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The Georgia Voice
OUTSPOKEN IN THEIR OWN WORDS
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TV: Gay is ‘The New Normal’ for mainstream entertainment. Page 4 Trends: Fashion, technology and local happenings you can’t miss this fall. Page 7 Music: Melissa, Madonna, Morissey and more. Page 9 Theater: So a man brings home a wolf for a one-night stand… Page 10
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“I ﬁnd it inconceivable that one of your players, Mr. Brendon Ayanbadejo, would publicly endorse same-sex marriage… I am requesting that you take the necessary action, as a National Football Franchise Owner, to inhibit such expressions from your employee…”
— Maryland General Assembly Delegate Emmett C. Burns Jr. in an Aug. 29 letter, sent on ofﬁcial letterhead, to Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti. Burns also stated that he does not know any other NFL player who supports gay marriage. (Yahoo Sports, Sept. 6)
“The ﬁght is not about samesex marriage or interracial marriage or slavery or equal rights for women. The ﬁght is for equality for all!”
— Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo, responding via Twitter to attacks by Maryland Delegate Emmett C. Burns (Hufﬁngton Post, Sept. 7)
Film: No gay blockbusters, but plenty of fall fare. Page 12 Books: ATL lit events include Alice Walker, David Sedaris. Page 14 Events: Season packed with Atlanta’s biggest LGBT events. Page 17 Sports: Softball and other options to keep you ﬁt for fall. Page 18
Black Gay Pride brings thousands to Atlanta. Page 24 Southern Comfort Conference among largest trans gatherings. Page 27 Athens, Savannah celebrate LGBT Pride. Page 28
BOARD OF ADVISERS
Richard Eldredge, Sandy Malcolm, Lynn Pasqualetti, Robert Pullen
All material in the Georgia Voice is protected by federal copyright law and may not be reproduced without the written consent of the Georgia Voice. The sexual orientation of advertisers, photographers, writers and cartoonists published herein is neither inferred nor implied. The appearance of names or pictorial representation does not necessarily indicate the sexual orientation of that person or persons. We also do not accept responsibility for claims made by advertisers. Unsolicited editorial material is accepted by the Georgia Voice, but we do not take responsibility for its return. The editors reserve the right to accept, reject or edit any submission. Guidelines for freelance contributors are available upon request. A single copy of the Georgia Voice is available from authorized distribution points. Multiple copies are available from the Georgia Voice ofﬁce only. Call for rates. If you are unable to reach a convenient free distribution point, you may receive a 26-issue mailed subscription for $60 per year. Checks or credit card orders can be sent to Tim Boyd, email@example.com Postmaster: Send address changes to the Georgia Voice, 1904 Monroe Drive, Suite 130, Atlanta, GA 30324. The Georgia Voice is published every other Friday by The Georgia Voice, LLC. Individual subscriptions are $60 per year for 26 issues. Postage paid at Atlanta, GA, and additional mailing ofﬁces. The editorial positions of the Georgia Voice are expressed in editorials and in editor’s notes. Other opinions are those of the writers and do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Georgia Voice and its staff. To submit a letter or commentary: Letters should be fewer than 400 words and commentary, for web or print, should be fewer than 750 words. Submissions may be edited for content and length, and must include a name, address and phone number for veriﬁcation. Email submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail to the address above.
“P.S. I’ve also been vocal as hell about the issue of gay marriage so you can take your ‘I know of no other NFL player …’ and shove it in your close-minded, totally lacking in empathy piehole and choke on it. Asshole.”
— Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe in a hilariously profane open letter to Mass. State Delegate Emmett C. Burns Jr. The Maryland delegate has since backed down from his call to silence Ayanbadejo. (Deadspin.com, Sept. 7)
Satirical songstresses Bria & Chrissy go viral on YouTube. Page 31 Food Porn: Is Robert the biggest barrier to his own relationship success? Page 32
“I’m a black, gay woman. I think the only way to make the GOP hate me more is if I sent them a video of me rolling around on a pile of welfare checks.”
— Comedian Wanda Sykes, who comes to the Classic Center in Athens, Ga., on Oct. 11, in a clip from her new two-part Logo special, ‘NewNowNext Vote with Wanda Sykes.’ The ﬁrst part aired Sept. 10; the second is slated for Nov. 5, Election Day. (Hufﬁngton Post, Sept. 10)
That’s What She Said: Love, not sex, at the Democratic National Convention. Page 38 Domestically Disturbed: Topher Payne gets reasonable about choice. Page 39
t’s been 14 years since NBC launched “Will & Grace,” heralded as the ﬁrst successful network sitcom to debut with an openly gay lead character. The title of NBC’s new gay-themed sitcom sums up the progress since then — in the world of entertainment, gay is now “The New Normal.” The show, which debuted Sept. 11 and will air at 9:30 p.m. on Tuesdays, is about a gay couple who hires a surrogate to have a baby. Openly gay Andrew Rannells and Ellen Barkin head the cast, which also features “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star NeNe Leaks. “The New Normal” was created by openly gay Ryan Murphy of “Glee” fame. It’s based on Murphy’s desire to have a child with his own partner. Rannells feels the premise echoes the real world. “We are just showing what is already happening, what is out there in the world,” the actor says in a recent conference call with journalists. “This family we are creating could be yours, a group of unlikely folks who come together to create a family. It might seem speciﬁc but the storytelling is universal.” He and the cast and crew were disappointed to learn that a Utah TV station, afﬁliated with the Mormon Church, would not air “The New Normal.” “It’s a shame (that) came out prior to anyone seeing the show,” Rannell says. “I hope no one ﬁnds anything offensive about the show.” Ultimately, he feels “Normal” is about love. And as a gay man himself, Rannell found no real challenges playing gay, even with a straight co-star. “(Justin Bartha) and I had a natural chemistry when we started,” he admits. NBC isn’t the only mainstream network with launching a sitcom with gay leads this season. “Partners” premieres on Monday, Sept. 24 at 8:30 p.m. on CBS. “Partners” is the spawn of openly gay Max Mutchnick and childhood friend David Kohan, who brought “Will and Grace” to life and have known and worked with each other for years. The new show stars Michael Urie of “Ugly Betty” fame, with Brandon Routh (“Superman Returns”) as his life partner, and centers on the friendship of a gay man and a straight man in their joint workplace. It echoes the story of Mutchnick and Kohan themselves. The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation tracks LGBT characters on television. Matt Kane, GLAAD’s associate director of entertainment media, is pleased with the fall TV slate and what he sees on the horizon in the winter and spring.
by jim farmer
Created by openly gay ‘Glee’ creator Ryan Murphy,‘New Normal’ is about a gay couple who hires a surrogate to have a baby. (Photo by Timothy White/NBC)
He is particularly happy to see “Partners” on CBS, which has notoriously been behind the curve for LGBT inclusivity compared to other networks. “It’s a great step in the right direction,” Kane says. • “Go On” (Already premiered; Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on NBC) — This Matthew Perry comedy about a sportscaster who goes into
graduates – openly gay Kurt (Chris Colfer) and Rachel (Lea Michele) - have moved. Celebrities visiting this season include Kate Hudson and Sarah Jessica Parker. GLAAD’s Kane is happy that the transgender character Unique, introduced in the spring, will be back. • “Modern Family” (Wednesdays at 9 p.m. on ABC starting Sept. 26) — TV’s funniest and most-honored comedy returns for its fourth season with arguably the best comic ensemble cast around, including (openly gay) Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell and Eric Stonestreet as his partner, Cameron Tucker. This season, as their tomboy daughter Lily tussles with a fellow classmate, the gay couple must contend with the student’s lesbian moms. • “The Good Wife” (Sundays at 9 p.m. on CBS starting Sept. 30): Julianna Margulies’ drama returns for a fourth year, with one of TV’s most talked about characters, the bisexual Kalinda (Emmy winner Achie Panjabi). • “Chicago Fire” (Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on NBC starting Oct. 10) — This hour-long ﬁreﬁghter/paramedic drama features Laura German and Monica Raymund as lesbians who are out on the job and also romantic partners. • “Emily Owens, M.D.” (Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on The CW starting Oct. 16) — An African-American lesbian character in a substantial role, Kelly McCreary’s Tyra, is one of the perks of this new medical drama, Kane says. The show stars Mamie Gummer, perhaps better known as Meryl Streep’s daughter. • “American Horror Story: Asylum” (Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on FX starting Oct. 17) — Also from Ryan Murphy comes the second season of this scary series, set in an insane asylum this year. A lesbian couple will be in the mix. It’s rumored that openly gay Zachary Quinto will return as another character and that rocker Adam Levine will make an appearance, as will openly lesbian actress Sarah Paulson. • “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” (Mondays at 9 p.m. on Logo starting Oct. 22) — RuPaul is back with a “best of” set of drag contestants. Atlanta audiences watch this addictive show more than any other city in the country. • “Happy Endings” (Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on ABC starting Oct. 23) — This smart, engaging comedy series about a group of friends features openly gay Max (Adam Pally), who is one of TV’s most refreshingly non-generic characters. • “Malibu Country” (Fridays at 8:30 p.m. on ABC starting Nov. 2) — Reba McEntire plays a Reba McEntire-like character who moves to California after she learns of her husband’s affair and tries to return as a country star. Out actress Lily Tomlin is her pot-smoking mother.
therapy after his wife dies features Julie White as a lesbian lawyer dealing with rage after her partner passes away in a preventable death. • “Glee” (Thursdays at 9 p.m. on Fox starting Sept. 13) — Now in its fourth season, the musical comedy has been moved to a new night. It will still focus on the high school shenanigans as well as New York, where its
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September 14, 2012
Atlanta fashion guru E. Vincent Martinez, the man behind www.fashionado.net and stylemagvm.com, o ers ﬁve ways for anyone to stay on trend:
1 Scale & proportion 2 Leather
Says Martinez: “Scale and proportion are big this fall. (Pardon the pun!) Achieve this through an oversized sweater or a large chunky scarf.”
All things leather are in: coats, vests, skirts, pants and accents of all kinds. (No word on harnesses, though!)
3 Fur or Faux
Fur, especially used as trim, will take you into winter. Wear faux fur to avoid your militant PETA neighbors!
5 Great capes
Think burgundy, wine, orange, blue and deep emerald.
“If you’re feeling adventurous and fashion forward,” Martinez says, “try a gorgeous Dolce & Gabbana brocade trimmed cape. If that’s way too fashion fast lane for you, Zenga designed very handsome, very tailored ones.”
FALL Trends } }
The fashion, technology and culture to keep you ahead of the curve! by Bo Shell
Two Atlanta-area gay bars host competing drag contests that run through this season, both on Wednesdays. First, LeBuzz gets into the action with Charlie Brown’s Drag Idol 5. Six queens and six kings battle it out in what has been dubbed the “biggest and most di cult” competition yet. Then, following the success of several Dragnique competitions, Jungle is back with Dragniﬁcent. Expect weekly guest judges and contestant tips going to charities to help determine winners.
Fall is a drag!
We’ve seen that 99 Daze are back at Burkhart’s. That usually means 99-cent vodka drinks. Even an insider says no one ever knows how long the special will last, so keep an eye out get it when you can. Classy is always on trend: Don’t forget to tip on the pre-discount amount to avoid the evil eye from the usually friendly bartenders.
Politics: (the smartest trend)
Pundits are calling the 2012 presidential election a “choice” election. Know why you are making yours. When you’re fussing with political adversaries, be able to explain why. It’ll go a lot further than “because Obama hearts gays” or “because Romney had a horse in the Olympics.” Voting is not optional, even in the blue zone of a red state.
Style.com says “lesbian chic” is a force in fashion going into Spring 2013. Citing a new lesbian dating wave in NYC’s fashion scene, it seems lesbian is the new black. Even Rihanna’s stylist says combat boots are subbing for stilettos!
The iPhone 5
Though the iPad generally dominates tablet tech headlines, this fall’s tech trends include a tablet war that will last through the holiday season. Rumors have run wild that a smaller iPad is coming this fall: a seven-inch model that’s more easily hand-held than the current 9.7-inch iPad. But a new iPad may not be the best solution for users who don’t need all the bells and whistles — or the price tag — offered by Apple. Amazon’s brand new Kindle Fire HD is more a ordable and is now available for mobile networks. Amazon aims to get your money on the back end through Amazon Prime, an annual membership service that includes free two-day shipping and a growing library of streaming media.
