Ask Howard

How to do the wrong thing right

_howard-russell-logo-copy

 

Always, I receive loads upon multiple loads of various “size” questions — way too many to answer them all. And for mysterious, unfathomable reasons, most all of your measurement questions, dear readers, come at me as the seasons first begin to change; hence, with the “official” arrival now of autumn, the floodgates have yet once again opened: So, yank down those britches, studs, pull your wood rulers out, and let’s get right to it.

Dear Howard,
Whatever fragments that once still existed of my private life, pride and dignity are now shredded, pitifully, by asking you this question. Just so you know: I’m a top, always and only 100 percent — I’ve never swung bottom. But my penis (seeing as how I’m shoveling out honest-to-God total truth here) isn’t very much to brag on, and because I don’t swing a porn-sized pecker, I never advance a date beyond the first lay — packing a baby penis deals real blows of embarrassment to men like me. No dude has ever unzipped my pants and exactly whistled, “Well, lucky me, you’re still on the market, stud!” What can you tell me about the latest advances (assuming any such girthy miracles now exist) regarding the safety and functionality-realism of penile implants? — The 3-Inch Wonder

Dear Wonder,
Oh, fuck me, man: “Functionality-realism?” Really? OK, well, you want real truth here, 3-Inch, I’m going to actually give you functioning real truth. I am not at all an actual medical doctor (say nothing of a urological specialist). Think of me more, Wonder, as just, oh, your average, friendly, gay medical smartass; thus, here’s my un-wondrous prognosis: To the best of my understanding, surgical cock-lengthening doesn’t work; not satisfactorily, at this date, does such surgery functionally satisfy very many male patients who undergo it, if any. Whether you opt for an implanted prosthesis or an internally inflatable penile pump, the average length you’ll gain is but a mere half-inch—which satisfies no sexual partner distinguishably at all, especially after you’ve spent so much money to achieve no noticeable difference whatsoever toward increasing your partner’s pleasure. Wonder, I’m not being a party-pooper/bedroom-asshole to you here, but sincerely, I advise against penile implants as of this date. If you desire actual photographic surgical proof of why you shouldn’t waste your money going under the knife for such a bulge-producing procedure, simply Google: “Penile implants before/after photos.”

Dear Howard,
My current apartment building is at least two-thirds gay. We’ve got a big cardboard box in our mailroom where everybody leaves all their olden days’ fag mags, Beta video cassettes, used DVDs and whatnot that they’ve gotten either tired of jerking off to, or that they’ve replaced with more updated technology. A fusty porn library, basically, is what it amounts to. My infuriation, though, is that every queer resident in our building seems to think it highly amusing to also leave their own DNA “deposits” behind on whatever they return back to the box. I need assistance with how to word the perfect scathing note to hit these polluters with; may I request your helpful input, please? — Will

Dear WIll,
A scathing note saying what, exactly, would you hope I phrase for you to leave, when any “polluting” resident in your building who wants to borrow such monkey-spanking fare for a night or so can? Fortunately, Willard, no matter how much dried spooge you lick from any stuck-together pages of old porn mags, or from any lube-larded DVDs, all traces of any contagions you’re concerned about guzzling should have long ago dissipated.

Dear Howard,
My ex just got diagnosed with penile cancer. I didn’t even know there was such a thing, but the whole time we were together he never listened to me when I warned him that, one way or another, getting tattoos on his dick would come back to haunt him — Lee’s entire penis is covered in tats, tip to testicles. At full Viagra, his erection throbs up and down like one of those old cylindrical kids’ kaleidoscopes you look through to watch all the colors morph about. Now, he’s talking about suing his tattoo parlor. Lee asked me what I thought he should do, and I (facetiously) replied, “Cock amputation.” Predictably, I got tied to the bed and dick-whipped for that. Man, what should Lee do? — Perry

Dear Per,
How about you advise Lee to just, oh, follow a penile cancer specialist’s advice? Trigger-happy litigiousness will garner nothing; regardless, it’s sure not any tattoo parlor’s liability for his getting cancer: The only medical trials dear Howard here could find that, at all, give any credence to tattoo ink being a human carcinogen (containing toxic traces of lead, arsenic, nickel and such likes) are via a study from something called the “European Commission’s Joint Research Centre” (whatever that “Centre” dubiously is). Perry, you need to focus on being a real and true friend now to your dick-whipping ex: If Lee dies ahead of you, good man, you’ll probably miss him; moreover, suing never gets anybody into Heaven.

— Howard Lewis Russell

Do you have a question — about etiquette, love, life or work — that needs an answer? Send your problem to AskHoward@DallasVoice.com and he may answer it.

—  Dallasvoice

Best Bets • 09-23-16

Friday 09.23 — Sunday 10.22

ashley-d-kelley-photo-by-sergio-garcia

Dallas Theater Center shows a more colorful take on the Old West with the world-premiere musical ‘Bella’

We all know what the Old West was like — white cowboys and blond milkmaids whooping it up in saloons. Only that’s not the Old West — there were African-Americans out there, too, ya know … the frontier was a more colorful place than John Wayne movies would have you believe. So it is with Bella: An American Tall Tale, a world-premiere musical from author, composer and lyricist Kristin Childs (who previously worked on the DTC’s Peter Pan musical Fly), and directed by Robert O’Hara. This tuneful romantic comedy stars Ashley D. Kelley in the title role, and also features local stars Liz Mikel and Denise Lee.

DEETS: Wyly Theatre, 2400 Flora St. DallasTheaterCenter.org.

 

Friday 09.23

5

Local luminaries honored by Resource Center’s 5 Factor

Dallas’ Resource Center does a lot for the community, but they get a lot of help, and each year the annual 5 Factor party recognizes five folks — in culinary arts, media, community, government and philanthropy — who make a difference. Come toast this year’s honorees and support the center.

DEETS: 7 for Parties, 150 Turtle Creek Blvd. 7­–9 p.m. $65. RCDallas.org.

 

Friday 09.23 — Sunday 10.02

jl

Landmark musical ‘Rent’ continues at the Winspear, plus a special panel on Sunday

It was 20 years ago that a little-known composer opened a musical on Broadway that redounded across the culture. Jonathan Larson’s Rent remains a powerhouse document about the era of the AIDS crisis, while evoking the plot of La Boheme. Larson died suddenly before he could know its impact. It’s currently onstage at the Winspear Opera House for a special anniversary tour, but it will be even more special on Sunday night when a blue-ribbon panel of AIDS activists and experts (including AIN’s Steven Pace, UBE’s Jalenzski Brown and ASD’s Don Maison, among others) gather for a pre-performance discussion on Rent’s influence as well as the state of HIV today. The panel discussion is free and open to the public.

