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World AIDS Day 10 Talking Transition 09 Charges Dropped in Nettles Slay 22 Celine is Back 33



November 27, 2013 |


City News

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Changing laws changed their lives The recent Supreme Court ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act led Greg and Peter to take a serious look at their investment planning needs. The rapidly changing legal landscape meant it was crucial that they worked with someone who was knowledgeable, so they turned to Wells Fargo Advisors. Our Financial Advisors who have the Accredited Domestic Partnership Advisor℠ (ADPA®) designation are well-versed on the current set of challenges, so Greg and Peter walked away with a solid plan and confidence in the future. Let’s talk about your long-term investment planning needs. Because when people talk, great things happen. To find one of our ADPA-certified Financial Advisors in your area, visit today.

Wells Fargo Advisors is the trade name used by two separate registered broker-dealers: Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC, and Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network, LLC, Members SIPC, non-bank affiliates of Wells Fargo & Company. Accredited Domestic Partnership AdvisorSM and ADPASM are service marks of the College for Financial Planning®. © 2013 Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC, Member SIPC. All rights reserved. 1125358 9.875x11.4 4c GCN.indd 1

10/30/13 9:54 AM


| November 27, 2013




Flavors savored

32 Orange was the new Lavender

Cover Illustration by Michael Shirey





New York promoters of Russian investment on the run

Felony charge nixed in HIV exposure case

That sad Thanksgiving








November 27, 2013 |

What is STRIBILD? STRIBILD is a prescription medicine used to treat HIV-1 in adults who have never taken HIV-1 medicines before. It combines 4 medicines into 1 pill to be taken once a day with food. STRIBILD is a complete single-tablet regimen and should not be used with other HIV-1 medicines. STRIBILD does not cure HIV-1 infection or AIDS. To control HIV-1 infection and decrease HIV-related illnesses you must keep taking STRIBILD. Ask your healthcare provider if you have questions about how to reduce the risk of passing HIV-1 to others. Always practice safer sex and use condoms to lower the chance of sexual contact with body fluids. Never reuse or share needles or other items that have body fluids on them.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION What is the most important information I should know about STRIBILD? STRIBILD can cause serious side effects: • Build-up of an acid in your blood (lactic acidosis), which is a serious medical emergency. Symptoms of lactic acidosis include feeling very weak or tired, unusual (not normal) muscle pain, trouble breathing, stomach pain with nausea or vomiting, feeling cold especially in your arms and legs, feeling dizzy or lightheaded, and/or a fast or irregular heartbeat. • Serious liver problems. The liver may become large (hepatomegaly) and fatty (steatosis). Symptoms of liver problems include your skin or the white part of your eyes turns yellow (jaundice), dark “tea-colored” urine, light-colored bowel movements (stools), loss of appetite for several days or longer, nausea, and/or stomach pain. • You may be more likely to get lactic acidosis or serious liver problems if you are female, very overweight (obese), or have been taking STRIBILD for a long time. In some cases, these serious conditions have led to death. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any symptoms of these conditions.

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• Worsening of hepatitis B (HBV) infection. If you also have HBV and stop taking STRIBILD, your hepatitis may suddenly get worse. Do not stop taking STRIBILD without first talking to your healthcare provider, as they will need to monitor your health. STRIBILD is not approved for the treatment of HBV. Who should not take STRIBILD? Do not take STRIBILD if you: • Take a medicine that contains: alfuzosin, dihydroergotamine, ergotamine, methylergonovine, cisapride, lovastatin, simvastatin, pimozide, sildenafil when used for lung problems (Revatio®), triazolam, oral midazolam, rifampin or the herb St. John’s wort. • For a list of brand names for these medicines, please see the Brief Summary on the following pages. • Take any other medicines to treat HIV-1 infection, or the medicine adefovir (Hepsera®). What are the other possible side effects of STRIBILD? Serious side effects of STRIBILD may also include: • New or worse kidney problems, including kidney failure. Your healthcare provider should do regular blood and urine tests to check your kidneys before and during treatment with STRIBILD. If you develop kidney problems, your healthcare provider may tell you to stop taking STRIBILD. • Bone problems, including bone pain or bones getting soft or thin, which may lead to fractures. Your healthcare provider may do tests to check your bones. • Changes in body fat can happen in people taking HIV-1 medicines. • Changes in your immune system. Your immune system may get stronger and begin to fight infections. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any new symptoms after you start taking STRIBILD. The most common side effects of STRIBILD include nausea and diarrhea. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effects that bother you or don’t go away.

What should I tell my healthcare provider before taking STRIBILD? • All your health problems. Be sure to tell your healthcare provider if you have or had any kidney, bone, or liver problems, including hepatitis virus infection. • All the medicines you take, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. STRIBILD may affect the way other medicines work, and other medicines may affect how STRIBILD works. Keep a list of all your medicines and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist. Do not start any new medicines while taking STRIBILD without first talking with your healthcare provider. • If you take hormone-based birth control (pills, patches, rings, shots, etc). • If you take antacids. Take antacids at least 2 hours before or after you take STRIBILD. • If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if STRIBILD can harm your unborn baby. Tell your healthcare provider if you become pregnant while taking STRIBILD. • If you are breastfeeding (nursing) or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed. HIV-1 can be passed to the baby in breast milk. Also, some medicines in STRIBILD can pass into breast milk, and it is not known if this can harm the baby. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit, or call 1-800-FDA-1088. Please see Brief Summary of full Prescribing Information with important warnings on the following pages.


| November 27, 2013

STRIBILD is a prescription medicine used as a complete single-tablet regimen to treat HIV-1 in adults who have never taken HIV-1 medicines before. STRIBILD does not cure HIV-1 or AIDS.

I started my personal revolution Talk to your healthcare provider about starting treatment. STRIBILD is a complete HIV-1 treatment in 1 pill, once a day.

Ask if it’s right for you.

2/28/13 3:27 PM


November 27, 2013 |

Patient Information STRIBILDTM (STRY-bild) (elvitegravir 150 mg/cobicistat 150 mg/emtricitabine 200 mg/ tenofovir disoproxil fumarate 300 mg) tablets Brief summary of full Prescribing Information. For more information, please see the full Prescribing Information, including Patient Information. What is STRIBILD? • STRIBILD is a prescription medicine used to treat HIV-1 in adults who have never taken HIV-1 medicines before. STRIBILD is a complete regimen and should not be used with other HIV-1 medicines. • STRIBILD does not cure HIV-1 or AIDS. You must stay on continuous HIV-1 therapy to control HIV-1 infection and decrease HIV-related illnesses. • Ask your healthcare provider about how to prevent passing HIV-1 to others. Do not share or reuse needles, injection equipment, or personal items that can have blood or body fluids on them. Do not have sex without protection. Always practice safer sex by using a latex or polyurethane condom to lower the chance of sexual contact with semen, vaginal secretions, or blood.

• Do not stop taking STRIBILD without first talking to your healthcare provider • If you stop taking STRIBILD, your healthcare provider will need to check your health often and do blood tests regularly for several months to check your HBV infection. Tell your healthcare provider about any new or unusual symptoms you may have after you stop taking STRIBILD Who should not take STRIBILD? Do not take STRIBILD if you also take a medicine that contains: • adefovir (Hepsera®) • alfuzosin hydrochloride (Uroxatral®) • cisapride (Propulsid®, Propulsid Quicksolv®) • ergot-containing medicines, including: dihydroergotamine mesylate (D.H.E. 45®, Migranal®), ergotamine tartrate (Cafergot®, Migergot®, Ergostat®, Medihaler Ergotamine®, Wigraine®, Wigrettes®), and methylergonovine maleate (Ergotrate®, Methergine®) • lovastatin (Advicor®, Altoprev®, Mevacor®) • oral midazolam

What is the most important information I should know about STRIBILD?

• pimozide (Orap®)

STRIBILD can cause serious side effects, including: 1. Build-up of lactic acid in your blood (lactic acidosis). Lactic acidosis can happen in some people who take STRIBILD or similar (nucleoside analogs) medicines. Lactic acidosis is a serious medical emergency that can lead to death. Lactic acidosis can be hard to identify early, because the symptoms could seem like symptoms of other health problems. Call your healthcare provider right away if you get any of the following symptoms which could be signs of lactic acidosis: • feel very weak or tired • have unusual (not normal) muscle pain • have trouble breathing • have stomach pain with nausea or vomiting • feel cold, especially in your arms and legs • feel dizzy or lightheaded • have a fast or irregular heartbeat 2. Severe liver problems. Severe liver problems can happen in people who take STRIBILD. In some cases, these liver problems can lead to death. Your liver may become large (hepatomegaly) and you may develop fat in your liver (steatosis). Call your healthcare provider right away if you get any of the following symptoms of liver problems: • your skin or the white part of your eyes turns yellow (jaundice) • dark “tea-colored” urine • light-colored bowel movements (stools) • loss of appetite for several days or longer • nausea • stomach pain You may be more likely to get lactic acidosis or severe liver problems if you are female, very overweight (obese), or have been taking STRIBILD for a long time. 3. Worsening of Hepatitis B infection. If you have hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and take STRIBILD, your HBV may get worse (flare-up) if you stop taking STRIBILD. A “flare-up” is when your HBV infection suddenly returns in a worse way than before. • Do not run out of STRIBILD. Refill your prescription or talk to your healthcare provider before your STRIBILD is all gone

• sildenafil (Revatio®), when used for treating lung problems

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• rifampin (Rifadin®, Rifamate®, Rifater®, Rimactane®) • simvastatin (Simcor®, Vytorin®, Zocor®) • triazolam (Halcion®) • the herb St. John’s wort Do not take STRIBILD if you also take any other HIV-1 medicines, including: • Other medicines that contain tenofovir (Atripla®, Complera®, Viread®, Truvada®) • Other medicines that contain emtricitabine, lamivudine, or ritonavir (Combivir®, Emtriva®, Epivir® or Epivir-HBV®, Epzicom®, Kaletra®, Norvir®, Trizivir®) STRIBILD is not for use in people who are less than 18 years old. What are the possible side effects of STRIBILD? STRIBILD may cause the following serious side effects: • See “What is the most important information I should know about STRIBILD?” • New or worse kidney problems, including kidney failure. Your healthcare provider should do blood and urine tests to check your kidneys before you start and while you are taking STRIBILD. Your healthcare provider may tell you to stop taking STRIBILD if you develop new or worse kidney problems. • Bone problems can happen in some people who take STRIBILD. Bone problems include bone pain, softening or thinning (which may lead to fractures). Your healthcare provider may need to do tests to check your bones. • Changes in body fat can happen in people who take HIV-1 medicine. These changes may include increased amount of fat in the upper back and neck (“buffalo hump”), breast, and around the middle of your body (trunk). Loss of fat from the legs, arms and face may also happen. The exact cause and long-term health effects of these conditions are not known. • Changes in your immune system (Immune Reconstitution Syndrome) can happen when you start taking HIV-1 medicines. Your immune system may get stronger and begin to fight infections that have been hidden in your body for a long time. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you start having any new symptoms after starting your HIV-1 medicine.


| November 27, 2013

The most common side effects of STRIBILD include: • Nausea • Diarrhea Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away. • These are not all the possible side effects of STRIBILD. For more information, ask your healthcare provider. • Call your healthcare provider for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. What should I tell my healthcare provider before taking STRIBILD? Tell your healthcare provider about all your medical conditions, including: • If you have or had any kidney, bone, or liver problems, including hepatitis B infection • If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if STRIBILD can harm your unborn baby. Tell your healthcare provider if you become pregnant while taking STRIBILD. – There is a pregnancy registry for women who take antiviral medicines during pregnancy. The purpose of this registry is to collect information about the health of you and your baby. Talk with your healthcare provider about how you can take part in this registry. • If you are breastfeeding (nursing) or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed if you take STRIBILD. - You should not breastfeed if you have HIV-1 because of the risk of passing HIV-1 to your baby. - Two of the medicines in STRIBILD can pass to your baby in your breast milk. It is not known if the other medicines in STRIBILD can pass into your breast milk. - Talk with your healthcare provider about the best way to feed your baby. Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements: • STRIBILD may affect the way other medicines work, and other medicines may affect how STRIBILD works. • Be sure to tell your healthcare provider if you take any of the following medicines: - Hormone-based birth control (pills, patches, rings, shots, etc) - Antacid medicines that contains aluminum, magnesium hydroxide, or calcium carbonate. Take antacids at least 2 hours before or after you take STRIBILD - Medicines to treat depression, organ transplant rejection, or high blood pressure - amiodarone (Cordarone®, Pacerone®) - atorvastatin (Lipitor®, Caduet®) - bepridil hydrochloric (Vascor®, Bepadin®) - bosentan (Tracleer®) - buspirone - carbamazepine (Carbatrol®, Epitol®, Equetro®, Tegreto®) - clarithromycin (Biaxin®, Prevpac®) - clonazepam (Klonopin®) - clorazepate (Gen-xene®, Tranxene®) - colchicine (Colcrys®) - medicines that contain dexamethasone - diazepam (Valium®)

- digoxin (Lanoxin®) - disopyramide (Norpace®) - estazolam - ethosuximide (Zarontin®) - flecainide (Tambocor®) - flurazepam - fluticasone (Flovent®, Flonase®, Flovent® Diskus, Flovent® HFA, Veramyst®) - itraconazole (Sporanox®) - ketoconazole (Nizoral®) - lidocaine (Xylocaine®) - mexiletine - oxcarbazepine (Trileptal®) - perphenazine - phenobarbital (Luminal®) - phenytoin (Dilantin®, Phenytek®) - propafenone (Rythmol®) - quinidine (Neudexta®) - rifabutin (Mycobutin®) - rifapentine (Priftin®) - risperidone (Risperdal®, Risperdal Consta®) - salmeterol (Serevent®) or salmeterol when taken in combination with fluticasone (Advair Diskus®, Advair HFA®) - sildenafil (Viagra®), tadalafil (Cialis®) or vardenafil (Levitra®, Staxyn®), for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED). If you get dizzy or faint (low blood pressure), have vision changes or have an erection that last longer than 4 hours, call your healthcare provider or get medical help right away. - tadalafil (Adcirca®), for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension - telithromycin (Ketek®) - thioridazine - voriconazole (Vfend®) - warfarin (Coumadin®, Jantoven®) - zolpidem (Ambien®, Edlular®, Intermezzo®, Zolpimist®) Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of all your medicines and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist when you get a new medicine. Do not start any new medicines while you are taking STRIBILD without first talking with your healthcare provider. Keep STRIBILD and all medicines out of reach of children. This Brief Summary summarizes the most important information about STRIBILD. If you would like more information, talk with your healthcare provider. You can also ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist for information about STRIBILD that is written for health professionals, or call 1-800-445-3235 or go to Issued: August 2012

COMPLERA, EMTRIVA, GILEAD, the GILEAD Logo, GSI, HEPSERA, STRIBILD, the STRIBILD Logo, TRUVADA, and VIREAD are trademarks of Gilead Sciences, Inc., or its related companies. ATRIPLA is a trademark of Bristol-Myers Squibb & Gilead Sciences, LLC. All other marks referenced herein are the property of their respective owners. © 2013 Gilead Sciences, Inc. All rights reserved. QC14559 02/13

2/28/13 3:27 PM





November 27, 2013 |

Queens Councilman Mark Weprin and Manhattan Councilmembers Dan Garodnick and Melissa Mark-Viverito at the Baruch College speaker’s debate.



espite a mushrooming of candidate debates around town, the race for City Council speaker is limited to just 51 voters. But that’s not to say that this year’s seven announced candidates have suddenly decided to open up to a wider constituency an exclusive prerogative councilmembers previously guarded jealously. In fact, individual members have often enjoyed little leeway in casting their vote for speaker. “In many parts of the city, councilmembers aren’t allowed to think for themselves,” observed Ken Sherrill, a Hunter College political scientist and longtime student of New York municipal government. Traditionally, county Democratic organizations — especially in Queens, Brooklyn, and the Bronx — played the dominant role in the battle for Council control. When Christine Quinn, the first woman and first openly LGBT member to lead the Council, won her hard-fought contest in late 2005, the support of the Queens organization was instrumental in helping her dispatch her prime competitor, none other than Brooklyn’s Bill de Blasio. Borough party leaders certainly won’t let a little public exposure to the speaker’s contest dampen their resolve to play an inside game again this year. But a key conceit in the current political narrative is that 2013 is different. A new mood among the public. A new direction. A new mayor. De Blasio himself would seem philosophically aligned with charting a new course in choosing the Council speaker. Not only did he find himself at the short end of the stick when a leader was last chosen, but his cam-

paign this year, stuck in the doldrums for months, gained critical traction as he contrasted, in debate after debate, what he described as his inclusive style of leadership and decision-making with a heavyhanded control of the Council he saw from Quinn, who for months had been the clear frontrunner. De Blasio’s specific criticisms of the speaker focused on her delay in allowing a vote to guarantee most workers in New York paid sick days, her cautious response in addressing the NYPD’s stop and frisk policies, and her use of discretionary allocations to individual members to reward allies and punish dissenters. Boiling down the particulars, however, it’s clear the mayor-elect was faulting a political regime in which a Council speaker relies on powerful county organizations to maintain their reins on power. De Blasio has widely divergent relationships with the seven speaker candidates — the most distant being that with Harlem’s Inez Dickens, whose opponent he endorsed in the September primary — but in debates each has been careful to acknowledge the “mandate” he earned in his sweeping 50-point victory over Republican Joe Lhota. Still, at a Baruch College forum sponsored by the good government group Citizens Union, only Mark Weprin of East Queens and East Harlem’s Melissa Mark-Viverito said they or their senior staff had spoken about the contest with de Blasio or his senior staff. Weprin said he and the mayor-elect have spoken directly, while Mark-Viverito was more coy — though she can afford to be. The first councilmember to endorse de Blasio in defiance of Quinn, she is widely thought to be his favorite — and the favorite — in the race. “I see myself as the progressive candidate, who has an inclusive vision and

a record of accomplishment,” she told the crowd at Baruch and repeated in much the same formulation the next evening in an NY1 debate. To credibly make such a claim is a leg up in a year when the city elected the “unapologetic progressive alternative” as mayor and what observers consider the most progressive slate of City Council candidates in recent memory as well. In the current Council, the Progressive Caucus, co-chaired by Mark-Viverito and Brooklyn’s Brad Lander, numbers 11 members and saw its greatest success with the override of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s veto of a package of policecommunity relations reforms championed by Lander and Jumaane Williams, another contender for speaker. Out of that caucus, in recent weeks, has emerged a “progressive bloc” of 20 or more members — including newcomers to the Council — who have pledged to stand together in support of the same candidate in the speaker’s race. That pledge, if it can genuinely be carried out, represents a fundamental challenge to the county Democratic leaders. Hunter’s Sherrill said the progressive bloc’s bid reflects members’ “sense that traditional political machines are greatly weakened. And they are trying to fill the vacuum.” Beyond the specifics of the bloc’s ideology, its emergence squares nicely with a mood among voters for greater government transparency and among councilmembers themselves for greater input into how the body is run. A week before the November election, several dozen members and candidates just days away from winning their seats gathered at City Hall to embrace a package of procedural reforms, chief among them one that would “take the politics out of member items” by

allocating discretionary funding for Council districts on a “fair and objective basis.” The package, based on process and not outcomes, drew the support of at least 30 future councilmembers — a broader spectrum than the progressive bloc itself. An advocate for transparency and accountability, Citizens Union hails the vigorous discussion about revising Council rules. On the day it sponsored its speaker’s forum, it also released the findings of the questionnaires victorious Council candidates completed earlier in the year, which it said demonstrated “widespread support for reforms previously thought to be unachievable.” The group found 44 or more members of the 2014 Council supporting steps to strengthen committees relative to the speaker and more than three-dozen advocating greater member authority in drafting bills as well as more equitable and transparent allocation of discretionary funds to each Council district. Only on questions of limiting additional stipends to members and requiring greater disclosure of outside income did support for reform just barely win a majority. Discussing proposed reforms at the Baruch forum, the speaker candidates were most tepid on this last category, which — unlike proposals for decentralizing power from the speaker to the other members — would instead require sacrifice on the part of the Council’s rank and file. At several forums, the tenor of each candidate’s remarks about reform and the Council’s responsibility to act as a check and balance on the mayor has been telling. Mark-Viverito speaks proudly about being first out of the blocks for de Blasio and, at Baruch, pointed to “a clear mandate in this city that we need to move in a new direction.” While insisting she would not hesitate to “stand up and defend what the body wants,” she predicted the Council and the new mayor’s goals would largely be “aligned.” Dan Garodnick, an East Sider generally considered to be in the hunt with MarkViverito, talks less about ideology than about his skills as a “creative problem solver,” mentioning his efforts at organizing tenants of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village in a buy-out bid when their rent-stabilized status appeared threatened. Asked if reforms could weaken a Council already disadvantaged relative to the powers of the mayor, Garodnick responded, “That question hits right at the challenge we have. But that speaks to the skill of the speaker.” Queens’ Weprin, the third candidate given a decent shot at prevailing, cites his 16 years in the State Assembly prior to joining the Council in 2010 to claim his bona fides as a progressive, but lays greatest emphasis on two other factors — use of his Albany know-how to advance the city’s interests there and the eight years


NEW COUNCIL SPEAKER, continued on p.20

| November 27, 2013



Talking Transition, Not Talking Money At town hall meeting of LGBT, AIDS groups, focus is on need, but budget shortfalls loom BY DUNCAN OSBORNE



The LGBT Community Center’s Glennda Testone elicits community participation at the Talking Transition tent.

