WATCH: New video of ‘Make My Move’

About 18 months ago, I did an interview — his first one! — with a promising, openly gay Oklahoma-based musician named Nehemiah Akbar, who was appearing in Dallas during Black Pride. He was talented then, and his talents have continued to grow. Next month, he has meetings in New York (he hopes to be a signed artist) but until then, he has this awesome new video out there. Catchy tune, hot visuals and he’s a nice guy. Imagine that.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Queer locals of 2011

As we crown our local LGBT Person of the Year on the front page, over here in Life+Style we’ve been thinking about the locals who we will forever relate to helping define 2011 from the standpoint of entertainment and culture. Here are the ones who made the year memorable.

— Arnold Wayne Jones

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Chisom-Spillman

Anthony Chisom
activist, left

Derrick Spillman,
activist, right
In a short time, these two have made waves across the local LGBT African-American community. Chisom erased lines of gay and straight to focus on Dallasites with his foundation’s inaugural South Dallas AIDS Walk, which raised more than $10,000 in March. Spillman’s work with the DFW Pride Movement  stepped up Dallas Black Pride. With marquee speakers and a schedule of both educational and got entertaining sessions, The Movement the rep it’s been working for.

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3-Ferrell-CMYK

Joel Ferrell
theater queen
Whether producing Arsenic and Old Lace or directing two of the best shows of the year, Ferrell has been a force in Dallas theater since joining the DTC as an associate artist, and the community is richer for his vision and tireless work as a director, choreographer and all-around talent.

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4-Moore-Foley-copy

Linda Moore &
Laurie Foley
dog lovers
Moore and her partner Foley are devoted dog breeders, and in 2011 their cocker Beckham stormed Westminster, and ended the year as the top dog of any breed, anywhere, in America. Wow.

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5-Santos-copy

Charles Santos
task master
As executive director of TITAS, Santos is used to bringing talent to Texas, but it was his inspired idea of celebrating AIDS at 30 with A Gathering that reminded locals of his devotion to AIDS fundraising.

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6-Trimble-CMYK

Mark Trimble
bear-ish fundraiser
Trimble and the guys of BearDance came into their own this year with their dance party nights. The highlight was the TBRU party, and with three events during 2011, BearDance raised an impressive $22,000-plus for area charities.

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7-Ezelle-7804-High-Res-CMYK

Leslie Ezelle
cancer survivor/TV star
Just weeks after completing chemotherapy, Ezelle landed on TV’s Next Design Star. She didn’t win, but her celebrity, paired with the experience of beating breast cancer, has made her a devoted fundraiser for the
Susan G. Komen Foundation.

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8-Berryman.Dave-CMYK

David Berryman
gayborhood cheerleader
For years, Berryman has been the largely quiet behind-the- scenes guy for events like the Pride parade, but in 2011, after talks of the possible cancelation of Easter in the Park, Berryman stepped in, offering to coordinate it and obtaining the funding, literally saving Easter in the gayborhood.

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9-Lynch-Rane-CMYK

Craig Lynch & Jeff Rane
theatrical impresarios
Ten years after founding Uptown Players as an upstart theater troupe doing gay-themed work, Lynch and Rane launched the first-ever gay theater festival to coincide with Pride Week at the historic Kalita Humphreys Theater, their impressive new home. Way to go in a decade!

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10-Heinbaugh-CMYK

Chris Heinbaugh
re-committed arts lover
After years as Mayor Leppert’s right-hand man, the former actor and TV reporter left politics to return to his first love — the arts — by working with the AT&T Performing Arts Center.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition December 23, 2011.

—  Kevin Thomas

Planning Black Pride

Spotlighting events this weekend from seminars to sexiness

pride

YOU ROCK | Adult film actor and entrepreneur Rock Rockafella is one of several African-American porn stars who will appear at Dallas Black Pride events.

 

Two organizations have made Dallas Black Pride into an enhanced experience for the local queer community. DFW Pride Movement puts emphasis on education while Dallas Southern Pride celebrates with several parties.
Here are some of the highlights both have planned for Dallas Black Pride Weekend.

— Rich Lopez

Friday

Third Annual Black LGBT Community Summit
with speakers Cleo Manago and Steve Wakefield. Marriott City Center, 650 N. Pearl St. 1 p.m. DFWPrideMovement.org.

