It's a good New Music Friday, because Hayley Kiyoko is back with her brand new single "Found My Friends." Her first song in over a year comes at the perfect time for those of us (all of us) who are confused about where we stand with ourselves and our social circles after an extremely reclusive and mentally unhealthy year of lockdowns.
Related | Hayley Kiyoko Finds Her Voice
"Found My Friends" comes with a gorgeous dance-filled video, shot on film at the historic Millennium Biltmore Hotel in LA. The hotel is an LGBTQ landmark after hosting a 1971 psychiatry conference about finding a "cure" for homosexuality via electroshock therapy. The conference was taken over by activists and protesters, marking a turning point for the American Psychological Association, which eventually de-classified homosexuality as a mental illness.
In her exclusive photo diary for PAPER, Kiyoko talks about the hotel's poignant history, as well as those incredible orange leather pants and how lying down on a piano isn't as glamorous as it looks.
See her BTS photos and commentary, below.
Getting the full beat for a long day of filming! Marla Vazquez always has the best eye and the gentlest touch.
In 1971 the historic Millennium Biltmore Hotel served as the location for an important gay civil rights movement regarding mental health and homosexuality. I felt grateful knowing I had the opportunity to dance here and embrace myself so freely.
After finalizing the location, I decided orange would be the best color to wear. I wanted something bold with texture that would pop on film.
My fellow Aries and choreographer Anze Skrube, who's been working with me since "Curious."
I imagine a "glamour" shot that was reflective and sparkled. I am so happy with how this setup turned out, though laying on a grand piano isn't as luxurious as the movies make it seem.
Here's the full piano shot for scale ;)
We had to take the pants off between takes because... those pants were not sweat-friendly! I had my Ross Geller moment, lol.
The opening shot of the video was also the first shot of the day. The first shot always takes the longest but is always the most exciting!
It felt so good to be back in front of and behind the camera.
These stairs were etxremely narrow in person, which made dancing on them a little tricky... but luckily I didn't trip!
Shooting on film made the video extra challenging but I am so grateful and thankful for my hardworking crew who helped execute the vision for "Found My Friends."
Had to smell and feel good on set so I brought some HUE... isn't she cute?
Photography: Trevor Flores