Magazine V4 Issue 07 - January 2017
Spencer Anthony Stepping Outside the Boxes George Michael Tribute
Primal Static Inside:
Travel | Film | Fashion |Health | News
EILE Magazine | Who’s Who
Mark Anthony Mark is a UCD English graduate, who writes his own menswear fashion blog. Mark has also produced several fashion shows in the past, all in aid of worthwhile causes M. Butler M. Butler is a writer and editor, with a keen interest in human rights, and has studied philosophy and psychology Scott De Buitléir Scott is founder and Editor-at-Large of EILE Magazine. He is also a writer and broadcaster, originally from Dublin but now based in Nottingham Lisa Reynolds Originally from Co. Meath, Lisa is a fashion industry student, now living in Bray, Co Wicklow, with a great interest in media and celebrity Brian Rochford Brian has studied health, exercise, and nutrition, with a special interest in controlling pain in rheumatism and arthritis Frances Winston Frances Winston is EILE’s resident film buff, and has contributed to many other publications such as The Irish Independent and Irish Tatler
EILE Magazine | Welcome
Highlights January 2017 George Michael - P. 18 Defence of Secularism - P.28 Scott De Buitléir writes a tribute to George Michael, and also an article on a defence of secularism
Theatre - Pps. 46, 50, 52 Francis Winston reviews theatre, both La Cage au Folles,and And Then There Were None, and we also tell you about new project from Sean Denyer,, Couples and Pairs II
Health NY Resolutions - P. 20 Brian Rochford tells how to keep those New Year health resolutions
Music - Pps.6, and 10 This month’s issue brings you music from singer-songwriter, Spencer Anthony, and alt/rock duo, Primal Static
Fashion - P. 14 and Stepping Outside the Boxes P.24
Volume 4, Issue 07 Editor-at-Large: Scott De Buitléir Editor: MKB Contributors: Mark Anthony, M. Butler, Scott De Buitléir, MKB, Lisa Reynolds, Brian Rochford, Frances Winston Photographers: Kelly Elaine, and La Famos NB: All images in this publication are either under Creative Commons licence, or used with permission. Image credits, where necessary, are printed on the corresponding page(s) or photo(s). Any queries can be made to firstname.lastname@example.org Special Thanks to MKB for all her hard work, dedication and support. Web: http://eile.ie Contact: email@example.com Twitter: @EILEMagazine Facebook: http://fb.com/eilemagazine Note: All opinions expressed in this issue are the writers’ own.
This month, Mark Anthony tells us that men’s fashion may soon surpass women’s, while Lisa Reynolds writes about pansexuality (BZ&VSPQFBO5PVSJTN"TTPDJBUJPO
…plus film reviews, news, travel, and much more! EILE Magazine
EILE Magazine | Editor’s Letter
Frances on Film
Couples & Pairs II
And Then There...
Review: La Cage Au...
plus World LGBT News, Views, Arts, Entertainment etc
EILE January 2017 Edition! Welcome to the first issue of EILE Magazine for 2017. In our January issue, we have lots to keep you occupied on these cold nights! Our music section features pop/rock singer-songwriter, Spencer Anthony, and alt/rock duo, Primal Static. We feature a tribute to George Michael on his really unexpected death, but remember that he gave courage to so many LGBT people, apart from his wonderful music. We also have a feature on a defence of secularism, after a recent news article condemning it. Lisa Reynolds writes about the littleknown subject of pansexuality, and Mark Anthony gives us an insight into the recent men’s fashion weeks. Frances Winston gives us some great film reviews, we have theatre news, and Brian Rochford tells us how to keep those New Year health resolutions. All this and so much more makes up the January edition of EILE Magazine. Enjoy!
Scott De Buitléir Founder / Editor-at-Large
EILE Magazine EILE Magazine
See our film reviews by Frances Winston
Spencer Anthony Pop Rock Acoustic artist, Spencer Anthony, is one of EILE Magazine’s favourites this month, having just released his single, Monsters, from his new EP, Words To Hide Behind Pop/Rock/Acoustic singer-songwriter, Spencer Anthony, hails from Cincinnati in Ohio, USA, but now calls Los Angeles home part-time. When he turned 15, Anthony decided against doing what he had done up to then, which was hanging out with mates, and focusing on his schoolwork. He suddenly decided to follow his dream, and try to make it in the music world. With a heady mixture of talent, dedication and some good fortune, he quickly went from a regular kid in Ohio, to a talented and sought-after performer, which led to his now living part-time in Los Angeles. At eighteen, Anthony is now establishing his musical identity as both a singer and songwriter. Blending acoustic, pop and rock, he is creating a synthesis of genres, and in his songs, elements of this admixture shine through, supporting his longheld belief that ‘good music is good music, period’. Anthony’s debut EP, Words to Hide Behind, released early 2017, is a collection of songs about the problems of growing up, and how at times we mask our problems from even those closest to us. The first single from the EP, ‘Monsters’, is about the feeling of anxiety, and its affect on people in our everyday life. Using metaphor, the song’s chorus describes putting problems on a shelf to avoid solving them, while the bridge is more straightforward, breaking down into a moment of deep panic. The song culminates with an acoustic variant of the chorus, changing to note that even in the thick of turmoil, there is hope. The other songs on the EP show his range, with the second song, ‘Chase’, being Photographer: Kelly Elaine EILE Magazine
Cover Art for the single Monsters
a more to the point, acoustic/pop sing-along. The third song, ‘Happy Pill’ begins with electronic synthesizers and pop vocals, but is then catapulted into an anthemic stadium rock chorus. Spencer Anthony is “stoked” that his single, Monsters, is out, and says his mission is to create great, timeless, music that truly connects with people. Starting out with a number of original and very creative songs under his belt, Anthony’s real journey is just beginning. You can follow Spencer Anthony on: https://www.facebook.comSpencerAnthonyMusic/ https://soundcloud.com/spenceranthony http://artistecard.com/spenceranthonymusic https://www.instagram.com/spenceranthonymusic/ I/G
Spencer feels that â€œgood music is good music, periodâ€?
Photographer: Kelly Elaine
Photos: La Famos
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Primal Static Alternative Rock duo, Primal Static, have just released their EP, Panstylistic, with a great track, Fall Before Your Pride Primal Static is a two-piece alternative rock act. Alternative Rock doesnâ€™t really describe their music though, as you also hear blues, trance and beats intermingling. Listening to the track, Fall Before Your Pride, it struck me that it could have been something from the album Fill Your Head With Rock, an iconic album from the seventies, with great bands like Blood Sweat & Tears (the real ones) changing tempo in the middle of the song from hard rock to soft, psychedelic sounds, and then back again. In this case, you could add in some trance and beats. In this duo, song-writer/singer/guitarist, GT, can be seen in all his virtuosity in their music video, A Little Pain, where his amazing guitarwork belies his age. Keyboardist/bassist, Houfei, brings up the rhythm section, with her elastic soulful bass, and wonderful classically-trained keyboard playing. The band uses innovative trance beats to round out their incredibly unique sound sculpture. Primal Static is the definitive live band, with expert musicianship and charismatic presence. Live shows have been the backbone of the Primal Static experience, flooring audiences from all over the country! GT and HouFei are life-long musicians, uniting two very different cultures. GT has been steadily working on the creation of a new band. With a strong
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personality and music to match, his modern, exciting songs and guitar work are winning Primal Static fans worldwide. GT became impassioned as a child by rock and blues, and picked up the guitar, which allowed his songwriting to soar. He draws his inspiration from many great musicians, from primal blues to modern electronic trance. The passion and edge in his musicianship reflects the various worlds he inhabits, from traveling troubadour to isolated composer. HouFei once said, “when I met GT, he was like a furious wild fire that lit up life and music for me as I had never known before. I called GT a couple of days after we met, and got his answering machine. A heart-wrenching guitar solo greeted me. Time stood still. I couldn’t even speak when the beep sounded. That was my introduction of GT the musician.” HouFei, born and raised in China, started playing piano at 4. Her route to Primal Static started when she came to the U.S. at 18 on full scholarship, having been heard by an American piano professor giving master classes in Shanghai. Since arriving in the States, she has competed in international piano competitions, and won numerous prizes. HouFei has finished her doctoral degree at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, MD. Possessing a profound adoration of music, HouFei has found her true home in Primal Static. The electric energy and freedom reflected in the songs completes her. She now uses her vast knowledge of the keyboard for the music she was made for. You can catch up with Primal Static at:: https://twitter.com/primalstatic https://www.facebook.com/PrimalStaticOfficial/ and hear some of their music at: soundcloud.com/Primal-Static -MKB
Album Art for Panstylistic
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Mark An smashing
In today’s world, everything.
If we were to follow it, it boys should be loving al Gender stereotypes are fashion weeks for men h means just for girls.
But of course, there will in the crowd. Hitting Lo and New York in a coup pretty boys strutting the them slip by you unnoti
But why shouldn’t we le influenced by these show you see here. All those o been digging up over the Christopher Shannon.
All those nice hoodies an to Christopher Raeburn say less chav, more chic influenced.