Queerly Speaking:
Black Pride Edition with special guests Kerin Rodriguez and Uriah Bell. Marriott City Center Cambridge Ballroom. 7 p.m. $5. FahariArtsInstitute.org.

Cirque du Freak party
with DJs C. Wade and Unique and adult film star Ty Lattimore. The Brick, 2525 Wycliff Ave. 10 pm.
Sponsored by 7Connection. DallasSouthernPride.com.

The Dom: A Night of Dominance
with DJ Laid Back. Victory Tavern City Grille, 2501 N. Houston St. 10 p.m. $15. DallasHerStory.com.

Him4Him All-Star Friday Pride Boyzz Night Out
with Sex Siren competition. Club Elm and Pearl, 2204 Elm St. 10 p.m. ElmAndPearl.com.

Saturday

HisStory/HerStory: Telling Our Story intergenerational discussion.
Marriott City Center, Plaza A. Noon. DFWPrideMovement.org.

The Ex-Factor.
Q-Roc Ragsdale talks about ex-partners and living in the same community. Presented by Q-Roc.TV. Marriott City Center,  Nice Room. 2 p.m. DFWMovement.org.

TransFormation.
Valerie Spencer discusses trans topics within the black community. Marriott City Center, Champagne Room. 3:15 p.m.
DFWPrideMovement.org.

HIV through the Looking Glass.
Adult stars Ty Lattimore, Rock Rockafella and Remy Mars discuss HIV in the adult film industry. Marriott City Center, Normandy Room AB. 3:15 p.m.
DFWPrideMovement.org.

That’s Not Love, That’s Stupid
is designed to educate participants on relationship issues. Marriott City Center, Nice Room. 3:15 p.m.
Official Dallas Black Pride Tweet and Greet. Marriott City Center Plaza C. 3–7 p.m. DFWMovement.org.

Uncut (Sex and the Modern Man).
GLO TV live taping with Maurice Jamal. Marriott City Center, Plaza A. 3-5 p.m. GLOTVNetwork.com.

Full Throttle Fashion Explosion hosted by Midweek Meltdown. Marriott City Center, Plaza AB. 8–10 p.m. DFWMovement.org.

Her4Her’s Seductive Saturday Femme Figure and Stud Realness Show
featuring guest dancers. Club Elm and Pearl, 2204 Elm St. 10 p.m. DallasSouthernPride.com.

Cirque du Male party
with all-male circus. Presented by 7Connection. J. Pepe’s, 2720 N. Stemmons Freeway. DallasSouthernPride.com.

Sunday

Living Faith Covenant Church
worship service featuring the DFW Pride Movement Gospel Choir. Marriott City Center, Normandy Room AB. Noon. LivingFaithDFW.org.

Family Affair Carnival
is a family-friendly event featuring bounce houses, petting zoo and games. Club Elm and Pearl, 2204 Elm St. 4 p.m. DallasSouthernPride.com

Black Pride Dinner
at Catfish Blues, 1011 Corinth St. from 2–5 p.m.  DFWPrideMovement.org.

Whip My Hair
inaugural gay Pride hair show with DJ Black Cat and MC Sister Ida Mae Watergate. Presented by 7Connection and Tysin and Starr Entertainment. The Brick, 2525 Wycliff Ave. 7 p.m. DallasSouthernPride.com.

The Lipstick Ball 2011
is the official after party with local performer Shemar Collins Dupree. Radisson Hotel, 2204 Elm St. in the grand ballroom. Midnight. DallasSouthernPride.com.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 30, 2011.

—  Kevin Thomas

Fahari’s Harold Steward on KERA’s Art&Seek

Harold Steward

In this piece from Thursday, KERA’s Jerome Weeks talked to Harold Steward, artistic director of Fahari Arts Institute, as the organization begins its third season. Opening with two art shows (and a special edition of Queerly Speaking for Dallas Black Pride), Steward discusses Fahari’s confidence going into a new season, and some of that is due to the piece’s mention of the three Dallas Voice Reader’s Choice Awards the organization won. Collectively, the group won for Best Local Arts Organization, Best Theater Director for Steward for Fahari-produced The Bull-Jean Stories, and Q-Roc Ragsdale as Best Actress for the same show.

