Actor Abraham Lim and other cast members of the Broadway musical “KPOP” will be celebrating the LGBTQ+ community with a “Love Songs for Pride” benefit concert in New York City.
Lim, who previously starred in Netflix’s “Clickbait” (2021) and Amazon Prime’s “The Boys” (2019), has organized a night of love songs from the AAPI community to the LGBTQ+ community “as a symbol of allyship and solidarity.”
The event, which takes place at The Green Room 42 on Wednesday at 7 p.m. ET, will feature both original tunes and songs from beloved musicals performed by some of the cast members of “KPOP,” including Kevin Woo, Min, Marina Kondo and Patrick Park.
Lim, who moved from South Korea to the U.S. with his parents at the age of 3, said he has seen a lot of ignorance and intolerance within the AAPI community toward the LGBTQ+ community. This motivated him to create a safe space that celebrates and uplifts the LGBTQ+ community.
“There is still very much that stigma within our community,” Lim tells NextShark. “There is still a certain sense of discrimination from the AAPI community against the LGBTQ+ community, particularly within immigrant families. I see it within pockets of our community, and it’s something that really disturbs me. It’s something I really wish would change. The more we can embrace each other, that just makes for a better world.”
The benefit concert will include five sets and five different artists, including Lim, who will be singing an original song and two covers.
Lim shares with NextShark that he took a leap of faith after graduating from college to pursue his dreams.
“I was really on that road that was designed by my parents to become a lawyer,” he says. “I was very much immersed in the world of academia. I took the LSAT and got into NYU law school, then basically took that admission letter and put it in the paper shredder in front of my mom.”
Lim asked his mother to give him a year to explore the music industry before going to law school, and within four months, he was cast in the 2011 reality show “The Glee Project,” which ultimately opened several doors for him.
“[Acting] was storytelling, which I think I was born to do and really love to do. So I fell in love with it, and I started working consistently,” he shares.
After working on a few shows and movies in Los Angeles, the actor was eventually invited to a work session with “KPOP” cast members before he was ultimately offered a role.
Lim is grateful to be back in New York with his friends and family, including his now-supportive mother. He says he believes the best way to honor his parents’ life-changing sacrifice is to continue doing what he loves to do, which he says his parents did not have the opportunity to do after they immigrated to the United States.
Although Lim says the process of organizing the benefit concert has been a difficult and new experience for him, he is grateful for members of the AAPI community who have been supportive of his mission.
Lim says a portion of the event’s ticket sales will be donated to nonprofit organizations that continuously support both the LGBTQ+ and the AAPI communities.
“We don’t typically see shows by Asian people celebrating and uplifting the LGBTQ+ community,” he says. “Why? We should always be uplifting each other. We shouldn’t need a show. I really hope that whether people are watching it via livestream or in person, they feel that the LGBTQ+ community feels very celebrated.”
The actor also noted the importance of celebrating one’s individuality all year round.
“I don’t think diversity is a hashtag. Diversity is not a movement either. Diversity is just diversity. Inclusion is just inclusion. It’s not just a month,” says Lim, who hopes to organize more events to support AAPI and LGBTQ+ organizations.
When asked about his message to members of the LGBTQ+ community within the AAPI community, Lim highlights the struggles of intersectionality.
“It’s so difficult because you also have religion and you also have talks of masculinity in the AAPI community. I think it’s quite prevalent in a way where it feels quite repressive and suppressive.”
“I just want to say to them that you are beautiful and you are so brave to exist in communities where you do not feel fully accepted for who you are,” he adds. “The act of unapologetically being yourself is an act of bravery in itself. I hope that one day, it doesn’t have to feel so brave. I hope that it would feel as simple as being yourself, like how you’re breathing.”
“Your life is a beautiful one and I hope that we, the world, can do better in reminding you of that fact,” he concludes.
Tickets for the “Love Songs for Pride” benefit concert are available for purchase here.