It doesn’t matter if the c your wardrobe, there is is so much creativity in around the globe - who the better, right? Art an fashion is fiercely linked this as a platform for the
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nthony writes about gender stereotypes in fashion
, gender stereotypes dictate
t would be the girls who like fashion, and the ll those monster trucks. But times change. there to be smashed. And if any of the recent have proved one thing, it’s that fashion is by no
l always be a couple of skeptical characters ondon, Milan, and Paris over the past month, ple of days, men’s fashion week is far from just eir stuff down the runway. You don’t want to let iced.
et them slip by? Well, what you wear will be ws. Basically. It’s all shaped around what old bombers and denim jackets you have e last few months are all down to Coach and
nd trackies you have been eyeing up are down n making athleisure cool again. You could c. It proves our theory though - you’ve been
catwalk doesn’t really convince you to change no denying that fashion is an art in itself. There one space at each and every fashion week would want to pass up on that? The weirder nd politics go hand in hand too, right? Men’s d with politics, with every second designer using eir own views - with Brexit and Donald Trump
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at the front of many of this year’s shows. Every year, men’s fashion goes from strength to strength. This is an industry that is booming. You would be absolutely nuts if you didn’t sit up and take notice. Menswear is changing so much that all the established designers are sitting shows out, paving the way for new designers to showcase their stuff. It is because of this that menswear shows no signs of slowing down. But why would it? We have to wear it every day after all. There are talks that men’s and women’s fashion weeks are set to join forces. But why? Designers seem to have this idea in their heads that it doesn’t make sense to have two separate shows. Now I get it that the lines between the two are becoming more and more blurred every day, but what about when menswear surpasses womenswear? Will we just go back to separate shows? I am all about equality folks, but as the heavy hitters sit things out, the new designers show that menswear will eventually out-shine womenswear. People just need to take a seat, instead of making excuses. Menswear prevails once again.
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On the Death of the King: A George Michael Tribute EILE’s Editor-atLarge, Scott De Buitléir, writes about a poignantly apt moment to learn of the passing of the iconic singer On Christmas Night in Dublin, my mother and I watched a couple of episodes of the Netflix series, The Crown, based on the life of Queen Elizabeth II. As we watched scenes depicting how news broke about the passing of King George VI in 1952, the most bizarre, yet apt, of coincidences took place. I got a text message from my boyfriend, telling me that George Michael had died. Yet again, the curse of 2016 has struck, and one more icon has passed on from this world. George Michael’s death will undoubtedly strike deep sorrow into the hearts of many fans, especially within the LGBT community around the world. His own sexuality was a source of controversy during the height of the AIDS epidemic, a crisis which touched Michael’s life personally due to his relationship with – and the subsequent passing of – the Brazilian dancer, Anselmo 18 EILE Magazine
Feleppa. The singer’s iconic song, Jesus to a Child, was written for Feleppa, and Michael regularly dedicated performing the song to him during concerts.
song, Shoot the Dog. As a patron of the Elton John AIDS Foundation, he worked hard to raise awareness of a disease that only began to be defeated by the late nineties.
Controversy became something of a publicity agent for Michael during the nineties, and the singer was able to poke fun at himself and some of his more notorious court appearances with the hit, Outside. The song, including its music video, was an ode to sexual liberation, appealing especially to his gay fans. At this point in his career, despite many battles with depression, George Michael made it clear to the world that his sexuality would no longer be a source of shame or weakness. He would use it to throw the proverbial middle finger to any conservative critic who may dare to stand against him. Indeed, he would go on to have the last laugh.
After countless performances of incredibly beautiful songs, George Michael’s silken voice is now stilled, his music remaining only on records of various kinds. As his music lives on, so too does the inspiration he instilled in so many people; the inspiration to hold one’s head high, to enjoy life, to ignore begrudging, and most importantly, to love. My own favourite song by George Michael is Jesus to a Child, although I never knew until Christmas Night the background behind it, or the dedication to Feleppa. The fact that it remains such an iconic, timeless song, makes it all the more special for Michael’s LGBT audience.
Despite sharing his spotlight with controversy at times, George Michael became a brave and righteous figure in many human rights campaigns; from HIV awareness and famine relief, to criticising both George W. Bush and Tony Blair in his
Many others have noted how 2016 has taken some of the greatest people from us, from David Bowie to Prince, and more. George Michael now takes his place amongst the stars as one of music’s great kings, but he shall continue to be an inspiration for us all.
Image: University of Houston Digital Library EILE Magazine 19
New Year’s Health Resolutions Brian Rochford encourages you to continue with your health resolutions As with everything we decide to do, we find that it’s so easy to get started and so difficult to keep up the momentum. Human beings are creatures of habit, and the more you understand this fact, the more you can use this to your advantage. It takes time, plus planning and effort, to change the behaviour that has become a way of life. As we begin to make these desired improvements, be careful not to expect too much too soon, as it is so easy to become discouraged when we don’t see immediate results. It has been stated as few as 50 or 60 percent of people actually make definite New Year’s resolutions. As the year progresses, this figure can fall to as low as 7 or 8 percent of people who persist with their life-changing objectives. One of the most popular New Year’s resolutions is to become healthier, fitter, and get into better shape. Enthusiasm can get you started, and the novelty of doing something different can take you so far. However, unless you have realistic 20 EILE Magazine
plans, and more importantly, solid reasons for making these changes, you may unfortunately become sidetracked, and eventually run out of steam. So step one is to decide what it is you want in terms of your health goals for the next year. Make a short list on paper, or on your computer, of the realistic changes and improvements you want to see yourself achieving. You could include in your list, for example, to go for a short walk every day, or try to go jogging once or twice a week , or you may decide that you would like get to the gym twice a week or on the weekend. You might want to lose weight, or just get into better shape. Many start the New Year off with the desire to eat a healthier diet. The important thing is to get started, and work on keeping up the improvements your have made. Small changes really work, and once you see yourself doing these things daily, you will experience the benefits, and as a result you will want to continue. As you begin to feel and look better, it will
become easier for you to introduce more small changes that will have positive physical and health results. In order to help make these improvements more enjoyable and lasting, introduce physical and mental activities that you enjoy, or that you have always wanted to try. It can be a sport that you think you might like. It can be a group activity that may help improve your social life. Look for activities that challenge you physically and mentally. You will find that the more physically active you become, the more relaxed you will become.
remember to take your time, and adapt an approach that will work for you. Take the time to keep a record of how you are doing, and the results you are achieving. There will be days that you will not get everything done, and often it’s the new changes that are the first to suffer. Don’t be discouraged, as you can start again tomorrow, and remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day.
Best of luck, and have a very Happy New Year!
There are other important lifestyle changes you may wish to include in your New Year’s resolution programme. It has been suggested that a little as 35 to 40 percent of people get sufficient sleep. So if you are one of those people who try to pack as much into your day as possible, you may consider re-evaluating how your spend your time, and consider the long-lasting benefits that getting proper rest will have in the long-term. Whatever resolutions you decide on this year, EILE Magazine 21
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The amazing Dublin Bears’ Béar Féile is back again this year! From 30th March to 2nd April, you can enjoy a host of great events and entertainers, such as the Dublin Gay Men’s Chorus, George Michael Tribute, DJ El Styra, DJ Aggie, Hee Bee Bee Gees, Mr Bear Ireland 2017, the Bear Bus Tour and lots more! (Registration Pack €30) For more information and to make sure you don’t miss anything, go to: www.bearfeile.ie www.dublinbears.ie EILE Magazine 23
Stepping Outside The Boxes: Pansexuality Lisa Reynolds writes on the difficulties facing those who define themselves as pansexual This article was one I had in my head to write for a while, but when something is so personal to you, it can be difficult to put it down on paper. In October 2015, I realised that I was pansexual, and while it was incredibly liberating to find out who I was, it was also quite daunting, because we kind of live in a world where people assume you are either gay, straight, or bisexual, and that isn’t necessarily true of everyone. You hear the whole argument that you should just call yourself bisexual, to make things easier, and it’s very tempting to do that, which is why you hear a lot of stories about people who are pansexual saying they are bisexual, which I find heartbreaking, because a person is accepting they can never truly be themselves. At the same time, being pansexual, I understand why someone would do that. From the start I said to myself I wouldn’t do that, at least for 24 EILE Magazine
the most part. But in some situations saying you are bisexual makes sure there is less hassle and explaining. Admittedly, it’s easier for me as an introverted writer, because the situation of talking about my sexuality wouldn’t come up half as much as with someone who is more of a talker, and who connects with people more often. The other thing about that, and one which upsets me to be honest, is that sometimes a person who is bisexual thinks you are being disrespectful to bisexuality by saying you are pansexual instead. That hurts because I’m not prejudiced against anyone of any sexuality, and anyone who knows me knows that I’m very strong about that. So it has nothing to do with being disrespectful to anyone. It’s just that I have to be honest and be myself. That’s the only way I can be happy and content. At this moment in time, pansexuality is still not really understood. Of course I hate that but I also am aware of
it, and I accept the current situation, and hope it gets better. So here are the basics: someone who is pansexual is attracted emotionally and/or physically to men, women and non-binary people. Quite a lot of people assume you have a preference. Or you must, because it fits the binary box of sexuality. And it’s true that some pansexuals do, while others don’t. I fall into the latter, and if anyone asks my preference it is an easy answer: personality. Ironic considering I don’t think I have much of one myself, but I live in hope that some wonderful person will one day think I have the most wonderful personality they’ve ever encountered, and fall deeply in love with me. Well, we are entitled to dream. I feel so sorry for the person in advance. Sometimes I think people think people who are pansexual have a calendar of ‘this is the month I’m interested in this gender’. You know they say things like: ‘She’s having her woman month now’. It doesn’t quite work like that. You just like someone and you like them.
