Saturday, August 31, 2013

Patti Austin Plays Tanglewood

Patti Austin Plays Tanglewood Grammy-award winning singer Patti Austin will perform at Tanglewood’s season-ending Boston Pops matinee concert on Sunday September 1st at 2:30P at the Koussevitzky Music Shed in Lenox, MA. Austin will present her tribute to Ella Fitzgerald led by Thomas Wilkins, the BSO’s Germeshausen Youth & Family Concerts Conductor with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra. Patti crosses all musical genres, has made 16 solo albums & has performed her award-nominated hit songs on the Grammys & the Oscars. As a performer, songwriter & vocalist she has had a star-studded career that began at the age of four making her one of the most beloved artists literally the world over. Austin is the daughter of a jazz trombonist & goddaughter of musical legends Quincy Jones & Dinah Washington & made her stage debut with Washington at the world-famous Apollo Theater in Harlem. Her debut album for Quincy's Qwest label included the chart-topping hit "Baby Come To Me," a now classic duet with James Ingram. In recent years, Patti has performed with Symphonies worldwide & in addition to her international endeavors, Patti has devoted a lot of time performing benefits for AIDS related organizations. As a true artist whose creativity knows no limits Patti Austin continues to create milestones in an incredible career. She is also a fierce gay ally who we interviewed for OUTTAKE VOICES™.
Listen: Gay Ally Patti Austin Speaks OUT
For Info & Tix: bso.org 
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Friday, August 30, 2013

Gay Olympic Athletes Come Out

In less than six months the best athletes from the USA & around the world will travel to Sochi, Russia, for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games. Despite Russia's obscene anti LGBT laws athletes of all sexual orientations, gender identities & backgrounds will come together in Sochi in hopes of achieving Olympic glory. By choosing to compete in Russia, many LGBT athletes will soon make a global statement for equality through participation & competition on the world's stage. The LGBT athletes who will compete in the Olympic Games need our support now. LGBT athletes who have come out & those yet to come out, need to know that we stand behind them. To channel support for these LGBT Olympic athletes the organization GO! Athletes is calling on athletes from all across the world to come #Out4Olympics. GO! Athletes announced the launch of #Out4Olympics to prove that LGBT athletes from around the world are ready to come out & support our fellow LGBT athletes. As the first national network of LGBT athletes in the United States GO! Athletes believes it's critical time to come out now. GO! Athletes asks that you take 3 steps: First find your favorite sports photo of yourself, second the #Out4Olympics logo using & third submit your #O4O to @GOAthletes
For More Info: goathletes.org 
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Thursday, August 29, 2013

IRS Will Honor Gay Marriages

This just in from U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan (WI-02), co-chair of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus who applauds today’s decision by the U.S. Department of Treasury to recognize all legally married gay & lesbian couples regardless of whether or not they live in a state that recognizes marriage equality. The ruling means that married gay & lesbian couples, including Pocan & his husband Phil, who were married in Canada in 2006, can now receive all federal marriage-based tax benefits, including employee benefits, child tax credits & gift & estate taxes. Congressman Pocan stated, “I applaud the Department of Treasury for siding with equality & treating all legally married couples in America the same. Loving same gender couples should not be afraid they could lose their federal benefits or protections simply by moving to another state. Today’s decision continues our nation’s forceful progress toward recognizing the rights & responsibilities of all loving couples.” The decision follows the Supreme Court’s ruling in June that struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) & required the federal government to recognize married gay & lesbian couples in states that recognize marriage equality. Today’s decision expands on the ruling & recognizes all couples married in jurisdictions that recognize marriage equality.
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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Montreal Hosts InterPride 2013

