A 16-year-old boy who wore a red dress to his school prom has been “overwhelmed” by love and support after receiving seven million views on social media.
Korben was met with cheers from pupils and teachers after arriving in a sequined tuxedo and floor-length skirt at Archbishop Sancroft High School in Harleston, Norfolk last week.
Praise flooded in for the teenager online after his mum, Nina Green, shared images on Twitter and said she was incredibly proud of him.
She wrote: “At age 12 my son announced he wanted to go to his school prom in a gown. Four years later we made it happen.
“I’m so incredibly proud of him for being true to himself & the reception he got from his whole school was incredible. What do you think @michellevisage @theebillyporter”.
Nina said her phone “went crazy” when she travelled to Pride in London with Korben the following day, as her post was retweeted over 4,000 times and accumulated more than 119,000 likes.
Ru Paul’s drag race judge Michelle Visage also shared the tweet, saying: “Ohhhhhhhh yes! You are an amazing beautiful mom and your child is a STAR”.
Korben described the retweet as “surreal”, telling the BBC : “To me she is such an icon, a wonderful celebrity and I really admire her.”
Nina added: “We also had retweets from H from Steps, and Dr Ranj, it was amazing.
“Then at Pride, someone in the march came up to him said ‘are you the boy in the red dress? I think you’re amazing’.”
Nina said Korben’s year group has been “incredible”, and that she is “so happy” for her son.
She continued: “As soon as he got out of the car, everyone just cheered and I was crying, some of the teachers were crying, because he was being who he wanted to be.”
Korben wanted to attend the prom as himself while expressing his feminine side, she said, adding that his tuxedo and skirt look was “very much influenced” by American actor Billy Porter.
Nina said she hopes the post will show parents “in the same situation that it’s ok” and encourage others to be more accepting, while letting young people know there “is a network there if they need it”.
Her tweet came ahead of Saturday’s Pride in London parade, which saw crowds gather for the 50th anniversary of the event.
More than a million people descended on the city for the parade and associated celebrations, which was also the first since the outbreak of the pandemic.
Revellers in face paint, glitter, jewels and sequins took part in the parade, while floats lined Park Lane ahead of the main march through the capital.
Sharing a selfie of herself and Korben at Pride, Nina wrote: “Wow! When I posted images of my son being true to himself I never expected it to get the response it has.
“The support & positivity has been overwhelming & have totally drowned out the few negative ones which we take no notice of.
“It’s his life and I’m letting him live it.”