I have been in love with Miriam Margolyes for decades now. Some of her most notable movie roles for me have been: Mrs. Beetle in Cold Comfort Farm, a cult classic that I highly recommend; Aunt Sponge in James and the Giant Peach; Professor Sprout in the Harry Potter Series; and Gertrude Stein in Modigliani. Of course, I have to acknowledge how wonderful it was to learn that Dumbledore from Harry Potter was gay.
Margolyes recalls coming out to her mother. “I really came to terms with things in 1967. I was in my late 20s. I spoke to her about an affair with a woman and three days later she had this stroke,” she reported four years ago to BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs. She came out much more publicly and casually on the Graham Norton Show in 2012. I want to say a huge thank you to Miriam Margolyes for coming and being visible. Her celebrity and visibility help the world understand that we LGBT folk are everywhere!
Margolyes talks at length about “wanting to make a difference in the world in her lifetime,” and she most certainly is. Not only is she entertaining us all, but she is making a huge difference by being an out lesbian. After outing herself on Graham Norton, she added that by being visible, “…it gives one courage.” Here she is on Graham Norton. Earthy, charming, and outspoken, she’s happy discussing her health regimen or correcting someone’s grammar while all the time being honest and delightful.