Source: Naya Rivera Instagram
Almost all the cast members of the musical television series Glee showed up for a special reunion to pay tribute to their fellow cast member Naya Rivera, who passed away last year. The tribute was not only in remembrance of the late actor but to honour her contribution towards the LGBTQ+ community at the GLAAD awards. Naya Rivera completes 10 years since coming out as a Latina LGBTQ member this April.
Confident singer Demi Lovato, who was a friend of Rivera and portrayed the girlfriend of her character, Santana, on Glee, welcomed the cast at the GLAAD awards. "The character Naya played, Santana Lopez was ground-breaking for closeted queer girls like I was at the time", Demi began. She went onto talk about how Naya had inspired Latina women all over with her achievements. "That's the power of a show like Glee", she exclaimed before inviting the entire cast of Glee to take over.
Jane Lynch, Amber Riley, Jacob Artist, Lauren Potter, Matthew Morrison, Chris Colfer and many others were a part of the video call arranged to give the tribute to the late actor. They started off by remembering the hardships followed by the pandemic which started in 2020, including the loss of their colleague Naya Rivera.
They shared their experiences and special moments that they shared with Rivera while working on the sets of Glee. Lauren Potter started off by adoring Rivera's talent. "There was always so much that what met the eye with Naya", said Darren Criss who played Blaine Anderson on the show. Lauren Lynch, who portrayed Sue Sylvester, spoke about how she was in awe of Rivera as a dancer but found a new level of admiration for her when the director started giving her lines and made her a permanent cast member of the show.
Becca Tobin, Alex Newell and Jenna Ushkowitz reminisced on the time they saw Naya perform Nutbush City Limits by Ike and Tina Turner. The two actors remembered how they "could not keep their eyes off" of Rivera's powerful performance. Jenna went onto speak about how Rivera would make everyone laugh but the real win would be making Rivera laugh. Matthew Morrison brought up Rivera's love for her son, Josey Hollis Dorsey. "To see her put all that energy in her son was just an incredible sight to see", he explained. The others agreed that Rivera's role as a mother was "the most fulfilling" sight for all.
At the end of the tribute, Naya's mother Yolanda Previtire, who could not join the video call, left a few words honouring her daughter and her character Santana Lopez, who managed to inspire many LGBTQ members. "I am grateful that my eldest daughter helped to change the landscape of how we view and see each other", she wrote.
Naya Rivera disappeared on July 8, 2020, at Lake Piru in California. The actor's body was then found a few days later and it was revealed that she died by accidental drowning in an autopsy report. Soon after that, her body was buried at Forest Lawn Memorial in Hollywood Hills.
(Promo Image Source: Naya Rivera Instagram)
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