DEETS: Winspear Opera House, 2403 Flora St. Panel discussion at 6 p.m. on Sept. 25. Performance at 7:30 p.m. ATTPAC.org.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

—  Dallasvoice

Obituary • 09-23-16

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Dr. Terry Daniel Newsom died Sunday, Sept. 18, after a week with dear friends and precious family at his bedside. Born in Texarkana on Dec. 6, 1943, he lived the rare and exciting life of an adventurer, travelling the world again and again, including visits to Portugal, Spain, and Morocco in May. His adventures date back to his youth when, at Grandmother Alice’s knee, he dreamed he would become a doctor. She nourished that ambition, as did his parents, Davis and Myldred Newsom, who made it happen.

Music was always a major part of Terry’s multi-talented life. He was a trombone player in high school and natural pianist his entire life. He filled his home and surgery centers with the melodies of the seasons and classical masterpieces. As a member of various church choirs, Terry sang tenor beautifully in every city in which he ever lived.

After graduating with a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology from Southern Methodist University, Terry obtained his Doctorate of Medicine from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. After serving in the U.S. Air Force, holding the rank of major, he started his anesthesia practice at The Medical Center of Plano in 1979.

From 1980-1988 he served on four operating room committees and served six terms on The Medical Center of Plano Medical Executive Committee from 1983-1991. Terry was the Medical Center of Plano vice chief of staff in 1989, chief of staff in 1990, chairman of the Quality Review Committee in 1991, course director of the Anesthesia Technician Program in 1992, and on the Medical Center of Plano Board of Trustees from 1993-1994.

In addition to the many responsibilities he undertook at The Medical Center of Plano, Terry served at Baylor Richardson Medical Center as the chief of anesthesia in 1986 and 1988 and as a member of the Medical Executive Committee from 1986-1988. Terry was a member of the American Society of Anesthesia, the Texas Society of Anesthesia, the Dallas County Anesthesia Society, the American Medical Association and the Collin County Medical Society.

Perhaps his most memorable leadership position was as medical director and chair of the Physician Advisory Committee for the Surgery Center of Plano. Terry was a primary driver of quality and patient-centered care for the employees that followed him from 1994 until his passing. He will be remembered by his colleagues as a driving force of inspiration, positivity and mentorship to his surgery center and team.
Terry cherished sharing the life experience with others. He loved hosting parties and filling his home and yard with decorations every Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas for everyone to enjoy.

Terry is survived by his husband, Ross Williams of Dallas; daughter, Rachael Mozelewski of Dallas; brother, Monty Newsom and wife, Carolyn, of Mount Vernon; sister, Mary Beth Banks and husband, Joe, of Fort Worth; brother, Randy Newsom and wife, Vicki, of Dallas; nieces, Julie Crump of McKinney and Christi Dysart of Long Beach, Calif.; nephews, Michael Newsom of Midlothian, Terry Davis of Dallas, Alan Davis of Dallas, Blake Newsom of Houston, and Todd Newsom of Dallas; and numerous other loving family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

All are welcome to celebrate the extraordinary life of Terry Newsom at The Cathedral of Hope in Dallas at 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23. Terry will be laid to rest at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, at Sparkman-Hillcrest in Dallas.

Memorials may be made to the charity of your choice. To convey condolences or to sign an online registry, please visit www.TJMfuneral.com.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

—  Dallasvoice

Gay Agenda • 09-23-16

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­­­Have an event coming up? Email your information to Managing Editor Tammye Nash at nash@dallasvoice.com or Senior Staff Writer
David Taffet at taffet@dallasvoice.com by Wednesday at 5 p.m. for that week’s issue.

• Weekly: Lambda Weekly every Sunday at 1 p.m. on 89.3 KNON-FM. This week’s guest is attorney Rebecca Covell; United Black Ellument hosts discussion on HIV/AIDS in the black community (UBE Connected) at 7 p.m. every fourth Tuesday of the month at 3116 Commerce St., Suite C; Core Group Meeting every 1st and 3rd Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m.; Fuse game night every Monday evening except the last of the month at 8 p.m. at the Fuse space in the Treymore Building, 4038 Lemmon Ave, Suite 101; FuseConnect every Wednesday from 7 p.m. For more information call or e-mail Jalenzski at 214-760-9718 ext 3 or Jalenzski@myresourcecenter.org.

SEPTEMBER
• Sept. 23: Celebrate Bisexuality Day

• Sept. 23: Neighborhood cleanup
Alexandre’s will provide the gloves and bags for a neighborhood cleanup at 11 a.m. at Alexandre’s, 4026 Cedar Springs Road.

• Sept. 23: World AIDS Day launch
C.U.R.E. introduces the recipients of this year’s Open Hearts Awards from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Bungalow 5, 1201 Oak Lawn Ave. $20.

• Sept. 23: 5 Factor
Resource Center honors partners of the community from 7-9 p.m. at 7 for Parties,
150 Turtle Creek Blvd. #107. Tickets at RCDallas.ejoinme.org.

• Sept. 23: Arkansas/ Texas A&M meet & greet
University of Arkansas Pride Alumni Society and Aggie Pride: LGBT & Ally Former Student Network meet prior to the Southwest Classic at 8 p.m. at Cedar Springs Tap House, 4123 Cedar Springs Road.

• Through Sept. 24: Pride Performing Arts Festival
Uptown Players hosts its fifth annual arts festival for Pride with plays, including two world premieres from the company’s first-ever Pride Write Play Writing Competition, a staged reading and cabaret acts. Kalita Humphries Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd. UptownPlayers.org.

• Sept. 24: Teen Pride
For ages 13-18 from 2-7 p.m. at Celebration Church, 908 Pennsylvania Ave., Fort Worth.

• Sept. 24: HIV/AIDS and Testing Workshop
St. James A.M.E. Church in Denton, in partnership with the Learning Institute of Family Education and University of North Texas Zeta Beta Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma, holds its fourth annual “Building Healthy Relationships: HIV/AIDS and Testing Workshop.” The workshop theme is “Get Informed, Get Tested and Get Treated,” and the event is designed to increase awareness of HIV and AIDS in the community. AIDS Arms Dallas will provide free testing. For information call Mary C. Taylor at 940-441-5530 or 940-387-1223. The workshop takes place from noon-3 p.m. at the church, 1107 E. Oak St. in Denton.