Could be any time of the year. If you like the person, you like them. It’s rather simple really. I want to just preface this by saying that I can only speak about my experiences of being pansexual. My experiences, like any sexuality, can only be my own experiences. Other people who are pansexual would have different experiences, and I wouldn’t dare speak for everyone who is pansexual, because it’s so varied that I couldn’t. But my own experiences were that I was, or thought I was technically, attracted only to guys for quite a lot of my life. When I got attracted to people who were non-binary though, it wasn’t a surprise, because I hadn’t known, or known of anyone, who was non-binary for a long time. So it could happen when I did. Although, as you can imagine, straight didn’t quite sound right anymore, but I felt left in limbo. What was I exactly? Of course, I learned later that bisexual would have covered things, because it only means more than one gender. But the way the mainstream media has it so pushed into our minds that bisexual means men and women, I felt lost, because I didn’t know that it didn’t have to necessarily mean what they said. When I started having feelings about a woman, that was more of a surprise. A nice surprise, but a surprise nonetheless. At first I thought it was a onceoff. I liked her, but could I
like other women? I hadn’t before (well I had, but they hadn’t been strong feelings, and had come rather late too, so I didn’t put two and two together) so was it just because she was so amazing? Because quite frankly, almost everyone I think has one moment at least where they might like someone of a gender they don’t normally, and I suppose you stop yourself from making statements that might not be true. In my case, I realised I did feel feelings for other women, and when I did my research, it was easy to come to the realisation that I was pansexual. Not easy in the sense of it being easy. Confusion is never an easy journey. But when I knew how I felt, it was rather easy to know who I was. That journey included a lot of research on the internet, many days in college (I was at the time) feeling like I had this dark cloud called confusion above my head, fearing someone would ask and I wouldn’t know how to reply (I was 25 and unsure sounded bad) and finally realising that what I was feeling fit with what people called pansexuality. Then that cloud instantly lifted, and I don’t know how to explain it, but I felt a surge of relief wash over my whole body, my shoulders relaxed, my brain relaxed. That’s why I have to laugh when people say a pansexual is confused. It was the first moment in my life when I wasn’t confused, and
a weight was lifted from my shoulders that I wasn’t aware was there. A new chapter could begin. I was no longer in the dark. It was beautiful actually. I remember I went to watch Paris Is Burning with the QSA and film societies when I was in college, and wondering would anyone ask? I had only realised a month before, and I guess I was worried they would think, I don’t know, that I was weird or something. Looking back I have an idea they wouldn’t have if it had come up, but when you are only a month knowing you’re pansexual, your mind is not in the same place. I told my sister the night I realised. It wasn’t like a coming-out, because I was talking to her for ages about what I was feeling, so it was just a chat which was nice, in which I said I’d worked it out, she said that was good and that was that. My mum I haven’t told, but she isn’t good on the internet. My mum wouldn’t care, I don’t think, if I said I was gay or bi, but she doesn’t like unfamiliarity, and pansexuality is that right now. I’d like to tell her someday, and depending on whom I meet and fall in love with, she might know quicker, and it really relies on that currently. Someday I would like to tell her, but outside of situation timing is another issue, even if I were still single. She might think I was in a cult, which EILE Magazine 25
wouldn’t be true. Is pansexuality accepted and respected like any other sexuality? That is a difficult question. I think for the most part most people in the middle do, because often they face the same prejudice that people who are pansexual feel. We live in such a progressive society though, that I think most people who are gay or straight do accept and respect pansexual people as equal, but it is less so than the middle ground unfortunately. You hear a lot of ‘pick a team’ and ‘greedy’ among some people in binary sexualities, which is sad because most people who are gay and straight are so lovely about who you are, and quite frankly don’t care, which is wonderful. And I want to celebrate that because it is so beautiful. I respect you, I respect who you are, you respect me, you respect who I am. There is nothing more beautiful. So before I talk about the negative side, I want you to know that I think you are wonderful. With regard to straight people who think it is my thinking, that is the same prejudice as when straight people had a problem with gay people. If you are one-third gay, they still have the same problem, and optionally God, or whoever they can rely on, comes into it. With regard to gay people, I think it possibly could stem from the fact that many people who were gay claimed to be in the middle, to protect 26 EILE Magazine
themselves in those crazy, very ignorant times. But we don’t live in them anymore. I’m not in the 1950s, and if I were a lesbian, it would be easier to say than pansexual in today’s society. I would never say that everything is perfect for gay people. There is so much that still needs to be done, and as great as the Marriage Referendum was, anyone who thinks it was the end of the fight is naive, or at the very least misinformed, and I will be in complete support of gay people to push every right and attitude change over the line you can think of. Most people who are gay are very much in support of pansexual rights and attitudes, and anyone in the middle, but sometimes you get a fear into your head that some people who are gay don’t because some gay people don’t. The assumption sometimes is that you are bisexual/polysexual/ pansexual one day, and gay the next, but I don’t feel like I’m gay. Quite frankly, when you are pansexual, you don’t know who’s okay with you, and that can be very daunting. You want to be more trusting, but you are wary, because you’ve heard things that give you cause to be less so. And I add, you would rather not be wary, because there are so many wonderful people, of every sexuality, who are such nice people, but you just aren’t sure. People sometimes seem
to have a preoccupation with choosing, and no-one ever said anyone needed to, if it didn’t fit what they were feeling. Someone pours out what they really feel, and someone tells them to pick a box. That is so cruel. They have just told you who they are, and in today’s society, that took a lot. Being in the middle is a whole other ball game. If you are pansexual, people expect you to prove it. It has to be defined by your partners. Let me throw out a few problems with that. What if someone who is pansexual is a virgin? If someone is 40 and a virgin are they still confused? Or maybe they are just a pansexual virgin? The other thing that pansexuals have to contend with is that we are trying to be ‘cool’ or ‘fashionable’. Anyone who thinks that doesn’t know me. I’m formerly the 13-year-old who read Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte in school. I’m a nerd, I don’t worry about cool or fashionable. To be honest it’s superficial. I call myself pansexual because I am, and I have no interest in lying to people. Like I’d expect from anyone of any sexuality, I’m proud of who I am, and I don’t want to lie. Whatever prejudice someone shows is their problem, not mine. I was 25 when I realised, and a very big worry I had was that I was too old to find out. But I
since know that isn’t the case. You can find out what sexuality you are at any age, and that’s perfectly fine. Be happy, be you. There are so many myths that surround pansexuality, such as every pansexual being is very sexually active. Like every sexuality, that is true of some people and not of others. But I respect people, whether they fit the stereotype or not. The problem is the stereotyping, not the people who happen to fit the stereotype. So often when you are pansexual there aren’t many people in the media who are there to look to. This is why openly pansexual people like Miley Cyrus and Angel Haze are so important. If you are reading this article and you are pansexual, well now you can add an extra person to the list who knows how you feel, however small-time a writer I am. I suppose when I realised my sexuality, it soon became clear to me that, as a writer, I had a duty to do my best to get pansexuality out there. Since then, I have written a blog post about realising I was pansexual, a poetry collection about pansexuality, some other poems on the topic, and have written pansexual characters into my books. More to follow.
article, I’m not an expert, but be you, be happy. You don’t need to please anyone like they don’t need to please you. No one has the right to make you unhappy. You are perfect as you are, and don’t let anyone make you think any different. It seems pretty petty to me that anyone could discriminate against anyone based on something so small as sexuality. We are all human. I’m just an ordinary girl. Nothing terrible, nothing special. So when someone thinks me being pansexual changes anything I find it odd. I think we are all born with our sexualities, but even if we weren’t, what difference would it make? There’s no right or wrong sexuality. There’s no sexuality more superior to another. So I don’t think it would make any difference. Oh, and one final thing: I’m not into frying pans! You’d be surprised but some people do genuinely think that. Ridiculous, eh?! So just to conclude, be happy as you are, because you are perfect as you are. Those who matter don’t care, and those who care don’t matter.
I have always being very passionate about equality in general, one of the areas being sexuality, and it hasn’t got stronger since I realised, just more personal. If you are pansexual and reading this EILE Magazine 27
Christianity, Secularism, and Ireland - A Response Scott De Buitléir responds to an attack on secularism In the wee hours of Tuesday morning, I came across Father Brian McKevitt’s opinion piece in the Irish Times, titled Rite & Reason: Our world is dominated by an aimless secularist view of life. In the article, McKevitt declares secularism – claiming it “Ireland’s unofficial State religion” – as the ideology to blame for changes in today’s supposedly lost society. In our search and desire for “radical” freedom (though one cannot be sure how freedom can be radicalised) we have redefined our moral values to be “guided by reason alone, with no reference to religious beliefs or a supreme being”. By the way McKevitt writes this, he makes it out to be a negative development in Irish (and Western) life, although it sounds perfectly plausible to 28 EILE Magazine
this writer. Still, when it comes to making such claims in a newspaper as grand as the Irish Times, one expects examples of specific areas where secularism has disintegrated Irish life. McKevitt, aware of our expectations, is prepared to suggest quite a few, in the hopes that his claims would be viably supported: “Human nature itself is seen as a restriction of freedom, with State-sponsored gender ideology absurdly belittling our sexuality, and we are rapidly abandoning the idea that we are responsible for others, especially children and the sick. Worship of God is neglected or despised, […] human life is devalued, marriage is undermined, mothers are set against their unborn children, fatherhood is treated with contempt, consumption measures our success in life, happiness is momentary.”
