Dear Evan Hansen Star Jessica Phillips Comes Out as Queer at 50
'Dear Evan Hansen' Star Jessica Phillips Comes Out as Queer at 50
It's never too late to be true to yourself!
Dear Evan Hansenmay not be as queer as some people mistakenly thought it was at one point, but it turns out one of its stars is.
Jessica Phillips, who plays Evan's mother, Heidi, is opening up about how Broadway shutting down at the start of the pandemic gave her the time to really think about her identity and relationships, and wants others to know it’s never too late to learn more about who you are.
The actress told People that traveling to Los Angeles for work during the shutdown helped her learn more about herself. She wound up getting divorced from her husband last April, and reexamined her existing friendship with theatrical publicist Chelsea Nachman — realizing there was more to it than just being friends.
“That period of time [in LA] really was a beautiful experience for me and also really painful and scary and sad because, as you know, when we open ourselves to change and newness, there’s loss attached to that, and there was a lot of loss for me,” she said.
Phillips now identifies as queer, coming out to the world at 50, and coming out to herself not long before that.
Fortunately, she says her two adult sons have been accepting and supportive, despite her concerns that her newfound sense of self “might be shocking news to some people.”
“I do not have it figured out,” Phillips said. “I do not have the answers, but I certainly feel better knowing that most other people don’t either — that we’re all in it together, that it’s okay, that taking risks is okay, and changing your mind is okay.”