• Sept. 24: Furball
The SPCA holds its annual black tie fundraiser. Sit at a Gay and Lesbian Fund for Dallas table by registering at GLFD.org/spca. Seats are $200.

• Sept. 24: Kayak Eco-Tour
An Audubon guide leads a bird and wildlife adventure at Joe Pool Lake. All equipment provided. $30 members. $40 non-members. From 9-11 a.m. at 1570 FM 1382, Cedar Hill.

• Sept. 24: ONE Run
A 5k run or 1k walk that benefits Cancer Support Community North Texas. From 8-11 a.m. in Reverchon Park, 3505 Maple Ave.

• Sept. 24: Oak Cliff Flamenco Festival
The Grand Finale Concert from 8 a.m.-noon at Kessler Theater, 1230 W. Davis St.

• Sept. 24: Dallas Green Fest
Farmers Assisting Returning Military will break ground on their new urban park. Learn gardening to renewable energy at Green Fest from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at 700 S. Good Latimer Blvd. Free.

• Sept. 25: Mass on the Grass and neighborhood picnic
The Happy Campers Band, food, games and more. Service at 10 a.m. followed by picnic from 11:30-2:30 p.m. at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 6525 Inwood Road.

• Sept. 25: Spirit of Equality brunch
Wendy Davis is the keynote speaker at this Equality Texas fundraiser. 11:30 a.m. at The Rosenberg Sky Room, 847 East Hildebrand Ave., San Antonio. $135. EqualityTexas.org.

• Sept. 25: Rent and the History of the AIDS Crisis
Panelists discuss the history of the AIDS crisis and dispelling myths at 6 p.m. at Winspear Opera House, 2403 Flora St.

• Sept. 26: Presidential debate watch party
Metroplex Republicans and former Addison Mayor Joe Chow meet at 7:30 p.m. at May Dragon Chinese Restaurant, 4848 Belt Line Road.

• Sept. 26: Presidential debate watch party
Watch party at 8 p.m. at the Round-Up Saloon, 3912 Cedar Springs Road.

• Sept. 26: Outward Bound Showcase
A.L. + the Mystiks led by trans man Ivan Dillard performs at 10:30 p.m. followed by Star Fruit, led by non-binary artist Ethan Bergman, at 11 p.m. at RBC, 2617 Commerce St.

• Sept. 27: Historical Lessons at the Holocaust Museum
A discussion on the history of anti-Semitism at 11:30 a.m. at Dallas Holocaust Museum, 211 N. Record St.

• Sept: 28: Fort Worth Pride kickoff
Pride kickoff with Mayor Betsy Price.

• Sept. 29-Oct. 3: Dallas Southern Pride
19th Annual Black Gay Pride Weekend with Events 4 Him and Events 4 Her. Host hotel is Crowne Plaza Dallas Market Center,
7050 Stemmons Freeway.

• Sept. 29-Oct. 1: Heath Disparities and Leadership Conference
Southern Regional Ball/House and Pageant Communities presents the health conference to reduce health disparities across the southern U.S. by promoting health equality and improved leadership in the LGBT community. Crowne Plaza Dallas Market Center, 7050 Stemmons Freeway.

• Sept. 30: Ecumenical service
An ecumenical service supporting the LGBT community sponsored by Brite Divinity School to kick off Tarrant County Pride at
7:30 p.m. at Robert Carr Chapel at TCU,
2855 S. University Dr., Fort Worth.

……………………

charles-santos

Charles Santos, executive director of TITAS, moderates Rent and the History of the AIDS Crisis witha panel that includes Jalenzski Brown, Resource Center empowerment programs manager;  the Rev. Neil Cazares-Thomas, senior pastor Cathedral of Hope; Abigail Erickson, executive director, Bryan’s House; Jason Gillman, MD, AIDS Arms physician; and Don Maison, CEO of AIDS Services Dallas. For detail, see listing.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

—  Dallasvoice

Pride, Dallas Southern style

A pool party, a pageant and performances by singers Brandy and Monica are just some of the fun on tap for Dallas’ Black Pride weekend

brandy-and-monica

Monica, left, and Brandy

 

From Staff Reports

Each year, over the first weekend in October, hundreds if not thousands of men and women converge on Dallas for the annual Dallas Black Pride celebration, presented by Dallas Southern Pride, and centered this year around the theme, “Celebrating All Black Lives.”

Dallas Black Pride is known for its wide range of parties, some designed specifically For Him, others intended specifically For Her, and yet others meant to bring everybody together for a good time. And 2016 is no exception, especially since this year’s line up includes a Friday party featuring Grammy Award winner Monica, and a Saturday party featuring hit singer Brandy.

But you don’t have to wait til the weekend to start the party. Everything kicks off Wednesday, Sept. 28, when Rudeboy Dallas presents the Pre-Pride Foam Party at Marty’s Live, 4207 Maple Ave. Those 18 and up are welcome to attend, and admission is free for those 21 and up. You can call the bar at 214-599-2151 for details.

Black Pride “officially” starts, though, on Thursday, Sept. 29, with the Dallas Black Pride Customer Appreciation Welcome Reception at the host hotel for the weekend, Crown Plaza Dallas Market Center, 7050 N. Stemmons Freeway. The reception includes light bites and complimentary drinks, and takes place from 6:30-8:30 p.m.

Also on Thursday night, and also at the Crowne Plaza, is the Miss Dallas Southern Pride pageant, starting at 9 p.m., and honoring Unshante DeFoxx. For performers interested in competing, the entry fee is $150. Competition categories include Presentation (with a Colors of the Rainbow theme), Evening Gown (fabric or stones) and Talent (seven minutes time limit).
For information on Miss Dallas Southern Pride, call Brandon at 757-768-5591.

In honor of the Southwest Airlines State Fair Classic on Saturday — the annual football game between the Grambling State University Tigers — whose colors are gold and black — and the Prairie View A&M University Panthers — whose colors are gold and purple — Ya Va Do and A.O. host the Ladies’ Purple and Golds Mix-N-Mingle party Fridahy night, Sept. 30, from 8 p.m.-1 a.m. at Luxx, 723 N. Pearl St. Sheka Booker and Ace provide the music.

