Hailie Sahar is a force to be reckoned with. Best known for her role as Lulu Abundance in FX’s groundbreaking series Pose, Sahar has also appeared in Freeform’s Good Trouble, Netflix’s Eastsiders, and Amazon’s Transparent. She co-produced the award-winning documentary Beyond Ed Buck, and will soon star in a biopic as iconic trans-rights icon Sir Lady Java. Now, with the release of her debut single, Sahar makes it clear that her talent extends well beyond the confines of our TV screens.
Sahar’s new single, “Star Traveler,” and its accompanying video offer an uplifting message about finding the inner strength to be ourselves. In fact, Sahar wrote the song to speak to the very soul of her listeners. “I was thinking one day that we’re all just these balls of energy, like a star traveling from one dimension to the next,” she says. Her theory is that death— ”transitioning” is what Sahar calls it—is part of an ongoing process in which we are always reborn entities trying to understand all the versions of ourselves. “So I’m a star traveler, you’re a star traveler, and we’re on this quest,” she shares.
If the premise sounds deeply meaningful, that’s intentional. Though the song is a fun, synth-laden bop, Sahar wanted to inspire as much as entertain. “I am so intentional about doing things that are impactful to me and impactful to others,” she says. Sahar recognizes the voice the success of her projects affords her and dedicates her work to empowering other members of the queer and trans community. “I think of queer people (and those that just aren’t in the norm) as some of the most impactful beautiful entities ever designed on this planet. I want to be that voice for them, uplift and empower them,” she says.
This mission stems from Sahar’s own experiences. “I have always identified as something that would go in the ‘other’ category. I’m a trans woman or someone who identifies as something outside of the gender norm,” she says. Now, with the release of her music, she feels free to truly express herself and create music for others who have felt like they might be on the outside looking in. Sahar’s music isn’t for any one group of people. “My music is not only for trans and queer people—it’s for everybody who feels different or like an outcast,” she says. From showing the prominent birthmark on her left cheek to speaking up about representation and diversity, Sahar wants to exemplify what it means to live authentically. “I am not the typical woman that someone would think [of] and I’m not the beauty standard that people would think [of]. I want people to feel proud of who they are, no matter who you are,” she says.
Sahar originally planned to release her album in 2020, but the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic altered her plans. With the release of “Star Traveler,” Sahar is finally able to share her hard work and wonderful message with the world. “I can’t wait for the world to hear everything and see what I have up my sleeve,” she says. She promises that a full album is in the works, but explains that she’s not ready to share details quite yet: “I’m not a talker but I am a person who will show you rather than tell you, so hold on to your seatbelts and take a ride on my spaceship.”