Applause: Broadgay at Winspear

Lexus series adds queer event to upcoming season of musicals

What’s gay about ‘Jersey Boys’? The GLBT Broadway subscriber series at the Winspear will tell you.

The Lexus Broadway Series offers a muscular lineup of shows that feature classic stories and contemporary rock ‘n’ roll. But they go one step further in the 2011-12 season with the stage equivalent of special edition DVDs, featuring enhanced performances and pre-show engagements for subscribers — including its gay patrons.

Dallas Voice Life+Style Editor Arnold Wayne Jones will host a conversation every second-week Tuesday about 45 minutes before each show. The series, called GLBT Broadway, will highlight the appeal for queer audiences for the shows in the series. The discussion will touch on issues of gender identity and sexuality in regards to the show and the teams behind them. Some — such as the season lead-off, Hair — might be easier to analyze from a gay perspective than, say, Jersey Boys, but that’s part of the fun of the series.

The season starts with Hair, which won the Tony in 2009 for best musical revival. Youth in 1960s America are all about peace, love and understanding — including nudity and homosexuality — in this iconic musical. Sept. 20–Oct. 2.

The epic Les Miserables follows with a new 25th anniversary production. Dec. 20–Jan. 1.

Best musical Tony winner In the Heights details the immigrant experience as characters find a new life in their new country. March 13–25.

Alt-rockers Green Day went Broadway with American Idiot, touted as a mashup of a rock concert and staged musical. May 8–20.

The season concludes with Jersey Boys and Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. Classic hits like “Big Girls Don’t Cry” and “Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You” tell the tale of this well-accomplished music group from the ‘50s. June 12–July 15.

Other subscriber series include Broadway University, hosted by SMU theater professor Kevin Hofeditz which will explore themes of the show and its place in theater history (every second Saturday matinee) and Broadway Uncorked (every second-week Wednesday), where an expert sommelier will host a wine tasting based on the show. We wonder what American Idiot’s wine will be.

— Rich Lopez

For more information on the Lexus Broadway Series and its enhanced performances, visit ATTPAC.org.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 26, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

Lez Zeppelin plans mass wedding at NY show

Lez Zeppelin

I just saw this story on DNAInfo.com about the all-girl Led Zeppelin cover band, Lez Zeppelin, who are celebrating the recent vote to legalize same-sex marriage in New York in a unique way: a mass wedding at a Lez Zeppelin concert.

As it turns out, Leesa Harrington-Squyres, the Lez Zeppelin drummer, is also an ordained minister, and she will officiate at the ceremony, which will be held just prior to the band’s big end-of-summer concert on Aug. 26 at Irving Plaza in New York City. The ceremony is open to the first 50 people who pay $65 and register at the Lez Get Married website. The wedding package includes the musical ceremony, two free tickets per couple to the concert, with VIP seating for up to six people per couple and photos with the band.

And by the way, the ceremony is open to straight couples as well as lesbian and gay couples.

On the Lez Get Married website, Lez Zeppelin leader and guitarist, said, “In light of the historic moment here in our very own New York, and as we are in the unique position of actually being able to marry people, we thought it would be a beautiful and magical way to say ‘thank you’ to our fans.”

I know there are some folks who wouldn’t want to share their wedding with 59 other couples at a concert. But if you ask me, a wedding PLUS a concert for $65 sounds like a great deal.

Watch Lez Zeppelin perform “Whole Lotta Love” below.

—  admin

PHOTOS: Christian music duo (and partners) Jason & deMarco Saturday at MCC

I don’ t know how this show snuck in, but I found out about it late last week. Fortunately, one of our photographers got out to the show and snapped a few pics of the night.

The gay Christian pop duo Jason and deMarco came to Dallas for a benefit show Saturday at the Metropolitan Community Church in Carrollton. They headlined a night that also included Ray Norris, Buddy Shanahan and Kim Wisdom among others. The show was a fundraiser for AIDS Interfaith Network.

“Every dollar raised from the concert will go directly to help homeless clients with HIV/AIDS,” said Steven Pace, executive director of AIN. “We are so grateful to MCC-GD for their unwavering support.”

View more of Eric Scott Dickson’s photos from the event after the jump.

—  Rich Lopez

WATCH: Uh Huh Her at House of Blues

I was sad to not have made it out to the Uh Huh Her show this past Monday at the House of Blues — especially after talking to Camila Grey, half of the duo for last week’s ish. She and Leisha Hailey (from The L Word) came to town after a four-day stint in Austin at SXSW, but looks like they drew a decent crowd at Cambridge Room inside HOB. Just watch out for the vertigo-inducing sideways turn the video takes.

The band also debuted their new video today for their newest single “Black and Blue” on RollingStone.com, which also the title track to their current EP. Minimalistic video, but I’ve been digging the song. And who know Leisha could rock out? Watch it after the jump.