While the ladies are mixing and mingling downtown at Luxx, DTX Fridays presents the Purple and Gold State Fair Classic Pre-Party, hosted by award-winning singer Monica, at Pryme, 10333 Technology Blvd. W., just northwest of Love Field, near the intersection of I-35E and Walton Walker Boulevard.

The party starts at 10 p.m. and lasts until the wee hours of Saturday morning.

Football fans can head to Fair Park to watch the battle of the big cats when the Grambling Tigers and the Prairie View Panthers take the field at 4 p.m.

But if you aren’t such a big football fan, you can keep the fun going with the Black Pride Pool Party, presented by Dallas Southern Pride and hosted by hit singer Brandy  at the Bungalow Beach Club, 3121 Ross Ave. The party starts at 4 p.m. and goes til 10 p.m.

But the Pride doesn’t stop there. Saturday night, the party moves to House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St., for the Octane: The Gay Pride Mega, presented by Street Dallas.

And back at the Crowne Plaza on Saturday night — actually Sunday morning, Oct. 2 — Pioneer Father Larry Ebony presents the 24K Ball III: The Red Edition. That party starts at 2 a.m. and goes til 5 a.m.

You may think that Sunday is the end of the weekend, but there’s still more Black Pride events to come.

Dallas Southern Pride presents the Black Pride Unity BBQ, with free food and drinks, music and more, from 1-6 p.m. Sunday at Bachmann Lake Park, 3500 Northwest Hwy.

From 7-11 p.m., United Black Ellument hosts “Black Love and Unity: Pride 2K16,” a skate party at Southern Skates Roller Rink, 2939 Ledbetter Ave. Tickets are available online at ubedallas.org/bluskate.

And then the weekend winds up with a one-night-only performance by Wanda The Comedian, a celebration of 21 years of entertainment by Wanda, hosted by the cast of The Rose Room at Station 4, 3911 Cedar Springs Road. Doors open at 9 p.m. For more information visit Station4Dallas.com.

Weekend passes to Dallas Southern Pride’s Black Pride events range in price from $20-$100, and are available online at DallasSouthernPride.com.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

—  Dallasvoice

Turning tragedy into a legacy of hope

Steve Dutton is on a mission to help the homeless so that others won’t experience the pain he did

steve-dutton

Steve Dutton visited colleagues in Fort Worth to find ideas he can take back to Miami.

DAVID TAFFET  |  Senior Staff Writer

When his husband, Tom Lang, was attacked earlier this month on a downtown Miami street, Steve Dutton said he went through the various stages of grief. His first thought was to pack up and leave the city that he and Lang had quickly grown to love.

But then he decided to do something different. He decided he would turn his husband’s murder into a lasting legacy of hope that would help other people.

And Dutton was just the one with the experience to do it.

The tragedy
On Sept. 7, Lang and Dutton took their dogs out for their morning walk. Lang stopped at Starbucks for his coffee and Dutton stopped at nearby La Provence for his.

Across the street, a homeless man — later identified as Evans Celestin — was panhandling, yelling and cursing at anyone who didn’t give him money. Dutton said a woman who was with Celestin was seemingly cowering in fear.

dutton-lang

Steve Dutton, left and Tim Lang

“I’ve seen him hitting her and screaming at her in the past,” Dutton said.

Dutton snapped some pictures of Celestin, intending to pass the photos along to the police along with a complaint about the man’s behavior. But Celestin noticed Dutton taking the picture and became infuriated.

He stormed across the street toward the couple, approaching Dutton first. When Dutton defended himself, Celestin moved around Dutton and pushed Lang, 72, to the ground. Lang hit his head on the concrete and began to bleed profusely from his ears.

Celestin ran but was later arrested by police and charged with assault. Lang was rushed to the hospital but died of his injuries three days later, and officials upgraded the charge against Celestin to murder.

It wasn’t the first time Celestin had been in trouble with the law. In 1999, Celestin he was convicted of a similar assault, but was out of prison by 2007. The manager at the Starbucks Lang had visited daily said Celestin had been stalking her and was glad he was off the street.

Envisioning a legacy
Before retiring to Miami, Dutton spent 20 years as CEO of Samaritan House in Fort Worth. The facility was originally an AIDS hospice, but now provides affordable housing, nutrition, social services, substance abuse recovery, life skills training and follow-up care for people with HIV.

During his last two years in Fort Worth, Dutton also served as CEO of Fort Worth’s Mental Health Housing Development.

By a few days after the attack in Miami, Dutton said his anger over his husband’s death — which at first had had him figuring out how much he could get for a quick sale of his condo and deciding where he should move — quickly turned to compassion.

He said he understands that homelessness combined with mental health and drug issues were what killed Lang — the same issues he dealt with as CEO of Samaritan House. So Dutton began the process of establishing the Thomas P. Lang Jr. Foundation, with plans to turn his fledgling organization into a resource for the homeless.

He explained that he’s currently on a mission of discovery — not trying to replace any existing services for the homeless, but looking for ways he can supplement and build on the efforts of others.

“My goal is to raise funds to help inspire more efforts to make the urban core of Miami safer for everyone — including the homeless, residents, visitors and businesses,” he said.

He compared downtown Miami to downtown Fort Worth, noting that both have seen resurgences within the past 10 years. But one thing Fort Worth did successfully, Dutton said, “was transform downtown into a beautiful and safe neighborhood through a public and private commitment.”

For example, he cited Fort Worth’s use of private security on bikes to patrol downtown streets.

In his neighborhood in downtown Miami, Dutton said, thousands are living in new, high-rise condos built in the urban core. Cruise ships depart from the world’s busiest cruise port, which lies directly across the street from his Biscayne Boulevard condo. Almost 5 million passengers board those ships each year, and all of those visitors pass the area where Lang was murdered.

According to official figures, about 400 homeless people live on the streets of downtown Miami, but the actual numbers are probably larger. Dutton said that according to one count, more than 50 people spend the night in the alley behind Macy’s a few blocks away. And during the winter, the numbers swell as some northern cities give bus vouchers to their homeless to go south to get out of the cold.

The beginning
Dutton began his mission of discovery in Fort Worth. He spent the past week reconnecting with people and businesses that helped fund his work at Samaritan House, organizations whose work he admired and with city officials. He said he doesn’t know exactly where he’s going with his work, but he was in North Texas to collect ideas.