November 22 event were taken up with introductions of the panelists and presentations of the problems they or their clients confront. To satisfy the interactive requirement, Testone next read 20 statements about the community’s problems. The statements were also displayed on a large screen above the panelists’ heads. The audience was invited to hold up signs that read “True” on one side and “False” on the other. A panelist was then asked to

“No one in my line of work is so foolish as to imagine that everything we want is going to happen,” Daniel Tietz told Gay City News. say if the audience got it right and to comment on the statement. There was time toward the end of the event for a half-dozen questions from audience members. What went largely unmentioned during the 90 minutes was the city’s budget, which will continue to see annual deficits for the foreseeable future. Mayor de Blasio will also

have to negotiate new contracts with all of the city’s unions and that could require billions to pay for new labor, health, and pension contribution costs. The Bloomberg administration has balanced its recent budgets in large measure by not negotiating new contracts for the past four years. While all of the panelists certainly understood that relieving the problems they described requires money, few spoke to that issue. New York City, with its roughly $72 billion annual budget, is a major funder for their groups. When discussing the need to build housing for queer elders, Michael Adams noted that the city is not currently backing this. “This is something the city should be funding and supporting,” said the executive director of Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE) during the meeting. A November 15 meeting titled “Ending AIDS in New York City” had a similar tone. The attendees produced long lists of demands, but did not grapple with how to fund those demands other than backing a “Robin Hood tax” on financial transactions on Wall Street. “No one in my line of work is so foolish as to imagine that everything we want is going to happen,” Daniel Tietz, executive director of ACRIA, an AIDS research and education group, and a longtime Democratic Party activist, told Gay City News. “I do think it’s an opportunity to rethink the policy choices and how we


t the start of a town hall meeting held in the Talking Transition tent at Sixth Avenue and Canal Street, Glennda Testone told the roughly 50 people who turned out why they were gathered there. “Our goal tonight is to start a conversation about the serious issues that face the LGBT community,” the executive director of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center said at the November 22 event. It has been 20 years since a Democrat ran City Hall. Bill de Blasio, who will be sworn in on January 1, is not just a Democrat. He campaigned as the “unapologetic pr ogr essive alternative” not just to two successive Republican mayors — though Michael Bloomberg eventually shed that party label — but also to his fellow Democrats. “The people of this city have chosen a progressive path and tonight we go forward on it as one city,” de Blasio told a crowd of roughly 1,000 supporters who gathered in the Park Slope Armory on November 5 after he easily won the general election. In anticipation of a mayoralty that will perhaps be more receptive to the lobbying of queer and AIDS groups, 11 such groups organized the meeting. With an unwieldy 11 panelists, the 90-minute event was less of a conversation and more of a lecture as each panelist mostly detailed the ills — though they did articulate a few goals — that N e w Yo r k C i t y q u e e r s continue to be burdened with. Ten foundations spent a few million dollars to build the Talking Transition tent. Some of the walls and furniture were assembled from milk cartons that were meant to resemble soapboxes. Talking Transition required that every event have some interactive component. Community groups were invited to stage their meetings in the tent over two weeks starting on November 9. The tent drew visits from de Blasio, his wife Chirlane McCray, and members of his transition team. The first 20 to 25 minutes of the

SAGE’s Michael Adams says city money is not yet there for housing to serve LGBT seniors.

spend the money and to reprogram the resources to reflect the genuine needs of the city.” Some of the groups and the Talking Transition backers will produce reports on the proceedings that will be delivered to the de Blasio transition team. “I have to think that this is, if you will, the progressive wish list,” Tietz said. “That’s probably what mostly happened in that tent... That’s probably a shared agenda with the mayor -elect and a more progressive City Council. I do think it’s a great place to start a conversation.”


November 27, 2013 |

35.3 million people are currently living with AIDS

2.3 million new infections last year 10 million people now have access to retroviral therapies

30,000,000 people have died since 1981 636,000 people have died of AIDS, more than half were gay, bi men

There are 50,000 new infections each year

Men who have sex with men account for 63 percent of new infections CDC estimates that 1,148,200 are living with HIV infection in the US

129,000 know they have HIV

Thousands more are infected and are unaware of it New York leads the nation in new HIV diagnoses

100,000 have died of AIDS since 1981 SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 30

WORLD AIDS DAY 2013 : WE REMEMBER An event by Our Youth - NYC in recognition of World AIDS Day remembers those that have passed and aims to encourage gay youth to continue the fight against HIV/ AIDS. St John's Evangelical Lutheran Church,  81 Christopher St., btwn. Seventh Ave. & Bleecker St. 8-10 p.m. Call 212-242-5737.


WORLD AIDS DAY RALLY 2013 Join Housing Works, ACRIA, ACT UP-NY, Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), Treatment Action Group (TAG), American Run to End AIDS (AREA), Bailey House, Harlem United, AIDS Service Center of NY (ACS), AIDS Center of Queens County (ACQC), APICHA Community Health Center, AIDS Council of NY, Iris House, Planned Parenthood NYC, Long Island Association for AIDS Care, Community Health Action of Staten Island, Lower Eastside Harm Reduction Center (LESHRC), Long Island Association for AIDS Care (LIAAC), and a host of other local and regional HIV advocacy organizations and their supporters for a massive rally in Time Square — between 45th and 46th Sts. on Seventh Ave. 2 p.m. Every day, 11 New Yorkers are diagnosed with HIV and nearly five New Yorkers with AIDS die. Mark the 25th commemoration of World AIDS Day by declaring that now is the time to end AIDS as an epidemic here in New York State. Speakers will include Charles King of Housing Works, Janet Weinberg of GMHC, and Dan Teitz of ACRIA. WORLD AIDS DAY "HOW TO SURVIVE A PLAGUE" SCREENING Scott Kramer and Damon Jacobs, psychologists in New York, offer a special screening for World AIDS Day of David France's awardwinning documentary "How to Survive a Plague." This powerful film is about the beginning of the AIDS crisis, the formation of ACT UP, and the

heroic struggle to get approval for medications and services for people living with HIV/AIDS. Gay City News’ Paul Schindler wrote, “At the movie’s conclusion, when we finally meet all of the activists as they are today, we can see that the aching grief over all who were lost before we got lucky is, as France put it, ‘not even that far from the surface.’” After the film stick around for a discussion. 208 W. 13 th St. 2-5 p.m. or 347-620-5433. DAY WITH(OUT) ART 2013 - TALK This public forum explores singular moments in personal stories as a way of understanding and responding to the ongoing HIV crisis. Join fierce pussy and Risa Puleo along with artists and writers Alysia Abbott, Cathy Busby, and Visual AIDS artist member Orlando Ferrand as they share their experiences. Historian and writer Christa Orth facilitates. Artists Space, 55 Walker St., btwn. Broadway & Church St. 1-3 p.m. DAY WITH(OUT) ART 2013 - WALK Transitioning from Artists Space to Rusty Knot, this walk through SoHo and the West Village — led by writer and curator Alex Fialho — is a living history of the AIDS crisis in Greenwich Village. In a spirit of lively remembrance, writers, curators, and artists read briefly at the last residences of Joe Brainard, Keith Haring, and Cookie Mueller. The group also visits the former location of the New Museum, where Visual AIDS cofounder William Olander installed his groundbreaking "Let the Record Show..."; the site of Marsha P. Johnson's death near the water of the Christopher Street Pier; and the AIDS memorial in the Hudson River Park. Begin at Artists Space, 55 Walker St., btwn. Broadway & Church St. 3-4 p.m. Contact DAY WITH(OUT) ART 2013 - SING Day With(out) Art will end at Scissor Sundays at the Rusty Knot, tying the day to the power of music and acknowledging bars and nightclubs as among many sites of LGBTQ

liberation, solidarity, and cultural production. Enjoy a deep house vibe and disco sets by DJ Amber Valentine and others. Dance, sing, and celebrate. Rusty Knot, 425 West St. at W. 11th St. 4-6 p.m.


DAY OF REFLECTION: STRENGTHENING THE FIGHT TO END AIDS Join faith leaders, elected officials, AIDS services groups, advocates, and community members for music, performances, education, prayer, and action! The nearly 40 organizations participating include ACT UP-NY, African Services Committee, Ali Forney Center, AIDS Service Center, Bailey House, Community Health Action of Staten Island, Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies, Harlem United, Harm Reduction Coalition, Housing Works, Iris House, Inc., Latino Commission on AIDS, the LGBT Community Center, Lower East Side Harm Reduction Center, Partnership for the Homeless, Project Achieve, QUEEROCRACY, VOCAL-NY, and Washington Heights Corner Project. This event is part of the launching off of the campaign to end HIV in New York, also marked in Times Square on Dec. 1. First Corinthian Baptist Church 1912 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. at W. 154th St. 3-5 p.m.


SCREENING: THE UNIVERSE OF KEITH HARING In commemoration of World AIDS Day, Gay Men's Health Crisis will screen “The Universe of Keith Haring,” a fascinating look at this revolutionary artist and friend of GMHC, who was lost tragically to AIDS. GMHC, 446 W. 33rd St, 6th fl., 6-8 p.m. Contact LIGHTING CANDLES IN THE DARK IN THE HUDSON VALLEY Uptown Kingston will light candles in the dark to commemorate World AIDS Day. The Hudson Valley LGBTQ Community Center and the Old Dutch Church in partnership with Angel Food East,

Hudson Valley Community Services, Institute for Family Health, Mid-Hudson Care Center, Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley, and TOUCH-NY lead a 6:15 p.m. Candlelight Walk on Wall Street as part of a community-wide World AIDS Day commemoration. The walk steps off from the corner of Wall and John Sts. and proceeds to the Old Dutch Church at 272 Wall St. The route is wheelchair-accessible and candles will be distributed. Kenneth Walsh, musical director for the church, will perform on Old Dutch's 1955 Moeller great pipe organ as part of the program of Remembrance. HIV testing and safety counseling is available from 3-5 that afternoon at the LGBTQ Center’s headquarters at 300 Wall St., followed by an open house display of panels from the AIDS Memorial Quilt. Contact the Center at 845-3315300 or visit


Six hundred panels of the AIDS Memorial Quilt, the handmade tapestry, will be on display at the City College of New York. While the section weighs 54 tons, it is but a fraction of the entire quilt and stands as a striking memorial to the lives of countless individuals lost to AIDS. The City College display is the largest of its kind in America, according to Brian Holman, National Display Coordinator for the NAMES Project Foundation. The Quilt is being presented as part of the City College World AIDS Day Educational Series in collaboration with the City University's LGBT Task Force ( and will be open to the community for free public display and educational programming. Viewing locations are: The Center for Worker Education (CWE), 25 Broadway at Bowling Green, 7th fl., Dec. 2, 8-9 p.m.; Dec. 3, 9 a.m.9 p.m.; Dec. 4 9 a.m.-6 p.m.. The Great Hall of Shepard Hall in City College's main campus at 160 Convent Ave. at W. 137th St. Dec. 5-6, 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Contact 212 650 5426 or studentaffairs@

| November 27, 2013



November 27, 2013 |


New York Promoters of Russian Investment on the Run Queer Nation, other protesters derail big money conference, lead Stock Exchange to cut back on another one


n the face of protests on November 18 by Queer Nation and others opposed to investment in Russia due to that nation’s new anti-gay laws, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) scaled back its annual marking of Russia Day. A separately planned morning conference on investing in Russia had to move, was shortened by half, and lost most of its participants. “It’s all about putting pressure on Russia,” said gay activist Bill Dobbs, who has been working with Queer Nation on the campaign. “We are raising the ethical issue of investing in a country that has a terrible human rights record, including crackdowns on and scapegoating of dissidents, democracy activists, and LGBT people.” A morning demonstration was held outside 15 East 65th Street, where the Kosciuszko Foundation provided space for the Russian Center of New York’s Russia Forum investment gather ing. Criticism of the event by activists had earlier led the law firm of Goodwin Procter to withdrew space it had offered in its offices in the New York Times building. Goodwin Proctor’s action came several days after the forum’s scheduled keynote speaker, American Bar Association president James Silkenat, an attorney at Sullivan & Worcester, pulled out of the event. About 15 protestors with big banners showed up outside the Kosciuszko Foundation offices, and when conference organizers called the police to remove them, two squad cars pulled up but no action was taken against the peaceful, legal gathering. The Kosciuszko Foundation issued a statement to Queer Nation at the action that read, “We understand and respect your opinion. The rental of our gallery is by no means an endorsement of intolerance toward any group.” A downtown protest aimed at the NYSE began at 3 p.m. “directly across from the beating heart of Wall Street,” Dobbs said, attracting roughly threedozen demonstrators carrying three big banners made by Gilbert Baker, creator of the Rainbow Flag, including ones that read, “Human Rights Yes, Russian Thugs Nyet” and “Don’t Buy Putin’s Lies.” The protesters chanted, “Russia Day? We say, Nyet! Kiss our assets!” While the NYSE did not cancel Russia Day and a conference on investing in that nation was held inside,

On November 18, Queer Nation and others protested a Russian investment forum held at the Kosciuszko Foundation offices and the New York Stock Exchange’s annual Russia Day.




“there was no Russian flag outside the stock exchange” as is traditional on this occasion, Northrop said, and the New York Stock Exchange called off the ringing of the closing bell by Ser gey Belyakov, Russia’s deputy minister of economic development. In an email message, an exchange spokesperson wrote, “After discussing with the conference organizers, our clients, employees, and other stakeholders, the decision was taken to forego the

closing bell.” Northrop said Queer Nation will be stepping up its protests of individuals and corporations sponsoring the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia set for February. And the group has plans to protest Elton John’s December 3 concert at Madison Square Garden over his tour dates in Russia December 6 and 7. Gay activist Bert Leatherman, an NYU Law grad now living in Brazil, had

been relentless in an online campaign over the last several weeks to get Silkenat, Goodwin Proctor, and the NYSE to dissociate themselves from the Russian Center and its promotion of investment in Russia. In a petition to the NYSE CEO Duncan Niederauer urging cancellation of Russia Day that Leatherman said garnered 8,500 signatures. he wrote, "Under the cloying guise of ‘dialogue’ and ‘engagement,’ you are actively promoting investment that goes to support a government that is fixated on completely destroying the humanity of the gay people subject to its abusive rule. Shutting down Russia Day is the only action that would register on the radar of a cold, calculating regime like Putin’s that is driven by money and power.” Meanwhile, the oppression of LGBT people in Russia continues apace. On November 16, anti-gay thugs, denied entry into the Moscow gay club Central Station, harassed patrons and then fired several shots, damaging the club’s door though not hitting anyone. After the gunfire, they fled. In St. Petersburg, the LGBT Side by Side film festival — which was scheduled to include a showing of “Milk” about slain San Francisco City Supervisor Harvey Milk, with director Gus Van Sant and screenwriter Dustin Lance Black in attendance — had its opening night canceled due to a bomb threat. Fearful of running afoul of Russia’s law against gay “propaganda,” the Sweden-based international retailer IKEA pulled a story featuring a lesbian couple from the Russian edition of its IKEA Family Live customer magazine. “It is important for us to be neutral between religion and politics,” a company spokesperson said. IKEA has been using same-sex couples in its US ads since 1994. The Swedish Federation for LGBT Rights criticized IKEA, saying its preemptive censoring of its marketing magazine prevented a good test case of Russia’s anti-gay law. This week a Russian court fined Lady Gaga’s Russian promoters 20,000 rubles ($609) for “promoting homosexuality” in her 2012 concert in St. Petersburg, a city that adopted the anti-gay law prior to the federal government doing so. A mother of a 13-year-old who attended the concert said “she saw performers simulating lesbian sex acts and watched Gaga announce her support for Russia’s LGBT community,” in addition to promoting alcohol use, the UK Guardian reported.


| November 27, 2013


Gravely Ill Illinois Lesbian Allowed to Marry US judge orders license ahead of new law’s June 1 effective date BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD


espite the fact that Illinois’ marriage equality law, signed last week by Governor Pat Quinn, does not go into effect until next June 1, a federal district judge on November 25 ordered Cook County Clerk David Orr in Chicago to issue a marriage license to Vernita Gray and Patricia Ewert now. Gray and Ewert, who have been a couple for five years and desperately want to marry, may not be able to hold out until next June. Gray is suffering from advanced breast cancer and may not make it that long. The women filed suit on November 22, contending that the existing Illinois law banning same-sex marriages deprives them of due process and equal protection in violation of the 14th Amendment, echoing the existing marriage equality lawsuits on file with the Cook County Circuit Court. Those cases, in which motions to dismiss were previously denied, are being held in abeyance pending the June 1 effective date of the new law.  The women filed their motion for immediate relief on a Friday, and the court accommodated them with a hearing on Monday. The motion made clear why the women cannot wait until next June. “Unfortunately, Vernita may pass away in the near future,” their filing read. “Unless this Court acts, Vernita and Pat will be permanently denied the benefits, both tangible and dignitary, of legal marriage. For example, unless Plaintiffs are allowed to legally marry, they may face discrimination in hospital settings, an estate tax burden, and other harms, including challenges establishing eligibility for Social Security benefits as a surviving spouse. Given Vernita’s extensive medical expenses, the additional cost of being denied access to legal marriage is particularly burdensome.” The complaint pointed out that no adequate remedy in money damages exists for the deprivation of the status of marriage, and that no harm would be done to the State of Illinois by granting them immediate relief. Indeed, the state government has now decided as a matter of public policy that same-sex couples should be entitled to marry.

The effective date of the new law, however, was dictated by the timing of the votes in the two houses of the Legislature. While the Senate acted in February, the House of Representatives did not act until the fall “veto session.” Under the Illinois Constitution, any legislation approved in such a session cannot take effect earlier than the following June 1, unless it is approved by a super-majority of the House. Illinois constitutional requirements, however, would be preempted by federal constitutional considerations, the women argued. In effect, their motion maintained they have a federal constitutional right to marry, and any state rule that makes that impossible — even for just seven months — would be inflicting irreparable injury on them due to Gray’s medical condition. District Judge Thomas M. Durkin was persuaded by this argument and signed the order presented by counsel for the

“Unless this Court acts, Vernita and Pat will be permanently denied the benefits, both tangible and dignitary, of legal marriage.” women. Though he did not issue a written explanation, merely signing the one-page order, his agreement to do so implicitly signaled his finding that plaintiffs were likely to prevail on the merits of their claim to a federal constitutional right to marry under the 14th Amendment. The Cook County clerk promptly indicated his office would issue a license as soon as he receives a duly executed application. Clerk Orr, who is a named defendant in the pending state court lawsuits, is not defending the marriage ban on the merits; neither is Attorney General Lisa Madigan, who agrees that same-sex couples have a right to marry. Defense of the existing marriage ban in the lawsuits now on hold was left to county clerks from outside the Chicago area, who intervened as defendants represented by a Catholic litigation group, the Thomas More Society. A large legal team came together to represent Gray and Ewert, including groups of attorneys from Kirkland & Ellis LLP and  Miller Shakman & Beem LLP, staff attorneys from Lambda Legal’s Chicago office, and attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union’s Roger Baldwin Foundation in Chicago.

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US Panel Rules Domestic Partnerships Equal to Marriage In a federal employee grievance, judges say DOMA ruling applies broadly BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD


n administrative panel of the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Cir cuit has ruled that a former federal court employee in Oregon is entitled to compensation for the cost of providing health insurance for her same-sex domestic partner. The federal government’s refusal to recognize Oregon domestic partnerships in providing health benefits, the panel found, violates the Fifth Amendment of the US Constitution, as well as the Oregon district court’s nondiscrimination policy. The Executive Committee of the Ninth Circuit’s Judicial Panel, ruling on November 25, also found that the federal Office of Personnel Management (OPM), which denied the health benefits, had drawn the wrong conclusion from the June Supreme Court ruling in Edie Windsor’s successful challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The panel reversed a March ruling by Chief Judge Ann Aiken of the Oregon district court that had denied reimbursement for the health care costs. The Judicial Council is an administrative body that deals with grievances from employees of the federal courts, who participate in employee benefits plans overseen by OPM. In 2009, Ninth Circuit judges, sitting in the same type of administrative panel, ruled on two grievances brought by federal court employees in California who had married their same-sex partners before passage of Proposition 8. The employees

attempted to enroll their spouses under the federal plan, but OPM prevented that, citing DOMA. In one of those cases, the clerk of the court that employed the party filing the grievance reimbursed him for the cost of his husband’s insurance. The other case, however, resulted in a federal lawsuit brought by Lambda Legal on behalf of Karen Golinski, in which a federal district judge ruled that DOMA’s ban on federal recognition of same-sex marriage was unconstitutional. When the Supreme Court upheld that position in Windsor’s case on June 26, the government’s pending appeal was dismissed and OPM changed its policy regarding legal same-sex marriages. In July, OPM announced it would recognize same-sex marriages for purposes of federal employee benefit plans, regardless of where the employee and their spouse resided as long they married in a jurisdiction where it was legal. Taking a strict view of the Windsor victory, however, OPM said it could not recognize domestic partnerships or civil unions. That position, taken across the board by the federal government, was the main point of contention in the New Jersey marriage equality litigation, persuading State Superior Judge Mary Jacobson to rule in September that same-sex couples in New Jersey were entitled to marry. Governor Chris Christie argued that the plaintiffs in that case should have sued the federal government to recognize their civil unions, rather than challenging New Jersey’s lack of equal marriage rights. But that argument cut no ice with the courts

there, and when the State Supreme Court unanimously rejected Christie’s bid to have Jacobson’s ruling stayed, the handwriting was on the wall. The governor dropped his appeal, and samesex marriages began. The Oregon ruling responds to a 2009 grievance filed by Margaret Fonberg, a former law clerk at the federal district court there, who sought to enroll her registered same-sex domestic partner for the family health plan. OPM turned her down on the ground that the couple was not married. When Fonberg filed a grievance, Chief Judge Aiken initially ruled that denying health benefits to her partner because of her gender violated the court’s non-discrimination policy. The judge later rescinded a reimbursement directive finding that “no legal method for reimbursement is currently available and the law affords Fonberg no remedy in this matter.” Fonberg’s appeal to the Ninth Cir cuit’s Executive Committee came before three judges — Chief Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski, Circuit Judge Richard R. Clifton, and District Judge Ralph Beistline, the chief judge of the Alaska district court. Their ruling notes that Oregon’s domestic partnership statute claims to “confer upon same-sex domestic partners the same rights and legal status as those conferred on married couples.  In practice, however, it does not. Domestic partners are denied benefits from the federal government that are granted to married couples (including same-sex couples).” Fonberg was suffering discrimination in two ways, the Committee found.

First, she and her partner “are treated differently from opposite-sex partners who are allowed to marry and thereby gain spousal benefits under federal law. This is plainly discrimination based on sexual orientation, which the District of Oregon’s [benefits plan] prohibits.” Fonberg and her partner, the Committee wrote, are also treated unequally with “same-sex couples in other states in the [Ninth] Circuit, who may marry and thus gain benefits [in the wake of the DOMA ruling]. This violates the principle that federal employees must not be treated unequally in the entitlements and benefits of federal employment based on the vagaries of state law.” The discrimination the couple suffers, the Committee concluded, violates the court’s own policy and is “a deprivation of due process and equal protection” under the June DOMA ruling. Despite the fact that this is an internal administrative ruling rather than an official judicial opinion from the Ninth Circuit, it is a nonetheless a landmark — the first published opinion by sitting federal judges to hold that the distinction between same-sex marriages and same-sex state-recognized domestic partnerships or civil unions for purposes of federal employee benefits is unconstitutional. Gay rights advocates are likely to use this ruling to argue that OPM should change its non-recognition policy for domestic partnerships and civil unions as a logical extension of the Supreme Court’s DOMA ruling. The Ninth Circuit panel’s ruling was first reported online by Chris Geidner of BuzzFeed.

