Breanna Walton is just starting to stick a toe into broader LGBT waters.
The 16-year-old sophomore at Edmund Burke School is involved with SSASI (Students Supporting All Sexualities and Identities), a small Gay-Straight Alliance there, and is excited about going to Youth Pride in Dupont Circle on May 2. It will be her first time. And in February she joined the new GenOUT Chorus, a youth choir that launched out of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington’s youth outreach program.
The young singers, who range in age from 12-18, will debut May 15-16 at the GMCW “Born This Way” concert (details at gmcw.org). The group, which meets monthly for rehearsal, will sing pop songs and show tunes such as “Beautiful City” from “Godspell,” Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful,” “We Shall Overcome” and more, some on their own and others with the Gay Men’s Chorus. Walton, who just recently came out to her family but has been out at school for a while, says so far it’s been a wonderful experience.
“It’s great to have a place to feel safe and relate to other people in a good way,” Walton says. “It also helps the kids and teens who may not be out yet, to be more comfortable knowing there are other people with similar experiences. It helps to hear other people’s perspectives and take those lessons and apply them at your own school.”
Walton is one of about 12 in the chorus. She sings tenor and says the group is mostly comprised, so far, of girls. Thea Kano, the Gay Men’s Chorus conductor, directs and chorus members help with GenOUT rehearsals. Walton heard the full men’s chorus for the first time last month.
“I really enjoyed it,” she says. “I’m extremely excited to sing with them.”
Walton was born in Washington and lives in Southwest. She enjoys swimming, playing clarinet, ultimate Frisbee, reading, swimming and listening to music in her free time.
How long have you been out and who was the hardest person to tell?
About a year and a half. My brother was the hardest person to come out to.
Who’s your LGBT hero?
Every teen who has the courage to come out.
What’s Washington’s best nightspot, past or present?
I love hanging out with my friends in Georgetown and doing anything outside.
Describe your dream wedding.
Anywhere near water with my friends and family.
What non-LGBT issue are you most passionate about?
What historical outcome would you change?
What’s been the most memorable pop culture moment of your lifetime?
After six years, the season finale of “Lost.”
On what do you insist?
What was your last Facebook post or Tweet?
None. I don’t have Facebook or Twitter.
If your life were a book, what would the title be?
If science discovered a way to change sexual orientation, what would you do?
Try to convince them that you can’t change someone’s sexual orientation.
What do you believe in beyond the physical world?
That there is a heaven.
What’s your advice for LGBT movement leaders?
It’s a cause worth fighting for so keep moving. Many lives are counting on and supporting you.
What would you walk across hot coals for?
An end to the bullying of LGBT teens in schools.
What LGBT stereotype annoys you most?
That just because a guy does things that some people consider “feminine,” does not mean that he is gay.
What’s your favorite LGBT movie?
“Blue is the Warmest Color”
What’s the most overrated social custom?
Interacting on social media when you are in the same room.
What trophy or prize do you most covet?
My first ballet trophy at the age of 5.
What do you wish you’d known at 18?
I’ll let you know when I get there.
I was born here!