Surprise surprise, I think to myself, reading the above piece. Once again, a Catholic priest is concerned over issues of sexuality, women’s reproductive rights, and gender. Part of what McKevitt writes is actually a welcome criticism of modern society. Our happiness should not be measured by temporary highs, brought on by how or what we consume. Indeed, how we interact with, build, support, and contribute to the various communities of which we are members, that should be a key measure of our role in society. The rest of McKevitt’s words, however, are cause for concern. For a member of the Irish Catholic Church to refer to developments in Irish legislation and policy as “State-sponsored gender ideology absurdly belittling our sexuality” is laughably ironic, were it not so offensive. For far too many years, the
‘Christian’ attitude towards homosexuality or transgender identity was to disown at best, or kill at worst (this isn’t absurd, when one considers how churches in countries like Uganda and Nigeria are vitriolic in their attitude against LGBT people). Irish Christians (or rather, Irish people who would regard themselves as Christian) are no strangers to homophobia or transphobia, legitimising the maltreatment of LGBT people on “moral laws” – as McKevitt insinuates – taught by the Catholic Church. The killing of Declan Flynn in Fairview Park, arguably the anti-gay killing that sparked Ireland’s campaign for LGBT rights, was most likely carried out by people who regarded themselves Catholic. Any good Catholic, like Father McKevitt, would naturally condemn such a horrific act of violence, yet the perpetrators were likely to have learned their homophobia from somewhere. In Ireland of that
time, the Catholic Church still ruled supreme. Thankfully, Irish Catholics (in Ireland, at least) have realised that their faith can adapt alongside the social attitudes of the modern era, the proof of which was seen when a majority of the Irish voted for same-sex marriage in 2015. Many of these ‘Yes’ voters would have counted themselves as Catholic in the most recent census, despite the official stance of the Catholic Church advocating a ‘No’ vote in the referendum. The result proved that Irish faith, as it had once been in the Middle Ages, did not need to bow to the Vatican. Faith does not need to block reason. If anything, it should support it. For Father McKevitt to claim that traditions in Ireland are being mocked is unnecessary, and dangerously open to backfire. If Catholicism demands to remain the foundation of a healthy Irish society, it needs to admit
openly that it has failed its own people on several occasions. The Magdalene laundries. The child abuse. The belittling of women, and the blind eye to violence against them. The damnation of homosexuality. The list goes on and on, and yet somehow, a secularist society is what threatens the fabric of our society. Sure… Father McKevitt may do well to remember that wonderful Christian saying; let he who is without sin, cast the first stone. If the Catholic (or any other) Church is to survive in an increasingly progressive country such as Ireland today, then it needs to recognise where it has gone wrong in the past, take stock, and move forward with its people. Secularism is not Catholicism’s enemy, stubbornness is. [Also published on medium.com - January 3, 2017]
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Exotic Locations! Thinking of expanding your horizons and exploring more of the world in 2017? Then have a look at these holidays!
Whether you would like to tick taking an awesome safari off your bucket list, fancy dipping your toes in the warm waters of the Caribbean or treating yourself to a luxurious multi-centre getaway in Dubai and the Maldives, there’s something spectacular for you. Travelmood have a wealth of affordable holidays to inspiring destinations on offer. Book by the 31st of January, and set your sights on something wonderful this year, without breaking the bank!
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Spend 3 nights at the 3* Cultural Kandy and Tea Private Tour and 6 nights at the 4* Avani Kalutara Resort on a half-board basis from only €1469pp. Price includes: Return flights ex. Dublin, 9 nights’ accommodation as stated, taxes and charges. Based on two people sharing. Travel: June 2017 Ref No: 1472899
Spend 4 nights at the 4* Southern Sun Waterfront Cape Town on a B&B basis and 3 nights at the 4* Aquila Private Game Reserve on a full-board basis from only €1489pp. Price includes: Return flights ex. Dublin, 7 nights’ accommodation as stated, taxes and charges. Based on two people sharing. Travel: May 2017 Ref No: 1470463
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Spend 3 nights at the 4* Hue Boutique Hotel, Dubai on a B&B basis and 7 nights at the 4* Meeru Island Resort & Spa on a full-board basis from only €2359pp. Price includes: Return flights ex. Dublin, 10 nights’ accommodation as stated, taxes and charges. Based on two people sharing. Travel: March 2017 Ref No: 1471186 For more information or to book visit www.travelmood.ie, or call their dedicated and experienced team on 01 4331063 or visit the Travelmood store on Duke Street, Dublin 2, just off Grafton Street.
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USA Holiday deals 2017! With low booking deposits and exclusive fares, there has never been a better time to book ! Give yourself something to look forward to for the year ahead! Experience St Patrick’s Day the way the Americans do and watch New York turn green in March, take your family on a trip to remember to the home of Mickey Mouse and his Disney family, experience true excitement with a breakaway to Las Vegas or cruise the Caribbean with your loved one. Whichever type of American getaway you choose, you’re sure to have a magical time at great value for your money! Book by 31st January to avail of these amazing deals or visit American Holidays this weekend at stand M4/N3 at the Holiday World Show for more fantastic offers!
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Price includes: Return flights ex. Dublin, 3 nights’ accommodation as stated, taxes and charges. Based on two people sharing. Flight connections also available ex. Belfast, Shannon and Cork. Travel: March 2017 - other dates and durations available Ref No: 1480651
Orlando Summer 2017 Spend 7 nights at the 4* Ramada Plaza Resort & Spa from only €579pp. Price includes: Return flights ex. Dublin, 7 nights’ accommodation in a one bedroom suite on a B&B basis, taxes and charges. Based on two adults and two children sharing. Flight connections also available ex. Belfast, Shannon and Cork. Travel: May 2017 - other dates and durations available Ref No: 1469932
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MYSTERYLAND USA RETURNS TO BETHEL WOODS, NY - JUNE 9 - 12 Ever heard of Woodstock Music & Arts Festival 1969? The festival was a hallmark gathering that defined a culture of youth seeking peace, love and music in a divisive world. The ethos of the event has lived on through Mysteryland Music & Arts Festival, which takes place at Bethel Woods, the same hallowed grounds as Woodstock. Simply check out the official aftermovie to feel the immense energy thatâ€™s taken place the past three years. From June 9 - 12, 2017, Mysteryland will embody the same free-spirited energy that defined a generation nearly half a century ago. Approaching its third year at Bethel Woods, Mysteryland promises to return in a magnificent manner with an incredible lineup and attractions that will capture your heart and soul. Presale tickets have now gone onsale! This is undoubtedly the best time to purchase passes before prices increase. Donâ€™t skip out on 3 days of peace, love and music!
Tickets from: http://www. mysteryland.us/
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Frances Winston on Movies Directed by: Anna Foerster – Starring: Kate Beckinsdale, Theo James, Lara Pulver, James Faulkner, Charles Dance Blood Wars is the fifth film in the Underworld franchise, but if you’ve never seen one of the movies, and are worried you won’t be able to follow this, fear not. They have very kindly inserted a segment at the beginning, that gives you a quick recap of everything that has happened to date, in order to bring you up to speed. And since they had the wherewithal to do this, I won’t bother explaining the story arc so far. Suffice to say, all you really need to know to follow this review is that Beckinsdale reprises her role as Selene, a Death Dealer – or in lay terms, she’s like a vampire super soldier. She fights against the vampires mortal enemies, the Lycans – or werewolves to you and me.
being hunted by both sides. In order to protect her, Selene has ensured she doesn’t know her location, but of course no one believes that. Both sides try to capture her, and there’s something about drinking her blood, because she can walk in the sun, and that guy from the Divergent series (James) helps her out and becomes her sidekick. Or something like that. If I seem rather glib about this tale, that’s because it only serves as a flimsy framework to hang the action scenes on. Blood Wars is all about the kicking of ass – vampire ass, werewolf ass, hybrid ass – and the action scenes go all out. While they are indeed impressive (and seeing a strong female in a lead role kick the aforementioned butts is great) there is nothing in them that we haven’t seen before. Lots of slow mo, acrobatics, fancy blade work… It’s a case of style over substance. To be fair, pretty much every franchise is running out of steam by the fifth sequel (except Star Wars because technically part five was part two – you know what I mean!) and it is hard to maintain the momentum of earlier offerings.
In between all the incredibly stylised fighting – which requires everyone to wear skintight leather in order to enter the fray – there is a story. I think. Actually, I’m pretty sure there’s something Despite this, there is a pretty about Selene’s daughter, Eve, who is a vampire Lycan hybrid, impressive cast, although
they all completely ham it up, including Charles Dance. They are not helped by a turgid script, that thinks using more classical language in places will give a gravitas to Blood Wars, and convince you that these creatures are indeed ancient. Dialogue aside though, this looks great – leather fetishists will love it! I actually am a big fan of the vampire genre, and I also know the back-story, so I may have enjoyed Blood Wars more than some people would. Even if you are a fan of the franchise though, I would recommend keeping your expectations low. There is absolutely nothing new here, and many of its trademarks are starting to look older than the supposedly immortal characters are meant to be. The main problem is that Blood Wars takes itself far too seriously, and the premise is too ridiculous to be as dark as it’s trying to be. If there weren’t so many well-known faces in it, I’m pretty sure it would have gone straight to DVD. As it stands, Blood Wars will mainly appeal to die-hard Underworld fans, who will be thrilled to learn that a sixth movie is currently in development.