Your big gay wedding!
Tell the haters that legal gay marriage is happening whether they like it or not. From state-by-state approval to President Obama’s support to what will likely amount to a Supreme Court battle, gay people will eventually see marriage equality. Period. Whether you wait until then or you’re ready for a ceremony now, plan with fall’s biggest new publication: GA Voice and Equally Wed’s annual Atlanta Gay Weddings Guide. From proposal to honeymoon, we’ve got your LGBT nuptials covered. Join us at our free launch party on Oct. 4. Details on Page 36.
By the time this story hits the streets, Apple will have announced the iPhone 5. That means better technology and the ever-present trend of bitching about it: It will likely be as expensive as always and even worse, you might have to replace your chargers and cords — there’s probably a new Apple-speciﬁc data/energy port. The upside is iOS 6 for new and some existing product users. That means better maps, a better Siri and a feature just for shady queens who screen calls: decline an incoming call and instantly send a text or set a call back reminder. Even further, you’ll have a ‘Do Not Disturb Mode’ that only allows approved contacts to ring.
September 14, 2012
September 14, 2012
Melissa, Madonna, Morrissey and more
LGBT icons ﬁll fall music schedule
By Laura Douglas-Brown email@example.com Indigo Girls, Melissa Etheridge, Rufus Wainwright, Morrissey — Atlanta’s fall music line-up features some of the best known openly LGBT musicians, then sets gay fans swooning with a visit from the Material Girl herself, Madonna. It’s technically the end of the Atlanta Botanical Garden’s summer concert series, but Indigo Girls’ Sept. 14 show could also be considered the start of a banner fall music season. Tickets also go on sale Sept. 21 for the beloved lesbian duo’s Dec. 7 show with the Georgia Symphony at Cobb Energy Centre. Indigo Girls are just one of the acts to grow out of Atlanta’s famed acoustic music scene, which remains immensely popular with LGBT fans. The scene was rocked earlier this year by the unhappy split between famed Decatur acoustic venue Eddie’s Attic and founder Eddie Owen, but this season’s music line-up shows fans may actually beneﬁt. Duluth’s Red Clay Theatre is now home to Eddie Owen Presents, which is drawing top talents to Duluth to support the man who gave many their start, while the Attic continues to bring acoustic music to Decatur. The upshot? Fans get even more chances to see acts like lesbian blues rocker Michelle Malone (Oct. 5 record release at Red Clay, followed by Oct. 6 and Dec. 31 at the Attic); lesbian folk legend Janis Ian (Oct. 10 at Red Clay, Oct. 11 at the Attic); and lesbian “alterna-grass” band Roxie Watson (Sept. 15 and Dec. 15 at the Attic, Oct. 13 at Red Clay). Red Clay Theatre also brings in folk favorites Patty Grifﬁn (Oct. 21) and Michelle Shocked (Nov. 11), while Eddie’s Attic hosts several other acts popular with lesbian fans, including Jennifer Knapp (Sept. 25), who made headlines in the Christian music world when she came out and began playing secular folk music.
Sept. 14: Indigo Girls @ Atlanta Botanical Garden Sept. 15: Roxie Watson @ Eddie’s Attic Sept. 15: Brad Paisley @ Aaron’s Amphitheatre Sept. 18: Ben Folds Five @ The Tabernacle Sept. 19: John Hiatt @ Variety Playhouse Sept. 21: Break of Reality @ Ferst Center for the Arts Sept. 21: Beth Orton @ Variety Playhouse Sept. 21-22: Foo Fighters, Joan Jett, Pearl Jam, Florence and the Machine, and more @ Music Midtown Sept. 22: New Edition @ Chastain Park Sept. 25: Jennifer Knapp @ Eddie’s Attic Sept. 28: Garrison Starr @ Eddie’s Attic
Oct. 21: Patty Grifﬁn @ Red Clay Theatre Oct. 21: TAKIOPROJECT @ Ferst Center Oct. 25: Alanis Morissette @ The Tabernacle Oct. 25: Psychedlic Furs @ Variety Playhouse Oct. 29: Susanna Hoffs @ Eddie’s Attic
Out and on tour
Fans of Atlanta’s heavily lesbian acoustic scene aren’t the only ones in for a treat this season, as a virtual who’s who of out lesbian and gay performers bring their tours to the city. Singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, the gay son of folk legends Kate McGarrigle and Loudon Wainwright III, is touring behind his new pop-infused album “Out of the Game,” billed as his “loosest, most accessible” work yet. He plays the Tabernacle on Oct. 20. Lesbian rocker Melissa Etheridge, one of the ﬁrst out major label artists, brings her new
Oct. 3: David Byrne and St. Vincent @ Cobb Energy Oct. 3: Fiona Apple @ The Tabernacle Oct. 5: Michelle Malone record release @ Red Clay Oct. 5: Keiko Matsui @ Ferst Center for the Arts Oct. 5: Gotye @ Chastain Park Oct. 5: Miranda Lambert @ Aaron’s Amphitheatre Oct. 6: Journey with Pat Benatar and Loverboy@ Aaron’s Amphitheatre Oct. 6: Michelle Malone @ Eddie’s Attic Oct. 10: Janis Ian @ Red Clay Theatre Oct. 11: Janis Ian @ Eddie’s Attic Oct. 13: Maria Gabriella Band & God-des and She @ My Sister’s Room Oct. 13: Roxie Watson @ Red Clay Theatre Oct. 13-14: Andy Bell, Amy Ray, Rita Ora, Kristine W and more @ Atlanta Pride Oct. 18: R Kelly @ the Fox Theatre Oct. 20: Rufus Wainwright @ The Tabernacle Oct. 20: John Legend @ Chastain Park album, “4th Street Feeling,” to Atlanta Symphony Hall on Nov. 12. Also in November, out saxophonist extraordinaire Dave Koz brings his Christmas show back to the Cobb Energy Centre (Nov. 30), then openly gay former Smiths frontman Morrissey
Nov. 3: Rebecca Loebe @ Eddie’s Attic Nov. 7: Heart @ The Fox Theatre Nov. 8: Joshua Radin @ Buckhead Theatre Nov. 11: Michelle Shocked @ Red Clay Theatre Nov. 12: Melissa Etheridge @ Atlanta Symphony Hall Nov. 16: Antigone Rising & Jen Foster @ Eddie’s Attic Nov. 17: Madonna @ Philips Arena Nov. 28: Ray LaMontagne @ Cobb Energy Centre Nov. 30: Dave Koz @ Cobb Energy Centre
Dec. 1: Hannah Thomas @ Eddie’s Attic Dec. 2: Empire Brass @ Ferst Center Dec. 3: Morrisey @ Cobb Energy Centre Dec. 7: Indigo Girls with Ga. Symphony @ Cobb Energy Dec. 15: Roxie Watson @ Eddie’s Attic Dec. 20: Celtic Woman @ Symphony Hall Dec. 31: Michelle Malone @ Eddie’s Attic hits the Cobb Energy Centre on Dec. 3. In between all of the out gay performers, fans will also have the chance to “justify our love” for Madonna, who brings her longawaited tour to Philips Arena on Nov. 17. Expect throngs of LGBT to come out for MDNA.
September 14, 2012
Premiere season on local stages
‘Wolves,’ ‘Divine Sister’ among fall theater debuts
By Jim Farmer As memories of summer fade away, fall is now ofﬁcially here, with some sparkling theater options, including several new shows. In its 25th anniversary year, Actor’s Express is presenting one of its patented world premieres – gay playwright Steve Yockey’s “Wolves” (Nov. 8 – Dec. 2), directed by out lesbian Melissa Foulger. It’s very gay themed, starting as a gay man brings a wolf home as a one-night stand, to the dismay of his roommate. Hell breaks loose from there. “It’s really about the conﬂation of sex and fear in modern society, the overlapping mix of what’s sexy and what’s dangerous — all wrapped up in a sort of modern fairy tale narration,” Yockey says. It’s Yockey’s ﬁrst work at the Express since the company’s “Octopus.” Freddie Ashley, openly gay artistic director of the Express, feels that Yockey’s writing is always “bold, imaginative, sexy and exciting.” Virtue of The Process Theatre, openly gay Charles Busch’s “The Divine Sister” (Oct. 26 – Nov. 17) is making its Atlanta debut in October. Busch is the legendary playwright of such plays as “Die, Mommie, Die!,” “Psycho Beach Party” and “Vampire Lesbians of Sodom.” In “The Divine Sister,” a Mother Superior has to juggle a schoolboy in need of a mentor, a lascivious suitor and many other calamities. The comedy stars Topher Payne – GA Voice’s 2012 Best of Atlanta Best Actor – in the title role and he says it’s a perfect ﬁt. “I have played a lot of women, but I’ve never played a nun,” says Payne. The work of openly gay Del Shores, always a favorite in Atlanta, is back in a production of his “Daddy’s Dying: Who’s Got the Will” (Sept.28 – Oct. 20) at Onstage Atlanta. It’s directed by out DeWayne Morgan.
MORE INFO www.theGAVoice.com
‘What I Learned in Paris’ Through Sept. 30 at the Alliance Theatre 1280 Peachtree St. Atlanta, GA 30309 www.alliancetheatre.org ‘Anything Goes’ Sept. 21 – Oct.7 at the Strand Theatre 117 N. Park Square, Marietta, GA 30060 www.atlantalyrictheatre.com ‘War Horse’ Sept. 25 – 30 at the Fox Theatre 660 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta, Georgia 30308 www.broadwayacrossamerica.com ‘Daddy’s Dying, Who’s Got the Will?’ Sept. 28 – Oct. 20 at Onstage Atlanta 2597 North Decatur Road, Decatur GA 30033 www.onstageatlanta.com ‘Apples and Oranges’ Oct. 5 - 28 at the Alliance Theatre www.alliancetheatre.org
Actor’s Express presents the world premiere of gay playwright Steve Yockey’s ‘Wolves,’ about a gay man who brings a wolf home for a one-night stand. Melissa Foulger, who is lesbian, directs. (Yockey photo via Facebook; Foulger photo courtesy GCSU)
‘Next to Normal’ Oct. 17 – Nov. 11 at the Alliance Theatre www.alliancetheatre.org ‘Assassins’ Opens Oct. 19 at Fabrefaction Theatre 999 Brady Ave., Atlanta, Georgia 30318 www.fabrefaction.org ‘The Divine Sister’ Oct. 26 – Nov. 17 at Onstage Atlanta www.onstageatlanta.com ‘Wolves’ Nov. 8 – Dec. 2 at Actor’s Express 887 W. Marietta St. Atlanta, GA 30318 www.actorsexpress.com ‘The Mountaintop’ Nov. 13 – Dec. 16 at the Southwest Arts Center 915 New Hope Road, Atlanta, Georgia 30331 www.truecolorstheatre.org
Not as well-known as Shores’ “Sordid Lives,” it’s nonetheless a comedy with plenty of yucks and Southern characters. Also at Onstage during the holidays, for what is likely to be the company’s last show at its current location before Walmart forces it and Process Theatre elsewhere, is the bound to be campy “Nuncrackers – The Nunsense Christmas Musical.” It’s directed by out Cathe Hall Payne. Long a favorite in the LGBT community, Pearl Cleage has another upcoming world premiere at the Alliance Theatre. The just-opened political and comedic “What I Learned in Paris” (through Sept. 30) is set in Atlanta circa 1973. Alfred Uhry of “Driving Miss Daisy” fame returns to the Alliance as well with his new
“Apples and Oranges” (Oct. 5 – 28), directed by Lynne Meadow of the Manhattan Theatre Club. It’s about a brother and sister who grow closer, despite obvious differences in their lives. Another sure-to-please Alliance work is the Tony and Pulitzer Prize winning “Next to Normal” (Oct. 17 – Nov. 11). Off of a strong year, Fabrefaction’s upcoming musical “Assassins” (opens Oct. 19) looks at nine individuals who tried to assassinate presidents. Its music and lyrics are by openly gay Stephen Sondheim. Also look for Cole Porter’s classic musical “Anything Goes” (Sept. 21 – Oct.7) this month at Atlanta Lyric Theatre Though not gay in nature, one of the major productions coming to town via the Atlanta Broadway Series is “War Horse” (Sept. 25-30). The Best Play Tony winner from a few seasons back tells the story of a relationship between a young man and his spirited steed during wartime, using innovative, imaginative puppetry. Another potentially big production is Katori Hall’s “The Mountaintop” (Nov. 13 – Dec. 16), a play dealing with Dr. Martin Luther King and his chance encounter with a mystery lady. It
gets its ﬁrst regional staging here after a Broadway run recently with Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, with Kenny Leon directing, when Jasmine Guy helms its later this season for True Colors Theatre Company. Finally, it’s not been announced or is even ofﬁcial yet, but don’t be surprised if gay fave “Santaland Diaries,” based on gay humorist David Sedaris’ “Holidays on Ice,” comes back to the Horizon again this holiday season.