When he returns to Miami, he’s scheduled to meet with various people he hopes can help take the next steps.

In Fort Worth, Texas Christian University created volunteer opportunities through its MBA and undergraduate programs that benefited Samaritan House and other nonprofits, Dutton noted. So among the people he’s scheduled to meet with in Miami are officials at Miami Dade College and Florida International University, in hopes those schools will be inspired to create similar programs.

“These students live in the neighborhood,” he said. “They can be part of the solution.”
Echoing concerns voiced by Dallas Police Chief David Brown, Dutton said Miami police are also understaffed and are expected to solve every problem.

Police need an option other than taking someone to jail, Dutton said; they need case workers who can help find a place for homeless people to spend the night until they can transition into more permanent housing and receive the mental health help they require.

Dutton said he hopes to help create an integrated system that provides case management, immediate assistance including a safe place to sleep, and then develops long-term housing.

AIDS Services of Dallas CEO Don Maison said Dutton was the right person to get this project going. He said Dutton had a good handle on the AIDS epidemic in Fort Worth, where HIV was transmitted through injection drug use at a rate three times as high as in Dallas, Maison said. Dutton created programs at Samaritan House to deal with that issue, he said.

Dutton “understood where the epidemic was and how to provide long-term housing,” Maison said, adding that if anyone can make a difference for Miami’s homeless, Dutton is the man who can.

The Rev. Carol West agreed. “Steve had his hand on the pulse of the homeless community,” she said. “He was very active in dealing with that population, feeding them, and dealing with their needs. He’s top calibre and exactly what is needed.”
Dutton said keeping busy was a way to deal with his grief, although eventually he will return to his retirement. But that won’t be until his new foundation had made a dent in the problem of homelessness.

“I’m going to be an advocate who isn’t going to go away,” Dutton pledged.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

 

—  David Taffet

Putting hate on stage

‘Murder music’ star Sizzla to bring his homophobia to Lower Greenville

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DAVID TAFFET  |  Senior Staff Writer

Reggae star Sizzla Kalonji and the Firehouse Band are scheduled to appear at Heroes Lounge on Greenville Avenue on Oct. 7. Sizzla is known for anti-gay “murder music.”

According to the website 18 Karat Reggae, based in Kingston, Jamaica, Sizzla has been denied a visa to enter the U.S. to perform for about 10 years. Earlier this year, the site reported “Sizzla triumphs over the homosexual community.”

The website complains, “While the church and Christianity overall have been extremely anti-homosexual and unapologetic about it, the gay community has never boycotted the church.”

Sizzla is known not only for his anti-LGBT lyrics, but also for making homophobic remarks during his concerts. In 2014, he was banned from performing at the Sting Festival, one of Jamaica’s biggest music festivals, after he defied organizers by including the following lyrics in his performance at the December 2013 Sting Festival, after having been warned by organizers against including anti-LGBT lyrics in his performance:
“I don’t care who want vex, Jamaica no support no same sex.
“I don’t care who want vex, Africa no support no same sex.
“Them say, “Sizzla, you sing too much anti-gay lyrics.”
“Me just read the bible and get away with lyrics.
“Burn out the lesbian, burn out the gays with the lyrics.
“I don’t care who want vex, rastaman no support no same sex.
“Dem a tell me bout “free speech,”
“So me tell de raper man dem fe leave de beach.
“And me tell the pedophile dem flee the creech.
“Tell de lesbian dem flee de street and the battyman.”

“Battyman” is Jamaican slang equivalent to the English insult “faggot,” and Sizzla screamed the word while jumping up and down at the Sting Festival.

It was not the first time Sizzla had been banned from performing over his anti-LGBT lyrics and his brand of Jamaican dancehall music that has come to be called “murder music.”

Sizzla was barred from entering the United Kingdom in 2004, where he had several concerts scheduled, after OutRage!, a British LGBT rights group, criticized his songs including lyrics advocating anti-LGBT violence. He recorded his song “Nah Apologize,” an anthem declaring that “Rastaman don’t apologize to no batty-boy,” and saying gays and lesbians should be/will be shot and burned.

Sizzla signed the Reggae Compassionate Act in 2007 renouncing hate and pledging to uphold love, respect and understanding, written in reaction to a campaign to stop murder music initiated by several groups that included J-FLAG, Jamaica’s LGBT rights organization. But it wasn’t long before the anti-LGBT lyrics started up again.

Sizzla concerts in Toronto and Montreal were cancelled in 2007 after protests by the Stop Murder Music Canada coalition. He was denied entry to Germany in 2008 after his visa was cancelled. Several concerts scheduled in Germany in 2009 and 2010, after public protests, as were concerts in Madrid, Ghent, Belgium, Stockholm, Sweden and Lisbon in 2012. But concerts in 16 other cities on that tour were sold out.

Murder music protests in Dallas
In 2009, House of Blues in Dallas canceled an appearance by singer Buju Banton, another Jamaican singer whose songs encouraged violence against the LGBT community. Banton’s concert was then moved to a now-closed club on Main Street in Deep Ellum.

LGBT rights advocates staged a rally outside the venue. Protesters were cordoned off to a space across the street ,but few people attended the concert.

Soon after his Dallas appearance, Banton was arrested on drug and firearms charges, then in 2011 convicted and sentenced to 10 years in federal prison.

Dallas Voice has heard no word yet if any protests of Sizzla’s concert are planned at Heroes Lounge.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

 

—  David Taffet

Idina, letting go

‘Rent.’ ‘Wicked.’ ‘Frozen.’ And now a remake of ‘Beaches.’ We track the making of a queer icon with Idina Menzel

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Though it arrives nearly 20 years after her debut album, the timing couldn’t be more perfect for a self-titled Idina Menzel release. Menzel’s latest is a declaration of self — of her real self, that is.

“It’s how you pronounce my name,” the Broadway star says during our recent interview about the eponymous title, idina., a not-so-subtle allusion to that infamous name botch at the 2014 Academy Awards.

idina20163You remember: John Travolta called her “Adele Dazeem” just before she hit the stage to perform her career-changing song “Let It Go” from Disney’s Frozen, during which the Tony winner voices cold-thwarting snow queen Elsa. Frozen fame took Menzel to Elphaba heights, but it was Wicked and Rent that forever made her a gay fave.