Fierté Montréal Pride is hosting InterPride 2013 Annual General Meeting & World Conference from Thursday October 10th to Sunday October 13th at the Delta Centre-Ville Hotel in downtown Montréal, Québec, Canada. InterPride is the International Association of LGBT Pride Organizers & Organizations from around the world. InterPride members meet once a year at their Annual General Meeting (AGM) with its members to provide workshops on producing LGBT Pride Events & addressing issues pertinent to our LGBT community. InterPride strives to create a world where there is full cultural, social & legal equality for all. InterPride raises awareness of cultural & social inequality through its network of Pride organizations & to effect positive change through education, collaboration, advocacy & outreach. Co-Presidents InterPride Caryl Dolinko & Gary Van Horn stated, “We live in strange times, we watch proudly as legislation is overturned to support marriage equality in some states in the USA & yet on the other side of the world, we see the death penalty being imposed for LGBTI people in Uganda & anti-homophobic laws passed in Moscow. We find ourselves all over the spectrum of acceptance throughout the world but as activists, we live with Pride 365 days. With persistence & commitment, change will come. We ask you to join us as we stand strong & united & fight for one of the remaining human rights challenges of our time.” This year’s conference theme is “Honoring our past, building our future” & will include sessions on LGBT history, the global situation for LGBT rights & youth perspectives. Early Registration Deadline is August 31st.
For More Info: interpride2013.org 
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Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Tales of the City 20th Anniversary


Gay icon Armistead Maupin’s historic mini series Tales of the City has been released in a 20th Anniversary DVD Edition. This fabulous PBS miniseries was the first times our LGBT community was honestly depicted on television when it debuted in 1994. The new DVD from Acorn returns with SDH subtitles, exclusive footage & more featuring a star-studded cast including Olympia Dukakis, Parker Posey Laura Linney, Billy Campbell, Paul Gross, Thomas Gibson & more. Based on the groundbreaking novel by Armistead Maupin, Tales of the City follows a fabulous gay & straight cast of characters living at 28 Barbary Lane in sexually charged San Francisco in the 1970’s. Besides being a brilliant dramatic series the fashion alone is a like a trip in the gay time machine. If you don’t know the story here’s a tease… It’s about Mary Ann Singleton (Laura Linney) who arrives in sexually charged 1970s San Francisco & quickly realizes just how far from Cleveland she really is. She moves into a funky house at 28 Barbary Lane where her landlady (Olympia Dukakis) welcomes her with a joint. Mary Ann befriends the other residents & finds a good-natured home filled with drugs, drama & debauchery in a “if it feels good do it” kind of way. The DVD 2-disc set includes all six episodes, plus bonus audio commentaries with the writer, director & stars Olympia Dukakis, Laura Linney & Barbara Garrick, 36-min. of behind-the-scenes location & rehearsal footage & more. The San Francisco Chronicle called Tales of the City “Exquisite” & Entertainment Weekly called it “One of the 10 best miniseries”…:)
For Info & DVD: acornonline.com 
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Florida Disputes Anti Gay Russia

Equality Florida has called upon all Florida cities to suspend their Sister/Friendship City relationships with Russian cities due to the passage of extreme anti gay legislation & the alarming increase in anti gay violence in Russia. They have sent letters to the mayors of Gainesville, Orlando, Sarasota, St. Petersburg & Tallahassee requesting to take action. Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida stated, “One important goal of the Sister City relationship is to encourage travel & cultural exchange amongst the citizens of our cities. The anti gay laws & lawless violence now being encouraged in Russia negate this promise, not only for Florida's LGBT citizens, but also for all who believe in equality, diversity & tolerance. By continuing Sister/Friendship City relationships with Russian cities, we are turning a blind eye to the atrocities that are occurring in Russia. It is time to take action & in doing so, to let the Russian government know that their treatment of the LGBT community is unacceptable.” As we have been reporting Russia’s anti gay laws state that anyone organizing a Pride parade, any health official distributing information regarding safe sex between same gender partners, or anyone talking to a child under the age of 18 about anything LGBT-related can be subject to arrest or fine. The cities of Gainesville, St Petersburg & Tallahassee have responded to Equality Florida’s call to action by stating that they are currently reviewing the request. Updates to Come…:)
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Monday, August 26, 2013

