Lady Gaga was named the New York Film Critics Circle Best Actress back in December for her performance as Patrizia Reggiani in House of Gucci. She’s also been nominated for almost everything else from the SAGs to the BAFTAs and more…but not the Oscar. Many consider this to be a snub, but I’m not sure it was personal. The snub was a House of Gucci snub as the Academy clearly wasn’t feeling the film; it ended up with one nomination in the Hair and Makeup category.
For Gaga then, her win in New York, was probably her only opportunity for an acceptance speech … so she made a speech for all the awards, spending about 13 minutes on stage. Which I don’t think anyone minded, since it’s Gaga, and it’s not like she doesn’t know how to hold a stage and because it’s Gaga, she’s not just reading off names from a piece of paper, she’s PERFORMING her speech. Even her speech is its own theatre.
And, well, why not, if you can. If you’re Lady Gaga, who is from New York so the award must have had extra special meaning. And she used her time to talk about her connecting to Italy, what the role meant to her, being of Italian heritage. And what it meant to her as an Italian woman to be able to honour the women in her life with this work, as she explained that the award “recognized all the women in my family, because it was through them that I was able to create the heart and soul of this character, the one that she deserved. These women taught me how to have big feelings in a man's world and that having big feelings is beautiful," she said, fighting back tears. "And having big feelings also, to a lot of the world, people think it's really ugly. And they think women with big feelings are ugly. But it's not ugly. It's just real. And for me it's Italian.”
I love what she’s saying here about having “big feelings in a man’s world”. Women for far too long have made themselves small in a man’s world, small in every way. Small in how much space to take up, small in how quiet to be, and small in their emotions too, pushing away their feelings for the sake of everyone else. In that sense, Gaga’s speech matched her message – her big long speech was about her big feelings. And as we know, almost every Gaga does is big – she sings big, she emotes big, now she speeches big. A woman who was born this extra and in the most extra way, this is how she’s closing the Patrizia era of her career…(although we’ll see her to the end of award season next week as a presenter at the Oscars).