Words: Thomas Stichbury
Todrick Hall says he has learnt some important lessons in the wake of public accusations he’s faced online about his professional conduct.
In an exclusive interview in Attitude's February Travel issue, out now to download and to order globally, the singer and RuPaul's Drag Race judge addresses claims regarding the non-payment of his performers and also allegations over the treatment of an employee - a complaint that has reportedly now been resolved.
"My shows are still sold out, my fans have stood beside me, and they know my heart and integrity, and they know what type of person I am," Todrick says.
"They know that I would never intentionally do some of these things, any of these things that are being said about me."
The 34-year-old star adds that the drama – which surfaced on social media last year – has made him more careful about who he trusts and “who I allow into my circle” - but insists it won’t deter him from spreading a message of love and inclusivity.
"My show is full of love and I focus on that every night… when some kid comes and tells me that because of my music and my message that they didn’t take their own life, that they are now wearing heels at school, and they are winning prom queens.
"I’ll sleep with one eye open, but what I’m not going to stop doing is inspiring kids," he vows.
While he was in the eye of the storm, Todrick turned to close friend Taylor Swift and also his mentor, RuPaul, for advice and support.
“When I called Taylor, I said, ‘I’m so sorry to be bothering you, I know you’re probably busy, but you’re the only person who I can talk to’," he recalls.
"She was like, ‘Todrick, I know why because I’m a professional at dealing with these situations. People have been trying to cancel me for a long time."
Ru showed his support, too, when he sent the dancer, choreographer and singer a text message.
“I haven’t read this to anybody [before now],” Todrick says. “When I wanted to go out and defend myself and say, ‘This is not true, this is not what happened, this is just a completely fabricated part of the story,’ Ru said: ‘Trust me, this will blow over, they aimed at you because you’re kind-hearted and socially conscious. They knew they’d get a reaction out of you and affect you.
‘Most people suspect that they don’t really exist unless they’re affecting someone else. The only way they can feel themselves is through other people’s feelings, good, bad or otherwise. Hear this – when your action’s coming from a place of love, never worry about how it is perceived by others, know that your intention is love and nothing is wrong with that. XO, Mom.’”
“I don’t think he would mind me saying that,” he continues. “I’m learning so much from somebody who has experienced these things.”
Read the full interview with Todrick Hall in Attitude's February issue, out now.