“Behind The Curtain : Todrick Hall”

An Intimate Look

Amos Lassen

YouTube sensation Todrick Hall is a man who is driven by his passion to express himself creatively, and unafraid to tackle serious issues. He writes, records, and shoots music videos for his own socially conscious, and deeply personal, visual album “Straight Outta Oz.” He plans every detail including sets, costumes, choreography and more for the tour he will take after the album is released. In this documentary, we meet the man behind the music. It focuses on how he came to terms with his identity as a gay black man, and how he has used it to create an inclusive atmosphere for his fans. He shares coming out to his mother, discussing the impact of events like the Orlando nightclub shooting and lamenting about choosing his career over his one true love.

Hall is the type of entertainer and human being that we need to see more of in show business. Now at 32 years old, we see him as a man of ambition. He is a  rapper/singer/songwriter/actor/dancer/producer.  Director Katherine Fairfax Wright didn’t know who Todrick Hall was when she was offered a job to direct this film and we see that she not only found out who he is but she even fell in love with him as they worked together. That love makes this film very special.

“Straight Outta Oz” is Hall’s personal history set to music and dance and he tells us that as he was writing this album, he and Awesomeness Films decided that the documentary should follow him as he did so.

The documentary begins as Hall is about to start his new musical based loosely on “The Wizard of Oz” in which he incorporates his own life story, including his tough childhood growing up gay in a conservative religious African/American family. The show is a cathartic experience for him and also one that brings him closer to the audience.  One of Hall’s greatest talents is that he is really able to connect with his fans.

it is somewhat exhausting to watch Hall actually unwind with his very supportive boyfriend and we see that he has a totally different life when he is not being filmed or performing.

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