September 14, 2012
Looking for LGBT love on the big screen
No gay blockbusters, but with Out on Film, still plenty of fall fare
By Steve Warren It looks like another award season without a “Milk” or “Brokeback Mountain” or “The Kids Are All Right.” There are probably some LGBT characters and subplots not mentioned in advance publicity, but from what we know about the fall ﬁlm season, the pickings are pretty slim. You’ll need Out on Film (details next issue) for your queer ﬁlm ﬁx, and the rest of the season you can watch TV shows like “Partners” and “The New Normal.” (If the latter maintains the level of the pilot we’ve got a new favorite show!) Most of the positive news involves LGBT actors, directors, writers and icons who have been working on movies to be released this season. Here are some that sound interesting: • “Beloved” (Sept. 14, Landmark Midtown Art Cinemas) – Chiara Mastroianni falls in love with a gay American (Paul Schneider) in Paris while her mother (Catherine Deneuve), long since remarried, carries on an affair with her ﬁrst husband. It’s written and directed by gay Christophe Honoré. Also opening today are “Resident Evil: Retribution,” with Milla Jovovich and Michelle Rodriguez kicking butt, and “Finding Nemo” (now in 3D) with Ellen DeGeneres talking ﬁshy. • “How to Survive a Plague” (Sept. 28, Landmark Midtown Art Cinemas) – I was in San Francisco for the ﬁrst decade-plus of the AIDS crisis and wasn’t aware of how much my fellow activists accomplished, as detailed and shown in this documentary by David France, one of the few such ﬁlms to receive theatrical distribution. www.surviveaplague.com • “Pitch Perfect” (Sept. 28) – The ﬁrst feature by out director Jason Moore (Broadway’s “Avenue Q”) looks like “Glee Goes to College,” as Anna Kendrick makes the girls more competitive in a singing competition. Ester Dean plays a lesbian and Rebel Wilson gets most of the laughs as “Fat Amy.” www.pitchperfectmovie.com • Out on Film (Oct. 4-11, Landmark Midtown Art Cinemas) – 25 years old and still growing! Over 40 ﬁlm programs, including the titles you’ve been reading about from the big LGBT summer festivals; parties, and appearances by Miss Coco Peru, direct from Gay Days at Disneyland. www.outonﬁlm.org • “The Paperboy” (Oct. 12, Landmark Midtown Art Cinemas) – Gay director Lee Daniels follows “Precious” with a thriller loaded with over-the-top, sun-baked Southern sexuality, most of it hetero. There’s Matthew McConaughey
The ﬁrst feature by out director Jason Moore, ‘Pitch Perfect’ includes a lesbian character and could be seen as ‘Glee Goes to College.’ (Publicity photo via Facebook)
and a scantily clad Zac Efron for the boys and Nicole Kidman as an aging sexpot for the girls. www.thepaperboy-movie.com • “Keep the Lights On” (Oct. 19, Landmark Midtown Art Cinemas, after premiering in Out on Film) – Gay writer-director Ira Sachs (“The Delta”) follows a documentary ﬁlmmaker (Thure Lindhardt) and a closeted lawyer (Zachary Booth) for nearly a decade as their relationship faces various challenges, including addiction. www.keepthelightsonﬁlm.com • “Cloud Atlas” (Oct. 26) – A complex story features an all-star cast, some playing multiple ages, races and genders in the past, present and future, under a trio of writer-directors: Lana (formerly Larry) Wachowski, Tom Tykwer and Andy Wachowski. www.cloudatlasmovie.com • “Wreck-It Ralph” (Nov. 2) – Yeah, this Disneymation is mostly for kids, but with Jane Lynch, Jack McBrayer and Sarah Silverman in the voice cast (plus John C. Reilly in the title role), somebody’s got to slip in a line or two for us. • “Lincoln” (Nov. 16) – Steven Spielberg directs Daniel Day-Lewis as our favorite Republican president. Even with Tony Kushner (“Angels in America”) writing the screenplay
the possibility of exploring the gay rumors about Lincoln is as unlikely as that of showing Eleanor Roosevelt’s (Olivia Williams) lesbian side in “Hyde Park on Hudson” (Dec. 7). • “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 2” (Nov. 16) – Gay director Bill Condon (who also made Part 1, “Dreamgirls,” “Kinsey” and “Gods and Monsters”) wraps things up. In my dreams Jacob gets over Bella and realizes he really loves me, but I think the movie’s going to go a different way. • “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” (Dec. 14) – Sir Ian McKellen dons the Gandalf beard again for the start of another Tolkien trilogy. • “Les Misérables” (Dec. 14) – If the thought of a big-screen Broadway musical isn’t enough, think of Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway and Amanda Seyfried. www.lesmiserablesﬁlm.com • “The Guilt Trip” and “Parental Guidance” (Dec. 25) – It’s Barbra vs. Bette in the battle of the Christmas comedies. Though their children are about the same age, La Streisand is mothering Seth Rogen on the road in “The Guilt Trip” while the Divine Miss M’s focus is on grandmothering when she and husband Billy Crystal are called on to be housesitters in the Atlanta-ﬁlmed “Parental Guidance.” • “Gayby” (TBA) – I can’t imagine Jonathan Lisecki’s wonderful comedy not opening theatrically after debuting at Out on Film. Matthew Wilkas plays a gay man whose best friend (Jenn Harris) asks him to father her baby – old school. www.gaybyﬁlm.com
September 14, 2012
Make your LGBT reading list for fall
By Gregg Shapiro Whether you prefer ﬁction, non-ﬁction, celebrities or even cookbooks, there are plenty of options to ﬁll your fall LGBT reading list. Some are newly out this season, while others debuted earlier this year.
Atlanta author Elliott Mackle among writers with recent releases
More than meets the eye
On ﬁrst glance, Atlanta’s LGBT literary scene might appear chilly for fall. There will be no stand-alone Atlanta Queer Literary Festival this year, and the closure of Outwrite Bookstore still leaves a void for best-selling and up-and-coming LGBT authors alike. Gay store Brushstrokes joined forces with nightclub Mixx to host a few gay author readings earlier this year, but nothing is currently scheduled for fall. But lesbian-owned feminist bookstore Charis Books & More continues to offer a monthly calendar ﬁlled with writer’s groups, Cliterati spoken-word events on the third Thursdays, and readings from a wide variety of feminist and progressive writers. Charis staff say events they are looking forward to this fall include a kickoff to Atlanta Pride with Queer BOIS (Oct. 11); the store’s 38th birthday celebration, complete with author readings, a sale, and a celebration of LGBT and civil rights activist Mandy Carter (Nov. 3); a reading by mystery/thriller writer Amanda Kyle Williams (Nov. 1); and a visit from novelist, “Steampunk Queen and queer fave” Cherie Priest (Nov. 29). Major writers of LGBT interest also continue to visit Atlanta through local universities, independent bookstores and groups like the Georgia Center for the Book. October, especially, packs a series of heavy hitters. Authors Alice Walker and Pearl Cleage visit Emory University for a joint discussion of creativity (Oct. 2) and best-selling mystery writer Patricia Cornwell, who is openly lesbian, reads at the Carter Center (Oct. 19). The month also features celebrated gay humorist David Sedaris at Symphony Hall (Oct. 27) and lesbian academic, art critic and all-around contrarian Camille Paglia at SCAD Atlanta (Oct. 30). In November, Charis joins the GA Center for the Book to co-host Emma Donoghue at the Decatur Public Library. (Nov. 29).
• Picking up where “Captain Harding’s Six-Day War” left off, the period gay romance “Captain Harding and His Men” (Lethe Press, 2012) by Atlanta author Elliott Mackle follows more of Harding’s “adventures and misadventures” in a military setting. • Arriving on bookshelves around the same time that the similarly-themed NBC sitcom “The New Normal” makes its debut, Michael Lowenthal’s “The Paternity Test” (University of Wisconsin Press, 2012) explores gay fatherhood and surrogate motherhood. • Acclaimed gay novelist Joseph Olshan returns with the Vermont-set thriller “Cloudland” (Minotaur, 2012), a modern-day “crime novel” about a serial killer and the 19th century English novelist Wilkie Collins.
Clockwise from top left: Elliott Mackle brings ‘Captain Harding and His Men’ this fall. Alice Walker speaks at Emory. Gay humorist David Sedaris plays Symphony Hall, Adele gets the bio treatment from Marc Shapiro and lesbian Patricia Cornwell reads at the Carter Center. (Photos via Facebook, Walker publicity photo, Adele book cover)
• A different kind of coming-out tale, “My Husband and My Wives: A Gay Man’s Odyssey” by Charles Rowan Beye (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012), is the author’s personal, yet universal story of his journey of love and life through his marriages (to two different women and, ultimately, one man). • Lesbian writer and activist Sarah Schulman details the “dawning of her consciousness of the Palestinian liberation struggle” in what is sure to be her most topical book “Israel/Pales-
Many queer voices
• The essay anthology “Love, Christopher Street” (Vantage Point, 2012), edited by Thomas Keith, is the latest installment in the Lammy Award-winning series and features contributions from Thomas Glave, Jewelle Gomez, Aaron Hamburger, Michael Musto, Charlie Vazquez, Bob Smith, Felice Picano, Fay Jacobs and Kathleen Warnock, among others. • Edited by Keith Boykin, “For Colored Boys Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Still Not Enough” (Magnus, 2012) is a response to Ntozake Shange’s choreopoem “For Colored Girls…” and includes pieces by G. Winston James, Tim’m T. West, Emanuel Xavier, James Earl Hardy and many more.
tine and the Queer International” ( D u k e University Press, 2012). • “Cobra Killer” (Magnus, 2012) by Andrew E. Stoner and Peter A. Conway explores the brutal slaying of gay porn kingpin Bryan Kocis at the hands of rising gay porn-stars Harlan Cuadra and his partner Joe Kerkes in January 2007. • “Marilyn: The Passion and the Paradox” (Bloomsbury, 2012) by Lois Banner, delves into Marilyn Monroe’s lesbianism and her romantic dalliances with women, including acting coaches Natasha Lytess and Constance Collier. • Go rolling in the deep with “Adele: The Biography” (St. Martin’s Press, 2012) by Marc Shapiro.
September 14, 2012
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September 14, 2012
Fall packed with LGBT events
Atlanta Pride, plus much more to ﬁll your community calendar
By Matt Schafer and Shannon Hames As the temperature falls from the high 90s to the low 80s, Atlanta’s social calendar picks up with some of the biggest LGBT events of the year. The season offers a bit of everything, from huge outdoor events like Atlanta Pride and AIDS Walk Atlanta, to smaller fundraisers, Halloween galas, and even somber occasions like Transgender Day of Remembrance and World AIDS Day. Fall is so crowded with LGBT gatherings that two garden party fundraisers will overlap with each other. Both the Health Initiative and Lambda Legal will hold garden parties in Midtown on Sept. 23. Since changing its name last year from the Atlanta Lesbian Health initiative to The Health Initiative, the group’s focus has also changed. It no longer exclusively a lesbian health organization but now address the health needs of all in the LGBT community. “Since we have broadened our mission to include everyone, we have had some new challenges that we knew we might face when we planned to make these changes almost two years ago. Mainly, we want to ensure that we cover the full continuum of the lives of our clients,” says Jo Giraudo, board co-chair. The funds from the Garden Party, which is held at Einstein’s, will go into the general fund. According to Executive Director Linda Ellis, the party is the Initiative’s largest source of unrestricted funds. “Much of the most important work we do — like training new low-cost clinic partners or helping individuals access care thorough the Health Fund — is not easily funded by grants,” Ellis says. “We have more folks calling each day and asking for support,” she adds. “What that means for us is we have to do double time in managing the Health Fund and in building partnerships with new providers, especially in areas outside of Metro Atlanta.”
