Transgender actress Laverne Cox has a twin brother who is a famous musician, composer, and singer, and once played her male "self" in "Orange Is The New Black."
Countertenor, musician, and composer M Lamar is the identical twin of actress Laverne Cox, best known for her role as transgender prisoner Sophia in the Netflix hit series, "Orange Is The New Black."
Lamar has even tried his hand at acting and participated in two episodes of "OITNB" as his sister's pre-transition persona, Marcus, who commits fraud to pay for his surgeries.
Laverne Cox at the 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards in 2018 in Inglewood, California | Source: Getty Images
THE IDENTICAL TWIN
While Laverne is an actress, Lamar is also drawn to drama. As a musician, a singer, and a composer, he blends opera and goth-inspired music with performance art.
Lamar's work has been presented in some of the most prestigious art venues around the world, including the Wellcome Collection in London, the Funkhaus in Berlin, Germany; Warehouse9, in Copenhagen; and the African American Art & Culture Complex in San Francisco.
THE POST-PUNK DIVA
Lamar's on-stage persona is dramatic and riveting, and he clearly possesses the same dramatic talents as Laverne and a sense of timing that marks the greatest of "divas."
His work has been described as post-punk goth, and he embraces the label with gusto, wearing dramatic dark makeup on stage, clothing that pays tribute to both cultural movements.
Laverne is equally supportive of Lamar's work, which is focused on retelling the history and the experience of African Americans through music and performance art
While Laverne, born male and identical to Lamar, is transgender, her brother identifies himself as part of the LGBTQ community but does not like to be labeled according to a particular sexual orientation. Lamar said:
"The truth I believe is outside orientation and it’s about behavior and ultimately sexual freedom outside of a label and, of course, being a practicing artist — living one’s life as art."
The two siblings are extremely close and clearly each other's biggest fans. Both are extremely gifted performers and Laverne studied ballet and dance, while Lamar was drawn to music. Lamar recalled, speaking to Laverne:
"I remember seeing you at Marymount Manhattan College in a performance do a dance and then a monologue afterward and I thought, This is what you should be doing — acting."
Laverne admits that she runs her ideas and her plans by Lamar and that he is the one person who completely understands her, and the journey she's been on, as a trans-woman and as an actress. Laverne said:
"I love my brother so much … in so many ways, he's been my moral compass over the years. Like, I run things by him and he's … we're twins, so we've literally known each other our entire lives."
The siblings have never shared a stage, or filmed together, not even when Lamar played Marcus, Laverne's character Sofia's pre-transition persona in two episodes of "Orange Is The New Black."
The producers felt that no matter how hard she tried, Laverne just wasn't convincing as a man, not masculine enough, so they ended up calling on Lamar, who is identical to the pre-transition Laverne, to play Marcus.
The artist, under the direction of Academy Award-winning actress/director Jodie Foster, who is herself part of the LGBTQ community, gave a superb performance.
It's not that surprising really. Since Lamar and Laverne are identical, the love of art and music is in their genes, and so is that incredible motherload of acting talent.