You may recognize actor Robin DeJesus from the 2003 cult favorite CAMP in which he played the courageous cross-dressing teen Michael at a summer theater camp for obsessed thespians. Robin hasn't stopped working since he landed the role at 18 that would introduce him to audiences around the world.
The 23 year old actor can currently be seen in the new Broadway musical In The Heights, the hot new show about life, love and change in New York City's heavily Latino Washington Heights.
Tim Murphy of Out Magazine recently sat down with Robin to talk about his life, coming out, playing it straight onstage and the one television show he never misses.
Check out excerpts from the interview below. To read the full article click here.
On Being Single:
Are you somebody's housewife right now?
I'm single, but I'd like that to change. I don't really buy it when people say they like being single, but I have sort of been working on me. For a few years, my self-esteem was a little lower than it should have been, and now it's at the opposite end where I say, "You know what? I deserve someone as amazing as I am!"
Do you even have time to date with the grueling show schedules?
I do, but I haven't set it aside for some reason. I have this weird fantasy in my head that I'll turn the corner on Ninth Avenue one day and bump into someone...
How will you know if it's the right someone? Do you have a type?
I'm pretty open. I always say I'm like the friggin' U.N. I'm very big on energy. But I'm not saying I need to find the love of my life right now. I'm 23 years old. But if I do I totally welcome it.
On Playing It Straight:
Okay, let's talk about In the Heights a little. I don't know how you'll take this, but when I first saw you play Sonny in the off-Broadway version last year, I never would've known you were gay. You have such a swagger in that part.
If you call yourself an actor, you should be able to play straight. For years I was so worried that I couldn't pull off straight. When I would see an actor who didn't pull off straight, I would burn up inside. It would bother me. It was something that I felt like I had a battle with. Part of it for me is throwing [my gay side] away. I have a very high-ptiched voice, I'm very feminine.
You really think so?
My voice will go up to the key of bitch every now and then, but when I'm acting, I put it away.
On Coming Out:
So when and how did you come out?
I sort of came out as bi first in 11th or 12th grade. I really did believe I was bi. Before that, I had all these straight-guy friends who would stick up for me when others would call me "that faggot kid." These were guys on my football team who were my boys, and they were so awesome. I never told them [I was gay] and a lot of them found out after high school and were like "Why didn't you just tell us?" I feel like they might have felt a little betrayed.
How are things now?
Now my entire family knows I'm gay and it's been great with them. They're so accepting and warm toward me but there's always, like, that hope for them that I'll find some woman. I struggle with it sometime but I realize that, for them, it's all in love. My mom has become incredibly open, but to this day... She wanted to go to a gay bar with me and we went in Puerto Rico, where she moved back to in 2002. And we did go. And she was feeling uncomfortable after a while there, but she was totally doing it for me out of nothing but love. It's bittersweet. But opening night of In the Heights, when I got to my family after the show, all I could do was cry.