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04/19/2007


San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus 'I Am Harvey Milk' Original Cast Recording Comes Out: VIDEO

SFGMC

To coincide with National Coming Out Day the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus released a teaser for their original cast recording CD of I Am Harvey Milk by Andrew Lippa (The Addams FamilyBig Fish). Performed this past June at SFGMC's 35th anniversary concert, I Am Harvey Milk is an original work commissioned by the chorus that chronicles the life and legacy of Harvey Milk. The 300-member chorus is accompanied by the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony and features Noah Marlowe as Young Harvey, Andrew Lippa himself as Harvey Milk, and Tony Award-winning soprano Laura Benanti.

The teaser clip samples a few minutes from the finale piece, "Tired of the Silence", which implores gays and lesbians to proudly come out, and displays image after image of victories in the LGBT civil rights movement that were also shown during the live performance. The CD can be purchased on the SFGMC website and should ship later this month with the iTunes version of the album available by the end of October. The video as well as a few lyrics from select songs can be seen AFTER THE JUMP...

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United States Postal Service To Issue Harvey Milk Stamp

MilkEarlier this year we reported on speculation that the United States Postal Service (USPS) might be getting ready to release a Harvey Milk stamp. A campaign advocating for a stamp in Milk's honor began back in 2009 and today the USPS has announced they will in fact be issuing the stamp sometime in 2014. The Harvey Milk Foundation broke the news on Facebook:

"Another advancement for LGBT, recognition for Harvey and his message of hope! Amazing news from Stuart Milk, please share widely!

"Breaking! It is official! The USPS will confirm this week that my uncle, Harvey Milk will be commemorated on a 2014 US postage stamp. Another first! My deep gratitude to everyone that supported this effort! More details including the image to come via USPS soon! "Hope Will Never Be Silent" and will be on millions of letters soon!"

As GayPolitics.com notes, Milk's stamp will be the first to feature an openly LGBT elected official. Chucke Wolfe, President and CEO of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Institute commented on the significance of the USPS's decision:

"Harvey Milk’s legacy is alive and well...His historic run paved the way for a new generation of LGBT leaders who can be open and honest about who they are, and it’s encouraging to see the U.S. Postal Service honoring his legacy of perseverance and pride today."


Harvey Milk Stamp Coming in 2014?

Milkstamp

Back in 2009, we reported on efforts to get the U.S. Postal Service to issue a Harvey Milk stamp.

Could it be happening?

The Bay Area Reporter is hopeful:

Linn's Stamp News, a weekly publication that covers the mail service, is reporting in its May 27 issue that Milk was among the special stamps chosen for next year by the Citizens Stamp Advisory Committee during its closed door meetings earlier this year.

An anonymous source sent Linn's a copy of the panel's January 31 and February 1 meeting minutes where 2014 stamps were debated and chosen. It included a notation that the minutes regarding the Milk stamp, along with a number of other choices, had been approved at an April 13 meeting.

Reporter Bill McAllister, who provided the Bay Area Reporter with a copy of the article posted to the website of the subscription-only publication May 13, cautioned in the story that "there is no certainty" that the Milk or other listed stamps would be issued in 2014. The documents McAllister was provided, nonetheless, list the Milk stamp for release in May next year.


On Harvey Milk Day, Activists Remind Us That His Words are More Powerful Than Ever: VIDEO

Milk

Videographer and activist Sean Chapin, along with Andrea Shorter, Randall Mann, Sister Roma, Courtney Walsh, and Aaron Wimmer, produced a powerful reading of Harvey Milk's famous "Hope" speech at the top of the Castro in honor of today, Harvey Milk Day in California.

Walsh and Wimmer are two actors from Dear Harvey, the recent New Conservatory Theater play about Milk's life, Mann is a local poet and winner of the 2003 Kenyon Review Prize in Poetry,Sister Roman is a 20 year veteran of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, and Shorter is a  lesbian political consultant who serves on the city's Commission on the Status of Women.

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

Chapin writes:

"What came to be called 'The Hope Speech' was initially conceived as a stump address, wherein Milk attempted to embolden a strong GLBTQ nationalism within the Castro, while also appealing for an alliance with other disenfranchised groups and straight folks," wrote Jason Edward Black and Charles E. Morris III in their anthology An Archive of Hope: Harvey Milk's Speeches and Writings (University of California Press, 2013). Milk would revise the speech and recite it several more times at various appearances, according to the introduction written by Black and Morris to the version they included in their book. It was a defiant speech about gay self-acceptance that included Milk's call for LGBT people to come out of the closet and inspire others to do so. For as Milk said, particularly of LGBT youth, "And you have to give them hope. Hope for a better world. Hope for a better tomorrow. Hope for a place to go if the pressures at home are too great. Hope that all will be alright."

Milk would have been 83-years-old today.

2_milk

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Hateful Group Asks Parents To Keep Kids Home on Harvey Milk Day

Milk
This Wednesday is Harvey Milk Day in California; a day which is intended to celebrate this important gay rights activist. One conservative anti-gay organization, SaveCalifornia.com, is using radio ads airing in Sacramento and Los Angeles to urge parents to keep their kids home from school that day. Randy Thomasson, the president of the group explains his reasoning behind the illogical boycott:

According to the Sacramento Bee, the group's president, Randy Thomasson, says: "This is harmful to children...This is not academic, it's brainwashing." Thomasson also explained his feelings on the holiday to CBS13: “Children belong to the parents, not to the state, and to force a sexual agenda and a political agenda upon children, that’s highly inappropriate.”

What is highly inappropriate is the all of the information as well as a video posted on on the group's website which is full of hateful lies and anti-gay propaganda. The alarmist image above is from the group's website.

Watch a CBS13 news segment about the anti-gay campaign, AFTER THE JUMP.

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Powerful Anti-Hate Ad Imagines What Harvey Milk, Matthew Shepard, and Others Would Be Like Today: VIDEO

Milk

A powerful new ad from the Anti-Defamation League takes a look at a number of well-known figures whose lives were cut short by hate, imagining what their lives might be like today. MLK Jr., Anne Frank, Harvey Milk, Daniel Pearl, James Byrd, JR., Matthew Shepard, and Yitzhak Rabin are included in the ad which marks the organization's centennial year.

The ad is set, appropriately, to the music of John Lennon.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Shepard

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