Friday Night Fun and Culture: Garfunkel and Oates

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Friday Cultural Promotion

While Dallas/Ft Worth has a wide ranging cultural scene, it is some what lacking in the LGBT/T arts area.  For this one tends to look to New York/SF/LA

Ks Stevens who wrote the lyrics, libretto and composition for this play asked me if I was interested in seeing it and possibly giving it a blurb.

I think we should promote plays and movies that include actual TA/TG performers and so I’m giving this play I won’t be able to see a boost.

BIG EXCELLENT 20TH REUNION

A musical comedy for the entire LGBTQA community

SYNOPSIS

ERICA KLEIN is an 18 year old adoptee and a woman of color who attends her recently deceased mother’s BIG EXCELLENT 20TH REUNION in order to deliver her mother’s last message to her dearest friends from high school. It is quickly revealed all were closeted during high school. We meet KEVIN YIH is a sober gay therapist who was homeless, and now works with at-risk youth and is living with HIV. MITCH JOHNSON is a gay man who was kicked out of the military, and became a leatherman and Hollywood stuntman. DEBRA GONZALES is a  professional bisexual who traded in working in the mortgage industry for a new law degree. SAMANTHA BLAINE is a cat-loving lesbian romance writer. And DANIELLE PARKER is transsexual Professor of Queer Theory and the former quarterback of the football team. Due to personalities and dynamics, it’s no easy task for ERICA to deliver her mother’s last message, as this play reveals the differences and internalized prejudices within the queer community. There are anthems for everyone and it is a deeply intimate story for those who have ever loved family and friends who are queer, from interracial and/or adopted families, or have been touched by cancer and HIV.

STARRING

Bianca Leigh, Alyssa Chiarello, Vincent DiGeronimo, Clarence P Ilanan, Elizabeth Whitney 

and introducing Raven Troup

Ks Stevens – Lyrics, Libretto and Composition  Freddy Hall – Musician

Brad Gardner – Musical Direction and Arrangements Marques Walls – Musician

Natalie Malotke – Choreographer Sir Real – Lighting Designer & Operator

Regie Cabico – Director  Theo Czerevko – Sound Design & Technician

Jamar Green – Director’s Assistant Onyx Jackson-Preston – Stage Manager

BIG EXCELLENT 20TH REUNION is made in PARTNERSHIP with:

MCCNY Homeless Youth Services: Sylvia’s Place, H.A.L.O (Helping and Loving Orphans), The Catalyst Foundation, Project Renewal, LGBT Community Center NYC Cultural Programs, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, WOW Cafe Theatre, BKLYN Dry Goods, Cap 21 Studios, Queers For Economic Justice, Fourth Arts Block, Sylvia Rivera Law Project, and HB Studio.

The PREMIERE is JUNE 6TH, 2012 with a RED CARPET at 6:30 P.M., show is at 8 P.M. (Invitation Only).

There are 19 Performances in June for a three week run. The Final Performance is on June 23rd, 2012,

the night before NYC PRIDE SUNDAY 2012.

The play is located at THEATRE 80 (80 Saint Marks Place, between 1st and 2nd Avenues) in Manhattan.

Tickets go on sale MAY 1ST, 2012 on THEATERMANIA.COM. (https://web.ovationtix.com/trs/pr/912061)

Tickets are $55 and $30 for seniors over 62 and students.

Performances will be held on the following dates and times:

June 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 20, 21, 22, 23 at 8 p.m.

June 13, 17, 20, 22, 23 at 2 p.m.

June 17 at 7 p.m.

 Bianca Leigh (Danielle Parker) is a legitimate actress dubbed “a break-out star” by TimeOut magazine, Miss Leigh is one of downtown theatre’s leading lights. Bianca recently finished a successful return engagement of her solo musical BUSTEDat the Laurie Beechman Theatre. Her eclectic roles include “Time/Wind” in Taylor Mac’s The Lily’s Revenge, “Livia” in Theatre Askew’s “I, Claudius, Live,” “Olivia” in Twelfth Night (performed entirely in American Sign Language), “Sylvia Rivera,” “Tammy Fay Baker” and “Loreena Bobbit.” Miss Leigh is best known for her role as “Mary Ellen” in the groundbreaking filmTransAmerica.
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Remembering the Kent State Massacre

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Op-ed: CeCe McDonald Was Punished for Surviving

From The Advocate:  http://www.advocate.com/op-ed/2012/05/03/oped-black-poor-young-trans-sadly-often-recipe-violence-says-nctes-mara-keisling

BY Mara Keisling
May 03 2012

Reposted with permission

Society too often accepts that young, black, transgender women are victims of violence.

