Madonna Louise Ciccone (b. August 16, 1958) is an American singer-songwriter, actress, author, director, entrepreneur and philanthropist. Madonna has been a vocal advocate for gay rights and the LGBT community, and in a 2010 interview on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” Madonna said she first became close to the gay community when she was a teenager, stating that she felt different in high school and found acceptance and sympathy among gay friends, particularly her dance instructor. She also said, “In fact, I wouldn’t have a career if it weren’t for the gay community.”