Arkansas Reverses Gay Dad’s Visitation Restrictions State Supreme Court says no blanket ban on partner’s presence in son’s overnight stays BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD


sharply divided Arkansas Supreme Court voted 4-3 to reverse a circuit court’s requirement that a gay dad’s same-sex partner not be present when he has overnight visits from his youngest son. Contrary to the view of the circuit judge, the state’s high court, on November 21, found that Arkansas does not have a “blanket rule” requiring such a restriction. The case was sent back to the circuit court to determine wheth-

er allowing the partner to be present would be in the boy’s best interest. Reaching its conclusion based on state law, the high court declined to consider the gay father’s claim that the restriction violated his rights under the Arkansas and US Constitutions. When John and Libby Moix divorced in 2004, their settlement agreement stipulated that they share joint custody of their three sons, who would live with Libby but have liberal visitation with John. The agreement contained customary language that neither party was to have overnight guests of the opposite sex during visitation when the children

were also spending the night. But soon after the divorce, John, a pharmacist, began a relationship with Chad Cornelius, a nurse, who began to live with him. Libby, in turn, sought a modification of the court order, claiming it was harmful for the children to be exposed to their father’s “illicit relationship” with Chad. After negotiations, John continued to enjoy the same visitation rights with the couple’s twin older sons, but Libby won full custody of the younger boy, R.M., then age 5, with no overnight visitation with John. Despite this change, R.M. contin-

ued to have overnight visits with his father — and Chad — during which John says the two men used separate bedrooms and never displayed physical affection in the boy’s presence. In 2009 and 2010, John became addicted to prescription drugs, had a hit-andrun accident, and experienced problems with his pharmacist’s license, landing him in inpatient treatment. Though he joined Twelve Step programs to address his addiction and passed frequent drug tests, Libby, when she remarried in 2010, informed John that because R.M.


ARKANSAS, continued on p.21


he is still qualified to serve in contrast to the term limits most of his rivals face in 2017. “I will say what some others won’t,” he said. “I will never run for mayor.” Three of the other candidates — Harlem’s Dickens and Annabel Palma and Jimmy Vacca, both of the Bronx — have typically sounded less urgent calls for thoroughgoing Council reform. Both Palma and Dickens supported Quinn’s mayoral bid, and Dickens, in particular, can sound defensive when asked what changes are needed. “Bill de Blasio has an aggressive, progressive agenda,” she said at Baruch. “But he has spoken out against the Council rubberstamping the mayor. I don’t believe he wants to make that mistake.” Vacca, who is both plainspoken and colorful, raised the most vivid caveat about pushing power-sharing on the Council too far, arguing, “I don’t want to be Boehner, who goes into Obama’s office and says he does not have his House behind him.” The seventh candidate, Brooklyn’s Jumaane Williams, who established progressive credibility over the past two years with his leadership on the police reform question, is the hardest candidate to peg. Entering the race last week, he was immediately engulfed by controversy over past statements voicing opposition to marriage equality and a woman’s unfettered right to choose. Rosie Mendez, a lesbian representing the Lower East Side, told Capital New York those positions were a deal-breaker for her, and some who attended Williams’ presentation to the Progressive Caucus this past weekend said he struggled to explain his thinking on either question, at points becoming emotional. Among Mendez’s five LGBT colleagues on next year’s Council, only Corey Johnson, who replaces Quinn on Manhattan’s West Side, would speak about the Williams flap, telling Gay City News, “My principles in this decision with regard to marriage equality and choice are fundamental to me and who I am.” One longtime Brooklyn gay Democratic activist speculated that other councilmembers are playing the matter low-key out of recognition that Williams is not in it to win. His goal, that source speculated, was to highlight his concerns about police relations with communities of color — an objective now likely overshadowed by his ham-handedness on social issues. Outside observers and several councilmembers who spoke to Gay City News on background all agree that Mark-Viverito has the best shot at winning — but none would say the prize is yet hers. Numerous press reports last week chronicled the breakdown of efforts to set up a meeting between the progressive bloc and the Queens organization headed by Congressman Joe Crowley. One councilmember told this newspaper that “freeze is begin-

ning to thaw.” With a growing Hispanic population in his district, the member said, Crowley would like to “make history” by helping elect the first Latina speaker. “I don’t know if de Blasio is behind her, but I would think he would be, and his lift could help at the end,” the councilmember said. Another member, however, insisted that Mark-Viverito could prevail only if de Blasio stepped in on her behalf. According to that account, her Council colleagues are uncomfortable that she is too far to the left and has proved herself both “strident” and “aloof.” The mayorelect, this source speculated, may be reluctant to step in because a Mark-Viverito speakership would immediately confront him with issues such as non-citizen voting in municipal elections, a question he is not interested in taking up at the outset of his administration. The possibility that Mark-Viverito’s candidacy could be derailed because she is too progressive alarms Allen Roskoff, president of the LGBT Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club and a fierce critic of Quinn in her years as speaker. “What I fear is that the county leaders will be able to pick off members of the Progressive Caucus,” he said, pointing to Crowley as “the chief culprit” in that effort. The Queens leader, Roskoff charged, is angry that some in his county have bucked his organization in favor of the progressive bloc and has threatened to put up primary challenges even against councilmembers from other boroughs. Roskoff also denounced what he termed “red-baiting,” such as the claim made by Queens Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz that Mark-Viverito — who only in recent weeks began to join her colleagues in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance — had earlier refused to do so because she felt that Puerto Rico, where she was born and raised, should get its independence. George Arzt, who served as Mayor Ed Koch’s press secretary and runs a communications and government relations firm, said of the challenges facing Mark-Viverito’s candidacy, “The Pledge of Allegiance is a factor. Not a significant factor, but a factor.” The bigger problem, according to Arzt, is her relationship with colleagues. “What do we say on report cards?

She has a reputation for not working and playing well with her colleagues,” he said. Asked whether he thought de Blasio would intercede on her behalf, Arzt said, “I don’t believe it’s in his interest to get involved. He doesn’t need that war right now, and the other question is: Can she herd the other 50 cats? If she can’t, the mayor has to step in and give away the store on every vote.” As did several others Gay City News spoke to, Arzt suggested that a dark horse — Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras, who represents Elmhurst and Corona in Queens — could prove an acceptable compromise to county leaders and to the Progressive Caucus to which she belongs. Her selection, Arzt said, would also satisfy the mayor-elect’s interest in seeing a member of the Latino community win a citywide leadership role for the first time. A good number of councilmembers and major outside players, including labor giant SEIU 1199, would dispute Arzt’s assessment of Mark-Viverito’s ability to effectively lead the Council. Neither Melissa Sklarz, who heads the Stonewall Democratic Club of New York City, nor Matthew McMorrow, a co-president of Brooklyn’s Lambda Independent Democrats, were willing to handicap the speaker’s race, but both said the leading candidates have all shown strong commitments on LGBT and AIDS issues. Ken Sherrill observed that no matter how close de Blasio is to Mark-Viverito, it’s not clear what he is looking for in a Council speaker. Noting the tremendous fiscal pressures the new mayor will face, he said, “I would think he would want a speaker who would restrain the leftward impulses of the Council.” Sherrill also raised the possibility that a progressive mayor imposing a progressive speaker on the Council ironically might not serve progressive interests. “New York already has a strong mayor under the City Charter,” Sherrill said. “Be careful what you wish for.” If de Blasio wants to have a say, however, Sherrill has no doubt how that would work out. “I don’t think there will be many people who will want to cross him here,” he said. “If he wants it, I think he’s going to have his way.”




November 27, 2013 |

The Queens Pride House, on November 21, held an event to commemorate the Transgender Day of Remembrance, which provided members of the transgender community and allies with an opportunity to discuss the causes of violence against transgender people as well as possible ways to address such violence. The discussion was facilitated by Pauline Park, president of the Pride House board of directors and its acting executive director. The event was supported with funding from the North Star Fund as part of the Popular Resistance & Non-Violent Action (PRANA) Project and was co-sponsored by the New York Association for Gender Rights Advocacy (NYAGRA) and Q-Wave, an organization for lesbian, bisexual, and queer women and transgender and gender-variant people of Asian descent in New York City.

| November 27, 2013



Felony Charge Nixed in HIV Exposure Case New York appeals court rebuffs Syracuse DA’s effort to overturn trial court ruling, citing treatment advances BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD


unanimous five-judge New York appeals court panel has rejected the argument that an HIVpositive man should face felony charges, carrying a mandatory minimum prison term, for exposing another person to the virus by failing to disclose his serostatus before having unprotected sex. Turning back an appeal by Syracuse District Attorney William Fitzpatrick’s office, the November 15 opinion from the Fourth Department of the New York Appellate Division affirmed a ruling by Onondaga County Supreme Court Justice John J. Brunetti that reduced the charge to a misdemeanor. According to the court’s opinion, Terrance Williams “engaged in unprotected sex with the victim on two to four occasions without disclosing his HIVpositive status.” After their sexual relationship ended, Williams informed the victim that a former sex partner had tested positive for HIV and urged the victim to be tested. The victim, whose gender is not identified in the opinion, was diagnosed as HIV-positive several months later and complained to law enforcement. Indicted on the charge of “reckless endangerment in the first degree,” a Class D felony, Williams faced a potential prison sentence of two to seven years. Conviction on this felony charge requires proof that “under circumstances evincing a depraved indifference to human life, [the defendant] recklessly engages in conduct which


creates a grave risk of death to another person.” Kristen McDermott of the Frank H. Hiscock Legal Aid Society in Syracuse, representing Williams, moved to have the charges reduced, arguing the facts would not support the felony charge. Williams told police “he did not disclose his HIV-positive status to the victim because he was afraid [the victim] would not want to be with” him and that he “loved [the victim] so very much.”

According to the court’s opinion, the doctor, “an infectious disease expert, testified that the ability to treat HIV has increased dramatically over the past 15 years, with over 20 different anti-viral medications available for treatment. The expert testified that although an HIV-positive diagnosis may have been tantamount to a death sentence in the past, with treatment, the prognosis today is ‘outstanding,’ particularly when a patient promptly learns that he or she is infected and seeks treat-

The expert testified that although an HIV-positive diagnosis may have been tantamount to a death sentence in the past, with treatment, the prognosis today is “outstanding.” When he found out the victim tested positive, Williams wrote a letter apologizing “because he was ‘so upset’ and ‘felt terrible,’” according to the court’s opinion. Williams’ attorney argued that these facts would not support a finding that he exhibited “depraved indifference to human life” or that his conduct created “a grave risk of death to another person.” Testimony offered by victim’s doctor ended up supporting Williams’ motion.

ARKANSAS, from p.19

had a new father, he no longer needed John, and she sharply cut back on visitation. In response, John sought a new order from the court modifying the visitation provisions so that he could have more frequent and overnight visitation with the young boy. He pointed to Libby’s remarriage and the sharp restrictions on his visitation as well as his successful drug rehabilitation as the justification for the court revisiting its order. The circuit court heard testimony about both John and Chad, who is also a divorced father, and their relationship to their children. Chad’s ex-wife praised him as a wonderful father to their 16-yearold son, who, John argued, had a close friendly relationship with R.M., which was adversely affected by the visitation restrictions. While concluding it was in R.M.’s best interest to spend more time with his father, including one overnight a week, the judge said the court was required by Arkansas public policy to impose a “non-cohabitation restriction” pre-

ment. Indeed, the expert testified that patients with HIV who take their medication, eat well, do not smoke, and reduce their alcohol intake can live a ‘very healthy, normal lifestyle,’ and he expected a similar prognosis for the victim.” Justice Brunetti agreed with the defendant that he had been over charged, and reduced the charge to “reckless endangerment in the second degree,” a Class A misdemeanor with a

venting Chad from being present while the boy was staying overnight. The circuit court rejected John’s argument that the non-cohabitation requirement violated the federal and state constitutions. Justice Cliff Hoofman’s opinion for the Supreme Court noted that John and Chad “were in a longterm committed relationship, that they had resided together since at least 2007, and that Chad posed ‘no threat to the health, safety, or welfare’ of R.M.” The circuit court, Hoofman noted, “found no other factors present to militate against overnight visitation in this case” except for “the prohibition on unmarried cohabitation with a romantic partner in the presence of a minor child.” Hoofman wrote that the high court’s major ity agreed with John that the circuit court had misconstrued Arkansas law, and also observed that it avoids taking on constitutional questions if a case can be resolved on other grounds. Looking to several prior Arkansas decisions, Hoofman noted that the courts had departed from a

maximum prison sentence of one year. The district attorney appealed that ruling to the Appellate Division. “Although defendant may have acted with indifference to the victim’s health, his conduct lacked the ‘wanton cruelty, brutality, or callousness’ required for a finding of depraved indifference toward a single victim,” the appeals court wrote. “The fact that defendant encouraged the victim to be tested for HIV indicates that defendant ‘was trying, however weakly and ineffectively,’ to prevent any grave risk that might result from his conduct.” And, the testimony from the victim’s doctor — which was not contradicted by any other evidence — “failed to establish that defendant’s reckless conduct posed a grave or ‘very substantial’ risk of death to the victim,” the court found. The Appellate Division ruling stands in stark contrast to rulings from other jurisdictions upholding lengthy prison sentences in similar situations, usually citing outdated medical sources about the risk of death from HIV infection. Rulings of this type typically are issued in jurisdictions that have specific laws criminalizing the knowing exposure of another person to HIV and mandating severe sentences. New York instead handles HIV transmission under its general penal code, leaving the courts the flexibility to take account of new medical information. If Williams is a first offender, he may avoid prison time altogether, though the prosecutor’s pursuit of a felony charge doesn’t suggest that a lenient plea-bargain is in the offing.

strict observance of a no-cohabitation rule. A 1999 decision, he wrote, “made it clear that the purpose of the non-cohabitation provisions are to promote a stable environment for the children and not merely to monitor a parent’s sexual conduct… We have emphasized in more recent cases that the policy against romantic cohabitation in the presence of children must be considered under the circumstances of each particular case and in light of the best interest of the children.” As a result, Hoofman wrote, that “the public policy against romantic cohabitation is not a ‘blanket ban,’ as it may not override the primary consideration for the circuit court in such cases, which is determining what is in the best interest of the children involved.” The next step, then, is for the circuit court to determine whether the ban on Chad staying overnight when R.M. does is required for the boy’s best interest. John’s lawyers on this appeal include Holly Dickson of the Arkansas Civil Liberties Union and Leslie Cooper and James Esseks from the LGBT Rights Project at the American Civil Liberties Union.


November 27, 2013 |


Case Against Suspect in Islan Nettles Slaying Dismissed Second man’s would-be confession keeps DA from pressing misdemeanor, upgraded charges against Paris Wilson BY PAUL SCHINDLER




hree months after Islan Nettles, a 21-year -old transgender woman, died as the result of a brutal beating in Harlem, the only person charged in the slaying saw his case dismissed. Paris Wilson, 20, was arrested shortly after the August 17 attack — which took place near 148th Street and Frederick Douglas Boulevard — and charged with misdemeanor assault and harassment. The criminal complaint filed at that time said that the victim was left “unconscious on the ground with a swollen shut eye and blood on her face.” The defendant, the complaint read, struck Nettles in the head with a “closed fist,” knocking her to the ground, according to an eyewitness. Nettles, who remained in a coma until she was taken off life support on August 22, suffered blunt force trauma, according to the Medical Examiner’s Office. Nettles’ slaying has been investigated as a possible hate crime — Detective Cheryl Crispin, an NYPD spokeswoman, telling Gay City News that police determined that “derogatory language” was used in the attack. In the wake of her death, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office spoke of “possible grand jury action” and a homicide indictment in advance of an October 4 hearing. But prosecutors have also consistently indicated they are hamstrung by the fact that another young man came forward shortly after the attack to say that he was the perpetrator. Wilson’s October 4 hearing was adjourned with no additional charges brought against him, and in New York County criminal court on November 19, Assistant District Attorney Nicholas Viorst told Judge Steven Statsinger that while prosecutors and police are “aggressively investigating” the case with an eye toward a homicide charge, he was not prepared to move forward on the existing charges against the defendant, who he said was apprehended several blocks from the scene of the crime. Viorst acknowledged that any homicide charge brought in the case could be made against “Mr. Wilson or someone else.” In a misdemeanor prosecution, the state must be ready to go to trial within 90 days of arrest. The dismissal came on the eve of the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance, held in recognition of the lethal violence aimed at gender-non-

Islan Nettles died from a brutal beating she suffered in Harlem on August 17.

Delores Nettles, Islan’s mother, at an August 28 vigil in her ˆdaughter’s memory.

conforming people. The effort by a suspect other than Wilson to confess to the crime was first reported by the New York Post on August 26 in a story that had a law enforcement source saying Wilson’s mother put the man up to it. According to that account, the man told police he was too drunk to remember what happened. That report cast doubt on the veracity of the man’s account. The Daily News has since reported, however, that a source familiar with the investigation said two “reliable” witnesses had corroborated the account of the man who came forward. The man’s name has not been identified in court records. Viorst’s pledge to press forward to win a homicide indictment in the case is predicated on sorting out the contradictions between the initial identification of Wilson as the perpetrator and the other man’s effort to confess. After the hearing, Xavier Donaldson, Wilson’s attorney, said that his client and the other man are roughly the same height and weight and “may have been wearing similar clothes.” Nettles’ family and other advocates for the slain woman seized on the district attor ney’s commitment to bring homicide charges as progress of sorts on a day when the effort to win justice appeared to have derailed. “They will be upgraded,” Dolores

Nettles, Islan’s mother, said of the charges dropped against Wilson. “I’m upset, but I’m dealing… Hopefully the charges will be upgraded so that the next time he comes to court, he won’t walk out.” Asked if she had faith in prosecutors and the police, she said, “I have to have faith.” In an email to Gay City News, Sharon Stapel, executive director of the New York City Anti-Violence Project, said, “AVP, working with transgender leaders and activists, is paying close attention to this case, and we understand that the District Attor ney’s Office is now pursuing homicide charges instead of the original misdemeanor charges. Homicide charges would be progress, but the LGBTQ

Nettles’ family and other advocates for the slain woman seized on the district attorney’s commitment to bring homicide charges as progress of sorts. communities need a clear and thor ough explanation of what the NYPD and DA’s office is doing to investigate and respond to the tragic death of Islan Nettles.”

The group is calling on District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr.’s office to convene a meeting with AVP and community members “to discuss the most recent developments in this case, and to assure that those most affected by this violence have the opportunity to talk directly to the DA’s office.” D o n a l d s o n , Wi l s o n ’ s a t t o r n e y , speaking after the hearing, said, “I know that Paris Wilson had nothing to do with [Nettles’ death]… My client never put a finger, a hair, or a hand on Ms. Nettles.” He was less definitive about Wilson’s relationship to either the victim or the other man who came forward to police. Asserting that “everyone in Harlem knows each other,” Donaldson said of his client and the second man, “I can’t say they were acquainted. They were not hanging out that day.” He was similarly unable to comment on any relationship between Wilson’s mother and the second man. And, despite multiple media reports that had Wilson and Nettles being Facebook friends, Donaldson said, “ I can’t say [Wilson] was friends with the deceased.” Asked whether his client saw Nettles on the evening she was killed, he responded, “I can’t say whether he saw her or not that evening.” Donaldson’s demeanor suggested he knew his client was not yet out of the woods. Asked if the dismissal represented a positive resolution to the case, he hesitated before saying, “It’s a positive step.” He added, “Hopefully, he’ll be able to complete his education and continue his life.”


| November 27, 2013


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ith so much change coming to the Hell’s Kitchen area, many development projects that involve conversions or demolitions of buildings come before Community Board 4, the advisory group with jurisdiction over much of the West Side from 14th Street to 59th Street. Rarely, however, does a building receive the special farewell that CB4 member Jean-Daniel Noland gave 424 West 55th Street, located on the block between Ninth and 10th Avenues, a one-time church that became a groundbreaking theater. “The building is going to be torn down for affordable housing,” said Noland. “Before it is gone, let us take a moment to remember its history.” Built in 1898 as the First Evangelical United Brethren Church, the building was originally a refuge for German immigrants. In 1962, the interior was converted into Theater Four — and on April 14, 1968, Mart Crowley’s “The Boys In The Band” opened there. “This was the first play to portray a group of gay male characters on stage,” said Noland. “It was controversial, shocking, and it ran for over a thousand performances. ‘Boys In The Band’ has been called one of the few plays that can claim to have helped start a social revolution. A year after it opened, the Stonewall Riot erupted.” The theater also became home to the Negro Ensemble Company, “and in that space on West 55th Street in 1981,

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Charles Fuller’s ‘A Soldier’s Play’ won a Pulitzer Prize. Laurence Fishburne, Moses Gunn, Phylicia Rashad, and Denzel Washington performed there,” Noland said. The Manhattan Theater Club resided there for a while until finally, it became the Julia Miles Theater of the Women’s Project — the only women’s theater company to have its own stage. Noland distributed photos of the building and encouraged everyone to celebrate and remember that for over half a century, it provided “a space where men and women could create plays which played an important part in the struggle for acceptance, dignity, and empowerment for all men and women in this country.”

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November 27, 2013 |


That Sad Thanksgiving



Christopher Byrne (Theater), Susie Day (Perspective), Doug Ireland (International), Brian McCormick (Dance)

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Seth J. Bookey, Anthony M.Brown, Kelly Jean Cogswell, Andres Duque, Michael Ehrhardt, Steve Erickson, Andy Humm, Eli Jacobson, David Kennerley, Gary M. Kramer, Arthur S. Leonard, Michael T. Luongo, Lawrence D. Mass, Winnie McCroy, Eileen McDermott, Mick Meenan, Tim Miller, Gregory Montreuil, Christopher Murray, David Noh, Nathan Riley, David Shengold, Yoav Sivan, Gus Solomons Jr., Tim Teeman, Kathleen Warnock, B enjamin Weinthal, Dean P. Wrzeszcz






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BY PAUL SCHINDLER I was just days shy of nine years old that Thanksgiving Day. Much later I read Melville’s line about the “damp, drizzly November in my soul,” but Thanksgiving’s almost always carved out a warm place in my heart. A long weekend. None of Christmas’ ups and downs. And as I’ve grown older, I’ve always been able to find family. Back then, my older brothers and I usually spent Thanksgiving morning at the nearby schoolyard courts shooting baskets. Not that I ever had the coordination needed or the guts to throw my elbows around, but at least I could show my big brothers I was a decent shot.

I can’t remember if we shot baskets that Thanksgiving. I remember that six days before, when I was going back to school after lunch I heard the president had been shot. Panicky, the other kids and I also heard that John-John was shot. And then it was Johnson was shot. And only then, John Connally, the Texas governor. An hour or so later, we heard that President Kennedy was dead. One girl stood up clapping. Hurt made my mind go blank. I kept my mouth shut. My brother was home sick, so after school I had to go to his sixth grade class and pick up his homework. He had the only man teacher at the school, and a few of the boys in his class were hanging around talking about whether Goldwater did it. They ignored me and kept me waiting, but even though I felt very small I thought they were idiots. When I was finally walking

home, I thought I had to not cry when I got there. I kept thinking, “I didn’t even know him. Why do I want to cry?” I think I already felt shame from the feelings men gave me. When I got home, my brother screamed at me for smiling on a day like that. My father got home a little later and walked right over to the hi-fi. We had a Vaughn Meter record called “The First Family,” where he mostly made fun of the way Kennedy said “vigah” and “Cuber.” My dad cracked the album over his thigh. On Sunday, when my parents were at the grocery store, my brothers and I watched Jack Ruby shoot Lee Harvey Oswald. After that, my dad took us bowling for my oldest brother’s birthday. Later, when we watched the crowds file past the president’s coffin, my mom told me you could tell the Catholics because they were making the

sign of the cross. She stood in front of the TV crying. We all cried when Jackie prompted John-John in a salute to his father at the end of it all. On Thanksgiving, we knew President Johnson would go on TV to talk to the country. We knew we would watch it. It was after we ate. I later learned that Johnson was a big talker and a colorful man. That day, he looked like a grandfather. His Texas drawl was soft and slow and his face was very tight. It seemed like we were supposed to feel better after he spoke, but it was still just sad. I really wanted to see Jackie, the beautiful lady behind the black veil a few days before. It would be years before we saw her again, and by then a lot of people had turned on her. I don’t know if the whole country would watch the president on TV on Thanksgiving today. It’s probably something to think about. And it’s probably good to remember that on one sad Thanksgiving Day, we all did.


