wished, as this video proves.

Benedict Cumberbatch
The Sherlock star got an online license to perform a wedding for his friends Seth Cummings and Rob Rinder in Ibiza last year. Not a bad gig! Rinder is a bit of a celebrity himself, presiding over a British courtroom reality show called Judge Rinder, where he basically makes fun of hapless litigants. Hopefully his wedding vows didn't contain any mention of the word "penguin," which we've recently learned Cumberbatch cannot pronounce.

Joan Rivers
May she rest in peace, Joan was caught a little off-guard by a fan's request at a book signing to marry him and his partner. Jed Ryan and Joe Aiello didn't actually expect her to say yes, let alone to marry them right there on the spot. Surprise! Then Rivers married the couple for real a few weeks later, because of course you can't just go around marrying people without filling out licenses first.

Lady Gaga
Of course Lady Gaga has performed gay weddings. Of course. Frankly, we wouldn't be surprised if a simple strut from Gaga through a room resulted in several same-sex marriages. She performed a wedding for her lesbian yoga teacher Tricia Donegan in 2012, so it's fitting that Los Angeles producer Jason O'Ffill used "Edge of Glory" in his iconic marriage equality video, below. Side note: Remember when Gaga made great songs? Those were the days.

Cory Booker
Don't try to tangle with Cory Booker. The former mayor of Newark, now a U.S. senator from New Jersey, had no patience with a homophobic heckler when he performed one of the state's first same-sex marriages almost exactly a year ago. During the ceremony, someone hollered at Orville Belle and Joseph Panessidi that their marriage was "unlawful in the eyes of God," and with a few words Booker had the interloper ejected from the room.

30 Years of Out100Out / Advocate Magazine - Jonathan Groff & Wayne Brady

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Matt Baume