CHICAGO – The issue of gender identity, especially for those who are born with a vagueness as to what to call themselves between/beyond boy and girl, has come front and center in the U.S., both with the legalization of gay marriage and the callous repudiation of identity by trying to pass laws dismissing it (the North Carolina “bathroom” laws). The performance companies of The Living Canvas and Nothing Without a Company is currently staging “[Trans]formation,” which presents gender identity art by six performers, who perform most of the play in the nude.
Celebrity News: Whitney Houston Passes Away at Age 48
CHICAGO – She was once the most popular pop star in the world, but addiction derailed her incredible career and now her story has the most tragic ending as Whitney Houston passed away today, Feb. 11, 2012 at the age of 48.
Photo credit: Access Hollywood
The cause and location of Ms. Houston’s passing were unclear but the story has been confirmed by her publicist to USA Today after years of trouble with drug abuse.
Where to begin with Houston’s career? She won two Emmys, six Grammys, 30 Billboard Music Awards, and 22 American Music Awards. According to Wikipedia, she has sold over 170 million albums and singles worldwide, including a record-setting streak of seven consecutive number one hits — “Saving All My Love For You,” “How Will I Know,” “Greatest Love of All,” “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)”, “Didn’t We Almost Have It All,” “So Emotional,” and “Where Do Broken Hearts Go.”
She broke into film in a big way with “The Bodyguard” with Kevin Costner but it was the soundtrack that was arguably even more essential to the pop culture landscape, even winning the Granny for Album of the Year. Yes, a soundtrack won Album of the Year, pushed by the gigantic success of “I Will Always Love You.” She also had film roles in “Waiting to Exhale” and “The Preacher’s Wife” on the way to what felt like would become a solid acting career.
It felt like as high as Whitney Houston rose was as low as she fell as stories of crack abuse and a tumultuous relationship with Bobby Brown completely derailed her career. There were other attempts at fame, including a reality TV series and a new album as recently as 2009 (“I Look to You”), but this tragic end to Houston’s career means that comeback that we were all hoping would someday arrive never will.
Update (2/11/12, 10:03pm): According to a source at the Beverly Hills Hilton, where Whitney Houston was staying, the singer was found in her bathtub in her 4th floor room. This has not been confirmed.