Ending Anti-Transgender Violence BY MICHAEL SILVERMAN


h e 1 5 t h Transgender Day of Remembrance, held November 20, provided an opportunity to reflect on the many transgender people whose lives have been cut short by brutal violence simply for living as their true selves, including Harlem resident Islan Nettles, the 21-year-old AfricanAmerican transgender woman who was viciously attacked in August by an assailant who shouted anti-LGBT slurs at her and her friends. Nettles died at Harlem Hospital several days after the assault and police are still sorting through varying witness accounts of the incident as they consider whom to charge and with what specific crime. The T ransgender Day of Remembrance began in 1999 when activists held a vigil to honor Boston activist Rita Hester, a 34-year-old AfricanAmerican transgender woman

brutally murdered the previous year in her apartment. Transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith organized what has grown into a worldwide commemoration of all those killed by anti-transgender violence. Hundreds of thousands of people across the globe now observe the solemn day. The commemoration is a somber occasion that allows the LGBT community and its supporters an important opportunity to memorialize the thousands of transgender lives lost to senseless violence. The vast majority of victims have been transgender women of color like Islan and Rita. The Transgender Day of Remembrance official website reports that on average more than one transgender person is murdered per month around the world. In addition to violence, transgender people also often endure huge disparities in health care, education, employment opportunities, housing, and public accommodations. A 2011 study, “Injustice at Every

Turn,” by the National Center for Transgender Equality and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, revealed wide ranging inequalities facing transgender people in the United States. “Respondents were nearly four times more likely to live in extreme poverty, with household income of less than $10,000, and twice as likely to be unemployed compared to the population as a whole,” the report stated. “Half of those surveyed reported experiencing harassment or other mistreatment in the workplace, and one in four were fired because of their gender identity or expression.” These are just a few of the harsh realities revealed in the report. But despite such obstacles, the study showed that transgender people continue to be extremely resilient, overcoming immense odds to access the services they need and working hard to lead happy, healthy, and productive lives. I see that kind of resilience on a daily basis, in my role as executive director of the Transgen-

der Legal Defense & Education Fund. Whether we’re helping someone legally change their name to reflect their true identity, fighting to ensure a transgender child is treated equally at school, or working to right the wrongful firing of a transgender employee, we are lucky to see firsthand the spirit and determination of people who will not waiver in their quest to live authentically. Islan Nettles lived life with that kind of spirit, but sadly, someone with hate in their heart found her mere existence an affront and made her pay with her life. The loss of Islan in New York City and countless other transgender people worldwide, is a stark reminder of the need to eliminate anti-transgender violence and hatred in our society. The Transgender Day of Remembrance gives all of us the opportunity to rededicate ourselves to that mission. We must never forget Rita Hester, Islan Nettles, and so many others who have been singled out for attack, based solely on who they were. Violence against transgender people must end. We, as a community, can and must do better.


| November 27, 2013


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Punsters might be forgiven for saying that the LGBT Community Center’s 16th annual Women’s Event, held November 23 at the Edison Ballroom in Midtown, was all about bustin’ out. Among the three honorees saluted during a gala evening of cocktails, dinner, and dancing was Laverne Cox, who portrays Sophia Burset, a transgender prison inmate on the hit Netflix series “Orange is the New Black.” Many of Cox’s castmates joined her (seen in pink, with Center executive director Glennda Testone, in white) on the other side of the wall, including (l. to r.) Samira Wiley, Danielle Brooks, Michelle Hurst, Kate Mulgrew, Lea DeLaria, and Selenis Leyva. Despite all the attention Cox has received for the role, there are apparently moments when she can still genuinely react, “Who, me?” Among the evening’s other honorees was Joy Tomchin, a longtime supporter of LGBT community organizations ranging from Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE) to Gay Men’s Health Crisis, the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, and Congregation Beit Simchat Torah. Tomchin was an executive producer of David France’s Oscar-nominated 2012 documentary “How to Survive a Plague,” about the early years of the fight against AIDS. Tomchin is seen here addressing the gala audience and also greeting Edie Windsor, who successfully challenged the federal Defense of Marriage Act at the US Supreme Court. The evening’s third honoree was Beth A. Brooke, Ernst & Young’s global vice chair for regulatory and public policy who is responsible for the accounting giant’s diversity and inclusiveness programs. Brooke worked on tax policy matters regarding insurance and managed care at the Treasury Department during the Clinton administration. The gala’s three co-chairs — Lisa Linsky, Stephanie Battagaglino, and Aimee Saginaw — opened the evening with their take on “Orange is the New Black.” The event raised more than $350,000. — All photos by Donna Aceto

| November 27, 2013



For Financial Planning, Year-End Is a Deadline Checklists for LGBT people who are single, in domestic partnerships, or married BY LEONARD BOCCIA


s the year -end approaches, LGBT people, whether single, in domestic partnerships, or married, will want to focus on their investment planning and on the implications for their tax filings next April. Important issues merit your attention before 2013 draws to a close. Relationship status matters, and the follow checklists for November and December cover important considerations — though, of course, they are not the be all and end all:

Single LGBT People:

November Financial: Look at your portfolios and see if you should sell securities to establish losses. Remember, the last day to double up your position to avoid a wash sale is Friday, November 29, 2013. Develop a plan to complete charitable and family member gifts by yearend. Also consider opening, funding, or adding to 401K accounts, IRA accounts, and 529 accounts. Remember to look at all of your retirement accounts, including accounts from previous jobs. Look at your accounts and discuss your beneficiary designations with your financial advisor and attorney; make any necessary adjustments due to life changes (marriage, divorce, birth of child, death, disability, etc.) or changes in your goals. Medical: Make sure to enroll in your health plan. Also nominate someone to make medical decisions for you if you are incapacitated. December Financial: Fully fund your IRA and/ or your employer retirement accounts. Check with your accountant to confirm that you have dealt with ALL your retirement accounts. Review the beneficiary you have selected for EACH retirement account to make sure you have the correct beneficiary on each account. When selling securities you own, remember the trade date, not the settlement date, determines the year of the sale and recognition of any gain or loss in most situations. Make sure any 529 distribution or an Education Savings Account (ESA) distribution and actual payment of qualified education expenses occur in

the same tax year. Take required minimum distributions (RMDs) before December 31. An RMD for your IRA cannot be combined with an RMD for your employer plan. Each must be calculated and distributed separately. If you’ll reach age 65 or plan to retire in 2014, make an appointment to talk with your local Social Security Administration office early in January to discuss Medicare and Social Security claiming options. Personal: Review leases and checking accounts to see that you are set up correctly.

Unmarried LGBT People in Relationships

November Financial: Look at your portfolios and see if you should sell securities to establish losses. Remember, the last day to double up your position to avoid a wash sale is Friday, November 29, 2013. Develop a plan to complete charitable and family member gifts by yearend. Also consider opening, funding, or adding to 401K accounts, IRA accounts, and 529 accounts. Remember to look at all of your retirement accounts including accounts from previous jobs. Look at your accounts and discuss your beneficiary designations with your financial advisor and attorney; make any necessary adjustments due to life changes (marriage, divorce, birth of child, death, disability, etc.) or changes in your goals. Medical: Make sure to enroll in your health plan. Also nominate someone to make medical decisions for you if you are incapacitated. Check with your or your partner’s health plan to see if you qualify for Domestic Partnership Medical benefits. December Financial Fully fund your IRA and/ or your employer retirement accounts. Review the beneficiary you have selected for EACH retirement account to make sure you have the correct beneficiary on each account. When selling securities you own, remember the trade date, not the settlement date, determines the year of the sale and recognition of any gain or loss in most situations.

Make sure any 529 distribution or an Education Savings Account (ESA) distribution and actual payment of qualified education expenses occur in the same tax year. Take required minimum distributions (RMDs) before December 31. An RMD for your IRA cannot be combined with an RMD for your employer plan. Each must be calculated and distributed separately. If you’ll reach age 65 or plan to retire in 2014, make an appointment to talk with your local Social Security Administration office early in January to discuss Medicare and Social Security claiming options. Personal: Review leases and checking accounts to see that you are set up correctly.

Married LGBT Couples:

November Personal: Go over your respective accountants, lawyers, and other financial professionals including financial advisors and agree if you are going to proceed as “ours” or as “yours, mine , ours.” Financial: Have a written agreement as to how bank and brokerage accounts are to be registered. Notify banks and brokerage firms IN WRITING of any registration changes in your accounts. Check with your accountant NOW to see if you should be filing jointly or separately. Look at your portfolios and see if you should sell securities to establish losses. Remember, the last day to double up your position to avoid a wash sale is Friday, November 29, 2013. Develop a plan to complete char itable and family member gifts by year -end. Also consider opening, funding, or adding to 401K accounts, IRA accounts, and 529 accounts. Remember to look at all of your retirement accounts including accounts from previous jobs. Look at your accounts and discuss your beneficiary designations with your financial advisor and attorney; make any necessary adjustments due to life changes. After marriage you need to update your beneficiary information on your accounts—it is not automatically updated.

Review your financial goals and budgets.

Update wills.

Medical: Make sure to enroll in your health plan. Also nominate someone to make medical decisions for you if you are incapacitated. Review both your Medical plans to see which one fits your needs best or if you want to keep your individual plans. December Financial: Fully fund your IRA and/ or your employer retirement accounts. Review and update the beneficiary you have selected for EACH retirement account to make sure you have the correct beneficiary on each account. When selling securities you own, remember the trade date, not the settlement date, determines the year of the sale and recognition of any gain or loss in most situations. Make sure any 529 distribution or an Education Savings Account (ESA) distribution and actual payment of qualified education expenses occur in the same tax year. Take required minimum distributions (RMDs) before December 31. An RMD for your IRA cannot be combined with an RMD for your employer plan. Each must be calculated and distributed separately. If you’ll reach age 65 or plan to retire in 2014, make an appointment to talk with your local Social Security Administration office early in January to discuss Medicare and Social Security claiming options. Personal: Review leases and checking accounts to see that you are set up correctly. Go over all real estate holdings.

Leonard Boccia is a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor® and Managing Director-Investments in the Boccia & Quinn Wealth Management Group of Wells Fargo Advisors. Wells Fargo Advisors is not a tax or legal advisor and Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC is a Member of the SIPC. Investment and insurance products are NOT FDICInsured. there is NO Bank Guarantee, and they MAY Lose Value. Boccia can be reached at or 212-205-2946.


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Patient model. Pill shown is not actual size.

What is COMPLERA? COMPLERA® is a prescription HIV medicine that is used as a complete regimen to treat HIV-1 in adults who have never taken HIV medicines before and who have an amount of HIV in their blood (this is called “viral load”) that is no more than 100,000 copies/mL. COMPLERA contains 3 medicines – rilpivirine, emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate. It is not known if COMPLERA is safe and effective in children under the age of 18 years. COMPLERA® does not cure HIV-1 infection or AIDS. To control HIV-1 infection and decrease HIV-related illnesses you must keep taking COMPLERA. Avoid doing things that can spread HIV-1 to others: always practice safer sex and use condoms to lower the chance of sexual contact with body fluids; never reuse or share needles or other items that have body fluids on them, do not share personal items that may contain bodily fluids. Ask your healthcare provider if you have questions about how to reduce the risk of passing HIV-1 to others.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION What is the most important information you should know about COMPLERA? COMPLERA® can cause serious side effects: • Build-up of an acid in your blood (lactic acidosis), which is a serious medical emergency. Symptoms of lactic acidosis include feeling very weak or tired, unusual (not normal) muscle pain, trouble breathing, stomach pain with nausea or vomiting, feeling cold, especially in your arms and legs, feeling dizzy or lightheaded, and/or a fast or irregular heartbeat. • Serious liver problems. The liver may become large (hepatomegaly) and fatty (steatosis). Symptoms of liver problems include your skin or the white part of your eyes turns yellow (jaundice), dark “tea-colored” urine, light-colored bowel movements (stools), loss of appetite for several days or longer, nausea, and/or stomach pain. • You may be more likely to get lactic acidosis or serious liver problems if you are female, very overweight (obese), or have been taking COMPLERA for a long time. In some cases, these serious conditions have led to death. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any symptoms of these conditions. • Worsening of hepatitis B (HBV) infection. If you also have HBV and stop taking COMPLERA, your hepatitis may suddenly get worse. Do not stop taking COMPLERA without first talking to your healthcare provider, as they will need to monitor your health. COMPLERA is not approved for the treatment of HBV.

Who should not take COMPLERA? Do not take COMPLERA if you have ever taken other anti-HIV medicines. COMPLERA may change the effect of other medicines and may cause serious side effects. Your healthcare provider may change your other medicines or change their doses. Do not take COMPLERA if you also take these medicines: • anti-seizure medicines: carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Equetro, Tegretol, Tegretol-XR, Teril, Epitol); oxcarbazepine (Trileptal), phenobarbital (Luminal), phenytoin (Dilantin, Dilantin-125, Phenytek) • anti-tuberculosis medicines: rifabutin (Mycobutin), rifampin (Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane, Rifadin) and rifapentine (Priftin) • proton pump inhibitors for stomach or intestinal problems: esomeprazole (Nexium, Vimovo), lansoprazole (Prevacid), dexlansoprazole (Dexilant), omeprazole (Prilosec), pantoprazole sodium (Protonix), rabeprazole (Aciphex) • more than 1 dose of the steroid medicine dexamethasone or dexamethasone sodium phosphate • St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum) If you are taking COMPLERA you should not take other HIV medicines or other medicines containing tenofovir (Viread, Truvada, Stribild or Atripla); other medicines containing emtricitabine or lamivudine (Emtriva, Combivir, Epivir, Epivir-HBV, Epzicom, Trizivir, Atripla, Stribild or Truvada); rilpivirine (Edurant) or adefovir (Hepsera). In addition, tell your healthcare provider if you are taking the following medications because they may interfere with how COMPLERA works and may cause side effects: • certain antacid medicines containing aluminum, magnesium hydroxide, or calcium carbonate (examples: Rolaids, TUMS). These medicines must be taken at least 2 hours before or 4 hours after COMPLERA. • medicines to block stomach acid including cimetidine (Tagamet), famotidine (Pepcid), nizatidine (Axid), or ranitidine HCL (Zantac). These medicines must be taken at least 12 hours before or 4 hours after COMPLERA. • any of these medicines: clarithromycin (Biaxin); erythromycin (E-Mycin, Eryc, Ery-Tab, PCE, Pediazole, Ilosone), fluconazole (Diflucan), itraconazole (Sporanox), ketoconazole (Nizoral) methadone (Dolophine); posaconazole (Noxafil), telithromycin (Ketek) or voriconazole (Vfend). • medicines that are eliminated by the kidneys like acyclovir (Zovirax), cidofovir (Vistide), ganciclovir (Cytovene IV, Vitrasert), valacyclovir (Valtrex) and valganciclovir (Valcyte).

PALIO Date: 10.4.13 • Client: Gilead • Product: Complera • File Name: 9731_pgitvd_standard_updtd_ant_GayCityNews.indd


| November 27, 2013


A complete HIV treatment in only 1 pill a day. COMPLERA is for adults who have never taken HIV-1 medicines before and have no more than 100,000 copies/mL of virus in their blood.

Ask your healthcare provider if it’s the one for you.

These are not all the medicines that may cause problems if you take COMPLERA. Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, or herbal supplements you are taking or plan to take.

The most common side effects reported with COMPLERA are trouble sleeping (insomnia), abnormal dreams, headache, dizziness, diarrhea, nausea, rash, tiredness, and depression. Some side effects also reported include vomiting, stomach pain or discomfort, skin discoloration (small spots or freckles) and pain.

Before taking COMPLERA, tell your healthcare provider if you: liver problems, including hepatitis B or C virus infection, or have abnormal liver tests • Have kidney problems • Have ever had a mental health problem • Have bone problems • Are pregnant or planning to become pregnant. It is not known if COMPLERA can harm your unborn child • Are breastfeeding: Women with HIV should not breastfeed because they can pass HIV through their milk to the baby. Also, COMPLERA may pass through breast milk and could cause harm to the baby

This is not a complete list of side effects. Tell your healthcare provider or pharmacist if you notice any side effects while taking COMPLERA, and call your healthcare provider for medical advice about side effects.

• Have

COMPLERA can cause additional serious side effects: • New or worsening kidney problems, including kidney failure. If you have had kidney problems, or take other medicines that may cause kidney problems, your healthcare provider may need to do regular blood tests. • Depression or mood changes. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms: feeling sad or hopeless, feeling anxious or restless, have thoughts of hurting yourself (suicide) or have tried to hurt yourself. • Changes in liver enzymes: People who have had hepatitis B or C, or who have had changes in their liver function tests in the past may have an increased risk for liver problems while taking COMPLERA. Some people without prior liver disease may also be at risk. Your healthcare provider may need to check your liver enzymes before and during treatment with COMPLERA. • Bone problems can happen in some people who take COMPLERA. Bone problems include bone pain, softening or thinning (which may lead to fractures). Your healthcare provider may need to do additional tests to check your bones. • Changes in body fat can happen in people taking HIV medicine. • Changes in your immune system. Your immune system may get stronger and begin to fight infections that have been hidden in your body for a long time. Tell your healthcare provider if you start having new symptoms after starting COMPLERA.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit or call 1-800-FDA-1088. Additional Information about taking COMPLERA:

• Always take COMPLERA exactly as your healthcare provider tells you to take it.

• Take COMPLERA with food. Taking COMPLERA with food is important to help get the

right amount of medicine in your body. (A protein drink does not replace food. If your healthcare provider stops COMPLERA, make certain you understand how to take your new medicine and whether you need to take your new medicine with a meal.)

Stay under the care of your healthcare provider during treatment with COMPLERA and see your healthcare provider regularly. Please see Brief Summary of full Prescribing Information with important warnings on the following pages.

Learn more at

PALIO Date: 10.4.13 • Client: Gilead • Product: Complera • File Name: 9731_pgitvd_standard_updtd_ant_GayCityNews.indd


