GayStarNews reports that San Francisco Pride could exclude tech firm Google from this year’s events due to inaction in combatting homophobic content on YouTube.
LGBTQNation reports that WABC-TV, the Disney-owned and operated station in Manhattan serving the greater NYC metropolitan area, has agreed to broadcast the 48th annual Pride March on Sunday, June 25th, and for everyone beyond New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, the station promises a livestream on its website as well.
The Good Night at the Southern series goes all out queer this month with its Pride Edition. Utica Queen of drag artistry fame performs a piece grappling with the problem of loss. Kate Anderson will present a stand-up set that previews the 2019 Pride Comedy Show. Mixed Precipitation offers a staged reading from the Ike Holter’s Stonewall play, Hit the Wall.07-08-1995 ri Rhode To Dingofakes Island Dob Prior Be Old – Must
Center Today Justice Register For Bar City
Urban Growler teams up with the Southern for a pre-show beer-tasting with assorted bar specials.
Good Night at the Southern: Pride Edition
Monday, June 17 at 7:30 p.m.
Center Today Justice Register For Bar City Southern Theater, 1420 S. Washington Ave., Minneapolis
Pay what you can at the door.
GLBT Talent Loves That Percy Jackson Spirit in “The Lightning Thief” at the Ordway – Satyrs, Demigoddesses and Heroes! Oh My!
The beloved Center Today Justice Register For Bar City Percy Jackson and the Olympians book series by Rick Riordan has introduced a generation of young people to the wonders of Greek mythology. In The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical, Percy Jackson, a son of ocean god Poseidon, is still learning to control his supernatural powers while trying to prevent a war between the Gods. But he’s got to find Zeus’s lightning bolt first!
Three actors from the GLBT community appear in the show’s national tour at the Ordway Center. They give us compelling reasons why they feel its worth our time to catch this rock musical hit which was nominated for the prestigious Drama Desk Award for Best Musical.
Sarah Beth Pfeffer: “I play a lot of characters in The Lightning Thief —12, to be exact!—but my primary, and favorite, character is definitely Clarisse La Rue. She—like all the kids in the show—is a demigod, meaning she’s half Greek god, half mortal, and in her case, she’s the daughter of Ares, the God of war. That makes her a fierce competitor on the battlefield, but what I love about her is that as scary as she can seem when she’s coming at you with a sword, she also has a really sensitive side.”
Jorrel Javier: “My primary character is Grover, a pure hearted satyr with the best intentions, and Percy’s best friend. I think my favorite part about Grover is that his character arc is one about an internal redemption of his worth and self-confidence. His past mistakes have instilled an apprehension within himself and a cloud of doubt that throughout the duration of the show, he slowly loses. For me, it’s the classic tale of regaining a sense of one’s purpose and I think that it’s part of the reason why Grover is such a lovable and endearing friend.”
Sam Leicht: “What I love most about Percy is his tenacity. From the start of the show we see that his childhood wasn’t easy, which is frustrating for sure. But his frustration doesn’t lead to shutting down. Instead, he uses this frustration to push himself further and overcome all of the crazy obstacles thrown at him. I’ve always loved this quote, ‘It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.’ Even in the tough times, Percy never gives up and I love that about him!”Begin To Licenses Real Offering Island Rhode Wjar Id-compliant
The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical
Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, 345 Washington St., St. Paul
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When most people think of westerns they think of Old Hollywood, John Wayne, Clint Eastwood and vintage TV— or maybe those dime store paperbacks by Zane Grey and Louis L’Amour packed in the attic left by their granddad. However, it’s not often that westerns in stage play form are selected for theater seasons. Green Center Today Justice Register For Bar City Grow the Lilacs, Arizonaand The Squaw Man are all but forgotten, though The Rainmaker is occasionally revived. But it’s a genre that itself seems to have been forgotten. However, take heart. In this very decade there’s a humdinger of a western play which you can see on stage at Theatre in the Round Players.
Playwright Jethro Compton, also the playwright of The Frontier Trilogy, has adapted the Dorothy Marie Johnson story published in 1953, The Man Who Shot Liberty ValanceVerge New Monolithic' - To The Is And 'solid License York's Forge Almost Impossible All-new Driver's, into a work where civilization and anarchism face off. She once stated, “I asked myself, what if one of these big bold gunmen who are having the traditional showdown is not fearless, and what if he can’t even shoot? Then what have you got?”
