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ISSUE # 16 | 04.20.17 DESTINATIONS: THAILAND SONGKRAN COLOSSAL WATER FIGHT

MATILDA THE MUSICAL

DREAMING OF A BETTER LIFE

TOP TRAX: DEBORAH COX LOVES WHITNEY THE LEGACY LIVES ON

MIAMI BEACH GAY PRIDE IN PHOTOS PART II

2017 MIFO LGBT + INTERVIEW

FILM FESTIVAL

TO OUTSHINE!

KEPT BOY GREG AUDINO + SPOTLIGHT FILMS


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TABLE OF CONTENTS: 7Bangkok . DESTINATIONS: THAILAND is the place to be for Songkran, the

distinct religious holiday that has evolved into an eight-million-way water fight.

14The. COVER STORY: MIFO LGBT FILM FESTIVAL OUTSHINES MiFo LGBT Film Festival, previously named the

Miami Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, returns and will be renamed OUTshine Film Festival – its focus and mission remain the same.

15. ACTOR SPOTLIGHT: A CHAT WITH GREG AUDINO FROM KEPT BOY Wire Magazine sat down with actor Greg Audino to find out more about the MiFo LGBT Film Festival world premiere of Kept Boy.

16Wire. COVER STORY: SPOTLIGHT FILMS Magazine spotlights 24 of the great films

from the MiFo LGBT Film Festival Miami edition.

20 . TOP TRAX: DEBORAH LOVES WHITNEY Deborah Cox's latest EP, I Will Always Love You, is

a brilliant homage to Whitney Houston guaranteed to keep the music – and legacy – alive.

22 . FEATURE: THE MAGIC OF MATILDA Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical brings the

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24. PHOTO ESSAY: MIAMI BEACH GAY PRIDE PARADE &

FESTIVAL PART 2

Re-visit the Miami Beach Gay Pride Parade & Festival with Wire Magazine's visual memento.

26 . GOING OUT: PLAN YOUR OUTINGS The week's rundown of nightlife, dining and cultural events.

PHOTO CREDIT: © DEPOSITPHOTOS.COM | MERLINUL

beloved novel to life as a Broadway show, and it is on the way to the Broward Center this month.


WIRE MAGAZINE READ IT WEEKLY EVERYWHERE IN PRINT, DIGITAL ONLINE & SOCIAL MEDIA

Publisher/Editor in Chief Rafa Carvajal Editor Michael W. Sasser Associate Publisher/Editor Michael Bustamante Design & Production True Ink Designs L.L.C. | trueinkdesigns.com Columnists Alfredo Barrios Alyn Darnay Dane Steele Green Anthony Reyes Dr. Amy Wecker Official Photography Studio Photo Studio Miami Staff Photographer J.R. Davis Local Advertising advertising@wiremag.com National Advertising Rep. Rivendell Media | 212.242.6863 Contact Information Tel: 305.520.WIRE Email: info@wiremag.com 1541 Brickell Avenue, #2004, Miami, FL 33129 Wire Magazine is published, produced, and owned by Wire Media Group L.L.C. All Rights Reserved. Distributed in print in Miami, The Beaches, and Fort Lauderdale, and digitally worldwide through wiremag.com The views, opinions or positions expressed by contributors to and interview subjects of Wire Magazine are theirs alone and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions or positions of Wire Magazine, its staff or publisher. Cover photo: Greg Audino Photo by Johnny Rey Diaz


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PUBLISHER'S CORNER MIFO LGBT FILM FESTIVAL TO OUTSHINE ONCE AGAIN! As a proud sponsor of the MiFo LGBT Film Festival, this week we bring you our special issue of the Festival's Miami edition. I also want to share the news that the MiFo LGBT Film Festival will be renamed the OUTshine Film Festival after its 19th edition. If you love film, there will be several great movies from around the world and multiple premieres for you to enjoy. This year, the MiFo LGBT Film Festival Miami edition will present more than 80 films from 28 countries, guest appearances by actors, directors and producers, and several fun parties and events. The array of films at the Festival will include 39 Features, 14 Documentaries, 31 Shorts and an unprecedented number of Premieres: four World Premieres, three International Premieres, two North American Premieres, three U.S. Premieres, 17 East Coast Premieres, four Southeast Premieres and two Florida Premieres. Films will be screened at the Regal Cinemas South Beach, Colony Theater, Miami Beach Cinematheque and the Wolfsonian-FIU, all in the heart of South Beach. In this week's issue we provide you a comprehensive overview of the Festival. I also sat down for a spotlight interview with Kept Boy actor Greg Audino to discuss the film's upcoming premiere at the MiFo LGBT Film Festival, being an actor and much more. In addition, we spotlight 24 of the best films and shorts being showcased at MiFo Miami for your viewing pleasure. We want to help you select some of the movies you would like to watch and plan ahead to purchase your tickets. On the performing arts front, if you loved the novel, or want to experience the story onstage for the first time, Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical comes to life as a Broadway show and is on the way to the Broward Center this month. Wire Magazine Editor Michael W. Sasser sat down for an interview with Ensemble performer Stephen Diaz to discuss the acclaimed production in advance of its opening and the rigors of life onstage.

