Lea Delaria

Lea Delaria

born on 23/5/1958 in Belleville, IL, United States

Lea DeLaria

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Lea DeLaria (born May 23, 1958) is an American comedian, actress, and jazz musician.[1][2][3] DeLaria is credited with being the first openly gay comic to appear on a late-night talk show with her 1993 appearance on The Arsenio Hall Show.[4] She is best known for her portrayal of inmate Carrie "Big Boo" Black on Netflix original series Orange Is the New Black.

Early life

DeLaria was born in Belleville, Illinois,[1][2] the daughter of Jerry Jean (née Cox), a homemaker, and Robert George DeLaria, a jazz pianist and social worker.[2][5] Her paternal grandparents were Italian.[3] She attended kindergarten through eighth grade at St. Mary's Elementary School in Belleville,[6] and has referenced her Catholic upbringing in her performances.


DeLaria's stand-up career began in 1982 when she moved to San Francisco and performed raunchy stand-up comedy in the Mission District.[7][8] Discussing her stand up, Delaria says, "This is who I am, when I'm up there. This is it. I'm a big butch dyke. That's who I am. And I'm a friendly one. I'm a big butch dyke with a smile on my face."[7]

In 1986, DeLaria directed "Ten Percent Revue", a musical revue with songs related to homosexuality and most of which reflect pride in being gay.[9] "Ten Percent Revue" was performed in Boston, San Francisco, Provincetown, Philadelphia, and Atlanta.[10] Many shows were sold out.[10]

In 1988, DeLaria starred in "Dos Lesbos", a musical comedy about two lesbians dealing with the issues of living together.[11] The show received very favorable reviews nationwide.[12]

DeLaria starred in "Girl Friday: We're Funny That Way", a musical comedy, in 1989.[13][14]

When DeLaria appeared on The Arsenio Hall Show in 1993, she was the first openly gay comic to appear on a late-night talk-show. While appearing on the show, DeLaria said, "Hello everybody, my name is Lea DeLaria, and it's great to be here, because it's the 1990s! It's hip to be queer! I'm a big dyke."[15] DeLaria later said she had been told that she should not have used the term dyke on the air.[6] Hall later defended her, saying, "If she wants to call herself a dyke, that's her business."[6]

In December 1993, DeLaria hosted Comedy Central's Out There, the first all-gay stand-up comedy special.[4]

DeLaria is also known for her touring "musical comedy about perverts", Dos Lesbos (1987–1989), as well as Girl Friday, a comedy she conceived, wrote, directed and starred in, and which won the 1989 Golden Gull for Best Comedy Group in Provincetown, Massachusetts.[16]

DeLaria has released two CD recordings of her comedy, Bulldyke in a China Shop (1994) and Box Lunch (1997). She has also written a humorous book entitled Lea's Book of Rules for the World.

DeLaria appeared as Jane in the 1998 Off Broadway production of Paul Rudnick's The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told, "a gay retelling of the Bible."[17] Entertainment Weekly said "a star is born with Lea DeLaria" of her "showstopping" performance as Hildy Esterhazy in the 1998 Broadway revival of On the Town.[18][19][20]

DeLaria subsequently played Eddie and Dr. Scott in the 2000 Broadway revival of The Rocky Horror Show, and can be heard on the cast recording.[21] DeLaria appeared in a number of films, including Edge of Seventeen and The First Wives Club

DeLaria integrates musical performance into her stand-up comedy, focusing on traditional and modern be-bop jazz. In 2001 she released a CD of jazz standards called Play It Cool. This was followed by the album Double Standards in 2003,[22][23] and by The Very Best of Lea DeLaria in 2008.

In 2001, DeLaria was the voice of Helga Phugly on the short-lived, animated sitcom, The Oblongs. In 1999 DeLaria played the recurring role of Madame Delphina on the ABC soap opera One Life to Live, returning in 2008 as both Delphina and Professor Delbert Fina. She continued to portray Delphina on a recurring basis until 2011.[24]

In 2008, Warner Records released The Live Smoke Sessions, DeLaria's first recording focused on "timeless pop standards" such as "Down With Love," "Night and Day," "Love Me or Leave Me" and "Come Rain or Come Shine." She noted, "I styled this CD on the old school live recordings ... It is my hope that this CD will take you back to 1948 and the Village Vanguard. So please let me invite you to mix a cocktail and enjoy a smoke while you sit back and soak up the swing."[25]

In November 2008, DeLaria completed a tour of Australia, playing Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Brisbane. She also frequently collaborates with comedian Maggie Cassella, most notably on an annual Christmas cabaret show in Toronto, Ontario which also sometimes tours to several other North American cities. In July 2010, her version of "All That Jazz" was used on So You Think You Can Dance. DeLaria is currently performing in Prometheus Bound at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Since 2013, she has appeared in the Netflix Original Orange Is the New Black as the recurring character prison inmate Carrie 'Big Boo' Black.[26][27][28]

