You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Ben Platt Talks Religion, Sexuality and Showbiz at Grammy Museum Event

Tony Award winner Ben Platt sat for a candid Q&A on July 24 at Los Angeles’ Grammy Museum, which was followed by an intimate performance of songs from his “Sing To Me Instead” album, released in March by Atlantic Records.

Speaking to veteran writer David Wild, the Broadway star discussed his showbiz family (his father, Academy Award winner Marc E. Platt, and brother Jonah Platt are no strangers to entertainment), religion and sexuality, the anxieties that come with being a performer, and the influences who pushed him to release his own work.

Empathetic and funny, the “Dear Evan Hansen” star recounted growing up on theater and starting his career at the age of 9 in the 2003 film “The Music Man,” based on the classic stage musical, alongside cast members Kristin Chenoweth, Matthew Broderick and Victor Garber. After his early success, Platt’s ignited love for performing led to other experiences on stage including a quick turn in the play “Caroline, or Change,” an experience he says stuck with him and inspired some of the sound on his latest project.

“I got to watch all of these incredible singers warming up to Stevie Wonder and Ray Charles and exposed myself to that whole world,” said Platt. “A light bulb kind of went off in my mind — that was a sound that feels really honest to me and feels like my fiber. You can hear this mixed pot of the intention that comes from the theater, some of the confessionalism of the James Taylors and Carol Kings, and then a little bit of the blue-eyed soul that hopefully, I’ve stolen from the Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder.”

Musically, Platt delivered with his smooth tenor guiding songs about anxiety and love like “Ease My Mind” and “Bad Habit.” An acoustic performance of “Grow as we go” allowed the audience some insight into the meaning behind his pleading lyrics.

He handled the topic of religion lightly, making jokes about being an openly gay Jewish man. Said Platt: “I definitely take that for granted growing up here in L.A. — a very liberal, progressive place — that representation means so much to some people. Just the right use of a pronoun can just change the whole vernacular. For people to tell me at meet-and-greets that they came out to their parents because of the album, or that they feel more comfortable with themselves or their relationships because of the album, that’s a completely unexpected byproduct that’s really beautiful.”

More Music

  • Warner Chappell Names Shani Gonzales Head of

    Warner Chappell Names Shani Gonzales Head of International, Executive VP of A&R

    Warner Chappell Music today announced the appointment of Shani Gonzales as Head of International, Executive Vice President of U.S., A&R. Based in New York, she will report to the company’s co-chair & CEO Guy Moot. Gonzales was most recently co-head of A&R at BMG U.S. and U.K., following stints at Epic Records and Def Jam. She [...]

  • KeshaSaks x Stonewall Inn collection launch

    Kesha Releases Trailer for ‘Debaucherous Joy’-Filled New Album ‘High Road’

    Kesha is more glittery than ever in the trailer for her new studio album, “High Road.” The eclectic clip, released Monday, heralds the coming of Kesha’s first album since 2017’s “Rainbow.” Amidst vintage clips of the American landscape and snippets of new songs, Kesha explains what to expect during a sit-down interview. “I’ve seen the [...]

  • Brandi Carlile at the 61st Annual

    Brandi Carlile Pulls Out of Fortune Women's Summit Over Kirstjen Nielsen Appearance

    Singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile has pulled out of the Fortune Most Powerful Woman Summit that begins today in Washington, D.C. She follows Hillary Clinton and “Surviving R. Kelly” executive producer Dream Hampton in exiting the summit over the inclusion of Kirstjen Nielsen, President Trump’s former homeland security secretary, who shared responsibility for implementing his family separation [...]

  • Sony/ATV Names Dana Baxter Senior VP

    Sony/ATV Music Publishing Names Dana Baxter Senior VP of Corporate Communications

    Sony/ATV Music Publishing today announced the appointment of Dana Baxter as Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, effective November 1.  According to the announcement, in this role, she will lead all global communications strategies to further advance Sony/ATV’s evolution and mission of putting songwriters first.  She will report to Jon Platt, Chairman and CEO of Sony/ATV and will [...]

  • Young Dolph

    How Rappers Young Dolph and Key Glock Turned Street Smarts Into Business Savvy

    Young Dolph and Key Glock are taking their “Dum and Dummer” act on the road, announcing their highly anticipated No Rules Tour, which kicks off Feb. 5, 2020 at Seattle’s ShowBox and hits a total of 33 dates. The rappers are booked by APA. Anyone who’s followed Dolph’s trajectory knows he’s all about getting his [...]

  • Coldplay

    Coldplay to Drop Double Album, ‘Everyday Life,’ Next Month

    After a teaser campaign that took place over the past few days, Coldplay confirmed in social media posts this morning that they will release a new double album called “Everyday Life” on Nov. 22. LOVE this type of real, old-fashioned post! Thanks @coldplay, new album due out 22 November! 🎉👏💕 #EverydayLife #Music pic.twitter.com/JDZeJQQzNM — Dan [...]


    Bob Dylan Releases Archival ‘Wanted Man’ Video, Featuring Johnny Cash (Watch)

    “Travelin’ Thru, 1967- 1969,” an album collecting Bob Dylan’s country-leaning recordings from the era, many of which feature Johnny Cash, is out on Nov. 1, and the album was previewed today with the release of a song from it, a rough version of “Wanted Man.” The pair are obviously still working on the song — [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content