Atlanta Cotillion Sept. 15 at The Foundry at Puritan Mill www.atlantacotillion.com Atlanta Arts Festival in Piedmont Park Sept. 15-16, www.atlantaartsfestival.com Southern Comfort Conference Sept. 18-23 at The Crowne Plaza Hotel Atlanta Perimeter at Ravinia, www.sccatl.org The Health Initiative Fall Garden Party Sept. 23 at Einstein’s www.thehealthinitiative.org Lambda Legal Garden Party Sept. 23 at a private residence www.lambdalegal.org/events/ll-in-atlanta
Out on Film Oct. 4 — 11 at Landmark Midtown Art Cinema www.outonﬁlm.org Atlanta Gay Weddings Launch Party Oct. 4, www.atlantagayweddings.com
ATLANTA PRIDE WEEK www.atlantapride.org
port from other Pride organizations and corporate sponsors, and that’s really allowed us to make this year’s festival bigger and more diverse.” Pride again hosts popular lead-up “Stride into Pride” events, as well as the AIDS Vigil (Oct. 10), Commitment Ceremony (Oct. 11) and Georgia Aquarium Kick-Off Party (Oct. 12). The Oct. 14 parade will continue on its traditional route, and looks to be larger than in other years. “It seems like a lot of people want to participate this year, maybe it’s the election, maybe it’s because it’s the second year of ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ being repealed, but we’re getting a lot of applications to walk in the parade,” Freedman said. The week after Atlanta Pride, LGBT Atlantans will head back to Piedmont Park to join in the annual AIDS Walk Atlanta and 5k Run, set for Oct. 21. Billy Jones, a spokesman for the AIDS Walk, says organizers have set an ambitious goal for this year’s event, hoping that 10,000 walkers and runners will raise $1.25 million for the eight participating organizations. Last year, the walk raised over $1 million for the second time in its history, and organizers hope increased effort by the runners and walkers
Fall is the season for LGBT Atlanta’s biggest event, Atlanta Pride Oct. 13-14. (Photo by Bo Shell)
Atlanta Pride AIDS Vigil Oct. 10 at St. Mark United Methodist Church www.stmarkumc.org Atlanta Pride Commitment Ceremony Oct. 11 at Altitude at W Hotel Midtown Ofﬁcial Atlanta Pride Kickoff Party Oct. 12 at The Georgia Aquarium Atlanta Pride Festival Oct. 13-14 in Piedmont Park 2020 Leading Women’s Awards Oct. 19 at the Georgia Freight Depot www.sisterlove.org AIDS Walk Atlanta & 5K run Oct .21 in Piedmont Park www.aidswalkatlanta.com Jerusalem House presents Ghosts of Hollywood Oct. 26, 8 p.m. — 12 a.m. at Atlanta Marriott Marquis www.jerusalemhouse.org/halloween
Fun and fundraisers
Prepare for Pride
Fall is also home to the Southeast’s largest LGBT event: Atlanta Pride. This year’s festival, set for Oct. 13-14 in Piedmont Park, boasts an increased calendar of events and headlining artists Andy Bell of Erasure and Amy Ray of Indigo Girls fame. “This year we really have expanded it to include a lot of different groups and different bars so that’s really cool,” Pride Chairman Glen Paul Fredeman says. “We’ve been getting a lot of sup-
will result in a record haul. “It’s really cool to see. We always get new friends and family coming on board,” Jones says. “We’ve seen an increase in our corporate teams, and a number of our teams who have been with us for a long time really step up in their fundraising.” WSB-TV news anchor Jovita Moore will serve as master of ceremonies, but other details of the event have yet to be announced. One the key points of the AIDS Walk is that all the money is used locally. “What we want to continue to remind people is that the money raised at AIDS Walk Atlanta goes to AIDS Atlanta and the seven other AIDS service organizations,” Jones says. “If you write a check to AID Atlanta then that is going to our clients, and supports our service.” After Pride and the AIDS Walk, there will be a number of events that are either new to the calendar, or have changed their focus for 2012. The new theme for Jerusalem House’s popular Halloween party is “Ghosts of Hollywood,” coming to the Foundry at Puritan Mill on Oct. 26. For the Kid in All of Us has added a new event series “For the Foodie In All of Us,” featuring top chefs, leading up to the annual Toy Party, which is scheduled for Dec. 2, though other details have not yet been announced. The National Transgender Day of Remembrance is Nov. 20, but plans for Atlanta’s commemoration have not yet been made public. Visit www.thegavoice.com for updates on all of these events as they approach.
For the Foodie in All of Us Nov. 4 at The Cook’s Warehouse - Piedmont www.forthekid.org MEGA Family Project Family Conference Nov. 3. Location TBD, www.megafamilyproject.org Chastain Park Arts Festival Nov. 3 — 4, www.chastainparkartsfestival.com Transgender Day of Remembrance, Date TBD
World AIDS Day Dec. 1 at various locations Toy Party Dec. 2, 2012, www.forthekid.org
September 14, 2012
As LGBT leagues get underway, Atlanta’s pro teams press for playoffs
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Gay fall ball, sports seasons set to kick off
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The end of summer marks the start of the annual fall sports leagues. From softball to ﬂag football, gay and lesbian sporting leagues offer a plethora of options for those seeking competitive fun this fall. On the national stage, three of Atlanta’s professional teams look to shake the city’s reputation of being a “miserable sports town,” as stated by Forbes. The Braves, Falcons and Dream are all poised for post-season action in 2012. The gay National Flag Football League of Atlanta will kick off its fall season with a day of pre-season games Sept. 16 followed by a shorter-than-normal ﬁve-week season schedule. The Atlanta Bucks Rugby Football Club kicks off its fall season against the Nashville Grizzlies on Sept. 15. The boys in purple then have several matches against local teams, but the biggest event for the Bucks is the late-October HellFest Rugby Tournament in Dallas, Texas, on Oct. 27. Hotlanta Softball recently announced the cancellation of its Fall 2012 season due to low registration. Other leagues, like the Decatur Women’s Sports League and Southern Softpaw League, will look to ﬁll the void left by Hotlanta’s cancellation. The Decatur Women’s Sports League will play at Kelly Cofer Park on Friday evenings through Oct. 26; proceeds beneﬁt The Health Initiative. The Softpaw league beneﬁts local animal nonproﬁts and charities. Games will be played on Saturdays at the Southside Softball Complex in Atlanta beginning Sept. 15.
MORE INFO www.theGAVoice.com
National Flag Football League of Atlanta www.nfﬂa.com Atlanta Bucks Rugby www.atlantabucksrugby.org Decatur Women’s Sports League www.decaturwomensports.com Southern Softpaw League www.southernsoftpaw.com
The ladies of the Atlanta Dream hope to repeat a WNBA ﬁnals appearance this October. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)
The Atlanta Braves are in the heat of the action as the 2012 Major League Baseball season winds down. The Bravos are currently second in the National League East standings behind the Washington Nationals but are ﬁghting for one of two “wild card” spots for the upcoming post-season. The Braves missed the playoffs the last two years by the slimmest of margins, but the team hopes to make a push down the stretch that would see third baseman Chipper Jones reach the postseason in his ﬁnal season before he retires. The Atlanta Falcons hope to ﬁnally win a play-
Professional teams aim for post-season
off game in the 2012/13 National Football League season under quarterback Matt Ryan. The team has put together four consecutive winning seasons for the ﬁrst time in team history and has reached the playoffs three of the last four years. The Falcons season kicked off Sept. 9 against the Kansas City Chief, winning the game handily 40-24. The Falcons will next play host to the Denver Broncos on Monday, Sept. 17. U.S. Olympian and all-star Angel McCoughtry will look to lead the women of the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream to a third consecutive Women’s National Basketball Association Eastern Conference title later this month. The Dream reached the ﬁnals the last two seasons but were swept each time in three games. The WNBA playoffs kick off Sept. 27 with the ﬁnals culminating sometime in mid October.
Atlanta’s Black Gay Pride draws tens of thousands
IN THE LIFE ATLANTA, FIRST PURE HEAT COMMUNITY FEST OFFER ENTERTAINMENT, EVENTS FOR ALL
Organizers estimate 16,000-20,000 people attended the Traxx Girls and Vision Community Foundation’s Pure Heat Community Festival.
By Dyana Bagby email@example.com The ﬁrst Pure Heat Community Fest held during Atlanta’s Black Gay Pride in Piedmont Park was a huge success, with live entertainment and vendors, plus free HIV testing by several organizations. “People always come to the park on Sunday [during Black Gay Pride] and we saw it as an opportunity to not only provide entertainment and also HIV testing, but also expose the community to the community on many levels,” said Bishop O.C. Allen, founder and senior pastor of the Vision Church. Party promoters Traxx Girls and the non-
proﬁt organization Vision Community Foundation organized the Sept. 2 fest as a way to raise funds for the Vision Community Foundation. While afﬁliated with the Vision Church of Atlanta, the Vision Community Foundation is a separate non-proﬁt entity that works to feed the homeless, help people earn their GEDs, mentor young people and offer free HIV testing. “I can’t believe it’s happened in such a profound way,” Allen added. “We’re deﬁnitely going to do this next year.” Allen’s husband, Rashad Burgess, works for the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s HIV/AIDS Prevention Division. He said the community spirit captured in the
inaugural Pure Heat fest was due to a lot of hard work by people who want to make their community better for all. “This is the reﬂection of the hard work of so many hundreds of volunteers and staff because they really believe in empowering communities and this is just an expression of it,” Burgess said. Organizers of the fest said their security personnel estimated 16,000-20,000 people packed Piedmont Park for Pure Heat. The Atlanta Police Department, which also provided security, reported no major incidents in the park. At press time, Avian Watson, spokesperson for Traxx Girls and the Vision Community Foundation, said the fest was still in the red
— as expected for a ﬁrst-year free fest — but organizers were still waiting for money from the company hired to provide food and liquor. In the Life Atlanta celebrated its “Sweet 16” this year and the non-proﬁt organizer of Black Gay Pride has already started planning next year’s celebration. Raymond Duke, president of the ITLA board, said he estimates some 77,000 people from around the U.S. and the world come to Atlanta to celebrate Black Gay Pride. “I’m always excited ﬁrst and foremost that we pull it off,” Duke said. “This is an immense undertaking. It takes a team of people, but
‘Sweet 16’ for In the Life Atlanta
Photo by Dyana Bagby
Photo by Dyana Bagby Photo by Dyana Bagby
GA Voice/Traxx/Traxx Girls ‘Welcome to Atlanta’ party
Elite Noel at WassupnATL’s Aug. 31 party at Jungle
Photo by Brent Corcoran/RNZ Photography
Photo by Brent Corcoran/RNZ Photography
Photo by Brent Corcoran/RNZ Photography
Traxx Flashback J-Sette Competition
Pure Heat Festival
Photo by Dyana Bagby
Fantasia at WassupnATL’s Sept. 1 party at The Nest
Elle Varner at Traxx’s party at 595 North
U.S. Rep. John Lewis (right) at the Melia Hotel
GA Voice/Traxx/Traxx Girls ‘Welcome to Atlanta’ party
Photo by Dyana Bagby
Photo by Dyana Bagby
Photo by Dyana Bagby
State of Black Gay America Summit
See all the photos in our full photo albums online at www.thegavoice.com
Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Still Not Enough: Coming of Age, Coming Out, and Coming Home.” U.S. Rep. John Lewis stopped by the Melia Hotel — where ITLA was based along with Traxx Atlanta, Traxx Girls, Xtreme Entertainment and Rockstars Production — on Aug. 31 to talk with ITLA volunteers and show support for Black Gay Pride. “I had been invited, and missed the past two or three years,” Lewis said while greeting ITLA volunteers and staff. “[Labor Day weekend] is a festive weekend in Atlanta. I think members of the [black] gay community felt the need to have a weekend and chose Labor Day weekend,” he said. “And they come from all across America.”
usually it’s a small group of folks that make it happen. There’s a lot of blood, sweat and tears, and sometimes some anger and resentment, that goes into this. But my hat always is off to our volunteers... This could not happen without our wonderful volunteers,” he said. Next year, Duke said he hopes ITLA will work with the Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau to get ofﬁcial data of how many people travel to Atlanta for Black Gay Pride. Duke did not hold back his disappointment that, as a non-proﬁt and not a party promoter, he believes ITLA gets the “raw end of the stick.” “It seems like that year after year after year. We do educational programming, a health expo … culture around our ﬁlm fest, our literary cafe,” he said.