Sochi Olympics Remain Anti Gay

Over the weekend over 2,000 gay rights supporters protested in Amsterdam's largest square condemning the Russian government's anti gay policies. This comes after the International Olympic Committee has accepted Russia’s argument that their new anti gay laws are in keeping with the Olympic Charter’s protections against discrimination. As you know in June the Russian Parliament approved anti gay laws that made homosexual love, or approval of or information about homosexuality illegal. The IOC has gone even further by warning that any athlete who is seen holding hands with a member of the same gender or wearing a rainbow pin at any point during the games in Sochi would not only face potential fines, jail time & deportation under Russian law but also punishment from the International Olympic Committee. If this isn’t discriminatory then the IOC should also rule that heterosexual couples are also not allowed to hold hands or show any sort of affection towards each other during the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014. Perhaps if straight couples were to experience the same treatment as our LGBT community they may realize that discrimination is just a larger word for hate. Since big money is invested in the Sochi Winter Olympics we know that they’re not about to be canceled or changed to another country but the International Olympic Committee needs to wake up & take a positive stand against this blatant homophobia & stand on the right side of history. Updates to Come…:)
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Sunday, August 25, 2013

NYC Dance Party Extravaganza

If you’re in New York City over Labor Day weekend you must check out the ultimate dance party. Nightlife mogul Brandon Voss & Masterbeat are excited to announce that Saturday August 31st from 10P to 6A the greatest party in the world is flying into the greatest city in the world for a once-in-a-lifetime special event. WE Party: Airlines lands into New York City’s Hammerstein Ballroom where the legendary concert hall will be transformed into an airport with check-in counters, gates, concessions & special lounges. Brandon Voss stated, "I'm really excited to partner with We Party to bring this incredible event to New York. Their events have really raised the bar in nightlife production worldwide & together we're planning to produce the biggest WE Party yet for its debut in New York City." Victor Pallas of WE Party Madrid added, “This will be the first time New Yorkers will actually enjoy going through security. Once past the friendly T&A Screening, passengers can choose between stepping into the pressurized, climate controlled cabin and embarking on the flight of a lifetime, or relaxing in the Mile High Club airport lounge for some special on the ground services. In both areas, specially trained flight attendants will attend to the every need of passengers, before, during and after departure.” WE Party’s resident DJ’s take their first flight together in the USA with Spain’s hottest export Manuel de Diego joined NYC’s own superstar Brett Henrichsen in the cockpit to provide beats for the flight along with the fabulous DJ Susan Morabito. Thousands of party-goers will arrive from around the world to spend a night flying on WE Party Airlines. Don’t miss OUT!! :)
For Flight Info & Tix: wepartyairlines.com 
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Saturday, August 24, 2013

International LGBT Business Expo


The 3rd International LGBT Business Expo presented by LGBT Confex will take place in the city of Guadalajara, Mexico from September 5 to 7, 2013. Ruben Sandoval, CEO of LGBT Confex stated, "LGBT Confex started in Puerto Vallarta three years ago & we are a company that is based in the Jalisco state. Last year our International LGBT Business Expo event was in Cancun so we are very excited to be returning to Jalisco state in Guadalajara for this year's event.” Sponsored by the Puerto Vallarta Tourism Board & the state of Jalisco’s Ministry of Tourism this year’s conference will feature international speakers including Ian Johnson, CEO of Out Now, Joel Simkhai, CEO of Brinder & Blendr & George Carrancho, Manager of Diversity Markets & American Airlines ground breaking Rainbow Team. Travel industry professionals interested in participating in this conference can apply for the Jalisco’s Ministry of Tourism’s hosted buyer & media program for a fully-funded visit which aims to enhance coverage & business connections between the state’s infrastructure & LGBT tourism in an effort to increase the number of LGBT tourists visiting the state of Jalisco from Mexico, Brazil, USA & other key international markets. Puerto Vallarta made its debut as a tourism destination in the 1960s when celebrity visits by Elizabeth Taylor & Tennessee Williams launched the destination into the eye of international media & has since developed into the country’s leading LGBT destination. The world's largest LGBT market research program, the Out Now Global LGBT2020 Study, shows that Mexico is one of the most popular destinations in a total global market for LGBT tourism that is measured in billions of dollars.
For More Info: lgbtbusinessexpo 
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Friday, August 23, 2013