November 27, 2013 |

• Worsening Especially tell y Worsening of Hepatitis B infection. of Hepatitis If you have B infection. hepatitis BIfvirus you have (HBV)hepatitis B virus (HBV) • an antacid me infection and take COMPLERA, infection and your take HBV COMPLERA, may get worse your (fl HBV are-up) may if get you worse stop (fl are-up) if you stop COMPLERA (kom-PLEH-rah) COMPLERA (kom-PLEH-rah) calcium carbon taking COMPLERA. A “fl taking are-up” COMPLERA. is when your A “flHBV are-up” infection is when suddenly your HBV returns infection suddenly returns (emtricitabine, rilpivirine, (emtricitabine, tenofovir disoproxil rilpivirine,fumarate) tenofovir disoproxil tablets fumarate) tablets take the antac in a worse way than before. in a worse COMPLERA way than is not before. approved COMPLERA for theistreatment not approved of for the treatment of Brief summary of full Brief Prescribing summary Information. of full Prescribing For more Information. information, For please moresee information, take COMPLER HBV, please so you see must discuss HBV,your so you HBVmust withdiscuss your healthcare your HBVprovider. with your healthcare provider. the full Prescribing Information the full Prescribing includingInformation Patient Information. including Patient Information. – • a medicine to – Do notrunletout. Do not let your COMPLERA yourRefi COMPLERA ll your prescription run out. Refi or lltalk yourto prescription your or talk to your (Tagamet), fam healthcare provider before healthcare your COMPLERA provider before is all your gone. COMPLERA is all gone. What is COMPLERA? What is COMPLERA? (Zantac). If you – not stop taking COMPLERA – Do not stop without takingfirst COMPLERA talking towithout your healthcare first talking to your healthcare • COMPLERA is a prescription • COMPLERA HIV (Human is a prescription Immunodefi HIVciency (Human Virus) Immunodefi medicineciency Virus)Domedicine COMPLERA, tak provider. provider. that is used to treat HIV-1 that is in used adultsto treat HIV-1 in adults after you take – – If you stop taking COMPLERA, If you stop your taking healthcare COMPLERA, provider your will healthcare need to check provider will need to check – who have never taken – who HIV have medicines neverbefore, taken HIV andmedicines before, and • any of these m your health often and your do blood health tests often regularly and dotoblood check tests yourregularly HBV infection. to check your HBV infection. – who have an amount– of who HIVhave in their an amount blood (this of HIV is called in their‘viral bloodload’) (this that is called ‘viral load’) thathealthcare provider – clarithromyc Tell your Tell yourabout healthcare any new provider or unusual aboutsymptoms any new oryouunusual may symptoms you may is no more than 100,000 is nocopies/mL. more thanYour 100,000 healthcare copies/mL. provider Yourwill healthcare measure provider will measure have after you stop taking have COMPLERA. after you stop taking COMPLERA. – erythromycin your viral load. your viral load. – fluconazole ( Who should not take Who COMPLERA? should not take COMPLERA? (HIV is the virus that causes (HIV is the AIDSvirus (Acquired that causes Immunodefi AIDS (Acquired ciency Syndrome)). Immunodeficiency Syndrome)). – itraconazole Do not take COMPLERA Doif: not take COMPLERA if: • COMPLERA contains•3COMPLERA medicines contains – rilpivirine, 3 medicines emtricitabine, – rilpivirine, tenofovir emtricitabine, •tenofovir • your your HIV infection has beenHIV previously infectiontreated has been withpreviously HIV medicines. treated with HIV medicines. – ketoconazole disoproxil fumarate – disoproxil combinedfumarate in one tablet. – combined It is a complete in one tablet. regimen It istoa complete regimen to • you are taking any of• the you following are takingmedicines: any of the following medicines: treat HIV-1 infection and treatshould HIV-1 not infection be used andwith should othernot HIVbemedicines. used with other HIV medicines. – methadone ( – anti-seizure – anti-seizure carbamazepine medicines: (Carbatrol, carbamazepine Equetro, Tegretol, (Carbatrol, Equetro, Tegretol, • It is not known if COMPLERA • It is notisknown safe and if COMPLERA effective inis children safe andunder effective the age in children under the age medicines: – posaconazol Tegretol-XR, Teril, Epitol); Tegretol-XR, oxcarbazepine Teril, Epitol); (Trileptal); oxcarbazepine phenobarbital (Trileptal); phenobarbital of 18 years old. of 18 years old. – telithromycin (Luminal); phenytoin (Dilantin, (Luminal);Dilantin-125, phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek) Dilantin-125, Phenytek) • COMPLERA does not• cure COMPLERA HIV infection does not orcure AIDS.HIV Youinfection must stayoron AIDS. continuous You must stay on continuous – voriconazole – anti-tuberculosis (anti-TB) – anti-tuberculosis medicines: (anti-TB) rifabutin (Mycobutin); medicines: rifabutin rifampin(Mycobutin); rifampin therapy to control HIV therapy infectiontoand control decrease HIV infection HIV-related and illnesses. decrease HIV-related illnesses. (Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane, (Rifater, Rifamate, Rifadin); rifapentine Rimactane,(Priftin) Rifadin); rifapentine (Priftin) • medicines that • Ask your healthcare• provider Ask your ifhealthcare you have any provider questions if youabout have how any questions to about how to cidofovir (Visti – – proton pump inhibitor proton (PPI) pump medicine inhibitor for certain (PPI) stomach medicine or for intestinal certain stomach or intestinal prevent passing HIV to prevent other passing people. Do HIVnot to share other or people. re-useDoneedles not share or other or re-use needles or other and valgancicl problems: esomeprazole problems: (Nexium, esomeprazole Vimovo); lansoprazole (Nexium, Vimovo); (Prevacid); lansoprazole (Prevacid); injection equipment, and injection do notequipment, share personal and do items not share that can personal have blood itemsorthat can have blood or dexlansoprazole (Dexilant); dexlansoprazole omeprazole (Dexilant); (Prilosec, omeprazole Zegerid); pantoprazole (Prilosec, Zegerid); pantoprazole body fluids on them, like bodytoothbrushes fluids on them, andlike razor toothbrushes blades. Always andpractice razor blades. safer Always practice safer What are the po sodium (Protonix); (Aciphex) rabeprazole (Aciphex) sex by using a latex orsex polyurethane by using a condom latex or polyurethane to lower the chance condomoftosexual lower the chance sodium of sexual(Protonix); rabeprazole contact with semen, vaginal contactflwith uids semen, or blood.vaginal fluids or blood. – more than 1 dose of–the more steroid thanmedicine 1 dose ofdexamethasone the steroid medicine or dexamethasone dexamethasone or dexamethasone COMPLERA can • See “What is t sodium phosphate sodium phosphate What is the most important What isinformation the most important I should information know about COMPLERA? I should know about COMPLERA? COMPLERA?” – St. John’s wort (Hypericum – St. John’s perforatum) wort (Hypericum perforatum) • New or worse COMPLERA can causeCOMPLERA serious side caneffects, cause serious including: side effects, including: • If you take COMPLERA, • If you you take should COMPLERA, not take: you should not take: • Build-up of an acid •inBuild-up your blood of an (lactic acid acidosis). in your blood Lactic (lactic acidosis acidosis). can Lactic acidosis can some people w happen in some people happen who take in some COMPLERA people or who similar take COMPLERA (nucleosideoranalogs) similar (nucleoside analogs) – Other – Other tests to check medicines that contain medicines tenofovirthat (Atripla, contain Stribild, tenofovir Truvada, (Atripla, Viread) Stribild, Truvada, Viread) medicines. Lactic acidosis medicines. is a serious Lacticmedical acidosisemergency is a seriousthat medical can lead emergency to that–can lead to have had kidne – Other Other medicines that contain medicines emtricitabine that contain or lamivudine emtricitabine (Combivir, or lamivudine (Combivir, death. Lactic acidosisdeath. can beLactic hard to acidosis identifycan early, be hard because to identify the symptoms early, because the symptoms can cause kidn Emtriva, Epivir or Epivir-HBV, Emtriva,Epzicom, Epivir or Trizivir, Epivir-HBV, Atripla, Epzicom, Truvada, Trizivir, Stribild) Atripla, Truvada, Stribild) could seem like symptoms couldofseem otherlike health symptoms problems. of other Call health your healthcare problems. Call your healthcare tests to check rilpivirine provider right away ifprovider you get right any ofaway the following if you getsymptoms any of the which following could symptoms–which could(Edurant)– rilpivirine (Edurant) • Depression or be signs of lactic acidosis: be signs of lactic acidosis: – adefovir (Hepsera) – adefovir (Hepsera) you have any o – feel very weak or tired – feel very weak or tired – feeling sad o What should I tell myWhat healthcare shouldprovider I tell my before healthcare taking provider COMPLERA? before taking COMPLERA? – have unusual (not normal) – have unusual muscle pain (not normal) muscle pain – feeling anxio Before you take COMPLERA, Before you tell take your COMPLERA, healthcare provider tell your ifhealthcare you: provider if you: – have trouble breathing – have trouble breathing • have or had liver problems, • have or including had liverhepatitis problems,B including or C virus hepatitis infection,Bkidney or C virus infection, kidney – have though problems, mental health problems, problemmental or bone health problems problem or bone problems – have stomach pain –with have nausea stomach (feeling pain sick withtonausea your stomach) (feeling sick or vomiting to your stomach) or vomiting • Change in live • • are pregnant or plan to arebecome pregnant pregnant. or plan Ittoisbecome not known pregnant. if COMPLERA It is notcan known if COMPLERA can – feel cold, especially–infeel infection or wh yourcold, armsespecially and legsin your arms and legs harm your unborn child. harm your unborn child. risk of develop – feel dizzy or lightheaded – feel dizzy or lightheaded with COMPLER Pregnancy Registry. There Pregnancy is a pregnancy Registry. registry There isfor a pregnancy women who registry take for women who take – have a fast or irregular – have heartbeat a fast or irregular heartbeat antiviral medicines during antiviral pregnancy. medicines Theduring purpose pregnancy. of this registry The purpose is to collect of this registry is to collect COMPLERA in provider may n information about theinformation health of you about and the yourhealth baby. of Talk youtoand youryour healthcare baby. Talk to your healthcare • Severe liver problems. • Severe Severeliver liverproblems. problems Severe can happen liver problems in people can whohappen take in people who take treatment with provider provider can take about parthow in this youregistry. can take part in this registry. COMPLERA. In some cases, COMPLERA. these liver In some problems cases,can these lead liver to problems death. Your can lead to death. Yourabout how you liver may become large liver (hepatomegaly) may become large and you (hepatomegaly) may develop fat andinyou your may liver develop•fat your liver areinbreast-feeding or• are planbreast-feeding to breast-feed.orYou planshould to breast-feed. not breastfeed You should if younot breastfeed if you • Bone problem (steatosis). Call your (steatosis). healthcare Call provider your right healthcare away ifprovider you get right any ofaway the if you get any of the have HIV because of have the risk HIVofbecause passingofHIV thetorisk yourofbaby. passing Do not HIVbreastfeed to your baby. Do not breastfeed problems inclu following symptoms of following liver problems: symptoms of liver problems: fractures). You if you are taking COMPLERA. if you are At taking least two COMPLERA. of the medicines At least contained two of the in medicines contained in your bones. COMPLERA can be passed COMPLERA to your can baby be in passed your breast to your milk. baby We in do your not breast know milk. We do not know – your skin or the white – your part skin of your or the eyeswhite turnspart yellow of your (jaundice) eyes turns yellow (jaundice) whether this could harm whether your baby. this could Talk to harm youryour healthcare baby. Talk provider to yourabout healthcare the provider about the • Changes in bo – dark “tea-colored” urine – dark “tea-colored” urine best way to feed your best baby.way to feed your baby. changes may i – light-colored bowel –movements light-colored (stools) bowel movements (stools) (“buffalo hump Tell your healthcare provider Tell your about healthcare all theprovider medicines about youalltake, the including medicines you take, including – loss of appetite for several – loss ofdays prescription and nonprescription prescriptionmedicines, and nonprescription vitamins, and medicines, herbal supplements. vitamins, and herbal supplements. Loss of fat from appetite or longer for several days or longer long term heal • COMPLERA may affect • COMPLERA the way other may affect medicines the way work, other andmedicines other medicines work, and other medicines – nausea – nausea • Changes in yo may affect how COMPLERA may affect works, how and COMPLERA may cause works, serious andside mayeffects. cause serious If side effects. If – stomach pain – stomach pain you take certain medicines you take withcertain COMPLERA, medicines the amount with COMPLERA, of COMPLERA the amount in your of COMPLERA in your happen when y • You may be more likely • Youtomay stronger and b get be lactic more acidosis likely toorget severe lacticliver acidosis problems or severe if liverbody problems if too low and may be bodyit may may be nottoo work lowtoand helpit control may notyour workHIV to infection. help control your HIV infection. a long time. Te you are female, very you overweight are female, (obese), very or overweight have been(obese), taking COMPLERA or have been taking TheCOMPLERA HIV virus in your body The HIV mayvirus become in your resistant body may to COMPLERA become resistant or othertoHIV COMPLERA or other HIV after starting y for a long time. for a long time. medicines that are likemedicines it. that are like it.

Brief Summary of fullBrief Prescribing Summary Information of full Prescribing Information ®


PALIO Date: 10.4.13 • Client: Gilead • Product: Complera • File Name: 9731_pgitvd_standard_updtd_ant_GayCityNews.indd

us (HBV) up) if you stop ddenly returns treatment of der.

talk to your

The most common sideThe effects most of common COMPLERA side effects include:of COMPLERA include: Especially tell your healthcare Especially provider tell your ifhealthcare you take: provider if you take: an antacid medicine• that an antacid contains medicine aluminum, thatmagnesium contains aluminum, hydroxide,magnesium or hydroxide, or • trouble sleeping (insomnia) • trouble sleeping (insomnia) calcium carbonate. If calcium you takecarbonate. an antacidIfduring you take treatment an antacid withduring COMPLERA, treatment with COMPLERA, abnormal take the antacid at least take2the hours antacid before at least or at 2least hours 4 hours beforeafter or atyou least 4 hours• after you dreams • abnormal dreams take COMPLERA. take COMPLERA. • headache • headache


eed to check HBV infection. toms you may

• any any of these medicines (ifoftaken thesebymedicines mouth or injection): (if taken by mouth or injection):







• depression • depression – erythromycin (E-Mycin, – erythromycin Eryc, Ery-Tab, (E-Mycin, PCE, Pediazole, Eryc, Ery-Tab, Ilosone) PCE, Pediazole, Ilosone) Additional common side Additional effects include: common side effects include:

, Tegretol, rbital

r intestinal vacid); antoprazole

a medicine to block •the a medicine acid in your to block stomach, the acid including in yourcimetidine stomach, including cimetidine • dizziness (Tagamet), famotidine(Tagamet), (Pepcid), nizatidine famotidine(Axid), (Pepcid), or ranitidine nizatidinehydrochloride (Axid), or ranitidine hydrochloride • diarrhea (Zantac). If you take one (Zantac). of these If you medicines take oneduring of these treatment medicines withduring treatment with COMPLERA, take the acid COMPLERA, blocker at take least the12 acid hours blocker before at least or at12 least hours 4 hours before or•atnausea least 4 hours after you take COMPLERA. after you take COMPLERA. • rash – clarithromycin (Biaxin) – clarithromycin (Biaxin)


); rifampin


| November 27, 2013

– fluconazole (Diflucan) – fluconazole (Diflucan)


– itraconazole (Sporanox) – itraconazole (Sporanox)

• stomach pain or discomfort stomach pain or discomfort

– ketoconazole (Nizoral) – ketoconazole (Nizoral)

• skinspots skin discoloration (small discoloration or freckles) (small spots or freckles)

– methadone (Dolophine) – methadone (Dolophine)


– posaconazole (Noxafi–l)posaconazole (Noxafil) – telithromycin (Ketek)– telithromycin (Ketek)



Tell your healthcare provider Tell yourif healthcare you have any provider side effect if youthat havebothers any side youeffect or that that bothers you or that does not go away. does not go away.

These are not all the possible These areside noteffects all the of possible COMPLERA. side effects For more of information, COMPLERA. For more information, ask your healthcare provider ask yourorhealthcare pharmacist. provider or pharmacist. • medicines that are eliminated • medicines bythat the are kidney, eliminated including by acyclovir the kidney, (Zovirax), including acyclovir (Zovirax), Call your doctor for medical Call your advice doctor about for medical side effects. advice Youabout may side reporteffects. side You may report side cidofovir (Vistide), ganciclovir cidofovir (Cytovene (Vistide), ganciclovir IV, Vitrasert), (Cytovene valacyclovir IV, Vitrasert), (Valtrex), valacyclovir (Valtrex), effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 effects to FDA (1-800-332-1088). at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088). and valganciclovir (Valcyte) and valganciclovir (Valcyte) – voriconazole (Vfend)– voriconazole (Vfend)

What are the possibleWhat sideare effects the possible of COMPLERA? side effects of COMPLERA?

How should I take COMPLERA? How should I take COMPLERA?

• Stay under the care• of Stay your under healthcare the careprovider of your during healthcare treatment provider withduring treatment with serious side caneffects, cause serious including: side effects, including: dexamethasone COMPLERA can causeCOMPLERA COMPLERA. COMPLERA. • See “What is the most • See important “What isinformation the most important I should information know about I should know about • Take COMPLERA exactly • Take asCOMPLERA your healthcare exactlyprovider as your tells healthcare you to take provider it. tells you to take it. COMPLERA?” COMPLERA?”

• Always • Always • New with take food.COMPLERA Taking COMPLERA with food. with Taking food is COMPLERA importantwith food is important New or worse kidney problems, or worse including kidney kidney problems, failure, including can happen kidneyinfailure, can happentake in COMPLERA to help the right amount to help of getmedicine the rightinamount your body. of medicine A proteinindrink yourisbody. not A protein drink is not some people who takesome COMPLERA. people who Yourtake healthcare COMPLERA. provider Yourshould healthcare do blood provider should do get blood a substitute your healthcare for food. provider If yourdecides healthcare to stop provider COMPLERA decides to stop COMPLERA tests to check your kidneys tests to before checkstarting your kidneys treatment before with starting COMPLERA. treatment If youwith COMPLERA. If youfor food. aIf substitute ada, Viread) and you are to new youmedicines are switched to treat to new HIVmedicines that includes to treat rilpivirine HIV that includes rilpivirine have had kidney problems have in had thekidney past or problems need to in take theanother past or medicine need to take thatanother medicine thatswitched and ombivir, the rilpivirinetablets, tablets should the rilpivirine be taken tablets only with should a meal. be taken only with a meal. can cause kidney problems, can cause yourkidney healthcare problems, provider yourmay healthcare need to do provider blood may needtablets, to do blood da, Stribild) tests to check your kidneys tests to during checkyour yourtreatment kidneys during with COMPLERA. your treatment with COMPLERA. • Do not change your dose • Do not or stop change taking yourCOMPLERA dose or stop without takingfirst COMPLERA talking with without first talking with your healthcare provider. your See healthcare your healthcare provider. provider See your regularly healthcare while provider taking regularly while taking • Depression or mood• changes. Depression Telloryour mood healthcare changes. provider Tell your right healthcare away ifprovider right away if COMPLERA. COMPLERA. you have any of the following you havesymptoms: any of the following symptoms: • If you miss a dose of• COMPLERA If you miss within a dose12 of COMPLERA hours of thewithin time you 12 hours usuallyoftake the time you usually take – – feeling sad or hopeless feeling sad or hopeless PLERA? it, take your dose of COMPLERA it, take your with dose food of COMPLERA as soon as possible. with foodThen, as soon takeasyour possible. Then, take your – feeling anxious or restless – feeling anxious or restless ou: next dose of COMPLERA next atdose the regularly of COMPLERA scheduled at thetime. regularly If youscheduled miss a dose time. If you miss a dose ection, kidney of COMPLERA COMPLERA 12 hoursbyofmore the time thanyou 12 hours usuallyoftake the time it, wait youand usually take it, wait and – have thoughts of hurting – haveyourself thoughts (suicide) of hurting or have yourself tried(suicide) to hurt yourself or have tried to hurt yourself by moreofthan then take the next dose then of COMPLERA take the next atdose the regularly of COMPLERA scheduled at thetime. regularly scheduled time. • Change in liver enzymes. • Change People in liver withenzymes. a history People of hepatitis with aB history or C virus of hepatitis B or C virus • Do MPLERA can take more than your notprescribed take more dose than to your make prescribed up for adose missed to make dose. up for a missed dose. infection or who haveinfection certain liver or who enzyme havechanges certain liver may enzyme have anchanges increased may have• Do an not increased risk of developing newrisk or worsening of developing livernew problems or worsening duringliver treatment problems during treatment This Brief Summary summarizes This Brief Summary the mostsummarizes important information the most important about information about with COMPLERA. Liverwith problems COMPLERA. can also Liver happen problems during cantreatment also happen withduring treatment with If you would who take COMPLERA. COMPLERA. like moreIfinformation, you would like talkmore withinformation, your healthcare talk with your healthcare without a history in people of liver without disease. a history Your of healthcare liver disease. 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November 27, 2013 |


Flavors Savored

A Cuban revolutionary and a cultured homosexual in a sparring dance BY DAVID KENNERLEY


iego loves the strawberryflavored; David is partial to chocolate. The significance of these preferences, however, goes far beyond mere ice cream in “Strawberry & Chocolate,” an earnest, three-man drama by Senel Paz based on an awardwinning short story he wrote in 1990.



International Studio 777 Theater 777 Eighth Ave. at 47th St. Through Dec. 29 Thu. at 7 p.m., Fri.-Sat. at 8 p.m. Sun. at 3 p.m. $25-$49.50; Or 866-811-4111 Roy Arias and A.J. Cedeño in “Strawberry & Chocolate.”

The setting is Havana in the early 1980s, as Fidel Castro’s Communist regime continued to stamp out artistic culture, promote conformity, and violate human rights. Anyone who deviated from the party line was branded a traitor and could be jailed, deported, or worse. Homosexuals were favorite targets. The play opens with David, a militant student devoted to the revolution, becoming agitated when the effete Diego, a cultured gay man in his 40s, invades his table at the local ice cream shop. In an awkward bid to befriend the sexy revolutionary — and perhaps seduce him — Diego shows him a couple

of hard-to-find books by blacklisted authors. Diego declares that the highly popular chocolate symbolizes machismo (and by extension, the pig-headed Communists). Strawberry, on the other hand, symbolizes more refined, forbidden pleasures. The socio-political drama suggests that in an ideal world, all flavors of humanity — farmers, soldiers, workers, intellectuals, housewives, homosexuals — should coexist as happily as they do in an ice cream parlor. It also reminds us that there are multiple flavors of gay people as well.

Whether these two polar opposites can respect, appreciate, and, yes, even taste one another’s flavor, is at the heart of the play. The stakes are even higher when another militant student, Miguel, persuades David to feign friendship with the “faggot” to gather enough evidence to have him jailed. It doesn’t take long, however, before David stops faking it and starts feeling it. I f t h e s t o r y s o u n d s f a m i l i a r, that’s because it was made into the groundbreaking “Fresa y Chocolate” in 1994, the only Cuban film to be nominated for an Academy Award (Best Foreign Film category).

As translated by Eugene Nuñez, Paz has done a good job at reworking the text for the stage. And the set of Diego’s apartment (by Edward E. Haynes), crammed with books, records, and antiques, evokes a wonderfully shabbychic Cuban abode. Yet under the direction of the acclaimed stage and film veteran Roger Robinson, this tiny play with grand ambitions just doesn’t quite come together. The performers, while committed, are not up to the level of the material. In the demanding role of Diego, Roy Arias often seems to rush the delivery of his lines. The buff, model-handsome A.J. Cedeño (whose role has been taken over by Frank Huerta since press previews) certainly has David’s anger down pat, but he registers more like a shiny character from a television sitcom. When he complains about being bitten by depression, it’s difficult to believe him. The bearded Andhy Mendez is perhaps the most convincing in the underwritten role of the brooding, intensely homophobic Miguel. That’s not to say that “Strawberry & Chocolate” is not worth a look. We do root for the two opposites to find common ground, and we admire Diego’s attempts to lure David to his lair full of wondrous forbidden books, like drawing a bee with honey. It’s a delicate seduction of both mind and body. “There’s always a way to win over a young man, no matter the political system in which you live,” Diego says smugly. “Some like this, some like that, but they all fall. They all have a weak spot.”

For the Birds Knocking off cheesy movies is ridiculous fun; doing the same to Chekhov, not so much BY CHRISTOPHER BYRNE


hatever kind of academic exercise playwright Sharr White is up to in the new play “The Snow Geese,” now being staged by MTC, the result is dull, even tedious, saved from disaster only by the talents of Broadway stalwarts Mary-Louise Parker, Danny Burstein, and Victoria Clark. During the seemingly interminable exposition that is the first act, the references to Ibsen and Chekhov accumulate, even to the point of

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introducing a gun that — you will be relieved to know — is later fired. The muddled story mashes together elements of “The Cherry Orchard,” “Uncle Vanya,” and “The Wild Duck.” It is as if White decided to play a game by

taking tropes of the late 19th century, shaking them up, and piecing together a play from the mix. What he came up with is the story of a family in denial as their world collapses around them at the outset of World War I. A widow is mourning for her romantic but ever so impractical husband. The fortune is gone; the beloved son, lost in his own romantic daydreams, is going off to war; and the practical younger son is made a pariah for injecting a cold dose of reality into the fantasy world around him. As the family leaves the country house they’re about to lose, all that’s missing is the sound of the axes cutting

down the orchard. “The Snow Geese” is especially disappointing in that White’s last play, “The Other Place,” was a brilliant examination of the effects of creeping dementia. It was as sharp and contemporary as the current effort is lugubrious and derivative. What spare pleasures there are to be had come from the performances of the stars. Even playing the largely onenote part of widow Elizabeth Gaesling, Parker is always interesting to watch as an actress. Clark, as Elizabeth’s


DISASTER, continued on p.42


| November 27, 2013


Making Chances Pay Off

A Winning Combination!

Celine Dion is back with a control that embraces today





here was a time when the big three were Whitney, Celine, and Mariah. Prior to the days of Rihanna, Miley, and auto-tune, these big-voiced divas owned the charts at a time when radio had room for big voices. Celine Dion has now released a new album, “Loved Me Back to Life” and it does her proud. While Whitney’s last outing screamed “comeback album” in its sentiment and bland execution and Mariah’s recent CD and videos are largely testimony to her ability to look sexy in hot pants, Celine actually seems invested here in making a great album for her fans. The first single, “Loved Me Back to Life,” produced by Sham and Motesart, has a dark, moody feel. It opens with a very current stuttering chant and the track is almost a dubstep one — or as close to dubstep as Dion will ever get. “Water and a Flame,” a Daniel Merriweather cover, is Celine in a loungey mode, using her voice to suggest a smoky late night, then morning after vibe. Her vocal is a bit

currently performs in her Las Vegas show. Dion duets with Stevie Wonder on his classic “Overjoyed” and she performs a remake of Janis Ian’s “At Seventeen,” produced by Babyface over a salsa beat. Celine also duets with Ne-Yo on the song “Incredible,” which no doubt will be heard nonstop during the upcoming Olympics. “Loved Me Back to Life” is a fascinating listen; Dion obviously brought a good deal of care, intelligence, and restraint to this collection. That’s not to say the album is lacking in big Celine ballads. “I’ll Always Be Yo u r G i r l ” i s a h u g e mountain of a song she climbs effortlessly to the top of. But “Girl,” with its familiar-style arrangement, is the exception on this album. Cel i ne’s l ast Engl i sh language album was titled “Taking Chances.” Released in 2007, the collection was a failed and labored attempt to try a new direction. It seemed Dion was taking chances just for the sake of it. With “Loved Me Back to Life,” Celine hits the mark —embracing current pop trends and projecting a more subdued vocal style onto smartly produced songs. This time out, if feels as though the singer enjoyed taking chances. A genuine sense of fun, experimentation, and joy shines through.