Earlier this week, I was in Minneapolis and Chicago supporting community activists seeking justice for two recent victims of anti-trans violence. In Chicago, I attended a rally for Paige Clay, who we lost two weeks ago to a gunshot to her head. In Minneapolis, the community has mobilized to support CeCe McDonald, a target of a racist and transphobic attack, who yesterday accepted a plea deal for defending herself from an attacker. And while I travelled, friends of Brandy Martell in Oakland began organizing in response to her murder this weekend, sitting in her car.

When attacked, both Paige and CeCe were 23-year-old Midwestern girls. Both were black transgender women. Paige was mortally shot; CeCe, a college student, was on trial, being punished for defending herself. Though in different ways, both stories tell the same truth about how society has come to accept, and even expect, the violence transgender people — especially young trans women of color — are often forced to face.

This Spring, there’s been so much hate violence against us: Coko Williams in Detroit, Brandy Martell in Oakland, Deoni Jones in Washington, D.C., and Paige Clay in Chicago—all transgender women of color killed because of who they were.

These are just the victims of murder and just the ones we know about. So much unreported violence occurred as well. Most decent Americans would be shocked and saddened to know how much violence many transgender people live with. We face higher levels of bullying violence, heightened domestic abuse, elevated assault by law enforcement, stunning rates of suicide attempts and off-the-scale levels of hate violence.

To steal a phrase from President Barack Obama, transgender people aren’t a special interest group. Fighting for trans rights isn’t really about anything other than ending violence. Whether it’s the physical violence faced by Paige and CeCe, the violence of poverty, or the spiritual violence of rejection, trans people know violence too well.

We aren’t fighting for special rights. It’s hard to see how Paige or CeCe would have claimed or used “special rights” to protect themselves from these kinds of attacks. Such a suggestion is too painful even to hear. Let me be clear. We want the right to live and thrive. We want the right to protect our youth, who too often are rejected by their own families and learn early that they need to protect themselves and each other, and in CeCe’s case, learn they can even face violence for protecting themselves from violence.

That night last summer, CeCe wanted the right to walk safely down a street to a grocery store. Instead, hate attacked her with broken glass to her face. That day a few weeks ago, like every day, Paige wanted the right to be Paige without having hate take aim at her at point blank range. That is what trans rights is about. I believe transgender people are special; the rights we demand, though, not special at all.

Society too often accepts that young, black, transgender women are victims of violence.

I can’t imagine the pain being felt by the people who love Paige and CeCe. Both have families and friends who want them back so badly. And for CeCe, the prison sentence she will receive next month is a reminder of how the criminal justice system has failed us again. While CeCe’s family will get her back, and despite CeCe’s resolve, her future is now fraught with barriers like dangerous treatment in prison, and later problems with accessing public services and even her ability to vote. All of this will only make completing her education and finding work that much harder. Facing an attack motivated by fear of who CeCe is and its aftermath, the choices and circumstances of her life have not been and will not be entirely her own to make.

Months and hundreds of miles apart, the aspirations of these two young women were derailed by hate. Despite the temporal and geographic distance between the violence they faced, in some ways, they were together at the same intersection—the intersection of race, class, age and gender, where violence is shamefully common, committed against anyone who lives there, without regard to the content of their characters. In this country, if you are black or poor or young or transgender—any one of those things—you are so much more likely to face violence. If you are all of those things the danger is compounded and too frequently ends in death.

This intersection is also a place where the justice system often fails. And in my time in Minneapolis and Chicago, I had to face a hard truth: CeCe is supposedly lucky. Against the odds, she’s alive. Paige Clay is dead and CeCe McDonald is being punished for surviving.

MARA KEISLING is the executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), a transgender social justice organization. Follow NCTE and Maraon Twitter.

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A Rallying Cry for CeCe, Paige, and Trans Women Everywhere: Your Lives Matter

From Huffington Post:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/janet-mock/a-rallying-cry-for-cece-paige-and-trans-women-everywhere_b_1467942.html?ref=gay-voices


05/ 2/2012

I was given the opportunity to deliver a keynote address to the University of Southern California’s LGBT graduates and allies at USC’s 18th annual Lavender Celebration on Sunday:

My speech would mark the first time a transgender person served as speaker in the ceremony’s 18-year history. While writing my speech, I harkened back to Amanda Simpson’s remarks about being the first openly trans presidential appointee.