Miss Richfield Tours Philadelphia

Gay friendly Philadelphia is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its award-winning “Get Your History Straight & Your Nightlife Gay®” campaign by releasing a new 30-second TV promo entitled “Miss Richfield’s Selfie Tour of Philadelphia.” The fabulous Miss Richfield 1981 embarks on her Philadelphia tour, visiting landmarks all over the city while snapping photos of herself & new friends along the way. Decked out in her red, white & blue finery she starts at Independence Hall & the Liberty Bell, runs the Rocky steps yelling “Yo, Adrian!” at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, admires the views along the Schuylkill River, dines alfresco over food & wine, dances at a crowded nightclub & finally, collapses onto a hotel room bed. The spot was produced by GPTMC (Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation). Meryl Levitz, president and CEO of GPTMC stated, “Ten years ago, Philadelphia was proud to officially ‘come out’ as a gay-friendly destination when we invited LGBT travelers to visit. With our new commercial, we’re going beyond our history roots & reiterating our invitation, celebrating both the city’s evolution into a premier destination and the LGBT community’s progress over the last decade.” This September & October, GPTMC will air the new commercial through Comcast on the Bravo & Style networks in the Philadelphia & Washington, DC markets & on Logo TV nationally. Pretty interesting considering that Pennsylvania has yet to pass marriage equality. Watch Video….
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Thursday, August 22, 2013

Studio Movies Lack LGBT Roles

Perhaps you have noticed that there is quite an absence of LGBT characters in studio films these days. GLAAD, the nation’s lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender (LGBT) media advocacy organization has released its first annual Studio Responsibility Index (SRI), a report that maps the quantity, quality & diversity of images of LGBT people in films released by the six major motion picture studios during the 2012 calendar year. According to their report of the 101 releases from the major studios in 2012, fourteen of them included characters identified as lesbian, gay, or bisexual. Mostly these characters were no more than cameos or minor roles. None of the films tracked contained transgender characters. Universal Pictures leads studios in 2012 LGBT-inclusive theatrical releases. GLAAD's Wilson Cruz stated, “As a major influence in American culture & one of our nation's largest media exports abroad, the lack of LGBT characters in big-budget films needs to change. Until LGBT characters are depicted in these films in a substantial way with more regularity, there will remain the appearance of LGBT bias on the studios’ part. Whether it's an action hero or a supporting character, moviegoers should be able to see LGBT people as integral players in the stories told by leading Hollywood studios.” View Full Report: glaad.org/sri 
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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Bradley Manning Gets 35 Years