Dion obviously brought a good deal of care, intelligence, and restraint to this collection. weathered here and the approach works for the song and is one she adapts appropriately for the feel of a number of the other tracks. “Loved Me Back to Life” was originally scheduled to be released in 2012 as an album mostly made up of covers of old songs and duets. That plan was scrapped in favor of adding new material, though a few of the original recordings remain. “Back to Life” includes two covers that she

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November 27, 2013 |


Bona Fide Bard

An accessible, giddy spin on a pair of Shakespeare classics BY DAVID KENNERLEY


n recent months, New York has produced a head-scratching array of shaken-up Shakespeare. A “Macbeth” set in an insane asylum featuring a single actor playing every role. A hunky Romeo in torn jeans riding a motorcycle. A “Julius Caesar” staged in a high-security women’s prison. Just to name a few.

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But before you lump in the all-male “Richard III” and “Twelfth Night,” now playing in repertory at the Belasco Theatre, with the others, remember: that’s how the works were staged in Shakespeare’s day. In fact, the many flourishes in

these eloquent Shakespeare’s Globe productions, imported from London’s West End under the expert guidance of Tim Carroll, are not gimmicks at all. Rather, they’re an earnest effort to restore the works to their original experience. The results are no less than astonishing. In addition to all parts being portrayed by men (plastered with beautifully spooky white makeup), the score is performed live by a small band playing Renaissance-era instruments in a gallery above the stage. This may well be the first time a shawm, recorder, lute, rauschpfeife, and sackbut have been showcased on Broadway. Lighting is chiefly provided by scores of wax candles in enormous chandeliers. In perhaps a nod to the immersive theater trend invading New York these days, upon entering you can observe actors onstage conducting the ritual of putting on their costumes and makeup. The period-perfect costumes, handstitched using only materials available in the late 16th century, are breathtaking and well-deserving of the pre-show

tragic narrative. “Murder her brothers, and then marry her. Uncertain way of gain,” he quips, eliciting a peal of laughter from the audience. Rylance supplies Richard with the occasional manic giggle that makes his misdeeds all the more chilling. Within this Richard, a heart does beat beneath the treachery and bombast, and his motivations are laid bare early on. A hunchback with a hideously deformed left arm, he is a misfit bullied all his life. His lust for power is only surpassed by his hunger for revenge. Of course, we have seen magnificent scoundrels from Rylance before, like Johnny Byron in “Jerusalem” and Valere in “La Bête.” But seeing him put his tour-de-force stamp on such a dramatic icon is one of the highlights of this Broadway season. The former artistic director of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London has appeared in more than 50 productions of plays by the Bard and his contemporaries.

showcase. One night, I saw awestruck audience members being allowed to touch an actor’s sumptuous silk robes. Two galleries flank the stage where lucky theatergoers can witness the proceedings up close and become, in effect, part of the show. The backdrop is a replica of a carved oaken screen found in an Oxford University hall, where the Bard’s works were often performed. Aside from an occasional chair, bench, table, or casket, there is no scenery, allowing the rich dialogue room to breathe. Jenny Tiramani is credited as production designer. “Richard III” has long been hailed as one of Shakespeare’s great historical tragedies. After all, the power-crazed Duke of Gloucester leaves a bloody trail of corpses, including sundry lords, ladies, brothers, and nephews, in his path to the throne as King Richard III of England. Good thing nobody bothered to inform British thespian Mark Rylance, for he plays the vengeful megalomaniac with a wry, devilish twist that extracts fresh bursts of comic flavor from the


BARD, continued on p.35

Bros Before Homos When guys gulp whiskey and brag about chicks and Facebook, unexpected sparks fly BY DAVID KENNERLEY



’m guessing that “Small Engine Repair,” the stunning nail-biter depicting the doomed reunion of three former best buds, now playing Off Broadway at the Lucille Lortel Theatre, won’t be winning a GLAAD award anytime soon. In fact, I expect some theatergoers will be outright offended by the blatant homophobia running rampant onstage.

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They will need to get over it. Because like it or not, sometimes when miserable, none-too-bright, supposedly straight guys get together

Keegan Allen, James Badge Dale, James Ransone, and John Pollono in Pollono’s “Small Engine Repair,” at the Lucille Lortel through December 21.

and chug Budweisers and Johnny Walker Blue like there’s no tomorrow, they are prone to calling each other “faggy” and “pussy” and “cuntface.” They can’t help but hurl emasculating insults that involve dicks and ass-fucking to make the barbs sting. Political

correctness is an alien concept. Keep in mind that John Pollono, the playwright who also stars as Frank, the owner of the ramshackle shop of the play’s title, is all too familiar with this particular stripe of folk. He grew up in Manchester, New Hampshire, where the

drama takes place, and has admitted he was initially afraid of acting on his dream of becoming a writer or actor. If he did, chances are his friends would call him a — well, you know. Critics of the work might do well to remember that it’s a satire of sorts with artificially amped up dramatic elements. It’s a ticking time bomb of a play designed to make you squirm in your seat. That’s part of the thrill. And besides, there is a good deal of shameless misogyny and bashing of other groups as well, so consider the work an equal opportunity offender. We sense something amiss from the get-go. The visibly agitated Frank has invited his two loser childhood friends, the tightly wound Packie (James Ransone) and the arrogant Swaino (James Badge Dale), under false pretenses to hang out at his shop after hours and get hammered. The guys, well into their 30s, have grown distant in recent years. Frank, a single


BROS, continued on p.35


| November 27, 2013


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Samuel Barnett as Viola and Mark Reliance as Lady Olivia in Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night.”


BARD, from p.34

Rylance is supported by a top-notch company that includes Angus Wright as the Duke of Buckingham, Joseph Timms as the reticent and doomed Lady Anne, Samuel Barnett as the seething Queen Elizabeth, and Kurt Egyiawan, who doubles as the Duchess of York and Richard’s foe, Richmond. Comedy is catapulted to new heights of delirium in “Twelfth Night.” This knotty romp — featuring a young woman named Viola who dresses as a man to broker a love connection between the Duke of Orsino (Liam Brennan) and Lady Olivia — is even more delectable with a male actor (the gifted Barnett) in the role.


BROS, from p.34

dad trying to raise the daughter he inadvertently fathered in high school, wants to relive those boyhood glory days, pre-Internet, when they would share Playboy magazines and watch Red Sox games together. (A cherished memory: their dads kicking the shit out of them after the Sox lost the World Series to the Mets in 1986.) But he’s holding something back. Not long after a preppie, drug-dealing college jock named Chad (Keegan Allen) joins the party and tells a story of sharing a naked photo that some girl texted him, Frank reveals his true motive. Under the taut direction of Jo Bonney, the supremely talented ensemble is firing on all cylinders. The performances are so wickedly entertaining we hardly notice the occasional potholes of logic and patches of improbable vocabulary in the script. As you might imagine, the cruel, expletive-filled “Small Engine Repair” echoes works from Neil LaBute and David Mamet. The set of the greasy repair shop (by Richard Hoover), cluttered with engine parts and

And while Rylance is sublime as the love-struck Olivia, he’s in plenty good company. As the boozy, buffoonish knight, Sir Andrew Aguecheek, Wright manages to be even more entertaining than the Fool (Peter Hamilton Dyer). Paul Chahidi brings a brash charm to the officious Maria, Olivia’s conniving chambermaid. If this back-to-basics Bard ramps up the authenticity, it also enhances the intimacy and emotional impact. Besides soliloquies directed to the audience, occasionally actors interact with individual theatergoers. Somehow, we feel as if we are conspiring with the company, not simply being entertained by it. The effect is both disarmingly accessible and transporting.

drenched in testosterone, recalls the junk shop in Mamet’s classic “American Buffalo.” “Be careful of this one,” Frank says when Chad arrives, referring to Swaino. “He’ll stick his dick into anything with a hole and a heartbeat.” Yet this brisk, 70-minute dark comedy has more than offensiveness on its mind. It’s got plenty to say about the power of shared histories, crumbling of friendships, inequity of socio-economic classes, and pitfalls of social networking. There’s even a subplot that recalls the devastating Tyler Clementi suicide. At some point, the homophobic veers into the homoerotic. All that blathering about massive cocks and fingers in asses makes you wonder if the guys, none of them married, doth protest too much. We suspect that one of them is a closet case in deep denial. Convinced they live in a land with very little action and even less hope of escape, they sarcastically — and derisively — refer to their provincial city as “ManchVegas.” At the play’s disturbing climax, we share their shock in discovering that they got it so terribly wrong.





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November 27, 2013 |


Taking Control… Maybe

Can self-objectification and feminism really work together? BY STEVE ERICKSON


S#X ACTS Directed by Jonathan Gurfinkel Tribeca Film In Hebrew with English subtitles Opens Dec. 6 Cinema Village 22 E. 12th St.

While it came out months before Mileygate, Harmony Korine’s “Spring


f Miley Cyrus’ performance at the VMAs and subsequent nude appearance in her “Wrecking Ball” video showed anything, it’s that our culture has no consensus on what constitutes healthy sexuality for teenage girls and young women. While some accused her of objectifying her African-American dancers, her white privilege didn’t prevent editorialists from suggesting that she was encouraging rape, although a twerking Nicki Minaj or Beyoncé probably would’ve received even more criticism. Sivan Levy in Jonathan Gurfinkel’s “S#x Acts.”

Breakers” is the movie of this moment, capturing a culture in which women are encouraged both to objectify themselves and pursue some post-feminist sense of “girl power” agency. Israeli director Jonathan Gurfinkel’s “S#x Acts” returns to the territory of Korine’s first script, for Larry Clark’s “Kids,” and it too captures

the queasiness of present-day attitudes about women and sex: whatever else one can say about the film, it’s clearly not a picture of healthy female sexuality. The film’s original title was “Six Acts,” as it’s structured around six acts of sex that its protagonist, 16-year -old Gili (Sivan Levy), either participates

in or rejects. As “S#x Acts” begins, Gili is taking photos of herself. She sends them to her high school classmate Tomer (Roy Nik), who, in n turn, shows them to his friend Omri (Eviatar Mor). Meeting up with them, she gives Tomer a handjob outdoors. She tries to develop a relationship with Omri, fooling herself into thinking she’s his girlfriend. The chubby Shabat (Niv Zilberberg) seems the most likable of this unpleasant bunch, but he eventually betrays Gili as well. In some respects, “S#x Acts” is the latest in a long line of films wagging its finger at the debauchery of contemporary teenagers. You can probably guess the details. Although they’re underage, its characters drink heavily and smoke pot frequently. Twelve-year-olds watch homemade porn on cell phones. Shabat refuses to wear a condom during sex with Gili, but then insists that Gili take the morning-after pill; he even drives to the pharmacy and buys it for her. Parents are missing —


S#X, continued on p.37

Brutal Violence, Yet Restraint Too Spike Lee adaptation of Korean action film, not completely successful, offers fascinating moments BY STEVE ERICKSON

OLDBOY Directed by Spike Lee Film District Citywide;



his may be a perverse statement, but Spike Lee’s talents might have thrived under the discipline of the classical Hollywood studio system. Of course, racism would have kept him outside their gates were he an adult in the 1950s or ‘60s — the first studio film directed by an AfricanAmerican was made in 1970 — and making a film as radical as his masterpiece “Do the Right Thing” then would have been impossible. However, over the past 15 years, Lee’s talents have thrived when doing adaptations and genre films (“25th Hour,” “Inside Man”) and faltered on “personal” projects.

Josh Brolin in Spike Lee’s “Oldboy.”

“Bamboozled,” his ambitious exploration of the long-term legacy of minstrel shows on American pop culture, is politically admirable, but as a narrative, it’s a mess. It probably would have made a better documentary. Lee’s

work hasn’t been helped by his frequent tendencies toward sermonizing and bloated running times. “Oldboy,” a remake of Korean director Park Chan-wook’s film of the same name, tests my theory. It’s an

unconventional action film whose closest American kin might be Christopher Nolan’s “Memento.” It doesn’t all work, but it’s fascinatingly conflicted. Advertising executive Joe (Josh Brolin) goes on a drunken spree one night and wakes up in a hotel room that’s really a prison. He’s kept there for 20 years, fed a diet of vodka (although he gives up drinking halfway through) and Chinese dumplings. His only companion is his TV set. Upon release, he stumbles back to a city and meets a friendly social worker (Elizabeth Olsen) with a similar pattern of addiction in her past. Given a cell phone, he gets weird calls about his daughter from a man (Sharlto Copley) whom he eventually meets and who seems to be manipulating his life, even outside the hotel, and holding his daughter captive. Lee doesn’t overdo stylized direction here, as he sometimes does. Visually, “Oldboy” is most notable for its saturated colors and its anonymous urban setting.


OLDBOY, continued on p.37


| November 27, 2013


S#X, from p.36

Gili drinks beer while her father snoozes in front of the TV — except in the final “act.” Unlike “Kids,” which punished its sexually active characters by giving them HIV, no one in “S#x Acts” ever mentions STDs. The film doesn’t exactly escape from the purgatory of prudishness — if it were less explicit, it could be shown in abstinence-only sexed classes to convince teens not to have sex — but it avoids the simultaneous demonization and eroticization of teen sex that renders Clark’s films exercises in hypocrisy. Thanks to Levy’s performance, Gili comes across as a very believable person, rather than a simple victim. The film itself is a convincing portrait of sex as a means of self-destruction, far more compelling than Steve McQueen’s “Shame.” It gets at some universal issues, akin to the masochistic fantasies of Susanna Moore’s novel “In the Cut.” (Jane Campion’s film adaptation was far more optimistic.) Teenage girls are hardly the only people suffering from low self-esteem or who feel more comfortable using sex to communicate rather than words. Gili’s deludes herself that Omri cares about her as anything other than a sex object. The signs are pretty glaring — he


OLDBOY, from p.36

While it was made in New Orleans, it could pass for New York. “Oldboy” was shot on a mix of film formats, including 35mm, 16mm, and even Super 8. There’s a dreamlike quality to Lee’s direction, which is implicit in the hotel room layout and explicit in the way flashbacks are staged, with present-day characters standing in the same room with their past selves and watching their actions unfold. “Oldboy” is Lee’s most violent film, with brutal rape and torture scenes. In interviews, he’s talked about his desire to bring a sense of real-life consequences to movie violence. That’s also implicit in Park Chan-wook’s work, particularly his trilogy about revenge (“Oldboy” is its middle entry.) Park’s “Oldboy” is memorable for its narrative twists and two iconic scenes. In the first, the protagonist eats a live octopus. This scene is not faked. In the second, he faces a gang of thugs, armed only with a hammer, and defeats them. Lee did not reproduce the octopus scene (the closing credits offer the usual disclaimer about no animals being harmed in the making of the film), but he does remake the hammer scene. It’s the closest he’s ever come to straightforward action filmmaking. “Oldboy” feels both attracted and repulsed by its tawdry subject matter and comic book origins. For once, Lee

neglects to put her name on the guest list at a nightclub party he’s throwing, humiliating her in front of a group of friends she brought with the promise of free passes. He eventually lets her in only because he wants her to have sex with one of his friends. All the while, Gili tells other girls that she’s in control, even that she’s the one using Omri. It’s never clear how much she believes what she says. In 1995, critic Jonathan Rosenbaum mocked the New York Times’ Janet Maslin for calling “Kids” “a wake-up call to the world,” noting the narrowness of her conception of the world. “S#x Acts” might be a wake-up call to the uppermiddle-class suburbs of the world, as almost every review has noted that the film could just as well be taking place in Beverly Hills or Sydney. There’s nothing specifically Israeli about the action — no references to religion or politics. Jamaican dancehall reggae makes up much of the soundtrack. The film suggests that all over the world, teenage boys are predators and teenage girls are prey. Feminism is sorely needed in its Tel Aviv, but one suspects it was a passing fad briefly espoused by the kids’ parents. Judging from his work here, Gurfinkel would be a great choice to make a film about the Steubenville rape case.

steps off the soapbox. Even so, he manages to deliver a subtle message about the lifelong impact of bullying. The film’s split between brains and gore is embodied in Brolin’s performance. Joe has two moods: quiet despair and total rage. When he’s not silent, he’s attacking someone, with whatever weapon he can find. In the film’s first third, Brolin’s work seems awfully bombastic. After Joe stops drinking, Brolin’s performance becomes a bit more measured and believable. Still, it’s tempting to imagine Jason Statham or direct-to-video star Scott Adkins in the role. For a mainstream American release, “Oldboy” is remarkably dark. It subverts the usual tropes of the revenge drama, like the quest for redemption by reconnecting with family. Joe does give up drinking — it’s hard to imagine any contemporary Hollywood film depicting an alcoholic who’s incapable of conquering their addiction — but in the long run, that doesn’t guarantee his mental safety. The film holds the pulpier elements of its narrative at arm’s length, though, and seems quite self-conscious about the need to push as far as Park Chan-wook’s film did. While not exactly an arthouse version of “Oldboy,” it does aim to play both Soho and Times Square. That gives it more freedom than most American films. I’m not completely enamored of it, but there’s nothing else like it in the multiplex.


November 27, 2013 |


Three Centuries of Voice Monteverdi through Richard Strauss featured at Carnegie, Lincoln Center, the Met


ctober 24 proved a happy night at the Metropolitan Opera: a perfor mance of Bellini’s mighty “Norma” in which all four leads belonged on the great stage. How often does that happen in major “red sauce” Italian operas these days? The John Copley/ John Conklin production remains an eyesore, with incredibly gauche, senseless use made of the heroine’s children, exhibited to the whole Druid clan just when she’s trying to protect them from exposure. This moment — potentially among the most moving in opera also featured one of many peculiar translations, rendering Norma’s plea to her father — “Pensa che son tuo sangue” (“Remember, they are your blood kin”) — as “Remember, I am your daughter”. But the singing, particularly that of the terrifically gifted, rich-voiced, and expressive Jamie Barton in her first major Met role as Adalgisa, triumphed over the staging and Riccardo Frizza’s superficial, sometimes rushed conducting. Barton phrased her words and music as if experiencing them afresh — something not true of Angela Meade’s Norma, though much of the marathon role was truly remarkably well vocalized. Meade has steadily improved her Norma from its Caramoor to Washington showings, and while she manages most of the hurdles straightforwardly she occasionally sharped or took refuge in pianissimi. At best she channeled anger and earnestness; but the large tragic arc of the character eluded her, and one felt duly impressed rather than moved. Past his opening aria, Aleksandrs Antonenko sang with incr easing warmth, relative agility, and dynamic shading. He was one of the Met’s better recent Polliones. Ievgen Orlov debuted as Oroveso with a big, buzzy Christofflike bass, not exceptionally elegant but sturdy and powerful. Why isn’t he singing Gremin in “Eugene Onegin”?

November 7 showed the Met functioning at its best

with the welcome revival of “Die Frau ohne Schatten” in the late Herbert Wernicke’s brilliant production. What a “Ring” he might have given us! Vladimir Jurowski, back in the pit, opened all the cuts imposed last time and led a fantastic performance, which should only improve. The breakout news was the fabulous singing and heartfelt acting of the Dyer’s Wife — the trickiest part in

the opera — by Christine Goerke, now at full peak sounding as what many of us thought she’d always be: the Great American Dramatic Soprano of her time. The audience roared approval. Anne Schwanewilms made a welcome debut, her slightly “tubular,” lightish sound making for a restrained but stylish, thoughtful Empress; opposite her, tenor Torsten Kerl was rather wooden but sang pleasingly enough. Johan Reuter, extremely sympathetic onstage and lovely at quieter moments, really needed more weight of voice for the Dyer; what there was, was choice. Ildikó Komlósi (Nurse) moved and acted well but her tone — and her German diction — came and went. Still, all were well within the frame of this weird, wonderful fairy-tale opera, a mindblowing experience.

T h e P h i l h a r m o n i c, o n November 9, played a pleasant

but curiously unbalanced program of vocal music under Bernard Labadie. The first part brought Bach’s cantata “Jauchzet Gott,” with Matthew Muckey’s fine trumpet and Miah Persson singing with style and generally bright tone, though Labadie’s swift tempi sometimes cost her loss of pitch and tone at line endings. One aria (“Let the Bright Seraphim”) from Handel’s “Samson” followed — why not one for each of the trio of soloists who joined Persson and considerably larger forces for the Mozart “Requiem,” as completed by Robert Levin, after intermission? Stephanie Blythe sounded duly luscious and Québecois Frédéric Antoun reaffirmed his beautiful timbre and stylistic command — a tenor sorely needed in Mozart and light French roles at the Met. Joseph Flummerfelt’s New York Choral Artists performed remarkably.

November 13 brought the US premiere of the great

Kunstdiva Anna Caterina Antonacci’s solo project “Era la notte” to the Rose Theater. Wonderful as it was to see this nonpareil artist (rarely in New York) and hear her incisive declamation in four beautiful laments by Monteverdi, Barbara Strozzi, and Pietro Antonio Giramo, I found the evening rather disappointing. Increasingly, BAM and — here, for its shakily defined” White Lights Festival,” which comes wrapped in positivist New Age rhetoric — Lincoln Center seem prone to import “snob hit” events created for a festival circuit seemingly linked by the primacy given to images suitable



Christine Goerke, Ildikó Komlósi, and Anne Schwanewilms in Richard Strauss's "Die Frau ohne Schatten.”

for brochures or website viewing. We had a striking wall of candles here, plus the branding of Christian Lacroix costuming, but the composition had the non-organic, commodified feel of one of those Starbucks compilation CDs of world music. The musicians from Les Siècles were not overly impressive, not on the (very high) level of the music or Antonacci herself. Solo shows are hard; real bêtes de théâtre are best experienced in interplay with others. But this brief encounter with Antonacci’s art left one wanting more of substance, soon.

