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02/19/2013

Gay Man Responds to Azealia Banks' 'Faggot' Slurs with Rap Instructing Her to 'Love Don't Hate': VIDEO

Yezak

Ryan James Yezak, the filmmaker behind the in-progress documentary Second Class Citizens (remember 'The Gay Rights Movement' video?), doesn't want to give up on Azealia Banks because of her use of anti-gay slurs, so he wrote this open rap to her.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

In related news, GLAAD President Herndon Graddick reached out to Towleroad with a reaction to our post last night about Banks' attacks on the organization and her defense of the word "faggot".

Said Graddick: "I've never said that Azealia Banks is anti-gay, but I think she talks like someone disconnected from the violence experienced by men who don't fit society's notions of masculinity -- violence that escalates when celebrities like Azealia Banks demean such people. It's the queer youth and those who might not fit the mold of masculinity who suffer most from this kind of crap she is peddling."

Posted Feb. 19,2013 at 2:40 PM EST by in Azealia Banks, Gay Slurs, News, Ryan James Yezak | Permalink | Comments (45)


Something Different from Kylie Minogue: LISTEN

Whistle

Kylie Minogue appeared with Juno Temple in a film released last year called Jack and Diane and also sang on the soundtrack with experimental electronic group Mum. The song has just been released as a single.

Listen, AFTER THE JUMP....

Posted Feb. 19,2013 at 2:32 PM EST by in Kylie Minogue, Music, News | Permalink | Comments (6)


Tectonic Theatre Project Presents 'The Laramie Project Cycle' At BAM: REVIEW

The Laramie Project_Tectonic Theater Project_PC_Julieta Cervantes

BY NAVEEN KUMAR

Just months after the fifteenth anniversary of Matthew Shepard’s death, the Tectonic Theatre Project presents both plays of The Laramie Project Cycle at Brooklyn Academy of Music, performing in repertory at the Harvey Theater through February 24th

The Laramie Project_Michael Winther (in hat), Mercedes Herrero (with mic)_PC_Julieta CervantesThese extraordinary productions, helmed by Tectonic’s resident director Moisés Kaufman (The Heiress), are proof of The Laramie Project’s lasting ingenuity. Then, as now, this is provocative, innovative, and wrenching theatre—and its call to arms for social justice is as urgent as ever.

In the fall of 1998, just one month after Shepard’s death, members of the theatre company travelled to Laramie, Wyoming to interview its citizens about their experience with one the country’s most notorious hate crimes and its explosive aftermath—including the ensuing media frenzy, investigation and trail of Shepard’s murderers, and how all of this affected the small western town.

Beautifully assembled using interview transcripts, company member journal entries, and other published accounts, the result is a searing and powerful play that offers rare insight into the emotional lives of those immediately affected by a tragedy that quickly escalated to the national level. The company conceived a second play by the same process in 2008, The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later, to follow up on developments in the community.

This momentous New York production of both plays reunites most of the Tectonic company members who traveled to Laramie and conceived the original project, which has since been adapted into an HBO film and seen thousands of productions around the country.

CONTINUED, AFTER THE JUMP...

The Lararmie Project Ten Years Later_Greg Pierotti_PC_Julieta CervantesThe expert ensemble of eight performs dozens of different characters with ease and precision, often using one indicative article of costume—like a jacket or pair of glasses—to switch between finely drawn characterizations. Original company members also play themselves, relaying observations they made in Laramie fifteen years ago.

Simple, compelling visual design and fluid direction for both productions are characteristic of Tectonic’s style and practice of staying focused on voices and ideas without unnecessary distraction.

The more viscerally emotional of the two, Part One of The Laramie Project Cycle is also the more successfully constructed drama. The play not only has a clear story to tell—that of the murder and its immediate aftermath—but its voices speak with the urgency and emotional intensity that follows hot on the heels of national tragedy.

Mostly addressing the audience directly, company members and characters tell their personal stories—from Matthew’s friends and University teachers, to the teenage boy who found him tied up to a fence, the policewoman first on the scene, and the spokesman and CEO of the Colorado hospital where Shepard died after spending several nationally publicized days on life-support.

The Laramie Project Ten Years Later_Tectonic Theater Project_PC_Julieta CervantesThe immediate outpouring of sentiment and national attention had necessarily died down when the company returned to Laramie ten years later, which was precisely their reason for creating a follow-up project. While the second play indeed feels like a vitally important companion piece, it’s not quite as solidly constructed a work of drama. 

Developments they discover—like the slow road to political change, and a lingering theory promoted by an episode of 20/20 that Shepard’s murder was a robbery gone awry and not in fact a hate crime—are undoubtedly key pieces of the story to understand. However, without the clear framework of a story, the insights feel more piecemeal.

Part Two of the cycle also includes chilling prison interviews with both of Shepard’s murderers, Aaron McKinney and Russell Henderson, as well as inspirational words from Judy Shepard, whose political activism paved the way for the Hate Crimes Preventions Act bearing her son’s name, which Obama signed into law in 2009.

Our national imagination has a natural tendency to forget the distinct, immediate heat of galvanizing tragedies so vividly captured in The Laramie Project. This one is worth a reminder.

Recent theatre features...
Ethan Hawke Opens in ‘Clive’ Off Broadway: REVIEW
Martin Moran's 'All The Rage' Opens Off Broadway: REVIEW
Ben Rimalower Is Working Through His 'Patti Issues' At The Duplex: INTERVIEW
'Picnic' Starring Sebastian Stan Opens on Broadway: REVIEW
'The Other Place' Starring Laurie Metcalf Opens On Broadway: REVIEW

Follow Naveen Kumar on Twitter: @Mr_NaveenKumar (photos: julieta cervantes)

Posted Feb. 19,2013 at 1:20 PM EST by in Matthew Shepard, Naveen Kumar, New York, News, Review, Theatre | Permalink | Comments (5)


Crain's: Half of Illinoisans Back Marriage Equality

As Illinoisans wait for the House to take up the marriage equality bill recently passed by the Senate, a new poll is out from Crain's/Ipsos:

ILThe survey of 600 adults found that 50 percent support the gay-marriage bill that cleared the state Senate last week and now awaits action in the House. That's considerably more than the 29 percent who oppose it, with 20 percent saying they don't know or have mixed feelings on the matter.

As expected, support is strongest in Chicago, with 56 percent backing passage. A majority of 52 percent of suburban residents supports approval, but support drops to a plurality of 48 percent downstate.

The on-line survey had an accuracy rate of plus or minus 4.7 percent statewide, with wider ranges for numbers specific to Chicago or its suburbs.

Posted Feb. 19,2013 at 12:55 PM EST by in Chicago, Gay Marriage, Illinois, News | Permalink | Comments (4)


Brit Boybander Duncan James Flexes for Instagram

James

Bisexual singer Duncan James from the Brit boyband Blue and his "tantastic tanorexic" friend Nathan Hunter Pope show off, as Squarehippies notes, "what Instagram was made for."

Posted Feb. 19,2013 at 12:51 PM EST by in Duncan Hunter, Instagram, News | Permalink | Comments (22)


New Documentary on Vivian Maier, the Genius Nanny Street Photographer Discovered After Her Death: TRAILER

Maier

Back in January 2011 I wrote about the shocking discovery of Vivian Maier's body of work by John Maloof, the former real estate agent who discovered it and began his campaign to have it recognized.

Now there's a forthcoming documentary about Maier.

Watch the trailer, AFTER THE JUMP...

Here's the video from my earlier post:

Posted Feb. 19,2013 at 11:56 AM EST by in Film, News, Photography | Permalink | Comments (10)



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