Imagine, then, what a new Beaches might do for Menzel. The Lifetime remake of the 1988 classic has the 45-year-old portraying Bette Midler’s CC Bloom, a career choice the singer-actress admits has ruffled the feathers of her loyal queer following. Menzel talked about one gay fan’s tweet that led to her almost backing out of the film altogether, how LGBT support solidified her success and why she’s “excited” that Frozen fans are pulling for a lesbian Elsa.

— Chris Azzopardi

Dallas Voice: What’s a trip to the grocery like now, after Frozen made you a household name?  Idina Menzel: It depends on how many little kids or gay men are there. And they certainly have been complimentary, and yeah, we take some pictures and I’ve put myself on a video for several people’s birthday wishes and bar mitzvahs.

But the gay guys aren’t just singing “Let It Go” to you, I’m sure.  Exactly. And you know what, I’m leaving out the ladies, too! Because, of course, I was Maureen in Rent, so it’s not all the gay male community. There are a lot of beautiful women that have been very supportive of me.

What does your long and loyal history with the LGBT community mean to you?  Honestly, you said the word “loyal” — it means everything to me. All the women that I’ve revered in my life have been beloved by the gay community. So, when I was younger it was like, if I’m not in with that club, then I haven’t made it. So, as soon as I felt like I was being included and appreciated and supported [by the LGBT community], it just really meant everything to me. Not to mention, the accolades and all the compliments don’t come easy. There can be harsh critics; it’s not an easy crowd to win over, so it feels good when you feel like you’ve made friends and they are so loyal and so supportive.

When were you first aware of your gay following?  The first moment was probably when I’d go to the Nederlander Theatre when I was in Rent, and I’d get all these amazing letters from young kids struggling with their sexual orientation and who they were and how they wanted to come out. I’d get a lot of letters about that and how I was helping them be honest with themselves and be brave about coming out, so it started then and that was even… that was stronger than I had even anticipated or ever really had dreamed. Just on a much deeper, much more important level than singing a high note with a lot of bravado and people clapping. And it’s continued to be like that, really, with Wicked and Frozen, with Elsa. There are always these characters who are literally trying to come out of the closet – they’re hiding something within them that they’re afraid to let people see, and then finally they embrace it and change the world around them.

You seem to gravitate toward empowered female characters and tropes. Is there a particular reason why?  I have no idea! I swear, I don’t know if I find them, or they find me. I went into the studio (for this album) — I was going through a divorce [she broke from Taye Diggs in late 2014 after 10 years of marriage], and I can’t tell you how many times I’d sit with these amazing writers and want to write some really upsetting, sad, dark song and it would turn out to be some uplifting, empowering song about trying to find my strength as a woman. I’d be like, “Aaack, why did we write that?! I hate that! I’m just so sick of it! I wanna be miserable! And I want people to let me be miserable!”

But no, I’m half joking. I just want to make sure that people know that I’m not always feeling that empowered and that confident in what I’m doing. Just like anyone else, I gotta work on all that stuff.

idina20161

Menzel’s new eponymous studio album dropped this week. (Photo courtesy Max Vadukul)

Are you saying you’re a real person?  I think so! I think I am!

There’s a lot of pressure on you and Disney to make Elsa gay. Are you surprised by the #GiveElsaAGirlfriend movement?  Am I surprised? [Sighs] Maybe at first I was a little surprised because it’s Disney, but I can say that I’m excited that the conversation is happening. I can’t promise anybody that that’s what’s gonna happen. I’m just a servant at a big company called Disney and I’m happy to have a role and a job. But deep down am I really happy that it’s causing people to talk about it and have these kinds of conversations? Yeah, I am.

Do you think the world is ready for a lesbian Disney princess?  I don’t know about that, considering we’re having a hard time even getting Donald Trump out of the way. Sometimes it’s a little discouraging. But you never know. We keep making all these strides. We’ve made a lot of strides in the last couple of years, and then all of a sudden the hate and the vitriol within our country is exposed and you’re like, “What happened? We’re in the ancient times again.”

What does it mean to you to know that so many LGBT people interpreted “Let It Go” as a coming out anthem? And did you when you first read the lyrics?  Yeah, probably not right at first because I’m an actor first, and so I’m thinking, what is it for this character and this young girl? Having had the Wicked experience, I bring those themes to it as well. But then I quickly saw all of the parallels and the universality of the song and how it could speak to so many people in so many different ways.

We must talk about the Patti LaBelle-inspired note you slay during “Queen of Swords,” from your new album.  I have to say that sometimes my best moments, artistically speaking, have come from really emulating someone I love and playing around, because then I get out of my own space. I was literally just having fun. We had already recorded the end of that song a million times and I sang a million different runs of ad-libs at the end, and I was trying to make my producer and engineer laugh. And I didn’t know I could do that one! So then, of course, they put it in.

I’ve had other moments in my life where I’m on stage and if I’m having a hard time — if I feel insecure about a beat or how I’m interpreting something — I’ve done something like, how would Glenn Close approach this moment? Then, all of a sudden, I’m like, “Oh, look at this,” and I’m holding for applause and taking an extra two seconds just to own the stage, not feeling like I have to get out of there because I’m undeserving. It’s interesting if you put yourself in their footsteps once in a while how it can open that up for you and you realize, “Oh, I’ve been selling myself short. I can sell this moment.”

I’m not saying anybody should copy anybody. I don’t think anybody should mimic anyone, but I’m always an advocate of emulating and soaking in all of the greats, because then once it comes out of you, it’ll never be a clone — it will be you inspired by these people.

You’ve had three other studio albums — why self-title this one, and what’s the significance of the period?  It’s very personal. I went through the hardest time in my life while writing this album — a beautiful, successful time, and also a very tumultuous, complicated time in my personal life, and so it’s very intimate. It’s my way of saying, “Hey, this is me and my barebones.” And the period is… what’s the word?… just a little nudge, like, “This is me,” with a little attitude in there, whether it’s how you pronounce my name or [directed toward] anybody who has tried to keep me down.

We refer to our most beloved icons by one name —  Cher, Madonna, Mariah, Bette – so maybe this is also your initiation into gay iconography. Hey, if I can get into that realm or that class, I would be very happy. It would be a huge compliment. But I’m still working toward that. Those women have done a lot more than I have!