Carnegie’s Zankel Hall hosted a better baroque ensemble, Jonathan Cohen’s

Arcangelo, on November 18. Violinist Alina Ibragimova shone tonally and stylistically as soloist in J.S. Bach’s “A Minor Concerto.” She then joined her eloquent playing to Katherine Watson’s singing of

the harmonically entrancing aria “Mein Freund ist mein” from a cantata by Bach’s paternal cousin Johann Christoph (16421703). Like the great Christine Brandes, Watson manages to inscribe a dark coloration on a texturally light, pure lyric sound. For a baroque soprano, she could make uncommonly effective use of her lower range. After intermission, Russian baritone Nikolay Borchev joined Watson for Handel’s sparkling duologue “Apollo e Dafne.” The brief mythic tale was tricked out with a bow and arrow as props, but they didn’t distract. Watson was again very impressive in sustained as well as trippingly agile passages. Borchev, a little empty at the very bottom, showed good coloratura, a fluent timbre, and a properly self-regarding affect as Apollo. David Shengold (shengold@yahoo. com) writes about opera for many venues.


| November 27, 2013

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November 27, 2013 |


Greatest American Film Actress Stanwyck’s oeuvre says it all, Adonis brings back sexy BY DAVID NOH



lthough she is not as celebrated and written about as her contemporaries Katharine Hepburn and Bette Davis, a very strong case could be made for Barbara Stanwyck (1907-1990), far more versatile than either, as the pre-eminent American film actress of the sound era. Easily supporting this assertion are her films themselves, 88 in all, which include more bona fide movie classics and contain more honestly good work by the actress than are represented by the careers of Hepburn and Davis combined. “Double Indemnity,” “The Lady Eve,” “Remember the Night,” “Meet John Doe,” “The Bitter Tea of General Yen,” “Forty Guns,” “Stella Dallas,” “The Furies,” “Baby Face,” and “Union Pacific” can be counted as classics, while Stanwyck’s performances in a myriad of lesser soap operas, melodramas, Westerns, and preCode raunchfests were never less than interesting and often terrific, however indifferent the vehicle. Her relative lack of recognition is righted with a vengeance this fall with a monumental new biography, “A Life of Barbara Stanwyck: Steel-True,” by Victoria Wilson, which is accompanied by a month-long retrospective of her films at Film Forum. (209 W. Houston St., Dec. 6-31; The book, a real labor of love 15 years in the making, is 1,044 pages and only takes Stanwyck’s life up to 1940! It is safe to say that no actor has ever received such exhaustive treatment and the book is researched to a fare-theewell, with the author scoring interviews with the ever -diminishing ranks of survivors who knew or worked with the actress — as well as combing through endless fan magazines of the period and other publications, not to mention eBay. Wilson is obsessed with context, and anyone opening these pages better be prepared for what amounts to a history of American film itself during Stanwyck’s career, as well as the entire world around her. Prohibition, the Depression, and two World Wars are covered at length, as are the lives and careers of virtually all Stanwyck’s important co-stars and directors. Hence, you get many a digression like a tenpage description of the making of the 1936 Garbo version of “Camille.” Why? Stanwyck’s second husband, Robert Taylor, was the star, and the film was an important professional milestone for him. Added to this overwhelming wealth

Joan Crawford and Barbara Stanwyck with the husbands Franchot Tone and Robert Taylor.

of factual information is Wilson’s critical breakdown of not only Stanwyck’s films, but many others, as well. Thankfully, Stanwyck’s talent and intriguing life are rich enough to justify such microscopic handling. She was born Ruby Stevens in Brooklyn, and the accent from her youth remained an inescapable part of her persona, whatever the role, like Bette’s cigarettes or Kate’s tremulousness. When she was four, her mother, pregnant with her sixth child, was killed when she was pushed off a trolley car by a drunkard. Soon abandoned by her father, she was placed in some 10 foster homes before joining her older sister Mildred on the stage, eventually appearing in the “Ziegfeld Follies” of 1922. More work followed and she established herself as a strong dramatic actress when Hollywood, in need of new faces who could really talk, beckoned in 1929. She moved to California and never looked back, becoming one of the most respected, popular, and highest-paid actresses of her day. It is shameful that she never won an Oscar until a special one was granted in 1982. Although it leaves out a personal favorite, “The Lady Gambles” (1949), in which she gives a rivetingly raw performance as a compulsive gambler, Film Forum’s selection should delight all hard-core Stanwyck-philes. With beady eyes, a prominent Roman nose, and a curly-lipped snarl of a mouth, she was never a conventional beauty, but she had a smashing body (if a trifle long-waisted and satchel-assed) and was probably the truly sexiest of the major female stars. It wasn’t the softly yielding come-hither of a Monroe or the goddessy

but overt vampishness of Dietrich, but a wonderfully pragmatic and natural sensuality that was, like everything else about her, so very real. It’s what makes her so irresistibly watchable and instantly identifiable in wonderfully rowdy early 1930s delights like “Baby Face,” “Ladies They Talk About,” and “Night Nurse.” “Ladies of Leisure,” from 1930, directed by close collaborator Frank Capra, made her a star. Stanwyck had a terrifically vibrant, swinging walk — which she said she learned from watching panthers in the zoo — that immediately announced her as a life force to be reckoned with. Her voice, even with those ubiquitous nasal Noo Yawk intonations, could be incredibly seductive and moving in more hushed emotional moments. (And, when impersonating a Brit in her brilliant comic turn as “The Lady Eve,” her greatest performance, she out-poshed the Lady herself, Greer Garson.) Her two most defining dramatic performances are “Stella Dallas” and “Double Indemnity.” Stanwyck confessed she had given her “life’s blood” to her performance as the pitiably over-dressed vulgarian mother in “Stella Dallas.” Such is the miracle of her empathic gifts that, as excruciating as Stella’s behavior is, rather than squirm for her, you completely identify with her basic humanity and might even think her drag ain’t quite that bad. The scenes of the failed birthday party, Stella overhearing her treasured daughter’s friends cattily bitching about her, and then tearfully watching her daughter get married, while outside and in the rain, biting a soggy hankie, simply tear you to shreds emotionally.

No matter how many times you watch this greatest of noirs, Stanwyck’s Phyllis Dietrichson in “Double Indemnity” is eternally mesmerizing — like watching a cobra — glittering-eyed, mouth malevolently gleaming, and infinitely mysterious. There had been prominent screen villainesses before her — Bette in “Of Human Bondage,” “Bordertown,” and “The Little Foxes,” Ida Lupino in “The Light That Failed” and “They Drive By Night” — but they were showboaters of evil, obvious human volcanoes bent on destruction. With the subtlest and most minimal of means, Stanwyck makes Phyllis not only completely real (even with one of the worst wigs in film history) but also absolutely terrifying in her watchful, unflinching stillness. When it is revealed that, as a nurse, she killed her charge to marry her husband, you not only buy it, but also wonder what other unknown horrors she probably committed. Her later work also outshone those of her contemporaries, and, unlike Bette and Kate, who for too long plied their respectively jerky and quivering shtick — in unintentionally humorous fashion, becoming caricatures of themselves — Stanwyck knew when to quit, maintaining her dignity. One final histrionic conflagration was “The Thorn Birds” (1983), with its electrifying climactic moment when she confesses her lust for Richard Chamberlain’s much younger priest. Although 75 at the time, she was never more courageously and nakedly emotional in a scene that remains a dramatic rarity in its unflinching depiction of senior physical desire. The drag comedian Charles Pierce used to say, “Barbara Stanwyck was so butch she used two jockstraps as a brassiere!” I was lucky enough to attend her Lincoln Center tribute in 1981 (along with William Holden, Joan Bennett, Myrna Loy, and Frank Capra), and a highlight of this starriest of nights was a montage, set to Donna Summers’ justreleased “Bad Girls,” featuring Stanwyck at her most aggressive, slapping the crap out of various co-stars through the years. Inducted into the Cowboy Hall of Fame for her rootin’-tootin’, hard-riding work in her beloved Westerns, she has traditionally been a very tailored object of sensual fascination for generations of lesbians and straight women alike. Wilson told me years ago that there’s no verifiable evidence of anything gay in her life, despite decades of rumors about her and the breathtakingly


IN THE NOH, continued on p.41


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Tornado is one of the pre-Code dancers at the Adonis Lounge.


IN THE NOH, from p.40

beautiful Robert Taylor. At the time, Wilson decried biographers who relied on hearsay or pure fabrication to promote the notion of Stanwyck being lesbian, like writer Boze Hadleigh, whom the star literally threw out of her house when he insanely persisted in interviewing her in this vein. For me, the one suggestion of proof is the portrait of Stanwyck that Joan Crawford was said to have always kept by her bedside, as well as a photo in Wilson’s book of the two of them, sitting very intimately together in a nightclub while their respective spouses, Taylor and Franchot Tone, seem rather pushed to the side. Wilson is roughly halfway through Stanwyck’s life, so who knows what revelations she may have uncovered for her second volume in the years since we spoke?

More than a few people have suggested that the quiet

Japanese filmmaker Yasujiro Ozu (19031963) is the greatest movie director of them all, particularly for his “Tokyo Story” (1953). I couldn’t bear his films when I was younger; their meditative pace and lack of dramatic incident drove me crazy. They mostly seemed to be about brewing endless cups of tea or sake. I’ve changed my tune with the years and now find his work to be a gloriously rewarding haven of humanity and sanity in an ever more chaotic and alienating world. So many of his movies involve marrying off a somewhat aging daughter (usually played by the — always described as and rightly so — luminous Setsuko Hara, who never married and was rumored to be lesbian). This seemingly simple premise can be, in Ozu’s hands, as compelling as any crime thriller and as emotionally rewarding as 10 Meryl Streep vehicles. The director was a hard-drinking man who, when young, was expelled from school because of a love letter he sent

to another boy. He remained single and lived with his mother until her death in 1960, following her to the grave from cancer three years later, on his birthday, December12. The Film Society of Lincoln Center is presenting “Ozu and His Afterlives” through December 12, a survey that includes his “Equinox Flower” and “An Autumn Afternoon,” as well as evocative works by Claire Denis, Aki Kaurismaki, Wim Wenders, Jim Jarmusch, Hou Hsiao-Hsien, and others influenced by him. I wish they’d also included a film that influenced Ozu’s “Tokyo Story,” Leo McCarey’s “Make Way for Tomorrow” (1937), one of the most heartbreaking movies — about the “problem” of elderly parents — ever made. (

Funny, but I always feel a little pre-Code when I go to one

of the Adonis Lounge parties, which are happily coming downtown to the Village with a branch at the Actors Playhouse. As New York City becomes more and more Hays Code, with its relentless cracking down on all kinds of “sinful” fun, especially that which we know as gay — making a city like Cleveland seem a Sodom by comparison — it’s nice to know there’s still a place where you can go and, while the go go boys may not know your name, you certainly get to know theirs. It’s a wonderfully raffish paradise of male pulchritude, the perfect place to take out-of-towners desperately in search of a cheap (and not so) thrill in our Bloomberg’ed Disneyworld. Bravo’s Andy Cohen was in the house last Saturday, with his ear-to-ear grin, as the dancers circled him like bees to honey, perhaps in hopes of a guest bar-tending shot on his “Watch What Happens.” And “Missy” Stanwyck had nothing on these boys for acting — an international bevy, from the Ukraine to Rio to Trenton, they charmingly make each and everyone feel special and, yes, oh-so dangerously rich. (

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November 27, 2013 |


Power In Spite of It All Donna Minkowitz tells the story of a life shaped from clay


saw her in the flesh for the first time at the gay museum downtown, this short, blonde, confident woman reading parts of her memoir aloud and sucking down impressive amounts of water as if she still had muddy roots — and an urgent need to stay hydrated or crumble to dust.

GROWING UP GOLEM By Donna Minkowitz Magnus/ Riverdale Avenue Books $14.99; 216 pages

A golem, of course, is one of those fabulous creatures that — when rabbis still had the knowledge — could be constructed with wet clay and a magic word or two. They are usually meant to defend Jewish communities, but in general are compelled to do whatever their maker tells them to. And in the case of the golem Donna Minkowitz, shaped by her artist-philosopher mother, her commands were mostly to adore and entertain her mom. Though Minkowitz claims she’s human now, having been transformed by humanizing pain, there remain


DISASTER, from p.32

sister Clarissa, brings her usual ability to command the stage to a character who is tough but sympathetic. Burstein gives the most Chekhovian performance of the piece as a doctor who has lost his reputation and is trying to get his practice back. As the older son Duncan, however, Evan Jonigkeit is miscast, playing the role in far too contemporary a fashion to be believable as a young enlistee in 1917. Brian Cross, the younger brother, is far more convincing, and he has several of the piece’s rare compelling moments as he tries to make his family understand their altered fortunes. Wonderful sets from John Lee Beatty and costumes by Jane Greenwood can’t cover up the shortcomings of a piece that seems like the product of a playwriting class where the assignment was to write “in the style of” one of the greats. Interesting in academia, perhaps, but just this side of torment as would-be contemporary theater.

traces of her mother’s orders not to make her audience sad. So she keeps the tone light. Despite the controlling, incestuously creepy mother. The dad who uses her as a punching bag. The messed up shrink. The malignant girlfriends. And the excruciating disease — injury?; syndrome ? — that damaged her arms so much she can’t use them to write and can barely pick up the water. The book could have been a real tearjerker. Along the lines of, well, practically every memoir being published today. If not for ”Growing Up Golem,” I’d never have suspected her clay doll origins. Minkowitz always seemed human enough to me, powerful even, as a journalist who used to write for the Village Voice (when that rag was still good). She had a column called the Body Politics and did some reporting, too. When I was a Lesbian Avenger, we’d plan an action and somebody would say, “I’ll call Donna and maybe she’ll write something.” And she often did, if I remember correctly. A few years ago when I was starting my own memoir about my Avenger days, I dug up some articles and read what she had to say in the early ‘90s about the extreme right wing and the Christian Right. She seemed oddly thoughtful about them, interviewed the

anti-environmentalist, anti-feminists, anti-queers with a real desire to understand. Later, she’d go undercover with the Promise Keepers as a teenage boy, putting her soft round face and butchness to good use. She wrote with an authority I wished I had, but that was apparently as much of a façade as her smiling goy boy face. That’s one of the threads of the book that she only deals with sideways. Her powerlessness, or sense of it, in the face of evidence to the contrary. As a golem, she downplays her possible role as defender against the hateful, violent hordes, and focuses instead on her maker’s power to turn her on and off at will and to control her. It didn’t matter that she could use her role at the Voice to get queers out on the street after a dyke-bashing — she still felt like an imposter. Real was her capitulation to the bizarre tyranny of her mother and all the relationships she didn’t really choose but fell into. We see how long it takes for her to admit desire. To stand up for herself. You’d feel sorry for her, but she keeps you, Dear Reader, at broken arm’s lengths, with her jokes and metaphors. Maybe she takes it even a little too far, so you can see what a burden it is, wanting to get the story out, but not get bogged down in the usual clichés of

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from time to time? — then hurry over to St. Luke’s to catch “Disaster! A 70’s Disaster Movie Musical.” Created by inveterate musical theater fan and Sirius radio personality Seth Rudetsky and director Jack Plotnick, this is a deliciously cheesy send-up of all those disaster movies that Hollywood cranked out in the 1970s. The flimsy plot concerns a floating casino in the Hudson that suffers all manner of mayhem, from earthquakes to sharks to you name it. And, just as in the movies, it has a cast of stereotypical characters brought together under the most



Jennifer Simard in “Disaster! A 1970’s Disaster Movie Musical.”

preposterous conditions. As moronic as those movies were, Rudetsky and Plotnick push the envelope even further, and the silliness

rotten childhoods and physical hell that appear on the bestseller lists — where memoirists are forced to craft every story into a tale of survival against the odds, a transformative experience juxtaposing hell with redemption, so you can end with the glorious choirs of heaven, not the off-key bewildering, mediocre soundtrack of most of our lives. Reading, I wondered if that tactic was a dyke thing. Either we want to wallow in our suffering or mask it, pretend like it doesn’t matter. We often display it indirectly, so our survival can be admired but you don’t have to admit the shame of desiring sympathy and love, a tactic I employ myself. Is it a female thing, or a class thing? To fear our own power so much we don’t even recognize it, and when we do, experience it as so incredibly fleeting we must have imagined the whole thing. I couldn’t help wondering what would have happened if instead of embracing humanity, Minkowitz had stuck to her golem roots, found a way to break free of human commands, like golems occasionally do, then run completely and utterly amuck. An audio of Donna Minkowitz reading from her memoir can be heard at the online version of this article at

just keeps coming. All of this is set to renditions of songs like “Signed, Sealed, Delivered,” “I Am Woman,” “Don’t Cry Out Loud,” “Feelings,” and many more. Think of a ‘70s song in a K-Tel compilation from late night television ads and you’ll probably find it crammed into this show. Indeed, half the pleasure of “Disaster” is guessing which song is coming next in the obvious wind-up to a song cue. What is most inspired about this romp, however, is the casting. Just as Irwin Allen would collect the most unexpected stars, Rudetsky and Plotnick have cast — shanghaied? — such wonderful Broadway stars as John Treacy Eagan (replaced in the show now by Plotnick), Tom Riis Farrell, and two of my personal favorites — Mary Testa and Jennifer Simard — to do outrageous and ludicrous things. Simard is especially good as a nun who’s gambling addiction is triggered by a “Hawaii Five-O” slot machine. As I said, idiotic. But I’ll take it over faux Chekhov any day.


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November 27, 2013 |


Who’s Who Hits Terminal 5 Out magazine’s annual portfolio a melting pot of boldface LGBT names


Jonathan Groff, Murray Bartlett, and Frankie Alvarez of HBO’s upcoming “Looking.”

Pascal Tessier was honored for winning a “bittersweet” victory against the Boy Scouts of America back in May, when its National Council voted that no youth may be denied membership based on sexual orientation — meaning he can stay active in the Scouts, but only until he is 18. Tessier was joined by Greg Bourke, a former associate scoutmaster, and David Knapp, who was a district executive until being forced out of the Scouts in 1993 because he is gay. Mariah Carey accepted the Artist of the Year award on behalf of director Lee Daniels. Carey, who worked with Daniels in “Precious” and “The Butler,” described him as one of the film industry’s true innovators. There is something surreal about the vast array of honorees featured — from

Successful DOMA plaintiff Edie Windsor.

celebrities like Denis O’Hare (“True Blood” and a Tony for “Take Me Out”) and recently out Maulik Pancholy (“30 Rock,” “Weeds,” and “Sanjay and Craig”) to lesser knowns like Bryan Petroff and Doug Quint, owners of Manhattan’s Big Gay Ice Cream. Gay City News took a poke at Out last year when the magazine included New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn in its list — not for her political achievements and pending run for mayor, but for her recent wedding to longtime partner Kim Catullo. It’s true the magazine’s annual who’s who tends to favor celebrity. Then again, so does our culture. Edie Windsor was one of the honorees featured on this year’s four different special OUT100 covers. She was the only one from outside the entertainment world


Lea DeLaria and Laverne Cox of “Orange is the New Black.”


Michael Urie, currently starring in “Buyer and Cellar.”


n an evening hosted by stage and TV star Michael Urie (“Buyer and Cellar”), Out magazine held its 19th annual OUT100 gala on November 14 at Terminal 5 on the West Side. The event, which coincided with the magazine’s November 19 newsstand r elease of its guide to the “most compelling people of the year,” featured musical performances by gay country music star Steve Grand, along with Charli XCX and Blondie’s Debbie Harry. Jonathan Groff, along with co-stars Murray Bartlett and Frankie Alvarez, gave a sneak peek at “Looking,” a highly anticipated new show from HBO being hyped as the gay version of the network’s hit “Girls.” “Looking” premieres in January. Other honorees included Laverne Cox and Lea DeLaria of “Orange is the New Black,” a Netflix series that recently enjoyed a successful first season. Cox, praised for her role as a transgender prison inmate, Sophia Burset, on “OSTNB,” received the first-ever Reader’s Choice Award. In remarks to the audience, Cox spoke on behalf of her transgender brothers and sisters, saying the current cultural moment represents a turning point in public awareness of their historically underrepresented portion of the LGBT community. The Lifetime Achievement Award was the evening’s high point, with Edie Windsor recognized for her successful challenge to the federal Defense of Marriage Act. After an introduction that compared her to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Senator Robert F. Kennedy, Windsor thanked the crowd for their overwhelming support, saying she was humbled by the endless praise and attention she’s received since her June victory at the Supreme Court. She pointed out that most in the audience were “too young” to remember the darker days of the early LGBT rights struggle and to appreciate just how far the community had come since then. To this, Windsor was met with resounding applause. Her lead attorney, Roberta Kaplan, was also recognized at the event. Other honorees included Jim Parsons (“Big Bang Theory”) as Entertainer of the Year. Unable to attend, Parsons sent a video message thanking his fans. Wentworth Miller (“Prison Break”), recognized as Newsmaker of the Year, recently came out in a letter in which he declined an invitation to the St. Petersburg International Film Festival, citing Russia’s new anti-gay legislation.




Big Gay Ice Cream’s Bryan Petroff and Doug Quint.

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401 Broadway in New York, (212) 226–2610, Chou Law Luna Chou Law specializes in immigration, asylum, and applications for legal permanent resident status and naturalization, and LGBT rights. It petitions for your family members.

AUTOMOTIVE Bay Ridge Subaru

1819 Cropsey Ave. in Brooklyn, (718) 234–7960, Visit Bay Ridge Subaru in Brooklyn for your new or used Subaru Impreza, Legacy, Forester, Outback, and Tribeca. It also supports same-sex couples and were at the GLBT Expo at Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

Habberstad BMW

945 E Jericho Tpke. In Suffolk, (631) 271–7177,, Proud supporters of the LGBT community!

These finely crafted fruit bouquets make the perfect addition to any wedding celebration.

properties of all types including condos, apartments, and commercial real estate.


Stetson Real Estate

Beth Israel LGBT Health Services 10 Nathan D Perlman Pl. in New York, (212) 420–2000, LGBT_Health_Services/index.html Beth Israel Medical Center LGBT Health Services provides an array of health, referral and educational services, promotes LGBT health equity and access to care, and develops effective partnerships with LGBT organizations, agencies and allies.

Chelsea Face and Body 270 W 19th St. in New York, (212) 647–8825, Chelsea Face and Body offers the largest variety of state-of-the-art aesthetic services. It prides itself in its ability to keep you looking renewed, refreshed, and rejuvenated for a more youthful appearance.

Groomed Grooms

1214 E. Boston Post Rd. in Westchester, (914) 381–7173, Stetson Real Estate is an independent firm located in Mamaroneck, Westchester County, New York. The firm has thr guiding philosophy that if it focuses on serving the client best — as opposed to the agent’s self-interest — the business will prosper.

Warburg Realty

Multiple locations, Warburg Realty is one of the city’s best trained and hardest working agents, and by choosing them to represent you and your property, you also get the benefit of Warburg’s leadership strategies every step of the way. Warburg Realty has distinguished itself in the vanguard of tech-savvy real estate companies.


430 W. 24th St. in New York, (646) 325–3378, Groomed Grooms provides men’s hair and makeup for weddings and other major events. Its slogan: You have the legal right to look your best.

80 W Broadway IN Nassau, (516) 889–1300, Allegria Horel, is a chic and sophisticated wedding venue in Long Beach with breathtaking ocean views. It is great for rooftop or beachfront weddings.

7905 5th Ave. in Brooklyn, (646) 712–4084,, Bridal Dreams’ mission is simple: to provide the best products and service to its customers at the lowest prices possible. It takes great pride in its company, commitment to customer service, and products.

In Touch NYC

The Edison Ballroom


126 W 96th St. in New York, (212) 865–9290, Mind Over Matter Health & Fitness is a Manhattan based in-home personal training service providing fitness professionals to you in your home.


New York God’s Love We Deliver

166 6th Ave. in New York, (212) 294–8100, God’s Love We Deliver is the tri-state area’s leading provider of nutritious, individually-tailored meals to people that are too sick to shop or cook for themselves. God’s Love provides all services by employing a small but dedicated professional staff and with the critical assistance of nearly 8,000 volunteers annually.