—  Rich Lopez

Elton John to Play Concert to Benefit Challenge of Proposition 8

Elton John is set to play a concert at the "Green Acres" estate of Ron Burkle in Beverly Hills to benefit the American Foundation for Equal Rights.

Elton_john

Said Chad Griffin, Board President of AFER: “We are deeply honored to have the support of Sir Elton John. The American Foundation for Equal Rights stands for the enduring principle that all Americans are created equal, and believes that ending state-sanctioned discrimination is a critical step we must take toward ending the hate crimes and suicides that continue to claim the lives of young Americans.”

The concert is set to take place on January 19th. All proceeds will support the American Foundation for Equal Rights, the sole sponsor of the Perry case, which is being argued by the Foundation's legal team headed by Theodore Olson and David Boies, the opposing attorneys in the Bush v Gore case that decided the presidency. The American Foundation for Equal Rights is a 501c3 non-profit organization.

Ticket information is available by contacting events@afer.org.

Perry v. Schwarzenegger, the federal challenge that AFER is pursuing against Proposition 8, goes before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on December 6.


Towleroad News #gay

—  admin

Soldiers Punished After Refusing To Attend Army-Sponsored Christian Rock Concert

About 80 U.S. soldiers have been disciplined at Fort Eustis, Virginia after refusing to attend a “spiritual fitness” Christian-rock concert put on by the Army. The unit was first marched in formation to the concert, only after which were the soldiers given to option of attending or not. Those who chose to leave were punished.

The Commanding General’s Spiritual Fitness Concert that Smith and others were told to attend was headlined by BarlowGirl, a “band of tender-hearted, beautiful young women who aren’t afraid to take an aggressive, almost warrior-like stance when it comes to spreading the gospel and serving God,” according to the group’s web site. The group Smith marched with included at least two Muslim soldiers who fell out of rank and stopped marching on their own, according to a first-hand account published by the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF). Once outside the concert, Smith and the other trainees were finally given an option and told to split into two groups: those who wanted to attend, and those who did not. Smith and about 80 others decided not to attend, even though they were obviously being “pressured” to do so. Smith and the others were sent back to their barracks on “lockdown,” a punishment that Smith said withholds even basic freedoms like using their own electronics. Barlow Girl band member Lauren Barlow said if she and the other members of the group knew soldiers were being forced to attend the concert and were then punished for refusing to attend “we would have said something.” “That’s horrible,” Barlow tweeted in response to the revelations first published Thursday by MRFF’s head researcher, Chris Rodda. “We never knew that. We thought they had a choice. If we would have known we would have said something.”

Two of the soldiers have filed a formal complaint against their superior officers. The Army claims to be investigating.

(Tipped by JMG reader Kevin)

Joe. My. God.

—  John Wright

WATCH: Lolene at the Rose Room Friday night

In case you missed new artist Lolene perform Friday night at the Rose Room, we caught some video for you. You can read colleague Chance Browning’s take on the show after the jump.

—  Rich Lopez

Friday freebie: Two tix to Oak Lawn Band's 30th Anniversary concert at the Cathedral

Stallman, Diane Trieder and Rodriguez of OLB

In today’s Voice, I chatted with Tim Stallman, president of the Oak Lawn Band, about the group’s celebrating 30 years of music in the community while looking to another three decades of playing. On Saturday, they perform an anniversary concert at the Cathedral of Hope complete with concert prelude and wine reception.

Thanks to band member Billy Rodriguez, we have two tickets for tomorrow night’s show at 7 p.m. at COH. Provided you can get to the office by 5 p.m. today, the first to e-mail me at lopez@dallasvoice.com with “Gimme Some OLB” in the subject gets the tickets. Or, if you’d prefer, tweet the same to me here.

—  Rich Lopez

Some LiveNation ticket sales to benefit LifeBeat

LiveNation, a company that produces, markets and sells live concerts, has announced that a portion of all ticket sales tomorrow — Dec. 1, World AIDS Day — will be donated to LifeBeat — The Music Industry Fights AIDS, LIFEbeat- The Music Industry Fights AIDS, ” a national non-profit organization dedicated to reaching America’s youth with the message of HIV/AIDS prevention.”

LiveNation has several concerts coming up here in DFW. Go here for a list. There’s Aventura and 311 this week at Nokia Theatre in Grand Prairie, and The House of Blues Gospel Brunch, Trivium with Chimairia, White Chapel and Dirge Within, Eric Hutchinson, Davy Knowles and Back Door Slam, Sister Hazel and Underoath, all at House of Blues Dallas.

And that’s just the list through Dec. 13! So find your favorite upcoming concert and get your tickets online tomorrow. Buy your ticket at LiveNation.com and a portion of the ticket price goes to LifeBeat, start at 12:01 a.m. tomorrow.

—  admin