Steward: “Of course, it’s all based off of popular vote. But you know, we looked at it, and said, ‘Here we are, a volunteer staff, an even more volunteer budget because we don’t know what it is, and how do we come away with three awards when no other organization does?’ Well, that speaks to the people and their beliefs in this . . . What we’re doing is building community.”

We highlighted Steward and Fahari back in January.

—  Rich Lopez

Pride 2011 • Black Pride: Much more than just a party

DFW Pride Movement has scheduled a full weekend of programs on HIV, relationship issues, trans issues and more, but they didn’t forget the party

Tammye Nash  |  Senior Editor
nash@dallasvoice.com

For many people, when they think of “Pride,” they think of parades and parties. But for DFW Pride Movement/Dallas Black Pride, “Pride” means going beyond the parties to offer a slate of programs and events intended to “move the community forward and empower the people,” DFW Pride Movement Executive Director Derek Spillman said.

“There’s nothing wrong with parties, we just wanted to offer more,” Spillman said of DFW Pride Movement, the local affiliate of the International Federation of Black Prides. “We are not a party promoter. There are party promoters who have chosen to work with us and to hold parties in conjunction with our Black Pride events,” Spillman said. “Our purpose, though, is to have a weekend of programs that focus on the cultural aspects of Black Pride, that focus on social justice and advocacy.”

Spillman said that the theme for this year’s Dallas Black Pride, set for Sept. 39-Oct. 2, is “HisSTORY and HerSTORY,” and events will focus, in part, on combating the spread of HIV/AIDS in the black community.

The host hotel is the Marriott City Center in downtown Dallas, and most of the programs take place there.

This year, Spillman said, Dallas Black Pride organizers wanted to tie in some of its programs with an HIV vaccine trial underway at UT Southwestern Medical Center, and has done so by bringing in a number of speakers who will focus on issues surrounding HIV/AIDS among African-Americans.

In fact, the first major program of the weekend will be the Black LGBT Community Summit on Friday, Sept. 30, featuring keynote speaker Christopher Bates, senior public health advisor to the deputy assistant secretary for health, infectious diseases, and executive director of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS.

The program takes place from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the host hotel.

The programs continue Saturday, Oct. 1, with the Empowerment Series starting with Session 1, from 10 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. It offers attendees a choice between a panel on Lambda

Legal, presented by Lambda’s Southwest Regional Director Omar Narvaez; “TRANScending All Obstacles,” presented by Carter Brown with Black Trans Men; “Financial FREEdom,” presented by Treach Wilson; and “If It’s So Wrong, Why Does It Feel So Right?” presented by Alex Byrd.

Options in Session 2, from 11 a.m. to noon, are “Stonewall Democrats,” presented by Omar Narvaez; “Erotic Play for Men: Serious Business,” presented by Dr. Herukhuit; and “Make

It Last Forever,” presented by the DFW Senators.

The noon special session will be “HisStory/HerStory: Telling Our Story — An Intergenerational Discussion.”

Session 3 will be held from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., and will include “Lying and Dying in Denial,” presented by author and poet Uriah Bell; “Sex and HIV Prevention Behind Prison Walls,” presented by Mychael Patterson; “Project Vogue,” presented by Stephaun Blahnik; and “The Ex-Factor: No More Drama — For Real,” presented by Q-Roc TV.

The final session of the day runs from 3:15 p.m. to 4:45 p.m., and includes panels on “TRANSformation,” presented by Valerie Spencer and Kennedy Davenport; “HIV Through the

Looking Glass,” presented by Deneen Robinson; and “That’s Not Love, That’s Stupid!” presented by Angela Harvey.

The day’s programs wind up with “The Official Dallas Social Affair: Tweet & Greet, Part 2” from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m., and a live taping of GLO TV’s “UNCUT: Sex and the Modern Man” from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

There will also be a “Greater Than AIDS” photo shoot from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., and “The Movement: Full Throttle Fashion Explosion” from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m., and parties hosted by a variety of community organizations beginning at 11 p.m.

The weekend concludes Sunday with worship services at noon at Living Faith Covenant Church and Black Pride Dinner at Catfish Blues from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Spillman noted that organizers designed the weekend’s schedule with the intention of reaching out to as many different aspects and interests of the community as possible. He said organizers were especially glad to have adult film stars Deneen Robinson, Ty Lattimore and Rock Rockafella attending to talk about HIV from the perspective of the adult entertainment industry.

