Country singer Chely Wright weds girlfriend

Sun Aug 21, 2011 4:58pm EDT
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Chely Wright, the first mainstream country performer to come out as lesbian, married her partner, activist Lauren Blitzer, on Saturday in Connecticut, People magazine reported.

Wright, 40, met Blitzer, 30, soon after the singer's 2010 announcement that she is a lesbian.

Named the top new female vocalist by the Academy of Country Music in 1995, Wright hid her homosexuality for years, believing it would hurt her career in the traditionally conservative country music community.

"They would rather you were a drug addict than be gay," she told reporters at the time of her coming-out, which is chronicled in the upcoming documentary "Wish Me Away."

Both a reverend and a rabbi presided over the weekend ceremonies at Blitzer's aunt's home with more than 200 guests in attendance. Wright is Christian, and Blitzer is Jewish.

The women wore white wedding gowns and skipped the veils. Wright explained to People, "We like our hair too much!"

(Reporting and writing by Sheri Linden; Edited by Bob Tourtellotte)

<p>Country artist Chely Wright arrives at the 39th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, May 26, 2004. REUTERS/Steve Marcus</p>