How stunning was Lea Michele, as Rachel Berry, singing Bob Dylan’s “Make You Feel My Love,” about Finn Hudson while she was crying for the real love of her life, Corey Monteith. Have you ever seen such courageous grace in grief?
Lea Michele So Brave To Film Tribute Episode
When she appeared halfway through the show, standing in front of Finn’s locker looking at the flowers and momentos that had turned it into a shrine, it was a show-stopping moment that also reflected Lea’s real life experience.
Every Glee fan knows that Lea herself drove by the impromptu memorial for Cory that grew outside the Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel in Vancouver, in the days after his death. When she told a McKinley High cheerleader that “it’s beautiful, I just had to see it,” referring to the Finn locker display, she was absolutely voicing exactly how she felt about the fans’ memorial in Vancouver.
And it was that willingness of Lea Michele to share her own deeply personal feelings about Cory and the experiences that she had before and after his death, that demonstrated her incredible courage.
Lea could easily have said that talking and singing about Finn/Cory on any Glee, was just too painful and personal and everyone would have understood.
In fact, Glee creator, Ryan Murphy, has said that he never would have ever filmed a Cory Monteith tribute if Lea hadn’t agreed.
We decided “to take time to write and deal with a tribute to Cory,” said Ryan. “That’s something Lea felt strongly about and she really is the one making those decisions.”
But Lea didn’t choose to hide her grief. Instead, she bravely agreed to help film the most beautiful memorial possible to Cory.
In fact, Murphy said it “was Lea who felt that the best thing for the cast and crew (after Cory’s death) was to be together and to get back to work and be together everyday and talk about our memories of him.
“And the dialogue in the memorial “Quarterback” episode was straight out of what she reportedly told the Glee cast when she went back to work in real life.
When Rachel Berry first appeared in The Glee Club’s music room scene , she announced to her fellow New Directions members: “Nobody treat me with kid gloves, ok?” Because apparently, that’s how Lea really did handle her return.
But no matter how strongly Lea felt about honoring the man she loved in the tribute, it must have been tremendously hard to film the scene in which she sings, “Make You Feel My Love.” When she started crying softly as she sang the words: “When the whole world is on your case, I could offer you a warm embrace, To make you feel my love,” keeping her composure was truly an act of heroism.
Lea Michele: You Weren’t Acting, You Were Grieving
You were NOT acting, you were grieving. And singing to Cory that “I could hold you for a million years, To make you feel my love,” was an incredibly intimate moment that you were willing to share in public.
Then when you were speaking to Mr. Schu about how you still talk to Finn, you were no doubt revealing to the world that you, Lea, still talk to Cory.
“I talk to him a lot. I can still see his face and I can hear his voice so clearly. Do you think that I’ll ever forget it?” you asked Mr. Schu poignantly. “Because I’m afraid that one day I will.”
Does anyone who watched, doubt that Lea was channeling her own fears about forgetting the sound of Cory’s voice, when she filmed this?
And when she told Mr. Schu that she always expected that she’d come home to McKinley High and she’d live happily ever after with Finn, didnt you all think that she was really talking about the ‘happily ever after’ future that she, Lea, had expected with Cory?
Opening up her heart like this, demonstrated great courage and maturity from Lea, who is only 27. It was also probably a very healthy step for her in her grieving process.
“Having everyone around her for the tribute episode was a wonderfully healthy and helpful thing,” explains celebrity relationship expert, Dr. Gilda Carle, “The 30 Second Therapist” for the Today show. “To have people there for her, going through the same thing, is supportive. When will you have that kind of gathering, other than at a funeral? And obviously this lasted longer than a funeral would.”
Well, Lea, I hope that you got some measure of comfort from bravely filming the Cory Monteith tribute episode.
You certainly provided an emotionally cathartic experience for your Glee following.
I think fan Fitri Rozlyana expressed it best on twitter:
Cried while watching the whole episode today. I didn’t see Rachel Berry tonight i saw Lea Michele. #RememberingCory
— ♡Fitri Rozlyana♡ (@FitriRStyles) October 11, 2013
Wasn’t Lea Michele so brave to film the Cory memorial episode and make it so personal? Let me know.
– Bonnie Fuller