Why was it important to you to be a part of the “Fight Song” for Hillary Clinton during the Democratic National Convention?  Elizabeth Banks asked me to do it. You know, I’m just … I believe in Hillary and I’m a Democrat, and I’m not trying to put off or judge anyone who isn’t, but I felt it was important to be a part of it.

Now that you’re obviously tight with Elizabeth Banks, could that mean we’ll see you in Pitch Perfect 3?  That would be awesome.

“Wind Beneath My Wings” is a song that’s so iconic and so owned by Bette Midler. What was it like taking it on for your upcoming Beaches remake?  It was almost reason to say “no.” I mean, I did say no a couple of times at first to the whole thing because to walk in her footsteps, I mean, you can’t. I needed to find what the reasons were to be a part of this when the [original] movie is so beautiful as is. I found that there’s a whole young generation of women who hadn’t seen Beaches. Because of the time we’re in now, as women, there’s a new perspective we have within that story, and there’s a new conversation that can go on as far as us living out our passions and our work and our home life. It’s a little different when you watch the movie now, in this context of life. There’s more that we can bring to it to update it. But as far as the song — the song terrified me. I brought it to my producer, Greg Wells, who did “Queen of Swords” and half of the album, and I said, “How can we make this contemporary?” We sat at the piano and stripped it down, and he just found this way that brings in all these modern sounds. We stayed pretty strict to the melody and I don’t know — I’m just really happy about it. I think it came off really beautifully. It’s an homage to what was already there, but also just a new incarnation of it.

Gay men are very devoted to Beaches. Have you consulted any of them for the role?  By accident I went on my Twitter feed and saw somebody who wrote, “Idina, I love you, but it’s sacrilege that you’re doing this!” I called my agent and I was like, “Tell them I can’t do it. All these gay men are mad at me and they’re gonna hate me!” But it’s just such a great role for me and the experience of being on set and working every day on this beautiful woman that is funny and talented and she gets to do drama and comedy — it was such a great experience for me and it was just hard to turn down. So I hope they’ll forgive me! I understand if they cannot. But you know, come on, Judy Garland redid A Star is Born and then Barbra redid Judy Garland! So sometimes these things happen. I’m not saying I’m any of those women, but you know, sometimes we redo these movies.

Earlier this year, you reunited with your Wicked co-star Kristin Chenoweth and sang “For Good” with her for the first time in 12 years. What was it like to revisit that song a decade-plus later with Kristin and can we expect you to work on anything else with her?  Ah, maybe! Yeah, I would never say never to that. That experience that day was very powerful for both of us, and very moving. We both sung that song a lot through the years in our own concerts, but we hadn’t gotten back and sung it together. And you know, that show changed our lives and the trajectory of our careers. It bonded us — it bonded lots of people — and it’s a song that people connect to in so many ways. They use it at their weddings and their dances with their mothers and they play it at funerals. It’s this incredible song, and for us to have sort of originated that — and together — it’s something we’ll always share. We felt such a pride about it.

Are you going to be OK if Wicked gets made into a film with actresses other than you and Kristin?  No, I’m gonna — no! I’m gonna have a hard time with that. Let’s be honest… you want me to be honest? Or do you want me to say, “Oh, sure, can’t wait for whoever looks 20 years younger than me but can’t sing as good as me gets the role?”

They better not fuck it up, right?  They better not fuck it up! I’m lobbying to do it like Benjamin Button. A little CGI on a beautiful, green face. I could look gorgeous! Like, who cares — just take out a couple wrinkles. Green and exotic. I still have a girly innocence about me. And here I am trying to audition for this role…

I’m sorry, Idina; believe it or not, I have no say in this. No, it’s all good. It’s not gonna happen for a while anyway. I’ll be 70 by the time it comes out and still be trying to get this role.

The special effects will be even better in 30 years.  I hope I’m just not in Vegas in some bad lounge singing it, that’s all I hope.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

—  Dallasvoice

Chord progression

How acceptance and support at a Deep Ellum club spurred a second coming out for trans musician Ivan Dillard

ivan

Ivan Dillard gave up on music, until a queer music showcase opened his eyes to his love of song … and his gender identity. (Tammye Nash/Dallas Voice)

 

ARNOLD WAYNE JONES  | Executive Editor

Ivan Dillard remembers a key moment in his coming out process — actually, his second coming out.

Ivan — born Aleah — had “tried to be a lesbian for 10 years! Oh, how I tried and tried!” he sighs. Then last year, he finally decided to present as a trans man, and a major step toward that was the decision to use the men’s room at the Deep Ellum club RBC (Rhythm Beats Culture).

screen-shot-2016-09-22-at-6-38-43-pm“The first time I started to use the men’s bathroom, I was a little scared about it,” he says. “But as I approached [the restrooms], a six-foot-tall trans woman cam out of the women’s bathroom and I was like, ‘This will be OK.’”

That club has ended up being a sanctuary for Dillard … and a second chance personally as well as professionally in his fascinating journey of self-discovery and acceptance.

It wasn’t an accident that the revelation occurred within Dallas’ thriving live-music scene. Dillard — a classically-trained cellist who attended the Meadows School of the Arts at SMU — came from a family that valued music and education. (His aunt was even a gospel singer/songwriter.) But while the East Texas native has always loved listening to symphonic music, playing it was another matter. And at Meadows, that set him apart.

“I was kind of a black sheep; my senior recital was of all living composers — no Bach or Brahms on my program,” he says. “I was always wanting to play contemporary music and use my instrument outside [concert halls]. That’s still what I want to do.”

While still in school, Dillard played with a few bands, and tried to find his groove in Deep Ellum. It didn’t work out, though.

“I started playing Deep Ellum in like ’09, but I didn’t feel that much energy at that point. It was harder to get people to come out there,” Dillard says. And so he gave up music entirely. Cold turkey. Nada.

“I had quit for a while because I was really depressed. I just didn’t have fun,” he says. “I didn’t write, I didn’t play, I didn’t go out, I didn’t listen to anything except what was on my iPod.” Instead, Dillard — then still presenting as female — pursued another interest: Boxing.

“I did it really hardcore — I got [ranked] all they way up to no. 9 in the country [in the lightweight class],” Dillard says. For years, he took a break from music altogether. “Then one day it just all came back.”

