“Break Free” is arguably the song that made Ariana break into the hearts and playlists of gays everywhere. With it’s bumping beat and empowering chorus, the song peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 and cemented her place on rotation at gay bars forevermore. However, it was the music video that established her as the gay icon of a generation. From the pink-hued alien planet to her now signature knee-high platform boots, the “Break Free” video is a campy gay fantasy. Ariana went even further, featuring a gay alien couple kissing -- because why not?
2. Her Love for Her Brother
Frankie J. Grande and Ariana Grande attend the 2016 MTV Music Video Awards at Madison Square Gareden on Aug. 28, 2016 in New York City.
4. Her "Side to Side" Lyrics
Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj perform at the MTV Video Music Awards at Madison Square Garden on Aug. 28, 2016, in New York City.
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3. Her Diana Ross Sample
Smack dab in the middle of her 2014 album My Everything is a little tune called “Break Your Heart Right Back.” While the sample of Diana Ross’ gay anthem “I’m Coming Out” is enough to perk up any gay’s ears, the subject matter will have them screaming: Based on an experience she’s “99.9 percent sure” happened to her, “Break Your Heart Right Back” is about a guy cheating on her with another guy. It takes a true icon to turn a shady situation into a real banger.
6. Her Pride Performance
Ariana Grande performs at the 27th annual NYC Pride: Dance On The Pier at Pier 26 on June 28, 2015 in New York City.
Ariana Grande in Manchester
Ariana Grande performs on stage during the One Love Manchester Benefit Concert at Old Trafford on June 4, 2017 in Manchester, England.
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5. Her Céline Dion Impression
It’s not very often that one comes across a voice like Ariana’s. She can belt into the stratosphere and instantly pop into an effortless whistle tone. Her adaptable voice can also bend to sound like another artist’s. While all of her impressions -- from Britney Spears to Rihanna -- are flawless, one takes the cake: Céline Dion. First seen on a 2015 appearance on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, her impression of Dion’s signature cheer-inducing ad-libs is iconic.
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8. Her Genuine Love for the Community
In a 2014 interview with The Riff, Ariana was asked about her thoughts on being considered a gay icon. Her response? “That’s my favorite thing anyone’s ever said to me in my entire life.” While some gay icons seem to take their LGBTQ audience for granted, it’s nice to know Ariana appreciates just how voracious the love from her gay fans is.
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More LGBTQ Icons & Allies: Ariana Grande | Lady Gaga | Madonna | Miley Cyrus | Lana Del Rey | Rihanna | Beyoncé | Kelly Clarkson | Fifth Harmony | Katy Perry | P!nk | Diana Ross