What’s notable about Compton that he is an Englishman born in 1988 with a playwriting and directing career based in the U.K. Yet he understands the historical contours of the American West better than most Americans. Early on in The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, saloonkeeper Hallie points out to lawyer Ransome Foster that the slaughter of Cherokees had happened long ago: the implication is that Ransome lives in a fantasy adventure past. The year is 1890 in the western town of Twotrees, six decades after the Indian Removal Act precipitating The Trail of Tears and 28 years after the Homestead Act of the Lincoln administration, his second most consequential policy after Emancipation.
Compton fully apprehends that by 1890, the U.S. government and society was essentially wrestling down what could be called a massive gang culture comprised of males, who in today’s identitarian parlance would be largely defined as white. Gangs of white cowboys, cowpokes and saddletramps are frequently the source of cruelty and wickedness in the western genre—as much or more than Native Americans. Not to mention that in many westerns Native Americans are friends of and oppressed victims of whites. That said, not all cowboys, cowpokes and saddletramps were necessarily bad guys and westerns often reflect that as well.
Twotrees is a town that has resigned itself to the terroristic and sadistic whims of a gang run by one Liberty Valance, searingly portrayed by John Goodrich. In the presence of this actor’s performance there is a genuine feeling that one is in the presence of evil. It rivals Kirkaldy Myers’s chilling performance of the malevolent ‘Man’ in last year’s Mixed Blood Theatre staging of Is God Is.
Ransome, an eastern attorney en route west, has been seriously injured by Valance’s thugs while heading in the direction of Twotrees. Little does he know that Fate guided him there to bring not biblical scripture, as so many characters in westerns do, but to bring a muscular understanding of the law: that pillar of western culture with its mandate for justice sprung from the Greeks and which stands adjacent to the religious pillar of Judeo-Christianity. Scott Pearson evinces an authentic mix of insecurity, resentment, and a smoldering desire to somehow stop the pattern of violence the townsfolk have come to see as inevitable. Most people will recognize that inner struggle which Pearson plays so honestly. We’re all faced at points in our lives where we know in our heart that we should buck up and rise above the impulse for self-preservation and be courageous. One thinks of emblematic western culture icons like Antigone and Jesus.
Ransome goes too far when he teaches a black man known as The Preacher to read. Worse still, this man soon learns to read and relish the words of western culture’s emblematic playwright, William Shakespeare. A lovable Samuel Joseph gives an inspirational performance and elicits visceral fear from within when confronted by the demonically racist Valance. Ransome has already crossed the Rubicon by teaching illiterate whites to read, but to teach a black man to read and for that man to excel beyond the rest and quote the Bard with heartfelt ease, the West’s emblematic poet playwright, is justification for murder! Contrary to current discourse, there have long been vast swathes of white-identified folks who deeply resent art and intellect and Valance exemplifies the worst of them. Whites who value the life of the mind have often been ridiculed by whites who don’t.
Within all this occurs a love triangle between the educated (though not arrogant) Ransome, Hallie, and Bert Barricune, who has carried a torch for the woman for years. The conflicted dynamics between the three crackles through with tangible understatement. A powerhouse Laura Hoover brings a Calamity Jane vibrancy to Hallie: a reminder that women actually held positions of power in some western locations because of their abilities, virtue and toughness. Remember that women’s suffrage came sooner to more western states than others. Hoover channels that sort of pluck.
David Tufford’s Bert is an utter vision out of the old west. Rugged, grizzled, and hard-bitten, but sweet underneath. Despite the rivalry, Bert understands that the time has come to make a decision about the Valance boys. This Ransome dude may rub him the wrong way big time but he knows in his heart he’s right. There’s something touching about the protective sense the grudging Bert has toward the man and it is played by Tufford with admirable nuance and macho charisma.
The love triangle, the advocacy for the life of the mind, and the theme of racism are all there but are not as fully registered in the drawn out John Ford film. Frankly, Compton’s script is better than the James Warner Bellah-Willis Goldbeck screenplay. This is not written to take away from the indispensability of the great Ford but his 1962 film version doesn’t cohere as tightly as this play. Therefore, Compton and director Brian P. Joyce have rescued author Johnson’s original: like right out of a western! Joyce has clearly drilled into the deep feelings, anxieties, fears and hopes of isolated people in circumstances that only a generous fate and a higher power might be able to lift above the collective resignation. What’s more is he has steeped his production in the very essence of the old west marvelously.
Joyce knows his stuff. He has a vivid eye for the grit and ruggedness of a people and of a specific point in time. The look of the TRP production itself seems lifted right out of that time! Timmy Rawerts’s Marshal Johnson is a lifelike manifestation you could imagine walking the wooden sidewalks of Fort Sumner, New Mexico on the lookout for Billy the Kid. The entire acting ensemble evokes the old west, all perfectly costumed by E. Emily Heaney. They include Joseph Homrich, Jacob Marcott, Shara Marquez, Selma Petterson, and Celia Adeline Wendt. Set designers Latoya Dennis and Sadie Ward capture the worn look of the saloon – it’s right on target. Mark Kieffer’s lighting, Jeff Musch’s sound design, music composition by Adam Conrad, and Robert J. Smith’s props reinforce the wild west spirit well.
