04-03-1924 – 07-01-2004 Marlon Brando – Born in Omaha, Nebraska. He was an American actor, film director, and activist. Brando’s performance in Tennessee Williams’s A Streetcar Named Desire, made him a star. It earned him his first Academy Award nomination in the Best Actor category. He received an Academy Award for his performance in On The Waterfront. The only musical he made was Guys and Dolls. Brando’s performance in The Godfather won him another Academy Award, which he declined. He boycotted the award ceremony and sent American Indian rights activist Sacheen Littlefeather to state that Brando objected to the depiction of American Indians by Hollywood and television. Brando was known for his many wives and girlfriends. He was the father to eleven children, three of which were adopted. In 1976, he told a French journalist, “Homosexuality is so much in fashion, it no longer makes news. Like a large number of men, I, too, have had homosexual experiences and I am not ashamed. I never paid much attention to what people think about me.” Brando was close friends with Wally Cox and told a journalist: “If Wally had been a woman, I would have married him and we would have lived happily ever after.” In 2018, Richard Pryor’s widow, Jennifer, told TMZ her husband, “had a lot of sex in the 70’s—and it was with both men and women—including Marlon Brando.”
04-03-1791 – 09-22-1840 Anne Lister – Born in Halifax, United Kingdom. She was a rich Yorkshire landowner, diarist, mountaineer, and traveler. Throughout her life, she kept diaries that chronicled the details of her daily life, including her lesbian relationships. The entries concerning the intimate details of her romantic and sexual relationships were written in code. The code was a combination of algebra and Ancient Greek and was deciphered in the 1930s. Lister is often called “the first modern lesbian” for her clear self-knowledge and acceptance of being a lesbian. Called “Fred” by her lovers and “Gentleman Jack” by Halifax residents, she did experience harassment for her sexuality. She recognized her similarity to the Ladies of Llangollen (Eleanor Butler & Sarah Ponsonby that lived together for over 50 years) and did visit them.
Gentleman Jack, created by Sally Wainwright, is a historical television series based on the collected diaries of Lister, which contain over four million words and written in secret code, documenting a lifetime of lesbian relationships. The series premiered on April 22, 2019, in the United States. and in the United Kingdom on May 19, 2019. Anne Lister is played by Suranne Jones and Ann Walker, Lister’s love interest, is played by Sophie Rundle.
04-03-1980 Pastor Megan Rohrer – Born in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Rohrer is the first openly transgender minister to be ordained by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. While in college, Rohrer came out as a lesbian and became president of the Gay-Straight Alliance. After moving to San Francisco in 2002, Rohrer identified as transgender. In 2014, Rohrer became the pastor of Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church in San Francisco. In 2017, Rohrer was hired by the San Francisco Police Department as their first chaplain from the LGBT community. The pastor has helped the homeless and the hungry in San Francisco, serving as Executive Director of the Welcome Ministry.
04-03-1931 – 05-04-2015 William Bast – Born in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin. He was an American screenwriter and author. He lived with James Dean for five years, both in Los Angeles and New York. After James Dean was killed in an automobile accident, Bast wrote about his relationship with the actor, James Dean: a Biography (1956) and in 2006, he published Surviving James Dean, in which he was more candid about his relationship with Dean and that they had a sexual relationship. He had left this out of his first book because of the social stigma of being gay and was afraid of how it would affect him personally. In 1976, Bast received the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Allan Poe Award for his television movie The Legend of Lizzie Borden, starring Elizabeth Montgomery in the title role. Bast often worked with his lover, writer, Paul Huson. In 2015, Bast died from Alzheimer’s disease. Photo is of James Dean and William Bast.
04-03-1915 – 10-29-2011 Axel Axgil (born Axel Lundahl-Madsen) – Born in Denmark – Places of birth unknown. He and partner Eigil Axgil were Danish gay activists. They were the first gay couple to enter into a registered partnership anywhere in the world following Denmark’s legalization of same-sex partnership registration in 1989, a landmark legislation which they were instrumental in bringing about. Axgil is a last name adopted by the couple – a combination of their given names as an expression of their commitment.
04-03-1939 – 05-21-1991 Lino (Catalino) Ortiz Brocka – Born in Pilar, Sorsogon, Commonwealth of the Philippines. He is regarded as one of the most influential and significant Filipino filmmakers in Philippine cinema history. In 1983, he founded the organization Concerned Artists of the Philippines, dedicated to helping artists address issues confronting the country. Brocka was a self descried gay man and he often incorporated LGBT themes into his films. In 1987, a documentary entitled Signed: Lino Brocka was directed by Christian Blackwood. It won the 1988 Peace Film Award at the Berlin International Film Festival. On May 21 1991, Brocka was killed in a car accident. In 1997, he was given the posthumous distinction of National Artist for Film.
04-03-1959 Davie Hyde Pierce – Born in Saratoga Springs, New York. He is an American actor and comedian. He is known for playing the psychiatrist Dr. Niles Crane on the hit NBC sitcom Frasier, for which he won four Emmy Awards during the show’s run. He has appeared in films such as Little Man Tate, Oliver Stone’s Nixon, and Sleepless in Seattle. He also won the Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical in 2007. After years of media speculation about his sexuality, Pierce came out in 2007 and confirmed that he and television writer, director, and producer Brian Hargrove were a couple. When accepting his Tony Award for Curtains, he thanked “my partner, Brian, because it’s 24 years of listening to your damn notes — that’s why I’m up here tonight.” They married in California on October 24, 2008, just days before Proposition 8 passed, banning same-sex marriages in the state. Pierce has spent years working with the Alzheimer’s Association on behalf of Americans with the disease.
04-03-1991 Hayley Kiyoko -Born in Los Angeles, California, her mother is from Canada and is of Japanese ancestry and her father is from Ohio of mostly Irish and German ancestry. She is an American actress, singer, and songwriter. She is best known for playing Velma Dinkley in the Scooby-D00 films, as well as Stella Yamada in the Disney Channel film, Lemonade Mouth. Her music video for her single, Girls Like Girls, was released on June 24, 2015. As of January 2017, the video has had over 56 million views. Kiyoko has said that the Gravel to Tempo video draws on her experiences with having crushed on girls while growing up. She has stated in Paper Magazine that she has always liked girls, although lately she has said she may be interested in boys as well. Not sure if she is a lesbian or bisexual, but she is definitely LGBT friendly.