HARVEY FIERSTEIN, American actor, born; An American Tony Award-winning and Emmy Award-winning actor, playwright and screenwriter is perhaps known best for the play and film Torch Song Trilogy, which he wrote and starred in and originating the role of Edna Turnblad in the Broadway musical Hairspray.
The 1982 Broadway production won him two Tony Awards, for Best Play and Best Actor in a Play, two Drama Desk Awards, for Outstanding New Play and Outstanding Actor in a Play, and the Theater World Award, and the film earned him an Independent Spirit Award nomination as Best Male Lead. Fierstein also wrote the book for La Cage aux Folles (1983), winning another Tony Award, this time for Best Book of a Musical, and a Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Book. Legs Diamond, his 1988 collaboration with Peter Allen, was a critical and commercial failure, closing after 72 previews and 64 performances.
His other playwriting credits include Safe Sex, Spookhouse, and Forget Him. Fierstein developed a new musical titled A Catered Affair in which he starred with Faith Prince, Leslie Kritzer and Tom Wopat. Fierstein is an occasional columnist writing about Gay issues and appears regularly on the PBS series In The Life. He was out at a time when very few celebrities were. His most recent Tony was for Kinky Boots, with Cindy Lauper.