December 11th People

December 11th

12-11-1926 – 07-25-1984 Big Mama Thornton (born Willie Mae Thornton) – Born in Ariton, Alabama. She was an American rhythm big-mama-thorntonand blues singer, and songwriter. Thornton was the first to record Hound Dog and wrote Ball and Chain. She was openly gay and sang about her love for women. She often dressed as a man in her performances. She also taught herself to play the drums and the harmonica. Her playing with gender and sexuality set the stage for later rock ’n’ roll artists’ own plays with sexuality.


12-11-1913 – 11-08-1996 Jean Marais – Born in Cherbourg-Octeville, France. He was a French actor, director, and sculptor. Marais, who jean-maraiswas gay, was the muse and lover of Jean Cocteau for 25 years. He played over 100 roles in film and on television. In the 1970s he preferred performing on stage and did so up until his eighties. His sculpture “Le passe muraille” (the Walker Through Walls) can be seen in the Montmartre Quarter of Paris. From 1953 until 1959, his lover was the American dancer George Reich.

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