Free speech advocates are reacting angrily to the 35 year sentence that a military judge handed down on wikileaker PFC Bradley Manning in Ft. Meade, MD. Bradley Manning who is gay served his country during the DADT years. Actions around the country & internationally are planned in response to the sentencing with the Chicago event to take place at 6P at "The Bean" in Millennium Park, near Michigan Avenue & Washington Boulevard. Manning's advocates are particularly upset at what they see as the hypocrisy of the Obama administration's relentless prosecution of a person who exposed rampant government wrong-doing. It's an especially hard pill to swallow since Obama ran for office on a platform of transparency & yet has proven to be one of the most secretive and anti-civil liberties presidents in U.S. history. While Manning's revelations embarrassed the Obama & Bush administrations, the whistleblower's advocates see these diplomatic embarrassments as well deserved payback for policies that have proven time & again inimical to the values of human rights & democracy. Andy Thayer, co-founder, Gay Liberation Network stated, "There are few, if any, LGBTs alive today who have contributed as to the cause of human rights as Bradley Manning. Yet all the well-funded gay groups have failed to lift a finger in his defense, instead fawning towards nitwit LGBT & non-LGBT celebrities simply because they deign to notice us. From helping expose U.S. war crimes in Iraq, U.S. support of the anti-gay coup in Honduras, to helping spur the Arab Spring which opened up new possibilities to millions of LGBTs across that region, Bradley Manning is a gay hero whom our community should celebrate & defend."  
For More Info: gayliberation.net 
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New Prop 8 Film “The Campaign”

A new documentary that addresses Proposition 8 entitled “The Campaign” will air in a wave of broadcasts across PBS stations this Sunday, August 25th beginning with WHYY in Philadelphia at 2:30P EDT. Immediately following each broadcast, documentary team will host an online Google Hangout to connect with viewers in each city with local organizations in their region, including The National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, Our Family Coalition, PFLAG & ACLU Northern California. The documentary was directed by award-winning filmmaker Christie Herring & produced by Herring & Academy Award nominated producer Marc Smolowitz, “The Campaign” takes a heartbreaking & inspiring look at California’s No-on-8 Campaign to defend gay marriage, which unfolded in 2008. The film also covers the specific & surprising history of relationship recognition in the United States. Herring will participate in live Google Hangouts, August 25th after each broadcast. She will be joined by participates from the film & by representatives of partnership organizations. With the recent US Supreme Court rulings on both Prop 8 & DOMA, this cross-country broadcast on marriage equality is very timely for public television viewers. Christie Herring stated, “We are thrilled to wrap our public television broadcasts with Google Hangouts across the country. Although we cannot be in each city at the same time, we can connect with viewers no matter where they are. We are also honored to work with local community partners in each of these states. Civic engagement, equality & family are at the heart of “The Campaign” & at the heart of the daily work of these local organizations.” “The Campaign” is funded by ITVS & distributed across public television though NETA.
For PBS Viewing Info: itvs.org 
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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Uganda Lesbian Attacked In Coma

Jennifer Ikanza has always been a strong activist for our LGBT community residing in Uganda & serves on GEHO (Gender Equality & Health Organization). A few days ago she was brutally beaten by a mob & remains in a coma. Our contact in Uganda reports that a woman set her up by claiming to be a lesbian & wanting to meet her. Jennifer was then brutally attacked by a mob. She is suffering multiple organ failure due to internal bleeding. Her health is in grave danger. She is at the hospital where she is slowing dying. The doctors & nurses are not giving her any proper medical attention because they know she can’t afford to pay for the treatment. Jeniffer Ikanza has been a powerful voice for our community in Jinja as she coordinated the Health & Care program for the lesbians at GEHO. GEHO Uganda is an organization in Uganda that helps our LGBT community. As you know the situation for gays & lesbians in Uganda is horrendous. They are killed, chased out of their homes & workplaces & they need our support. GEHO provides safehouses for those who need shelter, legal & medical aid when needed. Let's not standby & watch this brave LGBT activist die. You can help Jennifer Ikanza by donating to their site.
For More Info: geho-uganda.org
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Monday, August 19, 2013