“These men will be appearing at some of the parties throughout the weekend also, but their main reason for being here is to talk to people about HIV and AIDS, and how everyone should protect themselves and how everyone should get tested,” Spillman said.

In another effort to encourage people to get tested, he added, everyone who gets tested can get their names entered into a raffle, with the prize being the opportunity to be a VIP guest of the celebrity of their choice at that evening’s parties.

“We want people to have a good time, and we want people to celebrate Pride,” Spillman said. “But we also want people to celebrate our culture and our community, and to learn and expand their thinking. These are the kinds of things we’ve been charged with doing by the International Federation of Black Prides, and these are the things that are important for our future.”

A full schedule and more information on special guests and parties can be found online at DFWPrideMovement.org.

……………………

The ‘Circus’ Circuit Party

Dallas Southern Pride, the Black Gay Pride circuit party held each year on the first weekend in October, returns this year with “Cirque, Cirque! Life is a Circus & We Are Your Ring Masters!” Sept. 29-Oct. 2, with Park Inn by Radisson as the host hotel.

Dallas Southern Pride kicks off Thursday, Sept. 29 with Hip Hop for Pride at Station 4, and continues Friday, Sept. 30 with the All-Star Pride Pre-Ball Party at Elm & Pearl and Cirque du Freak Ball at The Brick.

Saturday’s line-up includes a Grambling vs. Prairie View tailgate party at Level, Elm & Pearl’s Seductive Saturday’s Femme Figure, Cirque du Femme: Strawberries and Chocolate at Level, and Cirque du Male: Party Under the Big Top at The New J. Pepes.

The weekend concludes Sunday with The Official After Party/Lip Stick Ball, presented at the host hotel by Elm & Pearl and Dallas Southern Pride; The Family Affair Carnival at Elm & Pearl; and The “Whip My Hair” Hair Show and After Party at The Brick.

For complete details for all events, go online to DallasSouthernPride.com.
— Tammye Nash

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 16, 2011.

—  Kevin Thomas

Dallas Black Pride announces guests

Rock Rockafella, left, and Uriah Bell will participate in Dallas Black Pride 2011 this fall.

Although Dallas Black Pride 2011 is still some four months away, organizers have already announced two of the special guests who will be participating in this year’s event: author  Uriah Bell and adult film star and CEO Rock Rockafella.

Dallas/Fort Worth Pride Movement, a newly created nonprofit, will present the 2011 Dallas Black Pride event — HisStory and HerStory, Sept. 1-Oct. 2, with the Marriott City Center in downtown Dallas as the host hotel. Those who want to book their rooms early can call 1-800-228-9290 and ask for the Dallas Black Pride special rate of only $99 per room per night.

The DFW Pride Movement is a member of the International Federation of Black Prides. According to its website, The DFW Movement’s mission “is to promote social awareness, unity, self-empowerment, mentorship and positive visibility throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth LGBT and affirming community of color through education, health promotion, advocacy and coalition building.” This year’s Pride event will include a schedule of parties and educational panels.

—  admin

Dallas Black Pride: Pride by the Lake at Bachman

Expect more to this than just food

Bachman Lake

Black Pride weekend begins to wrap up with this fourth annual event. Pride by the Lake AKA the Him4Him and Her4Her picnic not only serves up the food, but it also might be the only time you’ll see a drag show outdoors at a lake. The Legends of Dallas will give a mini-drag show. Then get ready to battle with the j-setting competition, play some games and just chill out.

DEETS: Bachman Lake, 3500 Northwest Highway. 1 – 5 p.m. Free. DFWPridemovement.org or DallasSouthernPride.com.

—  Rich Lopez

Black Pride Weekend: Second annual Masquerade Ball at The Warehouse

“Fierce” doesn’t begin to cover it

Dallas Southern Pride is bringing back its Masquerade Ball which looks to be the centerpiece party of the weekend.With special performances by Andre Misrahe, Back Rayne, Kage Khan, pictured, and JuJubee from RuPaul’s Drag U, the night doesn’t stop there. Prepare yourself for the ultimate sex siren battle on the dance floor and of course, the fab and fierce costumes and masks sure to be on hand. You’ll  have to see for yourself just what to expect. Just note the time of the event. It’s late, but that means more disco nap.