On February 14, 2015, DeLaria received the Equality Illinois Freedom Award for her work as "a cutting-edge performer who has used her talent to entertain and enlighten millions of Americans," said Bernard Cherkasov, CEO of Equality Illinois. On receiving the award at the 2015 Equality Illinois Gala in Chicago, DeLaria said, "As an out performer for over 33 years who has made it her life's work to change peoples perception of butch, queer and LGBT, it is an honor for me to receive such recognition from my home state. I feel I'm doing Belleville proud. Go Maroons!"[29][30][31]

Personal life

In January 2015, DeLaria became engaged to fashion editor Chelsea Fairless after two and a half years of dating. The two met through Fairless's friend, actress Emma Myles, who plays Leanne in Orange is the New Black.[32] In January 2017, DeLaria confirmed she and Fairless had separated.[33]

Shortly after the election of Donald Trump as U.S. President, DeLaria was criticized for a profanity-laden post on Instagram in which she appeared to call for violence against people who supported Donald Trump. She later deleted the post.[34][35]


Comedy albums

  • 1994: Bulldyke in a Chinashop
  • 1997: Box Lunch (Rising Star)

Jazz albums

  • 2001: Play It Cool (Warner/WEA)
  • 2005: Double Standards (Telarc)
  • 2006: The Very Best of Lea DeLaria (Rhino/WEA UK)
  • 2008: Lea DeLaria – The Live Smoke Sessions (Ghostlight Records)
  • 2015: House of David (Ghostlight Records)

Guest vocalist

  • 2005: Din and Tonic – Janette Mason (Fireball Records)
  • 2006: Drawn to All Things – Ian Shaw Sings the Songs of Joni MitchellIan Shaw (Linn Records)
  • 2009: Alien Left Hand – Janette Mason (Fireball Records)

Broadway and film

  • 1998: On the Town – Broadway Revival Cast - "Hildy Esterhazy"
  • 1999: Edge of Seventeen – Music from the Motion Picture Soundtrack – Blue Skies (Razor and Tie)
  • 2001: The Rocky Horror Show – 2000 Broadway Revival Cast (RCA Victor Broadway)
  • 2005: Hair – Actors' Fund of America Benefit Recording (Ghostlight)



Year Title Role Notes
1996 Rescuing Desire Sadie
1996 The First Wives Club Elise's fan National Board of Review Award: Best Acting by an Ensemble
1997 Plump Fiction Mr. Purple
1998 Homo Heights Clementine
1998 Edge of Seventeen Angie
2006 Fat Rose and Squeaky Fat Rose Co-starring Cicely Tyson as 'Squeaky'
2013 Ass Backwards Deb
2016 Bear with Us Chief Ranger Stewart (voice)
2017 Cars 3 Miss Fritter (voice)
2018 Support the Girls Bobo Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1993 Out There Herself TV film
1993 Camp Christmas Herself TV film
1993 In the Life Herself/Guest host 1 episode
1994 Matlock Det. Pat Jordan 2 episodes
1994–95 The John Larroquette Show Lorelei 2 episodes
1995 Tom Clancy's Op Center Capt. White TV film
1995 Saved by the Bell: The New Class Miss Hearst 1 episode
1995 Out There in Hollywood Herself Sequel to the 1993 TV movie Out There
1996 Friends Woman Episode: "The One with the Lesbian Wedding"
1997 The Drew Carey Show Jewel 1 episode
1998 In Through The Out Door Various characters (also writer) TV film
1998 We're Funny That Way! Herself Documentary
1999 Great Performances Herself/Performer TV series
1999–2011 One Life to Live Madame Delphina 31 episodes
2000 The Beat Kathy Unknown episodes
2001 Further Tails of the City Willie Omiak TV mini-series
2001 The Oblongs Helga Phugly 7 episodes
2001 The Job Kiki 1 episode
2001 Cabaret Live! Herself/Performer
2002 Just for Laughs Herself/Performer TV Movie
2003 Will & Grace Nurse Carver 1 episode
2003 The Award Show Awards Show Herself TV special
2004 Mercury in Retrograde Betsy Brick TV short
2006 Outlaugh! Herself/Performer TV special
2009 Ptown Diaries DeLaria TV movie
2009 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Frankie Episode: "Transitions"
2012 Californication Debbie Episode: "Raw"
2012 Submissions Only Auditioner #4 Episode: "Another Interruption"
2013 Dear Dumb Diary Ms. Bruntford TV film
2013–present Orange Is the New Black Carrie "Big Boo" Black Recurring season 1-3, regular season 4- (36 episodes)
2014 Awkward Tattooist Episode: "After Hours"
2014–2017 Clarence EJ / various characters (voice) 9 episodes
2015 The Jim Gaffigan Show Herself Episode: "The Bible Story"
2014 Tellement Gay! Homosexualité et pop culture Herself Documentary
2017 Baroness von Sketch Show Brina Episode: "Don't Make Me Send a Lawyer Up There"
2017 Broad City Deb Episode: "Bedbugs"
2017 Shameless Barb Episode: "Frank's Northern Shuttle Express"

