The singer also opened up to The Guardian about being diagnosed with a mood disorder
Broadway-star-turned-TV-star-turned-pop-star Reneé Rapp is looking back on the experiences that inspired her debut album, Snow Angel.
The singer, who was just 19 when she played Queen Bee Regina George in the Broadway musical version of the 2004 hit movie Mean Girls, says she experienced her own real-life cruelty while starring in the production.
People involved with the show, “would say some vile f—ing things to me about my body,” Rapp, now 23, told The Guardian about her experience on the show.
Rapp, who says she was struggling with an eating disorder at the time, was so distraught that her parents flew to New York to convince her to leave the Tony-nominated show, which was eventually shut down due to Covid.
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Her parents are more worried than ever, Rapp says, now that she has ventured full-time into the music industry after a turn on the hit show Sex Lives of College Girls.
“Eating disorders don’t just go away and like, you’re healed, like: ‘Sorry, I can eat again, ha ha!’ It’s a lifelong thing,” Rapp tells The Guardian.
“There are battles with addiction and whatever everywhere. I still struggle with it, but at least my parents know that I’ve been taken out of environments that were really harmful to my sickness, which is awesome and a huge win.”
Rapp says she used her negative encounters as fodder for the songs on Snow Angel, with “Poison Poison” taking particular aim at “women tearing down women in front of men.”
“I’m not making art to say this is my moral high ground,” Rapp says. “I’m making art to be like, 'Damn, this is what I’m feeling right now.' ”
And as Rapp told PEOPLE, "Snow Angel is a bit more resilient and it's a bit more matter of fact and has a little bit more bite."
Rapp — who reprises her role as Regina George in the new movie musical version of Mean Girls, now filming — has also been frank about her struggle with mental health, revealing that being diagnosed with a mood disorder a year ago was validating.
“Getting diagnosed made me feel – and this is a derogatory term, if you want to talk about mental health – like I wasn’t just stupid, like I felt for so long,”
The singer, who came out as bisexual and has been linked to TikTok star Alissa Carrington, says her openness is partially because she “suffered in silence for so many years” — and partially due to her young age.
“My generation and the generation that will follow mine is much more open – especially women, non-men, queer people. I do think I’ve been afforded more opportunities than women before me, men and queer women before me,” she tells The Guardian.
“This generation is still super mean to each other. But we are more outspoken – and give less of a f—.”
If you or someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder, please go to NationalEatingDisorders.org.
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