Photo Credit: Keiynan Lonsdale Facebook
26 year old Aussie actor, dancer and singer/songwriter Keiynan Lonsdale plays Bram in hit movie, Love, Simon, the film which helped him release the shame he felt and fully accept himself as bisexual. Now he’s dropped a new single called ‘Kiss The Boy’, which is about embracing your sexuality and is accompanied by a cute, inclusive lyric video.
Lonsdale told Billboard that writing 'Kiss the Boy' was easy. “I had so much to draw off, with the movie, my own personal life and every relationship I'd been in and other people's stories that they'd told me.”
Lonsdale’s upcoming album will feature more queer songs on it. “At first, I was like, ‘I don't wanna force this kind of thing.’ But that's my reality,” he told Billboard.
Lonsdale came out as bisexual in an emotional Instagram post in May last year, a few weeks after he finished shooting Love, Simon. In the post, he opened up about his struggle to accept himself and the need to live authentically. Today he identifies as queer.
"I like to change my hair, I like to take risks with how I dress, I like girls, & I like guys (yes)," he wrote.
"I like growing, I like learning, I like who I am and I really like who I'm becoming," he added. "Spent way too many years hating myself, thinking I was less valuable because I was different, which is just untrue. A couple years ago I was able to accept myself, & it saved my life, but now I've gotten to a new road block & I feel kind of lost. I gotta take the next step & actually embrace who I am, which is pretty exciting."
“Not faking shit anymore, not apologising for falling in love with people no matter their gender. I've become bored of being insecure, ashamed, scared... no one should feel like that about themselves, especially when there is so much good life to live.”
“Ya know more & more I see so many young people being their best / truest selves, it's fucking inspiring... so what have I been waiting for!? Who knows. Everyone in their own time. I hope we can all learn to embrace who we are & not judge people who aren't exactly the same as us. The truth is we are all family, we're all one. Just love. Keiy. ❤”
In March this year, Lonsdale told the Hollywood Reporter that he struggled to be open about his sexuality on the set of Love, Simon, even though the film is a gay romantic comedy.
"It's kind of interesting. I was out to my cast at The Flash, I was out to some family and a lot of friends, but I went into this film, and I still hid myself from everyone. I didn't know how to be myself, and I didn't tell them. I was in a relationship at the time with a guy, and I didn't even tell them that."
“It took me until the last day, until wrap time, to tell my cast. And I remember that made me really upset. I was speaking to one of my friends and I was like, "I don't know why I'm so scared. I'm on a LGBT film, playing this character, there's a gay director, everyone is so supportive. I couldn't be in a better environment.”
“And so that made me think a lot. It made me really dig deep, and I realized that I was harboring shame. Despite having accepted myself, I realized, like, I'm not embracing this. I've just accepted (that) this is who I am, and looking at it as though I have to deal with this thing that I have.”
Lonsdale told the Hollywood Reporter that he hadn’t planned to come out “until I was like, in my 80’s. Until then I’d just live a nice sad life.”
Despite the cautionary tales about actors staying in the closet or losing their careers, Lonsdale is relieved he chose the authentic option.
“It’s been a wonderful experience, a very welcoming experience,” he said. “We have the power to change that outcome ourselves, and if you come out and you’re proud of it, and you’re proud of yourself, then people are proud for you. It’s infectious.”
Love, Simon is in cinema's now, and Kiss The Boy is available on iTunes.