Lady Gaga says sexual harassment in the music business was the 'rule, not the exception' when she started

'It was just the way that it was. So I do wish that I had spoken up sooner'

Jack Shepherd
Thursday 29 November 2018 08:59 GMT

Lady Gaga has spoken candidly about the sexual assault she suffered when she was 19 years old, admitting that she wishes she had discussed it publicly sooner.

"When I started in the music business when I was around 19, it was the rule, not the exception, that you would walk into a recording studio and be harassed,” the singer and actor said at a roundtable hosted by The Hollywood Reporter.

“It was just the way that it was. So I do wish that I had spoken up sooner. I did speak up about it. I was assaulted when I was young, and I told people.”

Gaga went on to say that, although she spoke about being assaulted, the "boys club" culture prevented assailants from being brought to justice.

“Nobody wants to lose their power, so they don’t protect you because if they say something, it takes some of their power away,” she added. “What I hope is that these conversations come together — that it’s not just about equal pay on one side… or equal billing over here… and then assault on this side. But that it all comes together and that this movement is all of those things.”

Also at the roundtable was Glenn Close, who revealed that a “very famous, very big actor” had subtly “put his hand” on her thigh during a reading.

“It just froze me up,” the actor said. “Because you’re trying to do the scene, and all of a sudden you think, ‘Why is he doing that?'”

“It’s a trauma response,” Gaga, who has previously spoken about suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), responded.

Both Close and Gaga are expected to be in contention for the best actress Oscar, for their respective roles in The Wife and A Star is Born.

Kathryn Hahn, Nicole Kidman, Regina King and Rachel Weisz were also in attendance at the roundtable.

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