The death of Raffaella Carrà on July, 5th, 2021 shocked everyone, not just people in the show business. The showgirl was an example for many generations, breaking the rules of society and singing out loud until the end. Surely, the LGBTQI+ community always considered her an ally. So, what was so special about Raffaella Carrà?
I had two mothers, did I grow up wrong?
Raffaella Carrà grew up without a father. He was wealthy but he liked playing around too much. So, her mother got divorced when Raffaella was barely 2 years old, in 1945. She grew up with two women, her mother and her grandmother. Indeed, what would be considered an unconventional family.
“When someone talks about gay families adopting, I wonder: who did I grow up with? Two women,” said the show-woman, “did I turn out so bad?”
Her family was far from traditional and so was her union with her life partner. In fact, they never married. More than once, Carrà spoke about how unfair it was that she could not adopt just because she didn’t put a ring on it. While she didn’t set up to be a hay icon, the Italian LGBTQI+ community rallied behind her right away. Why? Because she never showed any prejudice. Just the opposite, Raffaella Carrà believed the human race was varied and different. And those differences made it better.
Raffaella Carrà sings “Luca”
Released in 1978, this was the first song of Italian pop culture to speak of a gay love. The voice of Carrà carried the story to everyone who would listen.
One afternoon from my window
I saw you with a blond guy
Who knows who he was, perhaps a tramp
And then I never saw you again
Why do gays liked me so much?
..I will never know it.
Raffaella Carrà was a playful character. Often, she joked about being a gay icon and not knowing how and why that happened. She used to say that the Italian LGBTQI+ community chose her, not the other way around. So, first she respected them. Then, she loved them.
The show-woman promoted freedom and she did in high heels and paillettes. Indeed, she did in style. Always with style, Raffaella Carrà accepted the recognition of being an LGBTQI+ icon. In 2017, she received the honor, gained for her bravery, energy, and freedom.
Raffaella Carrà accepted it with a smile, happy to support a community that has always felt different. But, thanks to her passion and words, didn’t have to feel alone anymore.
“She was a great artist symbol of our LGBT+ community. She believed in the freedom of loving anyone and of being yourself. Her music has always been a cult of Pride and LGBTQ+ bars in Italy. And it will remain that way even after her death,” wrote LGBTQI+ spokesperson Vladimir Luxuria on Twitter.
The show-woman is unforgettable. Furthrmore, she will always be an example of how the show business can support equality. Because it can’t all be about money. Goodbye, Raffaella.