Alan Cumming

I’m such an admirer of this man. I just finished reading his new book, “Not My Father’s Son”, which is a memoir, and an incredibly open and courageous one at that; I’m so glad he wrote it. There are a few photographs in the book, and this one is my favourite:

alan cumming and grant shafferThis is Alan with his husband, Grant Shaffer. Alan looks so at peace. It gives me hope for my life and my future that he has found and made a home for himself with Grant. That it can work. 

I love Alan too for much lighter reasons :), his sense of humour, his fun with fashion, and the stunning breadth of plays and performances he takes on (from Shakespeare to Cabaret, from The Good Wife to Hedwig and the Angry Inch…).

Shame is not one of the problems he’s had to deal with, neither in his sexuality nor in being different in any other way (he talks about this in his book). And it’s liberating to see that, to witness that, to have someone in usually uninspiring celebrity interviews who is himself and cares not for what the world thinks. He plays roles few others would take on, to some his plays might at times be offensive or ridiculous or ‘too gay’ – it doesn’t matter. He plays roles he likes. He wears clothes he likes. Self-determination. And he’s fought hard for that, and against odds piled highly against him. And I’d love to have more of that kind of strength and freedom in me, and I’m glad that I can look to him for inspiration.

Here’s a little taste of his creative fashion sense and his various (and important – again, read the book) hair styles:

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I think he looks completely fantastic in this red suit:

alan-cumming-red-suit  And in red in general…

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He also makes any kind of kilt look breathtakingly good:

NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 12: Actor Alan Cumming walks the runway at Naomi Campbell's Fashion For Relief Haiti Fall 2010 Fashion Show during the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2010 - Official Coverage at Bryant Park on February 12, 2010 in New York City.  (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz) *** Local Caption *** Alan Cumming

Alan has also been on “Who Do You Think You Are?” (a genealogy show), following the traces of his maternal grandad to Malaysia. He went back a few years later with his brother and his mum, to show them all the places he had found:

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The bond between the three of them is so strong; a lot of “Not My Father’s Son” describes their love for each other, which saved all three of them in many ways, and it’s wonderful to be allowed an insight into their relationship. 

In all the interviews he gives, he comes across as a very kind, very intelligent, compassionate, funny, courageous and characterful man who has been tried and tested and has come out stronger on the other side, having fought for all that is good and beautiful in his life and knows how to cherish it all.

What an inspiration he is.

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