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Frances Winston on Movies continued...
Directed by: Ben Affleck – Starring: Ben Affleck, Elle Fanning, Brendan Gleeson, Chris Messina, Sienna Miller, Zoe Saldana, Chris Cooper
Dennis Waterman character (“I’ll write the theme toon, I’ll sing the theme toon…”). However, like all babies, it can be temperamental, and while this has some incredibly strong elements, it also lets itself down badly in parts.
This had barely started, and I was cringing in my seat. Not because of any grotesque visual on screen, but rather because of Sienna Miller’s quite frankly appalling Irish accent.
Affleck plays Joe, a smalltime crook, who offers his services to a group of Italian gangsters, to afford him the opportunity to exact revenge on Irish mobster, Albert White (the aforementioned Glenister with his dreadful accent). In the process, he becomes the biggest bootlegger in Florida during the prohibition era, and marries the beautiful Graciella, all the time struggling with his conscience.
Within the next few minutes, my eardrums were assaulted once more, when Robert Glenister also made an attempt at a brogue. It was actually a breath of fresh air when Brendan Gleeson appeared on screen, with an authentic Irish accent. Which then left me even more confused as to why they failed so miserably at it, as, since they had an actual Irishman on set, surely they could have gotten some coaching from him. Or, and this is a rather novel idea Ben Affleck, perhaps next time if you want Irish characters, you could hire actual Irish actors. Accent problem solved!!! Thank me later. I addressed that last comment to Ben Affleck, because this movie is very much his baby. He wrote, directed, co-produced, and stars in this, like a movie version of Little Britain’s
One thing that strikes you about this is how beautiful it looks. There is some simply stunning cinematography, and Affleck proves to have a real eye for a striking shot, with one or two being simply breathtaking. The soundtrack is also excellent, and completely complements the visuals. Accents aside, the cast do a good job – just good, not great. But good works. They all have a good (there’s that word again) chemistry, and bounce off each other well. However, many of them are caricatures that were clearly written that way, and they are definitely somewhat
hindered by the script. Many of the scenes feel a bit dragged-out and self-serving, and even the climax feels like it could have happened ten minutes earlier (and the opening could have been completely cut in half!). Ironically, Affleck is probably the weakest actor here, and plays Joe nearly completely one-tonal throughout. There is also a huge amount of telegraphing going on, and you will see many things coming a mile away. The story itself has a huge amount of different elements, which also contributes to a pacing problem, as Affleck tries to tie up all the loose ends he has created for himself. Alongside this, there are one or two rather violent scenes, which some audience members may find disturbing (I guarantee you one scene will make you cross your legs and squirm) and it did feel somewhat like they were included simply to get a shocked reaction from viewers. Don’t get me wrong. I did really enjoy this as a viewer – it just doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. But if you just fancy a very stylised old-school gangster film, this is ‘yer only man’.
In Cinemas Now!
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Frances Winston on Movies continued...
Directed by: M. Night Shyamalan – Starring: James McAvoy, Anya Taylor-Joy, Betty Buckley, Jessica Sula, Haley Lu Richardson, Kim Director
girls’ thing has been done to death, but Split really gives it an interesting twist. Meanwhile, Buckley acts as an excellent buffer to his many alter egos, and does an excellent job of acting as a buffer for his more sinister sides.
It is a long time since I got excited about an M. Night Shyamalan movie. After displaying so much initial promise with the seminal The Sixth Sense, it all seemed to go downhill (and let us NEVER speak of The Village!). However, I was impressed by his work on the Wayward Pines TV series (if you haven’t seen the first season check it out – suspenseful telly at its best) so I approached Split hopefully, thinking that maybe he had got his mojo back.
As with most kidnapping tales, there is a sense of claustrophobia here, with most of the ‘action’ taking place in the tiny room in which the girls are being held. Shyamalan does a great job of building the tension and keeping the viewers on their toes, as they wonder just what the hell is going on. There is a sub-plot about one of the girl’s backgrounds that is handled somewhat clunkily, however. This is told through flashback scenes, and while relevant to the plot, it does take you out of the main story, and I felt it could have been handled more efficiently.
Split is being classed as a psychological horrormovie in some quarters, but instead of a bogstandard monster, the evil entity here is, in fact, James McAvoy’s Kevin. More specifically, it is Kevin and the 24 alternate personalities that inhabit his body, as he suffers from dissociative identity disorder. When he kidnaps three girls, they soon learn that they may be able to manipulate some of his other personalities in order to escape. However, Kevin is hiding one especially dark personality, The Beast, that is determined to come to the fore and wreak havoc, and since even his own psychiatrist, Dr Fletcher (Buckley) doesn’t really believe this exists, there is nothing to stop it.
That aside, Split is suitably creepy, and will literally make your skin crawl throughout. It loses its way a bit at the end – perhaps in an attempt to set it up for a sequel. However, it is still a satisfying watch. Split is not quite a total return to form for Shyamalan, but it is a step in the right direction, after a few (quite frankly) awful and nonsensical movies.
In Cinemas Now!
McAvoy is no stranger to playing complex characters – perhaps most notably in Jon S. Baird’s Filth, and Danny Boyle’s Trance, and these roles seem to have stood him in good stead for this part. He is mesmerising as he transforms between personalities, and at no point do the lines blur. You are always perfectly sure which character he is portraying, and with so many inhabiting the mind of one person, that is no mean feat. Using just his own physicality, he will genuinely creep you out. The ‘psycho kidnaps pretty young
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Frances Winston on Movies continued...
Directed by: Jeff Nichols – Starring: Joel Edgerton, Ruth Negga, Nick Kroll, Michael Shannon, Marton Csokas Despite the fact that she has been around for eons, and has turned in some hugely acclaimed performances, Loving will be remembered as the movie that put Irish actress, Ruth Negga, on the map, and turned her into a bona fide movie star. Based on true events, Loving stars Negga and Edgerton as Mildred and Richard Loving, a mixed-race couple, who challenged the American Constitution and won. While that may be the crux of the story in a nutshell, it really oversimplifies what they went through. Having left their home in Caroline County, Virginia, to marry in Washington D.C., they were subsequently arrested, as their interracial marriage wasn’t recognised on home turf. Both were sentenced to a year in prison, which would be suspended if they left the state for 25 years. However, after several years of struggling in Washington and feeling homesick, Mildred wrote to then Attorney General, Robert Kennedy, who in turn contacted the American Civil
Liberties Union on her behalf. They agreed to help them, and their case went all the way to the Supreme Court, where it was unanimously held that laws prohibiting interracial marriage were unconstitutional.
drama, but Nichols forgoes that to tell the couples story instead. The courts barely feature, and the focus is on the Lovings (what a fantastic surname by the way) and their reactions to the outcomes of various hearings.
This was a hugely significant moment in the American Civil Rights Movement, but what makes it all the more remarkable is that Mildred and Richard weren’t activists – just two people in love, who wanted to be able to live and bring up their children where they grew up themselves.
It does feel like it is somewhat at the expense of conveying the gravity of these hearings, and for those who are not familiar with the back-story, it may have helped to give it more context. It is over an hour into the movie before Mildred even writes to Kennedy, which was a turning point for the pair.
Although they were aware that their case could help a lot of people, they were modest in their accomplishment, and Edgerton and Negga capture that perfectly here. Mildred is very much the driving force, and Negga does a great job of portraying her as equally steely but vulnerable, while Edgerton manages to instil a quiet stoicism in Richard, despite the fact that he is not enamoured of the attention they are receiving. This whole movie hinges on them and their performances and chemistry, and they do a fantastic job. Loving is also a fascinating story which deserved to be told. However, given that it hinges on the outcome of a court case, you would expect a big overblown courtroom
While this isn’t a flaw per se, it may disappoint some people who were hoping for more tension. Instead, what you get is a surprisingly gentle and heart-warming tale of two remarkably unremarkable people, who literally changed the world as they knew it. Loving is beautifully shot and wonderfully paced, and it does somewhat restore your faith in people-power – particularly in light of recent events in the US. Loving may not be the most exciting, action-packed movie you will see, but it is certainly one of the most uplifting.
In Cinemas February 3rd 2017!
