Rufus Wainwright Releases Cover Of Judy Garland Classic ‘Over The Rainbow’ For Pride Month

Rufus Wainwright photo by Jenny Anderson/Getty Images for Elsie Fest

Two-time GRAMMY Award-nominated singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright has shared his rendition of the Judy Garland classic “Over The Rainbow.” “I was about 5 years old when I started singing ‘Somewhere over the Rainbow.’ My mom would occasionally wake me up in the middle of the night and make me sing the song to guests to end the party. They would feel so bad that the kid was still up that late at night and leave.”

He added, “Much later, she accompanied me on the piano at Carnegie Hall, the Palladium, the Olympia and the Hollywood Bowl during the Rufus does Judy shows in 2006 and 2007. After she passed away, I am only doing the beginning lines of the song a cappella without any piano accompaniment as an honor and memory to her and the hole she has left behind. It has a deeply personal meaning to me to sing this song. I think my mom and I singing that song together was also her finally acknowledging my homosexuality with which she struggled for a long time. I am sure that similarly to my experience this song means a lot to LGBTQ folks young and old and their struggles with coming out and living a proud queer life.”

The song’s release comes at the cusp of Pride Month and was recorded for the singer’s upcoming virtual concert event: Rufus Does Judy at Capitol Studios. That concert sees Wainwright performing his groundbreaking 2007 tribute to Judy Garland, Rufus Does Judy at Carnegie Hall, in its entirety, live from Los Angeles’ famed Capitol Studios. The event will premiere Thursday, June 10 at 8:00 PM (AEDT/EST/CET), celebrating what would have been Garland’s 99th birthday.

Tickets for Rufus Does Judy at Capitol Studios are available now exclusively via Veeps priced at $30 (advance)/$35 (day of show). There will also be ticket bundles available with the opportunity for fans to participate in an intimate Q&A with Rufus priced at $60 (advance) / $65 (day of show). Ticket buyers also will have access to an exclusive film Inside the Red Ruby Slippers – Backstage with Rufus does Judy at Capitol Studios which has behind the scenes of this special event.

For more information and ticket packages, visit Rufus Wainwright’s official Veeps page.

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