Hannah Waddingham on standing up for LGBTQ+ community: ‘Being an ally is everything’

Hannah Waddingham in a promo shot for her festive show Home For Christmas.

Ted Lasso star Hannah Waddingham has spoken about why being an ally to the LGBTQ+ community is “everything” to her.

The actor has racked up a strong queer following over the course of her career, thanks to her outstanding performances in West End shows such as Spamalot, A Little Night Music and Kiss Me, Kate.

More recently, she’s become a familiar face on screen, starring in queer favourites including Sex Education, Willow and Game of Thrones.

Earlier this year, she wowed audiences as one of the co-hosts of the campest show on earth, the Eurovision Song Contest.

Speaking to Attitude magazine about her new festive musical special, Hannah Waddingham: Home for Christmas, she addressed her queer fans, saying that it meant everything to her to be an ally of the community.

“It wouldn’t cross my mind to not lift the LGBTQ community up,” she said.

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“Too often, people look at the exterior of the LGBTQ+ community. It’s why I wanted to do RuPaul’s Drag Race, because I wanted to take a look into the brilliant performers people are as well, and to not just be defined by the obvious things that everyone else defines them by.”

Waddingham appeared as a guest judge on Drag Race UK season four, in 2022, on the Ru-sical episode – which fans deemed one of the best in the franchise’s history

Hannah Waddingham on Drag Race UK.
Hannah Waddingham was a judge on Drag Race UK. (BBC)

During her festive show, the actor is joined by a number of queer special guests, including the London Gay Men’s Chorus, her long-time friends and couple Scott Baker and Patrick Davey and LGBTQ+ star of The Hobbit films, Luke Evans, who she’s known for 20 years through their theatre careers.

“I met him when he was doing Taboo, the Boy George musical, at what was called the Leicester Square Theatre. He must have been early twenties then and I remember thinking ‘Who’s that boy?’ because he was really fabulous,’” she said.

The two of them have never worked together, she said she’d like to tread the board alongside him on something “more traditional” such as a new version of Kiss Me, Kate, added Waddingham, who also appeared in the Superman origin series Krypton.

Hannah Waddingham: Home for Christmas is available to stream now on Apple TV+.