“Being the first sucks,” Simpson told ABC News in 2010. “I’d rather not be the first but someone has to be first, or among the first … and I always win people over with who I am and what I can do.”

Yet the pressure to represent for trans people everywhere weighed heavily on me. But ultimately I had to speak my truth and share that truth with those around me. The one direction given to me by Vincent Vigil, director of USC’s LGBT Resource Center, was to offer the graduates a message of empowerment.

And so I thought about what empowered me to find, follow, and amplify my voice as a writer, as an advocate, as a woman who is living visibly. And that’s when it hit me: It’s always been about the girls, #girlslikeus.

I thought of CeCe McDonald and Paige Clay, two trans women of color, both 23 years old, both beautiful, and both creative. I “met” Paige a few weeks back when I came across a story of her murder in Chicago in April. I immediately thought, like so many trans women I personally know, that her tragic end could easily be mine.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/janet-mock/a-rallying-cry-for-cece-paige-and-trans-women-everywhere_b_1467942.html?ref=gay-voices

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Arizona shooter was neo-Nazi and former GOP official

From Raw Story:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/05/03/arizona-shooter-was-neo-nazi-and-former-gop-official/

By David Edwards
Thursday, May 3, 2012

An Arizona man who on Wednesday reportedly killed four people, including a 47-year-old grandmother and a 15-month-old infant, and then took his own life was also a former Republican Party official, a former white supremacist neo-Nazi and the founder of a border patrol vigilante group that advocated using violence on immigrants.

On Thursday morning, police in Gilbert, Arizona confirmed that J.T. (Jason Todd) Ready had committed suicide after killing his girlfriend, 47-year-old Lisa Mederos, along with her daughter, her daughter’s boyfriend and her granddaughter, according to The Arizona Republic.

Profiles compiled by the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defemation League (ADL) indicated that the gunman was a white supremacist with ties to the Arizona Republican Party.

Ready had a history of violence going back to the 1990s. He was arrested for aggravated assault with a weapon in 1992 and then court-martialed twice while in the Marine Corps in 1996. He was discharged after being found guilty of conspiracy, assault, and wrongful solicitation and advice.

Continue reading at:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/05/03/arizona-shooter-was-neo-nazi-and-former-gop-official/

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A Biocentric Viewpoint is Needed Now!

From Eco Watch:  http://ecowatch.org/2012/the-fundamental-failure-of-environmentalism/

David Suzuki
May 1, 2012

Environmentalism has failed. Over the past 50 years, environmentalists have succeeded in raising awareness, changing logging practices, stopping mega-dams and offshore drilling, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. But we were so focused on battling opponents and seeking public support that we failed to realize these battles reflect fundamentally different ways of seeing our place in the world. And it is our deep underlying worldview that determines the way we treat our surroundings.

We have not, as a species, come to grips with the explosive events that have changed our relationship with the planet. For most of human existence, we lived as nomadic hunter-gatherers whose impact on nature could be absorbed by the resilience of the biosphere. Even after the Agricultural Revolution 10,000 years ago, farming continued to dominate our lives. We cared for nature. People who live close to the land understand that seasons, climate, weather, pollinating insects and plants are critical to our well-being.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the birth of the environmental movement. In 1962, Rachel Carson published Silent Spring, which documented the terrible, unanticipated consequences of what had, until then, been considered one of science’s great inventions, DDT. Paul Mueller, who demonstrated the effects of the pesticide, was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1948. In the economic boom after the Second World War, technology held out the promise of unending innovation, progress, and prosperity. Rachel Carson pointed out that technology has costs.

Carson’s book appeared when no government had an environment department or ministry. Millions around the world were soon swept up in what we now recognize as the environmental movement. Within 10 years, the United Nations Environment Programme was created and the first global environmental conference was held in Stockholm, Sweden.

With increasing catastrophes like oil and chemical spills and nuclear accidents, as well as issues such as species extinction, ozone depletion, deforestation, acid rain and global warming, environmentalists pressed for laws to protect air, water, farmland and endangered species. Millions of hectares of land were protected as parks and reserves around the world.

Continue reading at:

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