Grab a handful of confetti, because Ellen Page married her girlfriend, Emma Portner, and the picture will make you want to sprinkle that joy everywhere. For some of you, though, it may have you asking, "Who is Ellen Page's wife?" — all while you gaze at the adorable Instagram post that the actor shared on Wednesday. Captioned, "can’t believe I get to call this extraordinary woman my wife," the post shows an image of Page's hand stretching out lovingly towards that of her wife, while two wedding rings glisten on their fingers. Portner is tagged in the image, and, if you didn't already know, she's actually a star in her own right.
The professional choreographer and dancer has amassed an impressive 84.5 thousand followers on Instagram, all of whom likely follow Portner for her incredible dance videos, candid portraits, and proud defiance of gender norms. As well as collaborating with Page on videos (including a particularly haunting performance of Britney Spears' "Lucky,"), you've likely also seen Portner in music videos like Justin Bieber's "Life Is Worth Living," (a video she both starred in, and choreographed for) or in Blood Orange's long form video series, (a)R(t)&B.
Portner is renowned for her mesmerizing fluidity as an artist, with expressive dance moves that are words and statements made flesh. Her talents are so immense that, at the age of 22, she became the youngest woman ever to choreograph a musical, lending her skills to the London show, Bat Out Of Hell in 2017.
In July, she revealed the challenges of being the only woman on a creative team during an interview with Bustle, and said:
"It’s your job as the choreographer to do the job. You’re not hired to upset people or make people uncomfortable. It was a constant battle between — how do I make myself feel good about the work — and the other 55 people feel good about it, too? And the musical theatre world is a microcosm for the macro world in terms of it being filtered all through the male and white experience."
As noted by The Globe And Mail, Portner's work plays with gender and genres, challenging the norms of the male gaze. In an interview with the Ottawa newspaper, she explained that she doesn't choreograph in "typical heteronormative gender politics, in the way that the ballet world might designate the male/female binary quite clearly," and added, "my work can easily substitute men and women as neutral."
Page herself has been outspoken about her resistance to gender norms, once telling Elle Magazine, "I’d get panic attacks and sense an incredible discomfort because I didn’t relate to the conformity that comes with my gender [such as wearing feminine dresses on photo shoots]."
According to The Cut Portner and Page met as a result of the actor and activist seeing her in a music video by the band Sylvan Esso and DM'ing her immediately. Their relationship became Instagram official in July 2017, followed by an onslaught of tabloid attention regarding the happy new couple. In an interview with the website, Portner revealed that, though their newfound tabloid fame is "quite crazy," it also has it's benefits, and said,
"If anything, I’m happy for it. We try to hold hands in public. I try to join her at movie premieres. If we were a straight couple, I don’t think we’d push it so much. But it’s a chance for queerness to be out in the open."
Which is another one of the reasons why Page and Portner's wedding announcement isn't just sweet, but also powerful. It's a celebration of love that also provides an opportunity for queerness to be out in the open, as Portner so perfectly put it. LGBTQ+ couples deserve the same visibility as their heterosexual counterparts, and this Instagram post is a wonderful, visual reminder of that fact. A reminder that that also reflects Portner's work as a dancer — taking a vow or a statement and making it physical.