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Design: Anthony Zagariko, exclusively for EILE Magazine
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Quality LGBT News and Features – Produced from Los Angeles Available via podcast on our website (thiswayout.org) or on iTunes, and on 200+ Radio Stations Worldwide!
thiswayout.org | Twitter: @TWORadio Overnight Productions (Inc.)/”This Way Out” Post Office Box 1065 Los Angeles, CA 90078 U.S.A. EILE Magazine 45
Couples+Pairs/2/ Theatre Upstairs, Feb-18 Couples + Pairs /2/, the second in a series of short plays and songs, all with love and relationships as a theme, opens soon at the Theatre Upstairs. This entertaining and thought-provoking evening of original short plays, by exciting new and emerging Irish writers, is the second show by Blue Heart in association with Theatre Upstairs, to explore the theme of love in all its pain and glory. Searching for love, finding love and losing it are all touched on, in short bite-sized pieces. They will include a very funny look at the workings of an unusual Dating Agency, where the owner is prepared to use very unconventional methods to find her new client the partner of his dreams. Another suggests love after death is a real thing, when two medical students fight over the affections of a woman who is no longer alive! In another piece, the development of a possible romance between long-term friends is explored. What exactly did happen on a drunken night out? Live music is used throughout to link the pieces, with some songs, some familiar and some less so, will amplify and echo the stories on-stage, some of which are funny, with others being deeply sad or downright strange. Like relationships themselves. Blue Heart Theatre is a recently established Irish theatre group, whose mission is to present new writing, and revive classics not seen by contemporary audiences. Producer Sean Denyer commented: “The ten-minute play has not much of a history in our theatre, but in the USA it is huge. It allows writers to try out new ideas, and if you don’t like one play, there will be another one coming down the track, which you may love.”
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All of them in this show have relationships as a common theme. Two feature same-sex relationships, and two of the pieces have been written by writers who are gay, and the company itself is a mix of genders and orientation.
“We couldn’t imagine doing a show like this without including an LGBT perspective – at the end of the day love is love, and we want to show the full spectrum” said Sean, who added: “The show may be best thought of as the theatrical equivalent of a blind date, only much less stressful!” The show has already been accepted to the Limerick Fringe in April, and will also be travelling to the Brighton Fringe in May.
Date and time:
7pm 3rd-18th February 2017 (no show on Sundays)
(Previews Feb 3/4/6 Matinees 1pm Feb 8/11/15/18) Venue: Booking: Price:
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Theatre Upstairs, Eden Quay, Dublin 1 www.theatreupstairs.ie or Tel: 0857727375 €12/10 (Dinner and Show €18/16)
Ann Blake (At A Loss) one of the writers in the collection, Couples & Pairs 2
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And Then There Were None – Review By Frances Winston Smock Alley Theatre 1662, 6-7 Exchange Street Lower, Temple Bar, Dublin 8, until 28th January @ 8pm, Tickets €15/12
It is quite brave of No Drama, an amateur dramatic group, to take on a story like And Then There Were None. This is possibly one of Agatha Christie’s best-known tales, and contains an array of deeply complex characters, none of whom (in true Christie tradition) are what they seem. In a nutshell, ten people are invited to a grand house on a remote island, and, of course, they all accept, despite most of their invitations being hugely dubious. Upon arrival, they find no sign of their host, but are confronted with demons from their past, and they quickly realise that someone wants to see them all dead. With no way off the island, and no idea who is trying to pick them off one by one, they can trust no-one, and must keep their wits about them to try and survive. As amateur theatre goes, this is quite ambitious. They have a rather grand set, which really sets the tone of the piece. As with all am dram, the quality of the performances is variable, but given the tone of the language utilised by Christie, even the biggest ham can usually convince in one of her roles. One thing I would say that all of them need to look out for is projection though. At times it was difficult to hear them, as all had a tendency to drop their voices. While this is not a disaster in an intimate space like Smock Alley, in a larger venue it would really take an audience out of key moments. The group have managed to find a lot of humour in Christie’s writing – I’m not always
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sure if it was intentional, but it works – and this also helps distract from any minor flaws. The biggest problem I and my companion had with this was actually the transitions. Without exception, they all felt a bit clunky, and this is something that could be looked at. If this were a professional theatre group, I could nit-pick away at other things, but in true ‘lets put on a show’ spirit, I won’t, as they have done an extremely good job when you consider that this isn’t what they actually ‘work’ at. This is a very entertaining whodunnit. Be warned though, it is also very long at 2 hours and 20 minutes. But ensure that you’ve eaten beforehand, and grab yourself a comfortable pew, and you’ll have a very enjoyable evening.
And Then There Were None is playing at: Smock Alley Theatre 1662, 6-7 Exchange Street Lower, Temple Bar, Dublin 8 Until 28th January @ 8pm Tickets at Smock Alley €15/12
Peter Blennerhassett as Philip Lombard Noel Cahill as Thomas Rogers Kate Cosgrave as Vera Elizabeth Claythorne Louise Dunne as Emily Caroline Brent Szabi Fernczi as Fred Narracott Triona Keane as Ethel Rogers Michael O’Kelly as Dr Edward Armstrong Declan Ryan as William Henry Blore Robert Shaw-Smith as General Mackenzie Ciaran Traenor as Anthony Marston Adam Walsh as Justice Lawrence Wargrave Directed by Renée van de Schoor Assistant Director Siobhan Hickey Produced by David Breen
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Musical Theatre Review: La Cage Aux Folles If the title of this musical sounds familiar to you, but you can’t quite place it, let me put you out of your misery. La Cage Aux Folles is the musical that the film, The Birdcage, was based on. It’s also the show that gave us the iconic disco classic, I Am What I Am (although it is performed in a more heart wrenching style here). If you’ve seen The Birdcage, you have probably already realised that this is a completely camptastic production. With more sequins than an entire series of Strictly Come Dancing, and more men in tights than Robin Hood, this, at its heart, is a comedy of errors. La Cage Aux Folles stars former EastEnder, John Partridge (but don’t hold that against him as he actually has extensive West End credentials) and one-time T.J. Hooker heart throb, Adrian Zmed (he was also in Grease 2, but we don’t speak of that!) as Georges, and the dazzling drag-artiste Albin, whose happy world is shattered, when their son Jean-Michel comes home and announces he is marrying the daughter of a notorious right-wing politician. The couple are at the heart of their locale’s nightlife, thanks to their lavish club, La Cage Aux Folles, where Albin is the star attraction. But with an imminent meeting with their inlaws on the horizon, the pair are forced to tone down their vibrant lifestyle, causing tensions between all involved. This is probably one of the most lavish touring shows you will ever see. Everything, from the sets to the costumes to the wigs, is breathtaking! However, it is not style without substance, and is held together by some fantastically strong performances – particularly from John Partridge, who is simply amazing as Albin. As certain scenes are set in a nightclub, it allows the cast to break the fourth wall, and John really embraces this element
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of the show, entertaining the audience as if it were his own private cabaret. Thanks to this element, the show is slightly different every time, which surely helps keep it fresh for both performers and audience. He and Adrian have a fantastic chemistry, and deservedly got the biggest cheers at the curtain call on the evening I attended. It would have been very easy to imitate Robin Williams and Nathan Lane, as people in the audience will probably be more familiar with the movie than the show. However, they resist this temptation, and really make these roles their own.
is a rollicking good ride, that will have you clapping and singing along. A perfect antidote to the January blues, La Cage Aux Folles will leave you with a smile on your face well into the next day (and you will probably have an urge to wear sequins!). Be warned though – if you are sitting near the front, John may single you out during his performance! Le Cage Aux Folles played at the Bord Gais Energy Theatre, Dublin, until 14 Jan 2017.
Producer, Bill Kenwright, has done a fantastic job of bringing La Cage Aux Folles – By Frances Winston back to the stage, and the Bórd Gáis Energy Theatre is the perfect size for a show like this. It feels very intimate, despite being such a big production. From the moment it starts, there is an overriding sense of fun. But that’s not to say you won’t feel all the feels. Your heart will break for Albin at points, but overall this
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NBC is officially bringing back television’s favorite foursome with a 10-episode limited run of ‘Will & Grace’ during the 2017-18 season. Stars Eric McCormack, Debra Messing, Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally — each of whom received at least one Emmy Award for their respective performances throughout the series — will be back. The original series creators, Max Mutchnick and David Kohan, will act as showrunners and executive producers. Legendary director, James Burrows, who directed every episode of the show during its initial eight-year run, is on board to direct and executive produce. “We’re thrilled that one of the smartest, funniest, and most defining comedies in NBC history is coming back”
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It’s Official! Will & Grace Back For 20172018 Season said NBC Entertainment Chairman Robert Greenblatt. “This groundbreaking series for everything from gay rights to social and political commentary — all disguised as a high-speed train of witty pop culture — is coming back where it belongs.” Jennifer Salke, President of NBC Entertainment, added: “We started talking with Mutchnick and Kohan about producing new episodes right after they shot the secret reunion show back in September, and the fact that all four of the original stars were excited about getting back into production is a testament to the joyful experience they had doing nearly 200 episodes for eight seasons. Few things cut through the clutter these days, especially in comedy, and ‘Will and Grace’ is one of the best.” Said Mutchnick: “Dave and I are absolutely thrilled about the opportunity to write what Will, Grace, Jack and Karen are thinking about in 2017.” Debuting in 1998, the show’s popularity climbed steadily, ultimately becoming the highest-rated sitcom in the adults 18-49 demo from 200105, and garnering an audience of more than 18 million for its series finale in 2006. In addition to taking its place in the cultural zeitgeist as a critic and fan favorite, Will & Grace was nominated for 83 Emmy Awards, winning 16 of them including Outstanding Comedy Series.