But because ITLA doesn’t offer nightlife, like the for-proﬁt clubs and promoters that bring celebrities to town for huge parties, ITLA can be overlooked by visitors and community sponsors, he said. “We stick mostly with cultural events so people can leave and know this is not just some big party. We want them to walk away with some education, culture. These are the things we try to provide,” he added. He said the State of Black Gay of America Summit on Sept. 1 was well-received as was the ITLA Candlelight Vigil. At the summit, keynote speaker Je-Shawn Wholley of the National Black Justice Coalition urged black gay people to make sure they write their own histories.
“We have to understand the difference between tokenized representation and intentional inclusion,” said Wholley, an alumnae of Atlanta’s Spelman College. “We have to determine what we want this revolution to look like for us. We can’t allow the narrative be determined for us … based on our collective truths and experiences. “We are a community made up of groups with many variances, faces … we are descendants of royalty and we hold the blueprint of this nation’s history on our backs. We want to own our collective power,” she added. National political analyst and author Keith Boykin also attended the summit and urged people to vote in the November presidential election. His new book is “For Colored Boys
Photo by Dyana Bagby
September 14, 2012
‘Comfort’ and joy
Annual transgender conference offers resources, community
By Ryan Lee For most of life, Blake Alford was enveloped by solitude. From the ostracism experienced coming of age in the 1950s and ‘60s – getting beaten up and kicked down the stairs at school for being queer – to more than 30 years on the road driving a truck, Alford was used to feeling alone. And sharing one’s own company can be particularly isolating when you are at war with yourself, when your body and your mind have dueling definitions of who you are. “Being behind the wheel of a truck, you don’t see very many libraries, you don’t hear very much about being transgender, especially back during that time, so I didn’t have any information about it,” said Alford, who, at age 56, transitioned from female-to-male almost a decade ago. During Alford’s transition, his therapist suggested he attend Southern Comfort, an annual transgender conference in Atlanta that this year takes place Sept. 18-23 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Ashford-Dunwoody Road. “The first time I walked through the door at Southern Comfort, it was honestly like I was home for the first time in my life,” Alford recalled of his first conference in 2005. “I was with family.” “I spoke with doctors and I spoke with other therapists, and you learn that you really not have been the only person on this planet that was like this,” Alford said. “It was just an eye-opener to find out that I was a real person, and that I was not some type of freak. Because I really thought I was alone out there, because I thought I was the only one that was going through this.” The transgender gathering uplifted Alford so much that by the end of his first Southern Comfort, he asked organizers if he could volunteer the next year. “I told them I wanted to make a difference, I wanted to work,” said Alford, who is the chair of this year’s Southern Comfort. “I didn’t want anybody else to go through what I did and not be able to get the knowledge.”
September 14, 2012
“There are still segments of the community that don’t have easy access to that type of information [provided in seminars], so there’s always going to be a need for that,” Anderson said. “I honestly think the education you get just by going out and being out in public, in ‘June and Ward Cleaver World’ as I call it, you get just as much and as important an education as you get from talking to a doctor. “So many of the attendees write us back and tell us what a positive effect the conference has been, just really from the ability to be out and talk with people and interact with people,” Anderson added. Southern Comfort has regularly planned outings to venues such as Agatha’s Mystery Dinner Theater and the Georgia Aquarium, but organizers have focused on bringing more entertainment opportunities to the four-day affair. This year’s list of social activities includes three nights of karaoke, a mechanical bull-riding rodeo Friday night, an appearance by transgender entertainer Buck Angel, and a Friday night concert by the rising Atlanta rock band The Sexual Side Effects, whose lead singer, Amber Taylor, is transgender. For all of the information and revelry Southern Comfort can provide, Alford regrets that there is still a Cinderella aspect to the weekend for some attendees. “It’s very upbeat and everybody has a blast, but about 11:30 or twelve o’clock [Saturday night], the tone starts to change from being constantly laughing, cutting up and carrying on, to everybody’s falling apart because they’ve got to go home and go back to the other life,” Alford said. “That part is hard, it’s very hard.”
‘Times are changing’
Top: Buck Angel will be a special guest at this year’s Southern Comfort Conference. A female-tomale transsexual, Angel makes and acts in adult films and also advocates on behalf of the transgender community, especially trans men. (Photo courtesy Buck Angel/CC 3.0) Above: Attendees at Southern Comfort enjoy a range of activities, from educational seminars to gala dinners. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)
MORE INFO www.theGAVoice.com
Southern Comfort Conference Sept. 18-23 Crowne Plaza Hotel Atlanta Perimeter at Ravinia 4355 Ashford Dunwoody Road Atlanta, GA 30346 www.sccatl.org tor for Southern Comfort. In addition to helping attendees navigate the variety of issues that transgender people encounter, the conference also offers “a communion with people who are of like mind and supportive,” Alexander said. The “social education” aspect of Southern Comfort has been Christy Anderson’s favorite part of the conference since he began attending in 2005.
Information and entertainment
Southern Comfort itself has undergone a remarkable transition since it began in 1990 as a gathering of about a half dozen friends. This
year’s conference features 96 seminars on mental health and legal resources, information on surgeries and hormones, and even fashion tips. The doctors who will offer insight at Southern Comfort come from all across the United States, as well as countries such as Belgium. “In the past, we were probably asking and encouraging some doctors to come and do whatever we could do to get them there, and now we turn half the people away,” said Shamayim Alexander, trans health coordina-
The size and make-up of Southern Comfort attendees continues to evolve, with about 1,000 people expected to attend. Most of the crowd is male-to-female transgender people, but the number of female-to-male participants numbered 160 last year, compared to the 10 or 15 who attended during Alford’s first year. Southern Comfort has also expanded its programming to included the spouses and significant others of transgender individuals, and mothers have started attending with their transgender children. “Now we’re seeing more of the younger FTMs and MTFs coming in with their parents, and I think that’s fascinating because they’ve got the support of their families,” Alford said. “They’re coming and they’re attending the seminars together and they’re working together to see that their children get what they need, and I think that it’s great. “If somebody would have suggested that would have happened a hundred years ago, I mean, we would all be hung up on trees behind the barn,” Alford said. “But times are changing and people are beginning to realize that people are people, and they deserve rights.”
September 14, 2012
Athens celebrates Pride as UGA staff demand equal benefits
University leaders to vote on domestic partner coverage
By Brian Smith Overnight temperatures in the 50s gave way to a sunny, comfortable setting for Athens’ Pride Picnic, held Sunday, Sept. 9 at Lake Herrick pavillion. The picnic has been held each year since 1998. Before 2011, Athens Pride was limited to a cookout in April. The full Athens Pride weekend in its current form took shape last year. For 2012, Athens Pride events ranged from a reception hosted by GLOBES, the University of Georgia’s LGBT faculty/staff group, to bowling, an artist showcase, nightlife parties, a church service and a commitment ceremony. One of the benefits of the Athens Pride weekend is its low cost. “Nobody had to pay more than $5 for anything,” UGA GLOBES chairperson Ricky Roberts said, calling the low cost “pretty rare” for Pride festivities. Roberts estimated that over 700 people attended Pride events this weekend. According to Rev. Dr. Renee Dubose, pastor at Our Hope Metropolitan Community Church, the worship service on Sunday morning drew 70 individuals, which she estimates to be a roughly
MORE INFO www.theGAVoice.com For full coverage and photo albums of these events, visit www.thegavoice.com
25 percent increase over last year’s service. The blessing of committed couples early Sunday afternoon drew four couples, and a reception immediately afterwards drew 15 to 20 people. Annette Hatton, who will turn 72 on Sept. 18, founded GLOBES in 1994 and continues to be active in Pride weekend. When the group first launched, meetings were held at the Tate Center in a private room with the blinds closed. People were notified of meetings and group events via distribution lists and later email. “If we didn’t have [the distribution lists or email], there was no way to have membership,” Hatton said. “There was a lot of invisibility. Meetings were kept secret so we didn’t out people.” The LGBT movement in Athens has historically seen support from local leaders. For the first GLOBES fundraising dinner, Hatton and her staff invited then-Mayor Doc Eldridge to attend. “He was a little scared,” Hatton said. Contrast that with the comment Eldridge, now Athens Area Chamber of Commerce president, made to Hatton at this year’s GLOBES event.
Athens Pride’s weekend celebration wound down with a casual picnic at Lake Herrick pavilion. (Photo by Brian Smith)
“He said Thursday how much further along he sees himself from those days,” Hatton said.
Looking to the future
One of the major local topics on picnic attendees’ minds was two upcoming votes on domestic partnership benefits for University of Georgia employees. At press time Sept. 11, the University Coun-
cil’s executive committee was expected to vote on the proposal Sept. 13, with a full vote of the council coming Sept. 27. The proposal has already been unanimously approved by the council’s Human Resources Committee. The Board of Regents sets health benefits for all state colleges and universities and refuses to pay for domestic partner health insurance coverage. But the proposal states that UGA should pay for the health coverage with other discretionary funds or revenue in order to provide equity for all employees. If approved, benefits would take effect on Jan. 1, 2014. “It is important for recruiting the right people,” Johns said. “The university is losing out on qualified, smart individuals” by not having domestic partnership benefits. Hatton agrees, noting that other state universities already offer at least voluntary benefits like dental coverage, vision coverage, and life insurance. “Georgia Tech and Georgia State have that,” she said. “Without people like us pushing, the university will not do anything.” Another issue Roberts hopes to pursue going forward is an LGBT community center for the Athens. “It’s important to me because we need it,” Roberts said. “That’s going to be one of my number one initiatives.”
