Watch the video interview below with Michael Urie as he talks about the importance of the play, how it’s being received and the end of his other job at “Ugly Betty”.
“The Temperamentals” educates its audience and tells a love story of two men in the early 1950’s in the current Off-Broadway production at The New World Stages in New York City. The importance of the play is that it tells the story of how the Mattachine society formed with its founding member, Harry Hay (Thomas Jay Ryan) alongside the man he falls in love with Rudi Gernreich played by Michael Urie (right).
Playwright Jon Marans and Director Jonathan Silverstein informed me that most audience members have never heard of Harry Hay who started the Mattachine Society, which was the first Gay Rights organization formed in the early 1950’s. They pointed out that this is as much a history lesson as it is a love story but, they both emphasized that these were five men who sacrificed their safety in a conservative era and should be considered pioneers and role models. “These were five empowered men” says, Marans. When asked if Harry Hay would approve of the Gay community today and the fight for marriage equality both Marans and Silverstein took a moment to think about how Hay would react. Ultimately, they feel he would not support Gay marriage as it represents assimilation into Heterosexual mainstream society.