Part of the impetus was attending shows at RBC, especially the recurring Monday night Outward Bound Mixtape Sessions, a hodgepodge of experimental and left-of-center musical and performance-art acts that in many ways removed Dillard’s blinders — about Deep Ellum, about his love of music and about his sexual identity.

“Gender dysmorphia is the worst — you don’t feel human because you’ve become disconnected from yourself,” he explains. “Going there was part of my coming out. There are so many different kinds of people. Everyone is ‘queer’ in their own, different way — it’s very avant garde.”

On Monday nights, he says, “you can hear everything from an ambient ensemble with light projections to like a hardcore metal band to someone having a nervous breakdown onstage through effects pedals … I’m not even joking. Everyone who shows up there is just open-minded and there to experience whatever you put in front of them. The energy you feel is life energy.”

Audiences at this Monday’s event will get a chance to experience that energy as Dillard and his trio The Mystiks make their Outward Bound debut.

The experience just as a patron affected Dillard’s own musical style, preparing him to share his own aesthetic. “It made me go further in how I perform. The performer after me goes by [the pronoun] ‘they.’ My music has been influenced by the energy I felt. I write songs I wanna hear — music that doesn’t have a chord progression I’ve heard 500 fucking times.”

Dillard attributes his courage to come out as trans to “Caitlyn Jenner and Laverne Cox and also to little 16-year-old kids at Booker T., who are changing their pronouns from he to they. I thought, it’s time to step up — the kids are over it. I’m almost 31. Time to be me.”

It’s an exciting evolution for the trans artist.

“Since coming out, the music I wrote a year ago is not the same as what I write now. I feel young, I feel light — like there’s a weight off of me. Oh man! I just … like… ya know, it feels like when I was in my first band and we were just loud for the hell of it.”

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

 

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Galveston Plezzure

Austin’s ‘Wolf Pack’ hosts Texas’ first-ever lesbian resort takeover

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WHAT WOULD THAT BITCH JUDY DO? | Plezzure Island co-founders Michelle Daly and Gabby Ayala … along with their inflatable mascot Judy. (Arnold Wayne Jones/Dallas Voice)

 

screen-shot-2016-09-22-at-6-45-08-pmOnce upon a time, four women joined together to form a pack. Their mission: To the change the landscape of how lesbians meet and play.

Michelle Solórzano Daly and Kelly West, along with their best friends Gabby Ayala and Ashley Marshall, joined together to form a company, Wolf Pack Productions. But everyone knows them as the Wolf Pack.

They’ve crafted happy hours and Pride events. They host regular, massive ladies’ nights at Austin’s new LGBTQ club, Highland Lounge.

They’ve proven that they know how to bring the girls and they know what the girls want. And now their biggest event is about to unfold — Plezzure Island, the first-ever all-female Texas resort takeover, coming to Galveston at the end of the month. The lesbian/woman centered (trans inclusive) event is a weekend of pool parties, a beach party, nighttime entertainment, DJs and a slew of lesbian celebs, including DJs, writers and TV stars.

The weekend opens with a VIP cocktail party and “speed dating” session. Friday includes a ton of daytime events, followed that night by a pajama party called The Sleepover, followed Saturday by a performance by Hunter Valentine and more activities.
We tapped the ’Pack to find out why they created this event and what they hope it will deliver.

— Jenny Block

Dallas Voice: Lesbians have a bad rep for not wanting to go out. Do you think that stereotype is true?  Ayala: This has been a stereotype of the lesbian community for a long time. There is the belief that we go out when we are single and then stay home knitting and drinking tea and raising our cats when we couple up.

Our community is so diverse that it is tough to make a blanket statement and say we are all one thing or one way. What we found out from the success of Lesbutante and The Boss events is that maybe the once a month and occasional happy hour is the right cadence.

There is something so incredibly exciting about seeing 400 to 500 women gather, so our goal is to create a space where that happens. We have done that in Austin with L&B and now we are taking the show on the road to bring that party to a greater audience. Us lesbians are a fun people. We like to go out. We like to socialize and we know how to party. You can’t put us in a box… unless we want to be.

What made you think there was a need/desire for an event like this?  Daly: There’s the Dinah Shore in Palm Springs; Aqua Girl in Miami; and Girls in Wonderland in Orlando. So what do we have left? Middle America and the great state of Texas.

They say everything is bigger and better in Texas, and that’s what we are about to show the world with a touch of good old southern hospitality. The expenses pile up when you have to book flights, rent cars, purchase weekend passes, budget for alcohol/food etc. Texas is such a large state that we expect 80 percent of our attendees to come just from all of the different cities in Texas, including Austin, Dallas, Corpus Christi, San Antonio, Houston and Laredo; although we have women coming from the D.C. area, Denver, New Orleans, and Florida.

By hosting a four-day event like this in Texas, it will allow those who haven’t been able to afford going elsewhere the opportunity to experience a space where they can be themselves; make long lasting friendships; find love; and meet others just like themselves.

Other than having a great time, what do you hope attendees will get out of this weekend?  Ayala: This event is about so much! A great time will be the baseline for this experience. We are also bringing a sense of community to this event. Whether you roll in with a whole crew or by yourself, we want you to leave with new friends. You will have at least four after meeting us.

We are taking it back to summer camp where you meet a whole bunch of cool kids and you cannot wait to see them the next year. Last but not least is the southern hospitality our guests will experience. I remember when I moved to Austin from California the biggest thing that stood out was how nice everyone here is! We want to give that to our guests who are visiting from all over the country.

Is this more of a couples event, a singles event, or both?  Marshall: Definitely an event for both — we’re focused on providing a space for attendees to enjoy with old friends, make new friends, and maybe even find a special someone… even if it’s only for the weekend. Our speed-dating event straddles both aspects — not only focused on hooking people up but also introducing attendees to the women with whom they’ll be sharing the experience.

What are you most excited about the weekend?  Ayala: I am so excited for the moment that I can step back and look at the crowd. I just want to watch the crowd enjoy the experience we have created. Enjoy each other and the vibe. I can already see it. Goosebumps.

Marshall: I can’t wait to see all of the events come to fruition but I’m most excited about our Friday night event, The Sleepover — we’ve got such an exciting evening planned with a live performance by BedPost Confessions (one of my favorite Austin performance groups) and our favorite DJ, DJ Citizen Jane, who has flown in from Miami for the weekend. The vibe is going to be very sexy and vibrant — although I still need to pick out my pajamas.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 23, 2016.

—  Dallasvoice