Rain doesn’t dampen Savannah Pride’s spirit
Mayor Edna Jackson among attendees for record festival
By Chris Seely Heavy rain showers did not deter revelers from turning out in record numbers at Forsyth Park for Savannah’s Pride celebration Sept.8. “The rain began, and people were undeterred, they relished in it, had fun, danced, and overall it made for an even more dynamic and exciting Pride festival than I could have ever imagined,” said Savannah Pride President Chris Brown. “The crowds stayed, through the rain, watched the rainbow that rain brought, and stuck around through the end of the night.” Early estimates based on ticket sales show that roughly 10,000 people attended this year’s Savannah Pride celebration, which is more than double last year, said Brown, who added that the record numbers were a “testament to the amount of community support we’ve received not only from the LGBT community here, but from the entire Savannah community as a whole.” Mayor Edna Jackson kicked off the event, which ran from noon until 10 p.m., with intermittent rain starting around 3 p.m. In her remarks, the mayor invited everyone visiting from smaller surrounding towns to move to Savannah. “Savannah is very diverse and it is about working together to make Savannah a place of choice,” Jackson said. “We know how to treat people in this city.” Pop/R&B singer-songwriter JoJo headlined despite the soggy conditions. “She has an incredible spirit, and an unbelievable voice, but more importantly she felt strongly about our cause and the importance of community tolerance, acceptance and understanding,” Brown said. In addition to JoJo, entertainers included She & She, Dylan, The Cusses, and Christina Foxx. In addition to Mayor Jackson, several local elected officials attended, including Alderman John Hall, Alderman Mary Osborne, Alderman Carol Bell, and School Board Member Carol Hall. of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” “We wanted to honor the service and sacrifice of our LGBT brothers and sisters who are serving, or have served, in the military,” said Robert Lewis, president of the Stonewall Bar Association. “We know challenges still remain for them, and wanted to both celebrate with them and assure them that we remain engaged with them.” Stonewall Bar Association partnered with OutServe Georgia, a chapter of OutServe, an association of actively-serving LGBT military personnel. OutServe has more than 50 chapters worldwide and more than 5,000 members. The federal Defense of Marriage Act prevents partners of military personnel from receiving the same benefits as opposite-sex military spouses, said Boyd Williamson, who spoke on the stage for OutServe Georgia. For instance, a military man married to a woman would receive a $1,116 monthly stipend to live with his wife off base, Williamson said. But an actively serving gay man would not receive the stipend to live with his partner, he said. “Because of DOMA, he gets zero and a barracks room he’s ordered to stay in.” Marsha Ipsen represented First City Network on stage as a board member. FCN is proud to say
Savannah Pride drew approximately 10,000 attendees Sept. 8, undeterred by soggy weather. (Photo by Chris Seely)
Military milestone celebrated
Representatives of the Stonewall Bar Association, a network of LGBT attorneys in Georgia, traveled to Savannah Pride for the first time and hosted an event celebrating the imminent one-year anniversary of the repeal
it is the oldest LGBT organization in Georgia. For Ipsen, Savannah Pride was a day to celebrate the city’s open-armed inclusiveness. Ipsen, a transgender woman, transitioned in Savannah. “There’s very little isolation here,” Ipsen said. “It’s a dream come true. This community has welcomed me and other transgender individuals with open arms.” For 19-year old Brady Burhalter, his first time at Pride exceeded his expectations. “It’s better than Lucky Charms,” he said.
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Atlanta’s own Bria and Chrissy, Bria Kam and Chrissy Chambers, are finding fame on YouTube with their spoofs of anti-gay causes and conservative politicians. (Courtesy photo; YouTube screen capture)
Atlanta lesbian duo Bria and Chrissy are quickly making quite a name for themselves. First, it was their popular tongue-in-cheek YouTube videos poking fun at Chick-Fil-A and satirizing Mitt and Ann Romney. Then, they made a big splash at the Democratic National Convention where they landed on page 2 of the Washington Post, kissing each other while counter-protesting anti-gay demonstrators. They were also interviewed by Comedy Central for “The Daily show with Jon Stewart.” Their wildly popular videos have garnered over 135,000 views in three months. We sat down with Bria Kam, 25, and Chrissy Chambers, 21, to talk about their newfound success. So who is this lesbian power couple? “We are Bria and Chrissy and we are a lesbian duo act promoting equality through spoof videos,” Kam says. Being direct is something that comes easily for the girls, but being gay is fairly new for Chambers. The girls met 10 months ago after Chamers decided that she wanted to be with a woman. “I had never dated a woman before,” Chambers says. “I’d been watching all of these lesbian films including ‘Loving Annabelle’ and decided that I wanted to fall in love with a woman. I went to Mary’s to find her thinking that she would just be there waiting for me. She wasn’t so I left. “I walked out onto the street, saw a crowd
Bria and Chrissy
Lesbian duo finds fast fame with satirical songs
by Shannon Hames
of people and Bria was in the middle of them. She walked right up to me and said, ‘Hi. I’m Bria. You’re really beautiful’ and we just hit it off right then,” she says. Chambers is a transplant from Mississippi who came here to pursue an acting career. She explains, “Atlanta is a much safer place to start than Los Angeles. There’s plenty of work here – a great place to get small parts and guest appearances. If I move to New York or L.A., I’ll have more credentials and it will be easier for me to get work since I’ve already been working.” Adds Kam excitedly, “She just finished shooting a movie called ‘Plus One.’ It’ll be released next summer.” Chambers notes that she grew up in Clinton, Miss. — “the heart of the Bible belt.” “I’ve had people from back home refuse to speak to me except to tell me that they’re praying for my soul. It’s different here,” she says. Kam, an Atlanta native, had a more accepting experience. “I came out when I was 16. I’ve lived here my entire life. I had a liberal upbringBria and Chrissy www.youtube.com/user/BriaAndChrissy ing — almost to the point that I had no idea that people weren’t open minded. When we put these videos out, some people starting leaving hateful comments about them. I was shocked. I knew it was out there in the world but I never really had to face it,” she says. They seem to keep full schedules. “Things are starting to snowball. We’ve been doing radio shows, phone and television interviews. We’ve had agent-type companies who have contacted us to represent us. We also have someone at the Huffington Post doing a story about us. He invited us to the Democratic Convention,” Chambers says. Did they go? “We went! We went to a gay party and did a lot of networking,” Kam says. “We attended the parade dressed as Mitt and Ann Romney. We made T-shirts and cards with our YouTube channel printed on them. It was so fun!” But is it a career path? “In the last couple of weeks, we realized
Love + politics + YouTube =
MORE INFO www.theGAVoice.com
that we can make money doing it,” she says. Chambers quickly notes, “Doing these videos has been an excellent coming together of our respective talents: me with the acting and Bria with the music. We think we will continue to progress. We have no intensions of stopping. We are reaching so many people and it’s a great creative outlet.” One aspect that the couple seems particularly keen on is the way that fans have been reaching out to them. “Bria got an e-mail that made her cry for three days,” Chambers says. “Yes,” Kam agrees. “It was so moving! This woman ran an organization for gay teens and she is working with a young girl who is a singer/songwriter and came from a very closeminded family. She wants to use our videos to give that girl hope that she can be successful and make a difference. We are thrilled.” All of the success and fame can take a toll on a relationship but these girls think it has only helped. “It’s strengthening us that we know we are making a different together. We are fulfilled,” Chambers says. The fans can tell. One of the fan favorites of the videos is their trademark kiss in each one. “People like the kiss. It’s cute that people look for it,” Chambers says. “When we don’t kiss each other, people complain.”
September 14, 2012
#9: Does Robert lack a husband because he hates himself?
At least there is always food to love
Robert sank into his usual chair at his therapist’s office. He started seeing Dr. Wilson a decade ago, soon after ending a two-year relationship. While Dr. Wilson poured himself a cup of coffee, Robert’s gaze fell on one of the framed bromides that decorated the walls: “To love another or to be loved by another, you must first love yourself.” “I really hate that saying,” he blurted. “I’ve hated it for 10 years.” Dr. Wilson smiled, looking over his reading glasses. “Can you say more about that?” he asked, somewhat sarcastically. After 10 years, Robert was quite “therapized” and the two of them often joked about the language of therapy. “It’s just empty,” Robert said. “How do you learn to love yourself? You learn to love yourself by discovering you’re lovable. How do you learn that? You learn it by engaging with others.” “I wouldn’t dispute that,” Dr. Wilson responded. “Is this something that’s up for you right now?” Robert felt annoyed. Undoubtedly his eye had indeed been drawn to the saying because of his romantic frustration. The hours before he turned 50 were ticking away and his effort to find a husband before then had so far produced dates with a relentlessly sarcastic Emory professor and a Log Cabin Republican. “Does going out with a Log Cabin Republican mean I hate myself?” Robert asked. Dr. Wilson, who was also a longtime gay activist, laughed. “I take it the food porn club has not turned up a husband yet,” he said. “But are you having fun?” Robert balked. “I guess,” he said. “You know,” Dr. Wilson said, “you have been complaining about dating and relationships since the first day you came in here 10 years ago. Week after week, you tell me about men you meet but how nobody is good enough.” Robert felt a bolt of anger zap through him. Dr. Wilson was known for being confrontational at times. It was something Robert appreciated and despised about him. “So,” the doctor went on, “what do all of these men who never turn into partners have in common?” Robert took a deep breath and began his litany of their superficiality, their poor self-esteem, their financial irresponsibility, their unkempt appearance, their political apathy, their rabid consumerism, their sexual incompatibility, their taste for McDonald’s French fries…. Dr. Wilson interrupted. “Now, they don’t all have all those characteristics. But there is one totally common element here. “ Then he fell silent.
Photo via Facebook
368 Fifth St., Atlanta, GA 30308 404-872-0846, www.cruzadorestaurant.com More detailed Facebook page: www.facebook.com/CruzadoATL Good choices: Besides the masitas de puerco, I love the fried chicken here. It’s not what you’re thinking. A classic medianoche, a Cuban sandwich, makes a good lunch. The restaurant serves brunch on Sunday. Experiment. weight, I hated women in low-rise jeans because I looked pregnant with triplets in them.” They laughed. It was lunchtime and the restaurant began to fill with residents and workers. A few baby strollers held infants who were adorable until they shrieked. A younger man, waiting on a takeout order, gave Robert an intense, up-and-down look. “He’s checking you out,” Janet whispered. The man actually planted a business card in front of Robert. “Call me maybe,” he said, laughing, and left. “Ooooh,” Janet gushed. “Young, hot and assertive. Black hair and blue eyes, a body to die for.” Robert shifted in his seat anxiously. “Did you see that tie?” he said, rolling his eyes. “And I don’t want to be called Daddy. And look at his card. He works in a bank, the people who have ruined our economy…” Janet interrupted. “I think your shrink may have a point. You’re freakin’ intimidated. You hate turning 50 and this beautiful guy found you attractive. You know zero about him but you’re already finding everything wrong with him. What’s the right word here? Superficial.” Robert dug into his longtime favorite dish, masitas de puerco – chunks of juicy, crispy pork much like Mexico’s carnitas. He ate them with black beans and rice, and a side of fried yucca. “I think our next Food Porn Supper Club meeting will be here,” he said, ignoring Janet. “Food, there’s always food to love,” Janet said, exasperated.
Food Porn is a fictional series by longtime Atlanta food critic Cliff Bostock. Set in real Atlanta restaurants, it chronicles the adventures of Robert, a gay man in search of a husband — or at least a good meal. Read the whole series at www.thegavoioice.com.
Robert looked around the room for another saying to change the subject, but Dr. Wilson continued. “ You are the common element here,” he said. “With few exceptions, it is you making immediate judgments about every man you come across.” Robert groaned. At such moments he hated to admit that he was so blind to the self-evident, but that’s why he was there. “We’re out of time,” Dr. Wilson announced. A few minutes later, Robert was burying his anxiety in comfort food at Cruzado, with his friend Janet. The new restaurant recently took over the location occupied by Las Palmeras for 20 years. It was widely regarded as the best Cuban restaurant in the city, despite its location on Fifth Street in a residential section. The new owner, Grace Lee, preserved much of the original menu, but, with the help of consulting chef Patric Bell, has expanded it to include food from other Latin American cultures. “Apparently I have low self-esteem that keeps me from getting involved at depth with other men,” Robert said to Janet. “I can’t love another until I love myself. I hate men in flip flops because I don’t love my ingrown toenails.” “That’s kind of a pop psychology cliché, isn’t it?” Janet responded. “But it does have a certain amount of truth to it. Before I lost
September 14, 2012
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ADD YOUR EVENT
There are two ways to add your events to our online and print calendars. Submit your info to www.theGAVoice.com or e-mail details to editor@theGAVoice.com.
