That's a Life in the Theater (Ep. 51 - Lily Tomlin, Carol Burnett)

"There was an incident and I was found to be insane," Mark reveals on this week's episode, "because my flamboyant behavior was disruptive."

Mark's been around long enough to remember when being gay was assumed to be a mental illness, and the very presence of an openly gay teenager was too much for anyone to bear. He fled his small hometown as quickly as he could, spending time in Japan, Cal Arts, and for a time at Brigham Young University where he says "I felt mighty comfortable. But apparently they didn't."

An unannounced exorcism made him aware that his presence might not have been entirely welcome at BYU. "I was sleeping with a lot of guys," he says. "Always there to lend a helping hand. I haven't been called 'The Golden Throat' all my life for nothing."

His wild life in the theater eventually took him to New York, where he took some advice given to him by Carol Burnett to heart: "you sound like you really love theater," she told him when he was young and wrote to her for advice. "And if you love it, keep doing it."

Some clips mentioned on this week's show:

Parisian Kevin MacLeod (
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