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First Trans Model For India Fashion Show A transgender model will walk the ramp at one of India’s premier fashion events next month for the first time, a sign of greater acceptance of a community that is ostracised despite recent laws ensuring their protection and more opportunities. Anjali Lama, who is from Nepal, first auditioned for the Lakmé Fashion Week last year but was rejected, she said. She will model for several leading designers at the show running from Feb. 1 to Feb. 5 in Mumbai. “It wasn’t easy for me in the early days when there was so much rejection and discrimination” Lama, 32, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation. “Now I am getting an overwhelming response from the fashion industry after being selected, and other transgender people tell me they are proud of me.” Born Nabin Waiba Tamang, Lama said she took the name Anjali, a common name in India and Nepal, after a transgender friend suggested it. Lama joined a modelling academy in Kathmandu, but did not come out to her family. When someone from her village found out Lama was living as a transgender woman and told her family, they cut ties with her and told her that she had let them down. “My mother, to some extent, was more accepting but there really wasn’t much awareness then,” Lama said. “There is more awareness and acceptance now in Nepal, and that has helped more people like me to come out,” she said. Nepal emerged from a decade of conflict against Maoist rebels in 2006 after which it began to acknowledge the rights of the country’s LGBT community. In 2007, the country’s Supreme Court ruled that citizens were entitled to select
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Photo courtesy Anjali Lama
their gender identity. Nepal granted protections to LGBT people in its new Constitution and began issuing passports with a third gender category in 2015, one of only a handful of countries to do so. Still, discrimination and abuse persist, and jobs are hard to come by. In India, transgender people are eligible for quotas in jobs and educational institutions. They are even getting a boost from Bollywood films, with a pop band of transgender women featuring on the soundtrack of a Hindi movie last year. The Lakmé Fashion Week is committed to inclusivity and breaking stereotypes in gender, size and beauty, said Jaspreet Chandok, fashion head at IMG Reliance, an organiser of the event. “This season, our model pool will feature a transgender, a gender neutral and a plus size model … (to) take these conversations forward, shining light on some these issues and bringing them to the national consciousness” he said. -Mumbai, Thomson Reuters Foundation (eile.ie 11 January 2017)
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US: LA LGBT Centre Expands Trans Services The Los Angeles LGBT Center, with support from Citi Community Development, announces the expansion of its Transgender Economic Empowerment Project (TEEP), which empowers transgender individuals to secure jobs and become financially stable. With Citi’s support, the Los Angeles LGBT Center will provide approximately 150 members of the transgender community with robust financial capability training, employment counselling, and career development resources. The program expansion will also include development of inclusive workplace trainings for employers, which covers essential topics such as legal protection of gender identity and expression, making the workplace an inclusive environment that is safer and more welcoming for transgender people, and providing culturally competent services to the transgender community. In addition to financial capability and employment services, TEEP provides an array of support services to transgender clients, including one-on-one sessions with a client advocate and case manager; peer mentoring and goal setting; job referrals to transgender-friendly employers; and name and gender change and other legal assistance.
“This relationship with Citi will enable the Center to expand vital services for the transgender community, who experience unemployment at twice the national rate—and that rate increases to four times the national rate for trans people of color” said Center CEO Lorri L. Jean. “Even in a relatively progressive city like Los Angeles, discrimination and violence against trans people is terrifyingly common. This must end, and we are proud to work with Citi to build a world where every member of the LGBT community can thrive as healthy, equal, and complete members of society.” “Integrating financial capability training into career readiness programs enables individuals to build a more resilient financial future,” said James Alva, South California Market Manager, Citi Community Development. 58 EILE Magazine
“We are pleased to collaborate with the Los Angeles LGBT Center to expand access to critical services that will boost long term economic success for transgender individuals.”
“Transgender people continue experience high rates of poverty because they are too often discriminated against by employers and are unable to find work. Advancing the economic stability of our community is not only the right thing to do, it is what we must do so that trans people advance in life.” said Center TEEP Program Manager Drian Juarez. Since 1969 the Los Angeles LGBT Center has cared for, championed and celebrated LGBT individuals and families in Los Angeles and beyond. Learn more at www.lalgbtcenter.org. (eile.ie 15 January 2017)
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US - Judge Halts Enforcement of Protections for Trans Health Services In the US, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), America’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender civil rights organization, has responded to a federal judge’s decision to issue an injunction blocking enforcement of federal protections, set to go into effect on 1st January, barring discrimination in healthcare services, based on an individual’s gender identity, as well as reproductive health services. U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor’s decision came in response to a lawsuit, filed by Texas and several other states, as well as religiouslyaffiliated medical groups,
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seeking to overturn a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services regulation, implementing Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act, which forbids discrimination in health insurance, and by health providers accepting federal funds.
a broad range of reasons. While Judge O’Connor’s action is unconscionable, we believe that justice will prevail as courts continue to recognize that discrimination on the basis of sex is illegal, including discrimination on the basis of gender identity.”
“Judge O’Connor’s decision to prevent the Department of Health and Human Services from implementing crucial protections for transgender people seeking healthcare services puts thousands of people at risk of marginalization, harassment, and discrimination at a time they are most vulnerable and in need of inclusive, respectful care”
The NCTE (National Centre For Transgender Equality) has taken a more optimistic view, stating that “there are many reasons to expect that major health care providers and insurers will continue recent efforts to improve access to care for transgender patients, regardless of what Congress or the new admin[i]stration do”.
said HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow. “In addition, limiting access to reproductive healthcare harms millions of Americans including LGBTQ people who rely on reproductive healthcare for
O’Connor is the same judge who, in August, issued an injunction blocking the U.S. Department of Justice from enforcing guidance provided to school districts by the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice, clarifying that transgender students have a right to be treated with dignity and
free from discrimination in schools. In March of 2015, he also sought to block Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) rights for legally married same-sex couples, despite the Supreme Court of the United Statesâ€™ decision in United States v. Windsor (2013) recognizing the marriages of same-sex couples under federal law. There are roughly 9 million LGBT people in the US, and more than 650,000 same-sex couples. The Human Rights Campaign is Americaâ€™s largest civil rights organization, working to achieve equality for LGBTQ people. (eile.ie 3 January 2017)
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Netflix Original Film â€˜iBoyâ€™ Premiere: 27 January 2017 The Netflix original film, iBoy, follows Tom (Bill Milner), an average teenager whose world is turned on its head when a violent encounter with local thugs leaves fragments of his shattered smartphone embedded in his brain. He wakes from a coma to discover that returning to normal teenage life is impossible, because he has developed a strange set of superpowers. With these new powers he sets out to seek revenge on the gang, who also assaulted his best friend, Lucy (Maisie Williams). The film is directed by Adam Randall, and also stars Miranda Richardson as Nan (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, The Hours, Sleepy Hollow) and Rory Kinnear (The Imitation Game, Skyfall, Spectre) as Ellman. The film is produced by Gail Mutrux, Nate Bolotin, Emily Leo, Oliver Roskill, Lucan Toh.
iBoy launch in all Netflix territories: 27 January 2017.
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Bill Milner as Tom
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Apple CEO Tim Cook
When the Mail on Sunday outed Lord Browne ten years ago, he was forced to step down from BP in a matter of days. Yet when Tim Cook proactively decided to come out in a Businessweek interview in 2014, the global corporate 64 EILE Magazine
To Advance L Companies Must
community applauded. The words used on both occasions couldn’t have been more different: Lord Browne spoke of “embarrassment and shock” for being outed. Tim Cook, on the other hand, said he was “proud to be gay,” adding: “I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me”.
When it comes to LGBT rights, this decade has seen a positive sea-change, with business constantly anticipating lawmakers. Think about it: today, U.S. federal law has no workplace protection for LGBT employees, yet 91% of Fortune 500 companies have introduced nondiscrimination policies based on sexual orientation. 67% of them have gone further, and
LGBT Rights, t Think ‘Glocally’
have voluntarily extended health and insurance benefits to all LGBT families. Europe has also seen his fair share of progress. MI5, the UK’s national counterintelligence agency, currently ranks as Stonewall’s Top Employer of the year: a remarkable achievement when you think that until the early 90s, LGBT people were altogether banned
from working at the British intelligence services. Despite this encouraging progress, a lot remains to be done. In more than half of the world’s countries, LGBT people aren’t protected against workplace discrimination. Samesex relationships are still criminalised in more than 70 nations, and perhaps most disheartening of all,
Lord Browne Author of The Glass Closet
50% of LGBT students in the U.S. and in the UK continue to suffer severe bullying at school. As a result, up to a third decide to drop out. Perhaps it is not a coincidence that 40 percent of homeless youth on the streets of major U.S. cities are indeed LGBT people. The waste of human and economic potential is immense. A report by Out EILE Magazine 65
Now estimates the U.S. economy could add an extra $9 billion a year if companies improved their ability to retain LGBT talent through the implementation of inclusive policies. Countries where such policies do not exist are missing out: the World Bank estimates India is losing $32 billion a year in economic output precisely because of widespread discrimination against LGBT people. On the other hand, companies openly championing LGBT rights are reaping the benefits. LGBT customers are among the most loyal: they reward companies who have got their back, even if this means spending more on their shopping basket. A big basket, if you consider that in the U.S. alone, the spending power of the LGBT community is calculated in the region of $800 billion a year. Starbucks’ CEO Howard Schultz famously put his money where his mouth is when he told an anti-gay shareholder he was free to sell his stocks and invest somewhere else. The company successfully demonstrated it was in touch with current LGBT culture when it released a commercial featuring iconic drag queens Bianca del Rio and Adore Delano. The advert has now become an international YouTube hit.
of its iconic Stan Smith trainer devoting a portion of the sales to an Oregon-based charity supporting homeless LGBT teens. And then of course, last year the NBA made headlines when it pulled its 2017 All Star Game from Charlotte due to the controversial HB2 law passed in March. The numbers are clear: there is an economic case for LGBT inclusion, and it’s strong. Companies with strong LGBT policies tend to innovate the most, to have loyal employees, and to experience significantly less cases of discrimination lawsuits. In addition to that, they are also positively perceived by their customers. It’s a win-win. But the inclusion journey does not happen overnight, and companies are seeking guidance. Where to start from, especially when operating in countries where samesex relations are illegal? The answer is to think and act glocally: underscoring the business benefits of diversity locally, and adopting global policies that make the workplace safe, fair and accepting for all.