DEETS: The Warehouse, 1837 Corinth St. Doors at midnight. Ball begins at 3 a.m. $20–$25. DallasSouthernPride.com.

—  Rich Lopez

Black Pride Weekend: Black LGBT Summit kicks off weekend

Black Pride starts off on a proper note

The organizers at DFW Pride Movement start Black Pride with an actual summit. Now that’s pretty cool and it gets the message across that this just isn’t a partying weekend. Although, there is that too. In the summit, they want to tackle health in the community and solidarity between citizens and leaders.

Before premiering the new season of GLO TV on Saturday, network president Maurice Jamal, pictured, will serve as the summit’s keynote speaker.

DEETS: Westin City Center, 650 N. Pearl St. 1 p.m. DFWPrideMovement.org.

—  Rich Lopez

Dallas Southern Pride organizers predict crowd of 10,000-plus

‘Drag Race’ star JuJu Bee, dance parties, pool parties to highlight city’s annual black Pride weekend

DAVID TAFFET  |  Staff Writer taffet@dallasvoice.com

Angela Amos
Angela Amos

More than 10,000 people are expected to attend Dallas Southern Pride, the premier annual black Pride event in North Texas, on Sept. 23-26.

Promoter Kirk Myers said that the event is moving from a regional event to a nationally recognized circuit party.

JuJu Bee from “Ru Paul’s Drag Race” will be one of the performers featured over the weekend. She will be at the Brick on Friday night, Sept. 24.

Myers traveled to Cleveland to see JuJu Bee perform.

“She’s very personable,” he said. “She gets out and meets everyone and is overwhelmed by the response.”

He said she didn’t realize she had such a large African-American fan base.

“A lot of people thought she should have won,” he said.

Myers said GloTV will be in town filming the Masquerade Ball on Saturday, Sept. 25, as part of a new reality series about the emerging ballroom scene in the black LGBT community.

Dallas Southern Pride has always been scheduled to coincide with the Grambling/Prairie View Classic football game generally held the first weekend in October at the Cotton Bowl in Fair Park. This year, the game was moved back a week, so Pride moved, too.

Myers said he hopes the move encourages more people of all backgrounds from Dallas to participate in some of the events. With Dallas Southern Pride coming the week after the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade, Myers said he believes people will still be in the mood for more Pride celebrations.

“That party is really an opportunity for the mainstream LGBT community to party with us,” he said.

Myers said several things indicate this year’s event will be larger than ever. He said the Convention and Visitors Bureau has been very supportive. More sponsors have signed on this year as well.

To close the weekend, the Signature Black Party will be held at the host hotel on Sunday night. SizzleMiami, the largest black circuit party that attracts more than 100,000 each Memorial Day, is sponsoring the event.

Myers said that the various promoters represent the diversity of the community. To attract women, they added Her 4 Her last year.

T.D. Davis, a Her 4 Her organizer, said that the theme for Dallas Southern Pride is “Taste of Dallas — Best of Both Worlds.” She said the women’s events “bring different flavors to Dallas.”

The women’s parties begin with Bourbon Street at Victory Tavern near the American Airlines Center on Thursday, Sept. 23, presented by Sophisticated Fridays.

DeMarco Major from Logo’s “Shirts & Skins” will host “New York — A Taste of the Big Apple” at the Radisson Love Field, the host hotel, on Friday evening.

The Saturday afternoon pool party has a South Beach theme and “A Night in Paris,” the Saturday night party at Wendy Krispin’s in the Design District, has a French flair.

Sunday’s brunch with Church of the Solid Rock features New Orleans soul food.

“We’re continuing to build the Her 4 Her brand,” said organizer Angela Amos.

Amos said all of the most recognized women’s organizations in the Metroplex participated in organizing the weekend’s events.

“I’d like to keep building the alliances and reaching out on an individual level,” she said.

On Saturday, several workshops presented by Glamour Girls and Alpha Lambda Zeta, a nationally recognized gay fraternity, will be held at the hotel.

“Then Sunday is a concoction of everyone,” Davis said.

After Sunday brunch and worship, both the men and the women head to Bachman Lake Park for a picnic. Myers said the food is being provided by Buffalo Wild Wings.
That event is free.

The organizers all said additional highlights and entertainment are still being booked for next week’s events.

A full schedule of events is available at DallasSouthernPride.com and Her4Her.org.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 17, 2010.

—  Michael Stephens