Actor, Model, Director
Indya Moore is an actor and model. Known for playing the role of Angel Evangelista in the FX series Pose, director Janet Mock said that creating their role proved to be a “healing” experience.
“It feels like this is the first time that we are seeing a trans woman being celebrated for all the different parts of herself,” the visionary director told TIME magazine.
At the age of 14, gender non-conforming Indya was thrust into the foster care system in New York City. In an interview with Elle—as the breakthrough star was the first trans person to appear on the cover of the US version of the magazine—Indya explained that their parents didn’t understand what it was like to have a family member who was genderqueer.
“A lot of times, when parents overdiscipline their children, especially when they’re queer, their intention isn’t to hurt them,” Indya said. “They think they’re saving their children from harm. But they don’t realise that they’re causing harm, that they’re doing to their kids exactly what they’re afraid of the world doing to them.”
They spent time in several foster homes throughout the city. After enduring endless bullying, Indya dropped out of high school and went into acting and modelling. Over the years, they have worked with Christian Dior, Gucci, GQ, Katy Perry, J View, Migos and Blood Orange.
To pay for their hormones, Indya was forced into sex trafficking to earn money. Over the next few years, they spent time in prison on Rikers Island, were sent to an institution where they were taken off her hormones, and developed a drug addiction. A few months prior to auditioning for Pose in 2017, they had fled foster care for the last time and ended up homeless.
“Ryan [Murphy] jumped up and he said, ‘I have nothing.’ I didn’t know what he meant,” Indya recalled of her audition for Angel Evangelista. “I just knew my life was going to change. I knew I had a chance to teach the world something that would help more people to be safe.”
In 2018, Indya signed a contract with IMG Models and William Morris Endeavor—for which the breakthrough star was the company’s first contract with a trans actor. They also started the production company Beetlefruit Media, which provides a platform for stories about disenfranchised groups.
“It reaffirmed how important representation [is when] people with power leverage their access to uplift voices that are less heard,” they said. “People of color and children of immigrants like myself … don’t get to be teachers, or leaders and actors … I think this shows marginalised people they can be anything they want to be.”Tags: Diversity and Inclusion, entertainment, fashion, film, Health and Beauty, LGBTQ+, TV
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