Carnival Week In Provincetown

Provincetown is celebrating its 35th fabulous year of Carnival Week that takes place now through August 24th. This year’s theme is “Viva Las Vegas” with all of the glitz, glitter & deviation of Sin City. Visitors are encouraged to wear their most outrageous Vegas gear. Tonight Monday August 19th the Costume Ball takes place at The Boatslip from 9P to Midnight so get ready to see a lot of incarnations of Elvis, Wane Newton, the Rat Pack & more. (FYI, you're encouraged to "don't be yourself!") Costumes will be judged for Cash Prizes. There are lots of parties & special events all week long. During the day you can tour some of Provincetown’s best Inns decked out in their best Vegas glitz. The high point of the week is the Carnival Parade down Commercial Street. An estimated 100,000 people will line the streets to take-in the fab costumes, music & outrageousness. On Friday the 23rd join the "Going to the Chapel Inn Stroll" stopping in at the Aerie House, John Randall House, Sunset Inn, White Wind Inn & the Brass Key/Crowne Point Inn complex. During Carnival Week the Crown & Anchor will play host to comedienne "Pam Ann" (aka Caroline Reid) & drag diva Paige Turner for limited engagements. Suede will be performing on Wednesday the 21st & catch comedian Kate Clinton doing her "Sis-Boom-Bah" Act August 22nd through the 24th at 7P.
Listen: Comedian Paula Poundstone Plays Provincetown 
For More Events & Tix: ptown.org 
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Saturday, August 17, 2013

Gay WWE Star Darren Young

Perhaps Russia’s anti gay laws will have a positive effect by inspiring more celebrities & athletes to stand up, speak out & come out. This week WWE superstar wrestler Darren Young publicly came out during an impromptu interview with TMZ. He became the first openly gay wrestler in the WWE organization to come out according to a tweet by WWE Executive Vice President Stephanie McMahon. Young made the statement while at an airport baggage carrousel in LA after being asked if "a gay wrestler could be successful within the WWE." Young stated "Absolutely. Look at me. Ya know. I'm a WWE superstar & to be honest with you, I'll tell you right now, I'm gay. And I'm happy. I'm very happy." Apparently the statement caught the TMZ crew off guard & they stumbled with this response. "Man, that's in ... that's ... sorry. I'm kinda' of flabbergasted man. I think ... I didn't know & obviously I think that's just ... I commend your bravery," the cameraman rambled. Young responded, "I don't think it matters. Does it matter? Does it matter to you? Does it change what you think about me?" "Not an iota," TMZ's cameraman added, "In fact I commend you even more that you would share something so beautiful & personal with me." Young added, "We're all adults. All sports are physical. When I come to work, I come to work. Business is business. Some people might not like it, & some people will like it.” World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., official statement is, "WWE is proud of Darren Young for being open about his sexuality, & we will continue to support him as a WWE Superstar.” On Thursday Young participated in an anti-bullying event in Los Angeles "to teach children how to create positive environments for everyone regardless of age, race, religion or sexual orientation," WWE added in its statement. Now all we need is a professional baseball player or NFL player to come out...;)
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Friday, August 16, 2013

California Fights Anti Gay Russia

Equality California is taking action against the appalling anti LGBT situation in Russia. EQCA has sponsored Senate Resolution 18 authored by Senator Mark Leno urging CalPERS & CalSTRS against making direct investments in Russia. There are billions of investment dollars at stake & they don't want any of it going to Russia while this law is in effect. The recent anti LGBT law signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin threatens arrest, detainment & imprisonment for people publicly supportive of LGBT equality. The law has resulted in a dramatic increase in hate crimes & public persecution of our LGBT community simply for expressing who they are or who they love. John O'Connor Equality California Executive Director stated, “By urging the state's two largest pension plans to cease Russian investments, we are making a bold gesture against hateful policies & a firm stance in defense of equality. Our investments should align with our values & never reward discrimination against individuals based on their sexual orientation or gender identity”. This is a great action & hopefully other states will join this effort as well. Last week President Obama spoke out about Russia’s anti gay laws stating, “I’ve been very clear that when you are discriminating on the basis of race, religion, gender or sexual orientation, you are violating the basic morality that I think should transcend every country & I have no patience for countries that try to treat gays or lesbians or transgender persons in ways that intimidate them or are harmful to them.”
Sign Petition Here… 
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