Looks like a huge congratulations is in order for one of the three new cast members of the oh so popular sketch comedy series, Saturday Night Live. Today, they announced that Bowen Yang, a writer and cameo actor for the show, is being promoted to a featured player role for its upcoming 45th season.
With this promotion, Yang will make history as SNL’s first Asian-American cast member and the first queer Asian performer on the show. Yang is openly gay, making him only the third out gay male cast member in the show’s history (with Terry Sweeney and John Milhiser). He joins fellow out LGBTQ cast member Kate McKinnon.
Yang previously engaged in the New York stand-up comedy scene and he is also a co-host of the “Las Culturistas” podcast. Many comedians have voiced criticism that Saturday Night Live hasn't fully embraced cast members from underrepresented groups. However, the long running series has made more of a commitment to diverse casting in recent years.
The current roster includes comedians of color like Kenan Thompson, Ego Nwodim, Melissa Villaseñor, Chris Redd, and Michael Che. Emmy Award winning cast member, Leslie Jones, announced she will not be returning for the upcoming season.
Earlier today, Yang excitedly posted "the heck???!!" in response to NBC welcoming him and his fellow newbie cast mates to the team.
Gayes help us congratulate all of the new cast members and especially, Bowen Yang for shattering glass ceilings and breaking barriers!