Uber has also taken a leading role by prohibiting its drivers globally from discriminating against LGBT passengers, even if state laws might allow it in the countries where they operate. In the wake of the Orlando shootings, the company offered free rides to a number of selected LGBT landmark locations around the world and free transport to the families of the victims.
The first step in this direction is to openly assess whether LGBT employees are comfortable in disclosing their sexual orientation at work and in reporting homophobic bullying in the workplace. It is also important to have visible LGBT role models across the organisation. Allies are the next step: are there any senior managers within the organization openly championing and supporting LGBTinclusive policies and employees? The role of allies is particularly powerful, because it drives the conversation from a ‘minority discourse’ to one of talent, performance and innovation.
Sports and clothing companies are also embracing the trend. During Pride month, Adidas released a rainbow-flag makeover
In the words of the UN, the fight against homophobia is now, more than ever, a “development imperative”. By forging an
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internal culture of inclusion that transcends national policies yet is aware of them, companies have a tremendous opportunity to leverage their global influence to shape socioeconomic progress. Employees of international corporations should be able to feel reassured that regardless of the national context in which they live, when it comes to work, they will not suffer discrimination because of who they choose to love and who they choose to be. -Antonio Zappulla, Thomson Reuters Foundation (eile.ie 18 January 2017)
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UK - Trans Prisoners Need Greater Protection From Bullying Transgender prisoners in Britain need more support and greater protection from bullying and harassment, a government watchdog said on Tuesday, more than a week after a transgender woman was found dead in her cell.
vulnerabilities,” he added.
Transgender prisoners are especially vulnerable to discrimination and sexual violence, and they have a higher risk of mental disorders such as depression and suicidal thoughts, according to the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman (PPO).
There are around 80 reported transgender prisoners in Britain, Newcomen said, though the numbers are likely to be higher, as such data are not accurately recorded, and because some prisoners might not reveal their gender identity for safety.
“Prisons are always difficult environments … but they have a fundamental responsibility to keep prisoners safe and to protect and support those with particular vulnerabilities,” PPO Nigel Newcomen said in a report.
He said transgender deaths in custody have been relatively low, but warned that “these numbers have been climbing”.
“When a person enters prison, they leave behind what support they had in the community. The prison environment can be particularly difficult for transgender prisoners, exacerbating existing
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The PPO is appointed by Britain’s justice minister to carry out independent investigations into deaths and complaints in custody. The Ministry of Justice was not immediately available for comment.
Four transgender women committed suicide in their prison cells last year, sparking national headlines and debate over the wellbeing of the transgender prisoner community. Prisoners are housed according to the gender on their birth certificate, or, if
UK PPO Nigel Newcomen
available, their gender recognition certificate, the PPO said. But this decision should be made after individual assessments, with the prisonerâ€™s gender identity taken into account, the report added. Newcomen said prisons should implement policies to investigate transphobic bullying and harassment, and for transgender prisoners to have better mental health support.
â€œThis is an issue which has come of age and I hope (the report) will contribute to helping transgender prisoners live safely in their gender identityâ€? said Newcomen. -Thomson Reuters Foundation (eile.ie 11 January 2017)
The government in November issued new prison regulations outlining the care that transgender prisoners should receive.
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Living Free and Equal – More Translations Due In 2017
The OHCHR publication “Living Free and Equal” provides an analysis of more than 200 examples of what States are doing to tackle violence and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) and intersex people. It offers concrete guidance and inspiration
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for States based on initiatives taken by Governments, courts, parliaments, national human rights institutions and others around the world to implement international human rights standards and United Nations recommendations to protect, respect and fulfil the rights of LGBT and intersex people. “Living Free and Equal” also identifies where there are gaps and challenges and
makes recommendations on how to address these. It is essential reading for Government officials, parliamentarians, judges, officials of national human rights institutions, human rights defenders and anyone else interested in upholding the fundamental human rights of LGBT and intersex people. The publication is presently in English
(PDF). However, translations into other UN languages are forthcoming for 2017. For further information on international human rights law and standards on human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity, please see the OHCHR booklet â€œBorn Free and Equalâ€? (update forthcoming in 2017).
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Information and support for women who need someone to talk to
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NUI Galway: Participants For Programme To Cope With Persistent Fatigue After Cancer NUI Galway’s School of Psychology, with the support of Cancer Care West, is currently recruiting people with persistent fatigue, who have completed cancer treatment at least three months ago. Fatigue is one of the most debilitating and frustrating symptoms faced by individuals after cancer treatment. For some, these symptoms can last for months or even years after treatment. This can have an emotional and functional impact on peoples’ lives. Such overwhelming fatigue can hold people back from resuming ‘normal life’ after cancer. An online programme called ‘REFRESH: Recovery from Cancer-Related Fatigue’ has been developed by NUI Galway and Cancer Care West Hardiman Scholar Teresa Corbett to help people manage fatigue symptoms after cancer. Participants to date reported they found the REFRESH programme both helpful and enjoyable to use. Cancer-related fatigue is still relatively under-recognised and under-treated. The 74 EILE Magazine
online programme aims to address this unmet need of cancer survivors by raising awareness about what might cause fatigue and how people can learn to cope with it effectively. The ‘REFRESH: Recovery from CancerRelated Fatigue’ programme will provide eight online sessions for people in the comfort of their own home. The free online sessions will focus on what people do and think in response to their fatigue symptoms. Participants will be provided with instructions on a range of activity-pacing techniques to encourage more consistent levels of activity from day-to-day. Useful relaxation techniques and how to sleep better will also be addressed. The study is open to people all over Ireland and will take place over the coming months. GPs and cancer support networks around the country are being encouraged to refer suitable people with fatigue to the study. Participants can access all medical services as usual while involved in the programme. Teresa Corbett, coordinator of the study, said: “I’ve met so many people who are fatigued after cancer treatment. Often they feel frustrated and confused about their symptoms. We know that programmes like this can be beneficial. Unfortunately, people often feel that they do not get the support
they need to re-adjust to life after cancer. We want to help people to learn skills to enable them to move on with their lives.” Dr Jane Walsh, supervisor of the study at NUI Galway, added:
“Online programmes can allow many people to access high quality care from their own home, but we know how important it is to have personal contact as well. This is a promising new online fatigue management programme and we are hopeful it will be of benefit to people with persistent fatigue after cancer.”
Psychology, NUI Galway, or visit https:// nuigrefresh.wordpress.com/. GPs or cancer services who are interested in referring suitable patients to the programme can also use these contact details. (eile.ie 4 January 2017)
All materials are available online for those wishing to learn effective ways of managing their fatigue. For further information contact Niamh Gethin, School of EILE Magazine 75
US - Virginia Governor Signs Order Protecting LGBTQ People In Public Services Yesterday (5th January) the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and Equality Virginia praised Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe for signing an executive order extending protections that exist on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity for state employees to contractors and in the delivery of state services. “While anti-equality politicians are introducing legislation targeting LGBTQ people, Governor McAuliffe is standing up against discrimination and sending a clear message that Virginia is open for business and welcoming to all” said JoDee Winterhof, HRC Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs. “This executive order will help to ensure contractors doing business with the state are not using taxpayer funds to discriminate against LGBTQ people. Governor McAuliffe is a champion for equality and continues to lead the way forward in the fight to ensure all Virginians are treated equally with dignity and respect, regardless of who they are or whom they love.” “In addition to keeping Virginia a place with a commonsense, pro-business government, today’s Executive Order is a huge leap forward in our goal toward becoming a state that is a safe, welcoming, and equal place for all Virginians. We are grateful for the continued leadership demonstrated by Governor McAuliffe on gay and transgender issues” said Equality Virginia’s executive director James Parrish. “This policy is simply good business practice—taxpayers should expect that their money will not be used to support organizations that discriminate; it goes a long way towards keeping Virginia competitive to businesses and aligns the Commonwealth’s practices with those of most Fortune 500 companies.”
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“While anti-equality politicians are introducing legislation targeting LGBTQ people, Governor McAuliffe is standing up against discrimination and sending a clear message that Virginia is open for business and welcoming to all” The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people. Founded in 1989 as Virginians for Justice, Equality Virginia is a statewide, non-partisan education, outreach, and advocacy organization seeking equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Virginians. (eile.ie 6 January 2017)
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Information and support for women who need someone to talk to
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Spencer Anthony by Kelly Elaine 80 EILE Magazine