He’s “unique” fabulous and in charge. Glee star Alex Newell hits the Bud Light Main Stage at PrideFest on Saturday, June 28 at 8:50 p.m. We caught up with the trans teen trailblazer to chat about PrideFest, his Glee persona, and more. 


My husband and I are super big Gleeks and we watch the show every week. We’ve really missed seeing you – does Unique have to move to New York for us to see you again?


It all depends on the pen; they’re still trying to figure out how to incorporate everyone so we don’t know. The season’s over now, we finished on last Friday, so it will be exciting to see what they muster up for the last and final season.


We’re really excited to have you come to St. Louis PrideFest – can you tell us what you have in store for St. Louis audiences?


Something exciting, I think. I haven’t decided on what I’m going to sing just yet but I know that I’m going to incorporate some new music and maybe even surprise with one of my own songs as well.


Audiences have come to know and love you as Wade “Unique” Adams on Glee. What has playing that character taught you about yourself?


Playing that character – it’s taught me about how comfortable I am and who I am as a person and about the tight support group of people that I have around me. That character just brings so much fun and life to my own life and to the show that exuberance follows through and travels with me everywhere.


Your performance of “If I Were a Boy” on Glee is probably one of my favorite “Unique” moments – you really conveyed the angst and struggle of dealing with gender identity issues. It was quite a moment. How did you prepare for that number; how did it impact you?


You try to make as everything as real as you live and I think the main thing that you learn through the journey of your acting career is you never want people to see that you’re acting. You just use past experience and put yourself in that moment in general, rather than preparing for days and trying to get into it. If you just sit there and let the story that you’re trying to portray get to you I think that’s the best kind of thing. I wasn’t spending weeks upon weeks of research trying to make myself cry – it would have just been depressed the whole entire two weeks of the episode. So letting the story speak to you speaks volumes and you’ll speak volumes with your performance.


Next season will be the last hurrah for Glee – if you had a chance to script the final story line for Unique, where would you like to see her end up?


I would want to see her as a guidance counselor or a mentor at McKinley – just being there and teaching other kids how to accept themselves no matter who they are.


Could you talk about your first Pride memory?


My first Pride was San Diego Pride almost two summers ago? That was my first Pride and it was just so much fun and I was performing there and I’d never been to a Pride. I was in the parade and I performed that night and it was just a lot of fun.


Could you talk a little bit about your advocacy? What projects are you passionate about?


I’m passionate, literally, across the board. I’m passionate about everything being equal rights or marriage equality – I’m passionate for the trans community. I’m just passionate about everything I’m in need and fit to advocate for.


What does PRIDE mean to Alex Newell?


Pride is a giant part of me. It’s just being happy for who or what you are and others that are around you.




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