Video games

Year Title Role Notes
2017 Cars 3: Driven to Win Miss Fritter Voice

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Work Result
1998 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical On The Town Nominated
Theatre World Award Won
2015 Screen Actors Guild Award Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series Orange Is the New Black Won
2016 Won
Orlando Film Festival Best Ensemble Cast in a Feature Film Bear with Us Won
2017 Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series Orange Is the New Black Won


  1. ^ a b "Lea DeLaria". Hollywood.com. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  2. ^ a b c "Lea DeLaria Biography". Film Reference. Advameg. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  3. ^ a b ""You & A Guest" Interview: Lea DeLaria". Breakupgirl.net. July 15, 1999. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  4. ^ a b Cagle, Jess (December 10, 1993). "Trend: Gay stand-up comedians". Entertainment Weekly. Time Warner. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  5. ^ "Robert DeLaria Obituary". Belleville News-Democrat. Retrieved June 21, 2015. 
  6. ^ a b c Richmond, Dick. "Lea Delaria: She's Got Nothing to Hide". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. November 25, 1993.
  7. ^ a b "Lesbian Comic Delaria Is So Out That She's In", The Press of Atlantic City, March 7, 1994.
  8. ^ Guthmann, Edward. "'The Parker Posey of Queer Cinema': Stand-up comic Lea DeLaria is all over the lesbian and gay film festival", The San Francisco Chronicle, June 14, 1998.
  9. ^ Keating, Douglas J. "Musical Revue Looks at Gay Life". The Philadelphia Inquirer. October 17, 1986.
  10. ^ a b Crouch, Paula. "It's a pickle's life in puppet comedy". The Atlanta Journal. November 14, 1986.
  11. ^ Hicks, Bob. "Dos Lesbos". The Oregonian. January 8, 1988.
  12. ^ Hicks, Bob. "Talented Comedians Slighttly Offbeat", The Oregonian, January 7, 1989.
  13. ^ Valdespino, Anne. "A Latin American original brings her steps to OC". The Orange County Register, January 25, 1989.
  14. ^ Hunt, Phil. "'Girl Friday' Provides a Gay Time for All", The Oregonian, January 12, 1990.
  15. ^ Holden, Stephen. "Left-leaning Singing Comic Caught a Ride on Rising Star". The Times Union (Albany, New York).
  16. ^ Post, Laura. "Lea DeLaria". AllMusic. All Media Guide. Retrieved June 28, 2011. 
  17. ^ Cagle, Jess (April 23, 1999). "The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told". Entertainment Weekly. Time Warner. Retrieved June 28, 2011. 
  18. ^ Canby, Vincent (November 29, 1998). "THEATER; An Exhilarating 'On the Town' Spreads Some Joy". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  19. ^ Cagle, Jess (December 4, 1998). "Little Me". Entertainment Weekly. Time Warner. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  20. ^ Wontorek, Paul (June 4, 1999). "Handicapping the 1999 Tony Awards". Entertainment Weekly. Time Warner. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  21. ^ "Lea DeLaria". Internet Broadway Database. The Broadway League. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  22. ^ Reynolds, Nick (November 3, 2003). "Lea DeLaria Double Standards Review". BBC. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  23. ^ "Double Standards". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  24. ^ Murray, Jesse (July 1, 2008). "Madame Delphina Sees All". SOAPnet. The Walt Disney Company. Archived from the original on March 14, 2012. Retrieved June 28, 2011. 
  25. ^ "Lea Delaria: Live Smoke Sessions To Be Released 9/9". BroadwayWorld.com. September 9, 2008. Retrieved 2011-06-28. 
  26. ^ "Tellement Gay! Une perle de la Culture lesbienne par Lea DeLaria". ARTE. Retrieved November 18, 2017. 
  27. ^ [1]
  28. ^ [2]
  29. ^ "EQIL Honors Lea DeLaria with Freedom Award". equalityillinois.us. Retrieved June 21, 2015. 
  30. ^ "BOOM". boom.lgbt. Retrieved June 21, 2015. 
  31. ^ "EQIL Honors Lea DeLaria with Freedom Award". chicagoactivism.org. Archived from the original on June 26, 2015. Retrieved June 21, 2015. 
  32. ^ Corriston, Michele. "Orange Is the New Black Star Lea DeLaria Is Engaged". People. February 6, 2015.
  33. ^ Webber, Stephanie. "Orange Is the New Black's Lea DeLaria, Fiancee Chelsea Fairless Split, Call Off Engagement", Us Weekly, January 12, 2017.
  34. ^ "'Orange is the New Black' actress Lea DeLaria says she wants to 'take out' Trump supporters with baseball bat". Foxnews.com. November 11, 2016. Retrieved November 18, 2017. 
  35. ^ Furdyk, Brent (November 12, 2016). "Anti-Trump 'OITNB' Star Lea DeLaria Deletes Controversial Instagram Post Threatening To 'Pick Up A Baseball Bat And Take Out Every F***ing Republican'". Etcanada.com. Retrieved November 18, 2017. 

External links

  • Official website
  • Lea DeLaria on IMDb
  • Lea DeLaria at the Internet Broadway Database
  • Lea DeLaria at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
This page was last modified 19.06.2018 21:26:38

This article uses material from the article Lea DeLaria from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia and it is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.