Theater archives

Dusty Springfield’s Sexuality Addressed In New Show


A few years ago, I saw a very early version of Forever Dusty, about the immortal singer Dusty Springfield, and found it a knockout, with Kirsten Holly Smith believable and really strong in the role.

I was wishin’ and hopin’ the show would make it to a big-time NYC theater, and now it has.

After honing and polishing, Dusty is heading to New World Stages in November, and it seems to have the look of love.

On the eve of its run, I asked Smith–who also has a cowriting credit on the show–if Dusty’s lesbianism or bisexuality is addressed in it.

Her reply:

“Yes, a central storyline of the show involves her relationship with the character Claire, played in our show by the extremely talented Broadway actress Christina Sajous.

“Dusty was a gay woman. She was constantly linked to men in the press, but she spent her most deep and serious intimate relationships with women. She lived in a time when she felt coming out would cause her to lose her audience and destroy her career.

“When she finally did her ‘coming out’ interview in 1970 with journalist Ray Connolly, it was unprecedented for a star of her level and a tremendous risk. She ended up finding a huge number of loyal fans in the gay community, which she still has to this day, obviously.

“We have many celebs who are openly gay today but there are so many who are still closeted. We have come so far on this issue but still have a ways to go. Dusty was a true pioneer and she risked her career for it.”

Love that Dusty.

I Only Want To Be With Her.