It’s likely that after seeing the production a lot of folks will go to YouTube to hear Gene Pitney’s spine-tingling rendition of the ballad “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance” by the incomparable Bacharach and David. Seeing the TRP production will only make hearing it again or for the first time all the more resplendent.
Note: John Ford left us with some towering westerns like The Searchers, Stagecoach, Fort Apache and the post-western, The Grapes of Wrath. If Compton’s script is ever filmed, one would hope that someone like a contemporary Ford, a George Stevens, or a Budd Boetticher would do so—someone who would keep the gore and violence to a minimum and let the characters, the period, and Compton’s structure and its spirit take the lead. Pray God Compton doesn’t do “a Tracy Letts”, who let the wrong film director derange his great play, August: Osage County.
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
Through June 23
Theatre in the Round Players, 245 Cedar Ave., Minneapolis
Center Today Justice Register For Bar City www.TheatreinthRound.org
Frederic Tcheng’s documentary about fashion designer Roy Halston Frowick (1932-1990) is a film that may well have you going back and forth about what you think of the man known simply as “Halston” while watching it. Halston tracks the career of a man who is paradoxically effervescent, yet steely in going forth to get what he wanted. Models and actresses loved the freedom his clothing gave them, as if you could sense your naked body underneath. Interviewee and intimate friend Liza Minnelli stresses the importance of how clothes make a person feel and that “his clothes danced with you.”
Tcheng vividly captures the conflict between Halston, the artiste, and the corporate culture he was never able to integrate into. Interviews with various women who loved and adored this gay man genuinely convey that he had to have been lovable. Yet Halston was also tyrannical and felt entitled to order around those who worked for him. He even called himself an Emperor and media played into that.
Ego became quite pronounced when he contracted with JC Penney in what truly was a populist impulse—and I mean that in a positive sense—to make comfortable, beautiful clothing available to working women and homemakers. However, he couldn’t abide by corporate schedules and he bullied those who worked under him.
He met his match with Playtex President Walter Bregman who understandably could not justify the designer’s extravagances like over a hundred thousand dollars to take his entourage to Paris for a Martha Graham tribute and not showing up to work till late afternoon when everyone else had arrived at eight or nine in the morning. It was a duel in the sun: Bregman the macho straight alpha male v. Halston the elegant gay alpha male who stated, “The folks from Planet Playtex landed on Planet Halston.”
Tcheng doesn’t dwell too much on Halston’s drug issues, but he doesn’t evade that drugs were a problem. The filmmaker also shows that Halston loved being an American. Some may have thought his pro-American attitude was unctuous and calculated, but in watching him talk about his Midwest childhood, he seems genuine. His trip to China was also very American in that he seemed to truly want to bring beauty and comfort to Chinese women who had been programmed into communist dreariness. We see such women in the film and they adored him.
His death at 57 from what the media called AIDS-related cancer was something he stoically faced, like a classical emperor. He reconnected with his family at the end. His niece, the endearing Lesley Fenwick, provides captivating information about the last seven years of her uncle’s life wherein which she witnessed the implosion of his career and the stoicism he embodied in the face of mortality.
It’s easy to judge against the man, but Halston was a man of post-war America who never let his gayness stop him. No trace of self-pity or victimhood. You’ve got to respect that. He definitely loved the finer things too well and was too captivated by the in crowd entertained by Truman Capote and the Warholian bunch that frequented Studio 54. But he was a workaholic who loved what he did, did it splendidly, and was always chasing a vision. There’s something to be deeply admired in a gay man like that.
Center Today Justice Register For Bar City
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Starts June 14
Lagoon Cinema, 1320 Lagoon Ave., Minneapolis
Center Today Justice Register For Bar City Center Today Justice Register For Bar City www.landmarktheatres.com
Pink News reports that Ecuador’s highest court legalized same-sex marriage on Wednesday (June 12), ruling in favor of two gay couples who petitioned for the right to wed.
Pink News reports that churches in Florida are planning a conference called Make America Straight Again (MASA) to coincide with the three-year anniversary of the Pulse nightclub shooting.
The New York Post reports that an Oklahoma “country boy” who plastered a rainbow on his pickup truck in honor of Gay Pride Month is receiving a lot of love on the Internet.