Lea Michele Addresses Rumor She Can’t Read In Self-Deprecating TikTok

Lea Michele debuted on TikTok this weekend with some self-deprecating humor.

The “Glee” actor joined the video-sharing platform on Sunday with a short clip of herself lip-syncing to her own recording of “Don’t Rain on My Parade.” Hours later, he released a second video in which he mocked the outlandish conspiracy theory that he can’t read or write.

In the clip, a distressed-looking Michele can be seen making a fake phone call while a recording of Kim Kardashian, circa 2017, plays.

“Calling Jonathan to read me the comments on my first TikTok,” reads a video caption, referring to Michele’s “Spring Awakening” co-star and longtime friend Jonathan Groff.

Michele has been dogged by jokes about her alleged illiteracy since 2017, when pop culture podcasters Robert Ackerman and Jaye Hunt delved into a memoir written by actor Naya Rivera, who starred with Michele on “Glee.” The couple took note of a segment in the book in which Rivera recalled Michele’s refusal to improvise with actor Tim Conway during the filming of an episode of “Glee” that had aired three years earlier.

Noting that Michele never publicly responded to Rivera’s accusation in the book, Ackerman and Hunt jokingly asked if he was able to read, and since then, (mostly) allegations of Michele’s illiteracy. have continued a gain traction in social networks.

Still, the actor’s willingness to participate in the gag via TikTok took many of his fans by surprise, given that he had denounced the rumor as sexist in an interview with The New York Times last month.

Jonathan Groff and Lea Michele.
Jonathan Groff and Lea Michele.

Bruce Glikas via Getty Images

β€œI went to ‘Glee’ every day; I knew my lines every day,” she said at the time. “And then there’s a rumor online that I can’t read or write? It’s sad. It really is. I think often if I was a man, a lot of things wouldn’t be like that .

It’s shaping up to be a busy fall for Michele, who returned to Broadway this month for the first time in nearly 15 years in the revival of “Funny Girl.” In a highly controversial cast change, Michele replaced Beanie Feldstein in the coveted role of Ziegfeld Follies comedian Fanny Brice.

Michele’s first performance on September 6 was met with critical acclaim and seven standing ovations. But he tested positive for COVID-19 a few days later and had to cancel the 10 days of shows. He is scheduled to rejoin the company this week.

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