Friday, Sept. 14
Saturday, Sept. 15
Saturday, Sept. 15
After a season of raising money for AID Atlanta, the Atlanta Cotillion XI takes over the Foundry at Puritan Mill with its annual drag ball to crown this year’s highest fundraiser. This year’s theme? “Le Bal en Robe Rouge.” Special guests include host Randy Roberts and the legendary Varla Jean Merman. 7 - 11 p.m. at the Foundry at Puritan Mill, 916 Joseph E. Lowery Blvd., Atlanta, GA 30318, www.atlantacotillion.org
Join the social networking ladies of Fourth Tuesday for their monthly lesbian happy hour, every second Friday. 6 - 9 p.m. at Mixx, 1492 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta, GA 30324, www.theheathinitiative.org, http://bit.ly/N4t58F The Indigo Girls play a sold-out show to wrap up this year’s Atlanta Botanical Garden’s Concerts in the Garden series. 8 p.m. at the Atlanta Botanical Garden, 1345 Piedmont Ave. NE, Atlanta, GA 30309, www.atlantabotanicalgarden.org Friday nights mean fall softball for the Decatur Women’s League, with play at Kelly Cofer Park in Tucker. www.decaturwomensports.com The Atlanta Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce hosts its annual Awards Dinner with recognition given to gay Business Man and Business Woman of the Year, Corporate Ally, Guardian Angel and Member of the Year. Black tie optional. Cocktails at 7 p.m., awards at 8 p.m. at the W Midtown, 188 14th St., Atlanta, GA 30361, www.atlantagaychamber.org Kai Lin Art presents Autumnal, a new exhibit featuring artists Carl A. Linstrum, Wallace DuVall, Dale Clifford, Tom Francis and Greg Noblin. 7-10 p.m. at 3096 Roswell Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30305, www.kailinart.com Gay actors are among the cast of “1776,” a musical take on the creation of the Declaration of Independence. Opens tonight and runs through Oct. 7 at Dorsey Studio Theatre, 3593 Clairmont Road, Atlanta, GA 30319. www.1776themusicalatlanta.com Special guest Lauren LaMasters joins the cast of Optical Delusion for a show of movie numbers, plus DJ Cody Nation spins dance music. 10 p.m. at Asylum, 543 Flat Shoals Ave., Atlanta, GA 30316, www.asylumatl.com
Photo via bravotv.com
It’s Pride Night at BJ Roosters, with volunteers on hand to sell Jell-o shots to raise funds for Atlanta’s largest LGBT event. 10 p.m. at BJ Roosters, 2345 Cheshire Bridge Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.atlantapride.org
MORE LGBT EVENTS: Visit our website for our extensive daily calendar, including nightlife schedules, sports, worship services and community organization meetings. www.thegavoice.com/calendar
Relive the days of your youth with sack races, egg tosses and other events at Atlanta Field Day to beneﬁt Jerusalem House and Camp Twin Lakes. 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. at West Minster Presbyterian Church PCA, 1438 Sheridan Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.atlantaﬁeldday.org
Friday Sept. 14 - Sunday, Sept. 16
Sunday, Sept. 16
Get a hands-on cooking demonstration with Janine Falvo of “Top Chef,” executive chef of Atlanta’s Briza restaurant. Part of the “For the Foodie in All of Us” series, the event beneﬁts For the Kid in All of Us. Tickets are $50. 2 p.m. at the Cook’s Warehouse- Decatur, 180 West Ponce De Leon Ave., Decatur, GA 30030. www.forthekid.org
The IGNITE 2012 Queer and Trans Youth Convening provides dialogue, political education, skill shares, networking and more to LGBTQ youth of color at this three-day conference at the Georgia State Student Center. Lambda Legal also joins in with its second annual “South Star: Safe Schools Convening of the South.” http://ignite.sparkrj.org
The Southern Softpaw Softball League kicks off its fall season at 10 a.m. at Southside Softball Complex on Jonesboro Road in Atlanta. The league is open to all skill levels and raises funds to support animal charities. www.southernsoftpaw.com South Georgia Pride brings performances from Spikey Van Dykey, Julie Schurr and others, along with food, games and pet show to Valdosta. 12 - 6 p.m. at John W. Saunders Park. www.southgapride.org A new “coming out” support group for LGBT adults starts today and meets on Saturdays through Nov. 17; 4 p.m. at First MCC Community Center, 1379 Tullie Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30329. www.ﬁrstmcc.com
Saturday, Sept. 15
The MEGA Family Project hosts a Baby/Toddler Meet Up Group for dues-paying members in Roswell. Learn more at www.megafamily.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo by Dyana Bagby
The annual East Atlanta Strut means a kooky-good parade followed by revelry in the streets of Atlanta hippest neighborhood. Stop by Mary’s, the local gay bar, for an Atlanta Talons (Hotlanta Softball) fundraiser and beats by DJ Joey. The infamous Mary-oke takes partygoers into the night. Parade at 2 p.m., party afterwards at Mary’s, 1287 Glenwood Ave., Atlanta, GA 30316, http://on.fb.me/OhRK76, http://on.fb.me/HTQVSN
Photo by Dyana Bagby
September 14, 2012
SAGE Atlanta hosts a potluck social for lesbians ages 50 and older. Bring a dish to share, plus your own plate, utensils and beverage. 6 p.m. at the Philip Rush Center, 1530 Dekalb Ave., Atlanta, GA 30307, www.sageatl.org Lesbian-inclusive “alterna-grass” band Roxie Watson plays a show at Decatur’s famed acoustic hotspot. 9:30 p.m. at Eddie’s Attic, 515-B McDonough Road, Decatur, GA 30030, www.eddiesattic.com Celebrate the one year anniversary of 3-Legged Cowboy nights at the Heretic with a night of country music and dancing. 9 p.m. - 3 a.m. at the Heretic, 2069 Cheshire Bridge Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.hereticatlanta.com The party peeps at Bedlam get down at “Hawt Mess,” another “Messy. Trashy. Disaster. Perfect. Chic. Couture” event. 9 p.m. at Asylum, 543 Flat Shoals Ave., Atlanta, GA 30316 Scream Club is a DJ set. Nicky Click is a live show of “stoping, latex and garter belts.” Kin 4 Life will blow your lady socks off. All in one night at Atlanta’s only lesbian bar. 10 p.m. at My Sister’s Room, 1271 Glenwood Ave., Atlanta, GA 30316, mysistersroom.com Re-live the glory days of gay Atlanta’s nightlife with the Backstreet Reunion featuring DJ Rob Reum, DJ Bill Berdeaux, and Charlie Brown’s Cabaret; this is also a Stride into Pride event. Show begins at 9 p.m. at Jungle, 2115 Faulkner Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.jungleclubatlanta.com Go “Man 2 Man” every Saturday night at XS Ultra Lounge, 708 Spring Street Atlanta, GA 30308, www.xcessultralounge.com
Wednesday, Sept. 19
“Waiting for the Stork” is a group discussion of information, ideas and support to those going through IVF, adoption, surrogacy or donor insemination. This event is for members only. 7 - 8:30 p.m. Learn more and join: www.megafamilyproject.org Every third Wednesday, Lost-n-Found Youth hosts the Big Gay Game Show, a fundraiser for their mission to help Atlanta’s LGBT homeless youth. Games include Family Feud, the Newlywed Game, Match Game and more. Stick around for “Dragniﬁcent” at no extra charge. 7:30 - 10 p.m. at Jungle, 2115 Faulkner Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.lost-n-found.org
Photo via Facebook
“Creating Transgender Inclusion in the Workplace” is an educational seminar presented by Turner and Out & Equal for all HR, diversity and inclusion, employee resource leaders and interested parties to learn about work place issues that surround trans employees. Free CNN tours will be available after the free seminar. Registration is required. 8:30 a.m. - 12 p.m. at CNN Center, 190 Marietta Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30303, http://bit.ly/inclusionworkshop
Friday, Sept. 21
Hosted by Jungle, the I Am Divine Foundation (named for John Waters’s legendary muse) and fasionado.net to beneﬁt Pets Are Loving support, the Divine Rules Pageant is hosted by drag legend Sherry Vine with judges Fred Schneider of the B52’s, Nicole Paige Brooks and Michelle Visage from RuPaul’s Drag Race. 10 p.m. at Jungle, 2115 Faulkner Road, Atlanta, GA 30334, www.palsatlanta.org
See a live taping of NPR’s famed “Wait wait… Don’t Tell Me!” 7:30 p.m. at the Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree Street, Atlanta, GA 30308, www.foxtheatre.org Tonight’s Cliterati Open No-Mic features hosts Karen G. and Theresa Davis with special guest Carrie Ludzinski. 7:30 - 9 p.m. at Charis Books and More, 1189 Euclid Ave., Atlanta, GA 30307, www.charisbooksandmore.com It’s the !Glitz! Paris is Burning edition with Ellisorous Rex at your fave gay dive bar, Mary’s, 1287 Glenwood Ave., Atlanta, GA 30316, www.marysatlanta.com
Saturday Sept. 15 Sunday, Sept. 16
Monday, Sept. 17
Photo by Dyana Bagby
Tonight begins competition in Jungle’s “Dragnique” re-boot “Dragniﬁcent.” There’s $1,000 up for grabs at the end of the seven week amateur competition. The new show is presented by the Fantasy Girls team, Phoenix producing and Nicole Paige Brooks on the mic. First night judges include Phoenix, Edie Cheezburger and special guest Nina Flowers. Tonight’s tips beneﬁt Lost-n-Found Youth. 10 p.m. at Jungle, 2115 Faulkner Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.jungleclubatlanta.com
Wednesday Sept. 19
Thursday, Sept. 20
The Atlanta Executive Network for LGBT professionals hosts its monthly networking event with featured speaker Leslie Williamson, “a specialist in leadership, communication, team-building, career development” and more. $20 Guests, free for members. 6 - 8 p.m. at Hudson Grille Midtown, 642 Peachtree Street, Atlanta, GA 30309, www.aen.org
Sunday, Sept. 23
The LGBT-centered Health Initiative hosts their annual Fall Garden Party fundraiser. The organization will honor the Atlanta Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence with the Healing Angel Award. New to this year’s line-up, a premium Host Committee ticket gains entry to a VIP reception an hour before the main event. VIP 3 - 4 p.m., general admission 4 - 8 p.m. at Einstein’s, 1077 Juniper St., Atlanta, GA 30309, www.thehealthinitiative.org
Photo by Eye Photography
The Festival on Ponce, part of the gay-owned and operated Foundation for Public Spaces festivals, offers local arts and crafts at Olmsted Linear Park. Saturday, 10 a.m. - 7 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. at Olmstead Linear Park near the intersection of Ponce De Leon and Moreland Ave., Atlanta, GA. www.festivalonponce.com
“T&F Transitionz: a Project of the Feminist Outlawz” is an open forum to discuss gender and facilitating dialogue and activism around social issues led by social justice minded feminists Buttonz and SJ. 7 - 9:30 p.m. at Charis Books & More, 1189 Euclid Ave NE, Atlanta, GA, 30307, www.charisbooksandmore.com Join the Obama Victory Fund 2012 and the LGBT Leadership Council for a fundraiser to re-elect Barack Obama, hosted by Jeff Cleghorn at the home of Dr. Craig Fisk, DDS. 7 p.m. Tickets start at $100. For more details: http://on.fb.me/Op90tX
Friday, Sept. 21
Sunday, Sept. 16
PFLAG Atlanta hosts its monthly Third Sunday meeting at 2:45 p.m. at First MCC, 1379 Tullie Rd. Atlanta, GA 30329. Also, check the PFLAG Atlanta website for upcoming meetings this month in Macon, Johns Creek, Athens, Peachtree City and Marietta. www.pﬂagatl.org The annual Dixie Invitational Bowling Tournament isn’t until Easter weekend, but the Miss Dixie signup event includes a beer bust with all-you-can-eat nachos, hot dogs and pizza for $10. 4:30-7:30 p.m. at the Hideaway, 1544 Piedmont Ave. Suite 124, Atlanta, GA 30324. www.atlantahideaway.com Queer-loving comedian Margaret Cho brings her “Mother” comedy tour to Atlanta. 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. at The Punchline, 280 Hilderbrand Drive Atlanta, GA 30328, www.punchline.com
SAGE Atlanta, for LGBT elders, hosts chair yoga every Friday at 10:30 a.m. at the Philip Rush Center, 1530 Dekalb Ave., Atlanta, GA 30307, www.sageatl.org The Third Friday Film Series presents “Tree of Life.” $1-$10 sliding scale donations. Doors at 7 p.m., movie at 7:30 p.m. at First Existentialist Congregation of Atlanta, 470 Candler Park Dr., NE, Atlanta, GA 30307, http://on.fb.me/Il753W
Tuesday, Sept. 18
Turner and Out & Equal present “No Dumb Questions,” a documentary about three sisters struggling to understand why their Uncle Bill is becoming a woman. Beer/wine and heave hors d’oeuvres will be served. There is no cost to attend. 5 - 6 p.m. registration and networking, 6 - 7:30 p.m. ﬁlm screening and discussion at Turner Entertainment Network, 1050 Techwood Drive NW, Atlanta, GA 30318, http://bit.ly/nodumbquestionspanel On Tuesdays, the new NBC gay-themed sitcom “The New Normal” screens at 9:30 p.m. at Amsterdam Atlanta, 502-A Amsterdam Ave., Atlanta, GA 30306, www.amsterdamatlanta.com
Saturday, Sept. 22
ZAMI NOBLA, the National Organization of Black Lesbians on Aging, hosts a free one-day conference to discuss breast health, education, self-exams and strategies for mental-well being for black lesbians 35 and older. Space is limited, pre-registration is required. 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. at the Marriott Courtyard Decatur, 130 Clairemont Ave., Decatur, GA 30030, www.zami.org