ENTERTAINMENT Erik Robert Jacobson, Classical Cellist

(212) 584–7500,, Mr. Jacobsen is a cellist and conductor residing in Brooklyn, New York. He has performed with Renee Fleming on David Letterman and at the inaugural concert at Zankel Hall at Carnegie.

M B Sound Productions Entertainment

3034 Merrick Rd., (516) 322–1745 in Long Island or 3034 Merrick Rd., (888) 517–2789 in Nassau, MB Sound Productions & Entertainment is a professional, high tech, well equipped, and mobile DJ entertainment company servicing the tri-state area. It has over 15 years of experience, and can accommodate all types of events.

FERTILITY Genesis Fertility & Reproductive Medicine (718) 283–8600, Genesis Fertility & Reproductive Medicine is a nationally recognized center for the treatment of infertility. It is known for its excellent success rates. Most major insurers accepted.

FLORISTS & CENTERPEICES Angelica Flowers and Events

436 Hudson St. in New York, (212) 229–0272, New York City’s premiere custom floral designer for events, corporate accounts, and same day delivery.

Ariston Flowers & Boutique

110 W 17th St. in New York, (212) 929–4226, Ariston Flowers is an award-winning and familyowned business that has been in operation since 1977. It stocks an array of fresh flowers directly imported from France, Holland, Hawaii, and from other parts of the world. It also has accessories such as vases, pottery, and baskets.

Edible Arrangements

(718) 535–7909,

242 E 77th St. in New York, (646) 234–4840, InTouch NYC is a New York City-based healing sanctuary providing acupuncture, Chinese herbs, nutritional counseling, bodywork, and pilates.

Mind Over Matter


240 W 47th St. in New York, (212) 201–7650,, The Edison Ballroom was originally opened in the 1930’s and was constructed in the classic art deco design. The venue can be rented for all kinds of events, including a wedding.


Multiple locations, Fairway offers seasonal, signature catering packages with the highest-quality, happy-making eats with zero work. Have Fairway cater your engagement, bachelor, or bachelorette party, rehearsal dinner or wedding.

Grand Oaks Country Club

125 W 21st St. in New York, (212) 255–0844, Print icon New York offers modern and heritage printing, including laser engraving, indigo press, letterpress, thermography and debossing accompanied by custom design services.

200 Huguenot Ave. in Staten Island, (718) 356–2771, Formerly the South Shore Country Club, this new and improved Staten Island venue can provide the perfect elegant backdrop for your reception with prime dates still available.


Hornblower Cruises & Events

Greenwich Jewelers 64 Trinity Pl. in New York, (212) 964–7592, In search of something classic, contemporary, or completely eclectic? Greenwich Jewelers is your source for exquisite adornments that are designed to last — and make your life brilliant.

Little King Jewelry 177 Lafayette St. in New York, (212) 260–6140, Little King Jewelry is a contemporary jewelry boutique in Soho that offers an eclectic mix of jewelry such as classic 21st century heirlooms, indie, rock and roll, to one-of-kind couture jewelry for all occasions.

LIMOUSINES M & V Limousine Ltd. 1117 Jericho Tpke. In Suffolk, (800) 498–5778, M & V has the largest selection of antique and exotic limousines in the world. Its main focus is providing you with an elegant and stress-free experience on your wedding day.

REAL ESTATE SERVICES Brooklyn Accurate Building 1860 Bath Ave. in Brooklyn, (718) 265–8191, Inspectors Accurate Building Inspectors is a full service home and building inspection firm servicing New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and the nation since 1961. It provides inspections, consulting, assistance, and testing services for homeowners It has and will continue to serve and support the LGBT community.

Modern Spaces Multiple locations, Modern Spaces is a real estate firm that manages

40 N. River Piers in New York, (212) 206–7522, / Hornblower New York specializes in New York dinner cruises, harbor cruises, yacht charters, sightseeing, events, birthday parties, and weddings. It has exceeded guest expectations for over 30 years by maintaining impeccable comfort and safety standards with a large fleet of private yachts in California and New York.

Hotel Giraffe

365 Park Avenue South in New York, (212) 685–7700, Hotel Giraffe would be honored to host your rehearsal dinner, special day, or to arrange guest accommodations. Its experienced staff will ensure that all of your expectations and special requests are surpassed.

Hotel Pennsylvania

401 Seventh Ave. in New York, (212) 736–5000, The conveniently located Hotel Pennsylvania has all the ingredients for a perfect reception. It has flexible ballrooms that provide an elegant, functional Manhattan setting for weddings of all sizes.

Millennium Broadway Hotel

145 W. 44th St. in New York, (212) 768–4400, The Millennium Broadway Hotel’s fully functioning Hudson Theatre has recently received a 3.5 milliondollar renovation. It offers flexible and moveable seating as well as Broadway-quality lighting and sound, making it the most extravagant wedding and reception facility in New York City.

Museum of Jewish Heritage

36 Battery Pl. in New York, (646) 437–4202, The Museum of Jewish Heritage’s unique facilities are perfect for galas, receptions, conferences, weddings, other life cycle events, and more.

The Picnic House in Prospect Park

95 Prospect Park West in Brooklyn, (646) 393–9031, The Picnic House in Prospect Park is a 4,000 square foot brick-and-glass enclosed pavilion with a terracotta tile roof. Built in 1927, it has been praised for its light and sweeping views. The natural setting makes it a perfect choice for a wedding and the French doors gracing the rear balcony create a charming focal point for the exchange of vows.

Hotel Plaza Athenee

37 E. 64th St. in New York, (212) 734–9100, The Upper East Side’s Hotel Plaza Athenee is a stunning European-style venue with antique furnishings in the lobby, a beautiful marble entranceway, and Italian tapestries on the walls. It is the perfect backdrop for your wedding photographs. It has an elegant ceremony space and the hotel’s dazzling, gold-domed Arabelle restaurant provides a great reception site.

The Provincetown Business Guild

3 Freeman St. in Provincetown, (508) 487–2313, In 2004 — when Massachusetts became the first state to extend full marriage benefits for same-sex couples — Provincetown quickly became the number one destination for LGBT unions. The inclusive, gay-friendly spirit provides the perfect place for all couples to host a wedding, commitment ceremony, or spend their honeymoon. In addition to the charming seaside splendor that Provincetown provides, there are a plethora of party planners, caterers, venues, and other helpful businesses that make it easy and comfortable for future newlyweds to plan their special day. Contact the Provincetown Business Guild for additional help!

reBar Brooklyn Gastropub

147 Front St. in Brooklyn, (718) 766–9110,, Located on the mezzanine of an 19th century tea factory, this hip, Brooklyn gastropub’s seasonal New American menu, 120 bottled beers, sustainable and organic wine list, and its extensive scotch selection.

Queens Russo’s on the Bay

162-45 Cross Bay Blvd. in Queens, (718) 843–5055, A beautiful, waterfront wedding at Russo’s On The Bay is a truly royal experience. It offers unwavering commitment to detail that you can sleep easy knowing that the valet will provide excellent service at the door, the food will be superb, the linens will be pressed, and the venue will be running like a well-oiled machine.

Tio Pepe

168 W. Fourth St. in New York, (212) 242–9338,, At Tio Pepe you have a choice of atmosphere. The skylight dining room supplies a touch of romance while the enclosed sidewalk cafe provides a room with a view of Greenwich Village.

Villa Russo

118-16 101st Ave. in Queens, (718) 849–0990, The Villa Russo has celebrated engagements and weddings for more than 50 years in its spacious wedding venue. The hotel invites you to experience the true radiance of this elegant Italian-style villa. The food is delicious and the certified wedding planners will assure a day you and your guests will not forget.

TRAVEL Ace World Travel

8320 13th Ave. in Brooklyn, (347) 915–4287,, Ace World Travel is a full-service, independent, home-based travel agency. Its goal is to help you explore the world however you desire, and make that experience as unique and memorable as possible.

WEDDING MINISTRY Celebration Ceremonies

(646) 322–6743,, Reverend Francesca Fortunato has been an ordained Interfaith minister since 2003. Rev. Francesca creates and performs beautiful, personal, meaningful ceremonies for couples of many different faiths (or none). She is proud and delighted to now perform legal marriages for members of her own LGBTQ community.



November 27, 2013 |



PERFORMANCE A Sparkling Holiday Evening

DECEMBER 14: Hedda Lettuce, everyone's favorite En-Diva, serves up a holiday bonanza.

In a benefit supporting the programs and services of the Actors Fund (, Scott Nevins brings “Sparkle: An All-Star Holiday Concert” home to New York for the Season. The evening includes performances by Melba Moore, Lesli Margherita, Charl Brown, Tituss Burgess, Rachelle Rak, Telly Leung, Shayna Steele, Erin Quill, Brandi Massey, Julie Garnyé, Kelly King, Natalie Douglas, and the Glamazons. Jesse Vargas is musical director. XL Cabaret, 512 W. 42nd St. Dec. 1, 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $65; $30 for standing room; $100 for a VIP meet and greet at

FILM Camp or Camp?


THANKSGIVING Celebrate With a Plate

This year, help out the efforts of God’s Love We Deliver — which provides hot meals at home to people living with AIDS and other life-challenging illnesses — by sponsoring a holiday meal at $10 a plate. Visit If you can help out in delivering these meals by car, email or call 212-294-8158.


GALLERY New from the Pop Factory

Larry Krone’s work has been described by Holland Cotter as “an expression of manufactured pop emotion taken seriously.” In “Larry Krone: Together Again,” the artist goes beyond expressing these borrowed emotions and infiltrates the culture of the objects, music, and traditions closest to him to explore their immediate access to our hearts. The exhibition’s centerpiece is “Then and Now (Cape Collaboration),” a glittering, floor-length cape, fully embroidered and encrusted with hand-sewn sequins, not an inch of its surface left unadorned by intricate handiwork. Pierogi, 177 N. Ninth St., btwn. Bedford & Driggs Aves., Williamsburg. Through Dec. 22. Tue.-Sun., 11 a.m.-6 p.m. More information at


GALLERY In Bed With Abraham Lincoln

Artist Skylar Fein’s work combines factual and fictional histories, proposing evidence of uncertain moments through his imagery and objects. In the 1830s, Abraham Lincoln shared a bedroom with Joshua Speed in Springfield, Illinois. Many historians, biographers, and scholars have speculated about the nature of their relationship, causing an ongoing debate about Lincoln’s sexuality, with strong cases about the 16th president’s samesex attractions coming from C.A. Tripp and Larry Kramer. Since no photographs exist of the Speed residence, the artist relied on photos and sketches of similar structures, as well as on his imagination to create an impressionistic and slightly hallucinatory re-creation that is far from a museum periodroom. C24 Gallery 514 W. 24th St. Through Dec. 21. Tue.-Sat., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

PERFORMANCE The Gospel of Dolly

Our Lady J presents an evening of Dolly Parton’s most beloved gospel music, accompanied by the Train-To-Kill Gospel Choir. Our Lady J sheds new meaning and light on Dolly’s greatest hits, as well as her lesser known spiritual songs. Joe’s Pub, inside the Public Theater, 425 Lafayette St., btwn. E. Fourth St. & Astor Pl. Nov. 30, 9;30 p.m. Tickets are $25 at or 212-967-7555.

“But I’m A Cheerleader” is the story of Megan, an all-American girl whose family and friends think she’s gay, stage an intervention, and send her off to True Directions, where she is coached on “successful heterosexuality” that involves her and the other girls wearing aprons, while the boys play with lawnmowers. Will she stand up for her true identity and those of her fellow campers? The joy is in the journey in this lighthearted and campy romantic romp. The screening is part of the First Sunday Film Series at the Hudson Valley LGBTQ Community Center, 300 Wall St. at John St., Kingston. Dec. 1, 3-5 p.m. Free. More information at


THEATER Building Queer Culture

Show your support for two exciting new queer institutions in New York by attending a star-cast reading of Michael Aman’s new play, “POZ,” directed by Michael Bush. The cast includes Veanne Cox, Christian Coulson, Penny Fuller, Randy Harrison, Lou Liberatore, and Jay Rogers. The reading benefits the {Your Name Here} A Queer Theater Company and the Bureau of General Services — Queer Division bookstore. The Playroom Theater, 151 W. 46th St., eighth fl. Dec. 2, 8-10 p.m. Admission is $20. For more information, email

SEX What Turns You On?

“Undressed: The Art of Sex & Seduction” is

a provocative series that brings together top experts for candid conversations about lust, sex, and relationships. Presented by the French Institute Alliance Française and curated by journalist Erica Lumière, on Dec. 2, 7 p.m., at FIAF’s Florence Gould Hall, 55 E. 59th St., sex therapist Esther Perel, New York Times Magazine contributor Daniel Bergner, and Lumière discuss the most common sexual fantasies and how they affect relationships. On Dec. 9, 7 p.m., at Le Skyroom at FIAF, 22 E. 60th St., biological anthropologist Helen Fisher, CNN Health sex and relationship expert Ian Kerner, and Cosmopolitan magazine senior editor Liz Plosser explore where sexual chemistry comes from and what the most sexy scents, seductive sounds, tempting tastes, sensual sights, and exciting erogenous zones are. Admission is $25 per talk; $20 for FIAF members at More information at 212-355-6160.


THEATER Marilyn, Marlene & Frida

Playwright Michelangelo Alasa takes on the lives, loves, and careers of three iconic women — Frida Kahlo, Marilyn Monroe, and Marlene Dietrich — in “Andy@62.” Duo Theatre, 62 E. Fourth St., btwn. Bowery & Second Ave. Tue., 8 p.m., through Dec. 17. Tickets are $20 at

BENEFIT Holiday Gifts for Homeless Youth

Industry Bar plays host to a happy hour event supporting the Ali Forney Center’s effort to collect holiday gift cards for LGBT homeless youth. Everyone is asked to bring gift cards, issued in $10 increments — from either Fairway Market, Old Navy, Starbuck’s, iTunes, or McDonald’s — with the goal of distributing $40 worth of gift cards to as many of the thousands of youth without permanent housing as possible this holiday season. Industry offers two-for-one drink specials, and spitfire drag phenom Paige Turner entertains. 355 W. 52nd St. Dec. 3, 7-10 p.m. For more information, email

FAMILY Do You Want to Be a Parent?

RaiseAChild.US is a non-profit dedicated to assisting would-be LGBT parents to respond to the needs of the 400,000 children in the nation’s foster care system by stepping up to adopt or provide foster care. In recognition of National Adoption Month, the group hosts an evening program where you can hear from LGBT parents who have gone through the adoption and foster parenting process. Actor and comedian Alec Mapa, who is an adoptive father himself, is part of the program, and complimentary beverages and hors d’oeuvres will be served. The evening will be helpful for those good to go and for those just beginning to think about being a parent. LGBT Community Center, 208 W. 13th St. Dec. 3, 6:30-8:30 p.m. RSVP to RaiseAChild.US.


14 DAYS, continued on p.47



14 DAYS, from p.46


DANCE The Narratives of Moses

Receiving its New York premiere, Reggie Wilson/ Fist & Heel Performance Group’s “Moses(es)” is an evening-length work examining multiple versions of the Moses narrative through different lenses — secular and religious — as well as the mythical place this figure holds in our imagination. Drawing inspiration from Zora Neale Hurston’s “Moses, Man of the Mountain” — the Moses story told as a Southern folktale in African-American vernacular — and from Wilson’s own travels to Egypt, Turkey, and Mali, “Moses(es)” explores our relationship to leadership and the effects of migration on beliefs and customs. How do we lead and why do we follow? BAM Harvey Theater, 651 Fulton St. at Ashland Pl., Brooklyn. Dec. 4-7, 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20$45 at

COMEDY Holiday Fruitcakes You’ll Love

In an evening of sugar plum fairies and frosty snowmen, have your stocking stuffed with hilarious nutcrackers from Michael Brill, Jackie Hoffman, Cara Kilduff, Jessica Kirson, and Gabe Morales in a “Miracle on 23rd Street” edition of “Homo Comicus.” Elf-in-chief Bob Montgomery keeps the evening moving. Gotham Comedy Club, 208 W. 23rd St. Dec. 4, 8:30 p.m. There’s a $20 cover charge, plus a two-drink minimum. Reservations at 212-367-9000.


CABARET Unending Camp

Gay and camp have long enjoyed a close relationship, sometime even a monogamous one — that is, until the nuts from the “ex-gay” movement started their own camps, summer and otherwise. “Gay Camp” is Philip Mutz and Susan-Kate Heaney’s hit cabaret comedy show, directed by Phillip Fazio, about the trials and tribulations of the gay campers. The Duplex, 61 Christopher St. at

Seventh Ave. S., Sheridan Sq. Dec. 5 & 20, 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the or 212-2555438, and there’s a two-drink minimum.

PERFORMANCE La Musica Cubana

Cuban music took the world by storm in the 1920s and ’30s, and found a special welcome in Paris. In a program that straddles the concert hall, the nightclub, and the theater, New York Festival of Song presents “Cubans in Paris, Cubans at Home,” featuring the music of Alejandro Garcia Caturla, Ernesto Lecuona, José Mauri, Eliseo Grenet, and Moisés Simons. The evening’s performers are soprano Corinne Winters, tenor Jeffrey Picón, baritone Ricardo Herrera, and Leonardo Granados on percussion, with Steven Blier, NYFOS’ artistic director, and Michael Barrett, its associate artistic director, on piano. Merkin Concert Hall at Kaufman Music Center, 129 W. 67th St. Dec. 5, 8 p.m. Tickets are $40-$55, with some $20 advance “real deal” tickets and $10 student tickets, at


THEATER Feliz Navidad — We Hope!

An interweaving of “The Nutcracker” and “A Christmas Carol,” “Los Nutcrackers: A Christmas Carajo,” written by Charles Rice-González, is a queer Latino play about a gay couple who go on a psychedelic trip through their lives one Christmas Eve. Carlos and Gabriel, together for 15 years, have argued so much they are heard in the queer heavens, which send a ghetto thug/diva spirit who guides them on a trip through their lives. They travel to the first time they met back in 1986 at a white party at the Palladium dancing to Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam, and on to a catastrophic trip to City Center to see “The Nutcracker,” to a dinner party with Martha Stewart fanatics, and more. Christopher Burris directs. This is the tenth anniversary staging at the Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance, 2474 Westchester Ave. at St. Peters Ave. (#6 to Westchester Sq.). Dec. 6-7, 13-14, 20-21, 8 p.m.; Dec. 21, 3 p.m. Tickets are $25 at or 718-918-3110.

COMMUNITY 40 Years of Herstory

The Lesbian Herstory Archives, located in Park

Slope, celebrates 40 years of preserving a community’s heritage and traditions with an anniversary art benefit. The event is sponsored by Johannes Vogt Gallery and Alexander Gray Associates, both Chelsea galleries, and will feature work from more than 140 lesbian artists, including Deborah Bright, Su Friedrich, Chitra Ganesh, Barbara Hammer, Harmony Hammond, Allyson Mitchell, Carrie Moyer, Annie Sprinkle, and Julie Tolentino. The evening is emceed by Moe Angeles, of the Five Lesbian Brothers, who presented the recent acclaimed performance work “Sontag: Reborn”; Robin Cloud, a comedian recently named one of GO Magazine’s “Top 100 Women We Love"; and Kay Turner, the folk arts director at Brooklyn Arts Council and the host of “Otherwise: Queer Scholarship Into Song” at Dixon Place. Johannes Vogt Gallery, 508 W. 26th St., #205. Dec. 6, 6:30 p.m. The art can be viewed in advance from 4-6 p.m. Raffle tickets of $140 must be purchased in advance at For those not purchasing advance raffle tickets, there will be a limited number of $40 admission tickets available at the door.

community ever since. In honor of IHI’s 40th anniversary, a host of celebrities will read from Sarah Moon and James Lecesne’s “The Letter Q,” a collection of letters written by award-winning queer artists to their younger selves. The cast includes Olympia Dukakis, Lea DeLaria, Maulik Pancholy, Natasha Lyonne, Wade Davis, Pedro Pascal, Brian Murray, and Halley Feiffer. The readings are directed by Sherri Barber, and Justin Sayre hosts. New York Theater Workshop, 79 E. Fourth St., btwn. Broadway & Second Ave. Dec. 9, 7:30-9 p.m., with an afterparty to follow. Tickets are $100; $50 for students; $250 for VIP seating at


MUSIC Britten, Vivaldi, Tavener Ring in the Holidays

The Stonewall Chorale, the nation’s first gay and lesbian chorus, presents its winter concert, featuring Britten’s “Ceremony of Carols,” Vivaldi’s “Gloria, and Tavener’s “The Lamb.” Harpist Elaine Christy and a chamber orchestra join the Chorale for the performance. Cynthia Powell is artistic director. Church of the Holy Apostles, 296 Ninth Ave. at 28th St. Dec. 7, 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25; $20 for students & seniors at stonewallchorale. org/tickets; $30 at the door.

BENEFIT Cyndi Lauper’s Advocacy for Homeless Youth

In recognition of statistics showing that 40 percent of America’s 1.6 million homeless youth identity as LGBT, Cyndi Lauper’s True Colors Fund last year initiated the Forty to None Project to raise awareness of the problem, engage the public toward solutions, and create opportunities to engage such young people. Tonight, Lauper hosts the Fund’s third annual Home for the Holidays fundraiser. She will be joined on stage by host Carson Kressley and P!nk, Josh Groban, Susan Sarandon, Nelly Furtado, the Indigo Girls, Rosie O’Donnell, Ingrid Michaelson, the Hives, Matt & Kim, Hunter Valentine, and the Cliks. Beacon Theatre, 2124 Broadway btwn. 74th & 75th St. Dec. 7, 8 p.m. Tickets are $35-$500 at


COMMUNITY Four Decades of Wellness

The IHI Therapy Center, a psychotherapy center for the LGBTQ community founded in 1973 and formerly known as the Institute for Human Identity (IHI), spearheaded the campaign for the American Psychological Association to remove homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses. The center has been fighting for the mental health rights of the



| November 27, 2013


DANCE Whiteface Warhol

Emerging choreographer Raja Feather Kelly smashes together voguing, traditional ballet vernacular, whiteface, and drag performance to bring a surreal Andy Warhol back to life. Kelly’s Brooklyn-based dance company, the Feath3r Theory, premieres its new work “Andy Warhol’s DRELLA (I love you Faye Driscoll).” Invisible Dog, 51 Bergen St., btwn. Smith & Court Sts. Dec. 12-13, 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 at


PERFORMANCE Everyone’s Favorite En-Diva

“Lettuce Rejoice 2013” serves up a holiday bonanza of crisp comedy and delicious song parodies from the inimitable Hedda Lettuce. Never stale, never out of fashion, but not always particular about good taste, Hedda’s holiday hell-raising has been a must-see for generations. How can a girl go wrong? The Metropolitan Room, 34 West 22nd St. Dec. 14, 20 & 21, 9:30 p.m.; Dec. 15 & 22, 7 p.m. Tickets are $25 at 212-206-0440.


November 27, 2013 |

Introducing New

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NOV. 27, 2013 GAY CITY NEWS  


NOV. 27, 2013 GAY CITY NEWS