Tuesday, Sept. 25
Jennifer Knapp made headlines when she came out as a lesbian after success in the Christian music scene; she now brings her folk tunes to Eddie’s Attic, 515-B McDonough Road, Decatur, GA 30030, www.eddiesattic.com
CONTINUED ON PAGE 37
September 14, 2012
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 35 Join old friends at the 2012 Sports Page Reunion, where regulars at the old bar meet to remember the glory days of Atlanta’s old gay sports bar. 1 - 8 p.m. at the Heretic, 2069 Cheshire Bridge Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.hereticatlanta.com Celebrate the ﬁrst anniversary of the repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” with a fundraiser for the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network presented by the Law Firm of Kitchens New Cleghorn and sponsored by the Law Firm of Koehler and Riddick. Suggested donation $100, $150/couple. 6:30 - 9:30 p.m. at the home of Jeff Cleghorn, Esq. For more information: http://on.fb.me/ReCDec DJ Alyson Calagna spins to end the evening at Jungle, 2115 Faulkner Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.jungleclubatlanta.com
September 14, 2012
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. 29 Saturday, Septeling
The beefy men of the trav nta for Bearracuda party stop in Atla p at the Heretic. DJ Hiﬁ another rom 9 p.m. Sean makes his Atlanta debut. 9 Cheshire - 3 a.m. at the Heretic, 206 Bridge Road, Atlanta, GA 30324, www.bearracuda.com
Friday, Sept. 28
Hey, man, Atlanta Pride volunteers will be there to collect your groovy donations at ‘70s & ‘80s night at the Atlanta Eagle, 306 Ponce de Leon Ave., Atlanta, GA 30308, www.atlantaeagle.com
Sunday, Sept. 23
Join the Armorettes for Red Ribbon Day: A Festival of Giving, as the camp drag charity troupe pushes to hit the $2 million fundraising mark. Includes midway games, a dunk tank, a cake walk, and more. 2 p.m. – 11 p.m. at Burkhart’s, 1492 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta, GA 30309, www.burkharts.com Lambda Legal hosts their annual cocktail reception fundraiser. Hosted at the home of supporter Harry Harkins, celebrate the gay legal group’s achievements and discuss the challenges faced in Georgia and across the country. $40 ticket, $500+ sponsors. 4 - 6 p.m. at a private residents. Contact Lambda Legal’s Mitch Mathias for more information: 212-809-8585, ext. 288, email@example.com or visit www.lamdalegal.org/atlanta
Saturday, Sept. 30
The ﬁrst annual Ansley Fall Festival includes food, shopping, entertainment, local artists, an antique car show, and more. 1-7 p.m. www.ansleyatlanta.com
Tuesday, Oct. 4
Starting tonight, Blake’s hosts speed dating from 8-10 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of the month. Blake’s on the Park, 227 10th St., Atlanta, GA 30309. www.blakesontheparkatlanta.com
Tuesday, Sept. 25
Join GA Voice and Equally Wed Magazine as we celebrate our new publication, Atlanta Gay Weddings. Admission, cocktails and hors d’oeuvres are complimentary, so come learn about this groundbreaking annual gay wedding/reception/honeymoon guide. 6 - 10 p.m. at Opera, 1150 Crescent Ave., Atlanta, GA 30309, http://on.fb.me/O2p0zY
Thursday, Sept. 27
Tuesday, Sept. 25 Sunday, Sept. 30
Apres Diem “Feeds the Soul” by donating 20 percent of tonight’s recepits to A.R.C.A., the AIDS Research Consortium of Atlanta. Apres Diem, 931 Monroe Drive, Atlanta, GA 30308, www.apresdiem.com Fort Worth City Councilmember Joel Burns, who drew national media attention when his story of surviving bullying went viral, comes to Atlanta to support “Breaking Through,” a documentary about openly LGBT elected ofﬁcials by local ﬁlmmaker Cindy Abel. Tonight’s event is set for 6:30-8:30 p.m. at a private home in Midtown. The suggested minimum donation is $100. There is also a private dinner with Burns set for the night before. For locations and other details on the events, email firstname.lastname@example.org Tonight is the start of the new 18-and-up College Night at My Sister’s Room, 1271 Glenwood Ave., Atlanta, GA 30316, www.mysistersroom.com
Maybe you saw the Oscar-winning ﬁlm, or you’re familiar with the ingenious puppetry behind the live show. “War Horse” is the imaginative drama that brings viewers on an “emotional journey that charges through the battle ﬁelds of history.” Most shows at 8 p.m. with matinees on the weekend at the Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree Street, Atlanta, GA 30308, www.foxtheatre.org
Wednesday, Sept. 26
Charlie Brown hosts “Drag Idol 5” every Wednesday at 10 p.m. at LeBuzz, 585 Franklin Road, Marietta, GA 30367, http://on.fb.me/MYbqiy
September 14, 2012
Reframing the gay rights debate for straight voters
Love (not sex) at the DNC
Melissa Carter is also a writer for Hufﬁngton Post. She broke ground as the ﬁrst out lesbian radio personality on a major station in Atlanta and was one of the few out morning show personalities in the country. Follow her on Twitter @MelissaCarter
BREAK OF REALITY
Friday, September 21
“Plays with genuine technique but rocks out like it means it.” –Time Out New York
ThE dAILY shOw LIvE
Friday, September 28
IndEcIsIOn TOuR 2012:
“The coolest pit stop on television.”
Friday, October 5
“An innovator and prodigious talent of such magnitude that cannot be fully understood until you see her perform live.” –All About Jazz.com
Call today for tickets!
My friend had the opportunity to attend the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte earlier this month, and I asked her to be my guest columnist and give some insight into what impacted her about the trip. These are her words: What has the Democratic Party done for us that we have never been able to do for ourselves? During the three days of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, nearly every major speech openly celebrated love, no matter whether that love comes in the form of two guys, two girls or a guy and a girl. One after another, speakers walked up to the podium and found a way to remind gay voters that they are loved, accepted and needed by the Democratic Party. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel described President Obama as someone who “believes that who you love should not keep you from serving the country you love.” Rep. Jared Polis of Colorado, who is openly gay, noted that in America “no person is prevented from serving the country they love because of who they love.” Rep. Gwen Moore of Wisconsin said Obama was focused on protecting all of us, “whether you were born on a reservation or in another country and whether you love a man or a woman.” All of this acknowledgement and celebration came without a politician mentioning sex or even the word “gay.” During Obama’s ﬁrst term, the Democratic Party has done something for us that we could never do for ourselves. Speciﬁcally, they learned how to tell our stories to straight people in a way that makes straight people care. Democratic leaders know that issues of “sexual freedom” and freedom from discrimination based on who you have sex with will never gain widespread support from the straight community. So instead, Democrats have changed the con-
versation for us. By presenting gay issues as issues of love rather than sex, they have changed the imagery. By showing our lives as lives with families instead of simply small pockets of “communities,” they have made us relatable. Small town America can fairly easily understand and digest the innate human right of two people to love each other. But small town America has never been able to rally behind two people’s innate human right to have sex together. Do both rights exist? Of course. But only the right to love is marketable to the masses. Through the years, social conservatives were happy for every gay issue to repeatedly mention sex. By keeping the focus of our relationships on sex, the straight community would never become a sympathetic ear. But now that we are talking about love, that conversation is garnering a different response from the straight community. Told from the mouths of Democratic politicians, our causes champion the right to hold the hand of a dying partner in a hospital or the right to outwardly embrace your partner when you return from deployment without fear. So, these days, the imagery has started changing and when the imagery changes, the opinions change. The highlight of the Democratic Convention for many was Zach Wahls, who told the world he was a sixth generation Iowan, an Eagle Scout and the proud son of two moms. He reminded the audience of all the ways his family was just like everyone else. But more than what he said, Zach showed the world a different image of our challenges and struggles. He showed the world an image of a loving son who is proud of his family but has to ﬁght the ignorance and prejudices of those who would diminish his family’s relationship. Standing at the podium, Zach was the embodiment of the kind of son that only love can make. And how can anyone not love that?
September 14, 2012
Choice of reason
Hi. I’m another white guy who thinks he has the right to talk about lady parts.
The ofﬁce park where I spend my days is across the street from the Feminist Women’s Health Clinic, or as the protestors standing in our parking lot call it, “Abortionland.” They’re usually there on Wednesdays and Fridays, so if you’re planning on getting a pap smear or somethin’ over there, you might want to schedule around those days. The loudest is a woman caring a sign which reads, “I REGRET MY ABORTION.” I call her “Irma” for short. I have learned so much about Irma’s personal narrative on walks to and from my car. Let me assure you: She really, really regrets her abortion. She thinks about it every day of her life. The child she did not have would be 37 by now. Mathematically, that means she has been screaming about her regret since Gerald Ford was in the Oval Ofﬁce. I am reminded of Christina Crawford, the adopted daughter of Joan Crawford. She’s in her seventies now, on tour with her one-woman show, “Surviving Mommie Dearest: From Tears to Triumph.” Someone should really teach Ms. Crawford the meaning of the word “triumph.” Spending 70 years working out your maternal issues, especially when your mother has been dead for nearly half of those years, is not a “triumph.” It is pathetic and sad. Which brings us back to Irma. Irma is ﬁlled with regret because, as she screeches to anyone within earshot, she was not able to conceive again after her abortion. Irma had a choice, and with the beneﬁt of hindsight she now wishes she had made a different choice. Her solution is to take that choice away from others. By Irma’s logic, anyone who ever got sick from too many shots of tequila should have alcohol banned, in order to protect others from the bitter regret of a Jose Cuervo hangover. I’m sure Irma would say she is attempting to spare other women the pain she has experienced. I do not believe this is the case. I think Irma’s most fervent desire is for everyone around her to feel as bad as she does.
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Topher Payne is an Atlanta-based playwright, and the author of the book “Necessary Luxuries: Notes on a Semi-Fabulous Life.” Find out more at topherpayne.com
I do not have the reproductive organs required for an unplanned pregnancy, but that certainly doesn’t stop other unqualiﬁed white men from weighing in on the matter, so what the heck, I’ll give it a go. Let’s clarify the terminology. The opposite of Pro-Choice is not Pro-Life. Everyone is ProLife. No sane individual celebrates the need to terminate a pregnancy, or the process of doing so. My nephews were unplanned pregnancies who were given up for adoption, and what made that experience so remarkable was seeing that it was the birth mother’s choice. There was no law forcing her to have a baby. She was mentally and emotionally prepared to give that amazing gift to a waiting family. I believe that a woman facing an unplanned pregnancy should have every option made available, and then she will make a private, personal choice. People who oppose that scenario are not Pro-Life, they’re Anti-Choice. Anti-Choice activists, like those who oppose marriage equality, think that by making their personal value system the law of the land, people will give up and do as they are told. But doing so would be denying what makes us great as a country, and as a species. We believe in the right to choose — our religion, our careers, our side items with Wendy’s value meals, and what our families will look like. Mine is two guys and a dog. My sister’s is a straight couple, two kids, and entirely too many animals. Christina Crawford’s is one attentionstarved lady and the ghost of a movie star. Each has its own kind of beauty, because while we may not choose our inclinations or desires, we do choose the life we build. Irma has made it abundantly clear she regrets the loss she experienced 37 years ago, but I wonder if she’s reﬂected on everything she’s lost in the decades hence by refusing to set down her sign and make the choice to pursue happiness.
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