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Also in this issue of Wire Magazine, Dane Steele Green explains why Bangkok is the place to be for Songkran, a religious holiday that has evolved into the world's largest water gun fight, and DJ FR8-O shares in the praise for Deborah Cox's latest EP, I Will Always Love You, a perfect tribute to Whitney Houston.

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Finally, Wire Magazine photographer J.R. Davis and I took thousands of photos during Miami Beach Gay Pride, so this week we bring you part two of our photos from the Parade and Festival in print and online at www.wiremag.com/photos. Enjoy our second photo essay of the occasion. See you at the movies! Cheers,

Rafa Carvajal Publisher & Editor in Chief rafa@wiremag.com

“MOVIES TOUCH OUR HEARTS AND AWAKEN OUR VISION, AND CHANGE THE WAY WE SEE THINGS. THEY TAKE US TO OTHER PLACES, THEY OPEN DOORS AND MINDS. MOVIES ARE THE MEMORIES OF OUR LIFETIME, WE NEED TO KEEP THEM ALIVE.” - MARTIN SCORSESE

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DESTINATIONS By Dane Steele Green

PHOTO CREDIT: © DEPOSITPHOTOS.COM | CHATCHAI

THAILAND

WATER, WATER EVERYWHERE – SONGKRAN

hiladelphia has the Mummers Parade, Rio de Janiero has Carnevale and Hong Kong has the Chinese New Year. A select handful of cities in the world have celebrations unique to them, ones that they have either invented or have made their own to such a degree no one else can compete. The most recent addition to this rarified list is Bangkok. The celebration is Songkran, and think of it as an eight-million-way water fight. Technically, Songkran is actually a very solemn holiday marking the rise of the constellation Aries, which heralds spring and the Buddhist and Hindu new year. Traditionally, this passage of the worlds was marked by priests sprinkling devotees with water to wash away the old year and all its tribulations. But even solemn traditions aren't immune to evolution. In Bangkok, priests have been replaced with Super-Soakers and streets have been turned into arenas where anyone

and everyone is fair game. Thailand's warm weather already encourages light dress, but on Songkran, it's wise to haul out the beach duds, flip-flops, and for God's sake, put your smartphone in a Ziploc. Maybe two, just to be safe. The locals aren't above dousing clueless foreigners, but will get the shock of their lives if you come out with the big guns first. Attack from above; it's the better strategy. Songkran moves with the solar-lunar cycle, usually falling somewhere in April (the 13-15 this year), so plan ahead, and if you want to experience the older, more stately version of the occasion, simply hit any of the temples in Bangkok like Wat Pho or Wat Arun. Here, Buddhist monks dutifully dip their fingers into little bowls to spritz lines of pilgrims; the Thai are actually a very devoted people. At least when they are on holy ground; once outside, all rules are off.

Well, not exactly "all." After a few bad crashes, it's an unspoken rule that people on a bike, moped, or motorcycle are absolutely off limits. Older folks who may not be down with this newfangled take on Songkran are also off-limits. Additionally, you may find a few holy processions going on, and while the surrounding crowd is a target, and are targeting, beaning the priests, or even worse, the idol of the Buddha that is the whole point of the parade and holiday, is a really, really bad idea. You are free, however, to respectfully pour some water over the Buddha if you get the chance. Even he needs to wash away the old from time to time, and it is totally good for the karma. However, if a priest nails you first – and it's been known to happen – they get as good as they give.

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WHAT IS GENVOYA®? GENVOYA is a 1-pill, once-a-day prescription medicine used to treat HIV-1 in people 12 years and older and weigh at least 77 lbs. It can either be used in people who are starting HIV-1 treatment and have never taken HIV-1 medicines before, or people who are replacing their current HIV-1 medicines and whose healthcare provider determines they meet certain requirements. These include having an undetectable viral load (less than 50 copies/mL) for 6 months or more on their current HIV-1 treatment. GENVOYA combines 4 medicines into 1 pill taken once a day with food. GENVOYA is a complete HIV-1 treatment and should not be used with other HIV-1 medicines. GENVOYA does not cure HIV-1 or AIDS. To control HIV-1 infection and decrease HIV-related illnesses, you must keep taking GENVOYA. Ask your healthcare provider if you have questions about how to reduce the risk of passing HIV-1 to others. Always practice safer sex and use condoms to lower the chance of sexual contact with body fluids. Never reuse or share needles or other items that have body fluids on them.

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• All the medicines you take, including prescription and overthe-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Other medicines may affect how GENVOYA works. Keep a list of all your medicines and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist. Ask your healthcare provider if it is safe to take GENVOYA with all of your other medicines. • If you take antacids. Take antacids at least 2 hours before or after you take GENVOYA. • If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if GENVOYA can harm your unborn baby. Tell your healthcare provider if you become pregnant while taking GENVOYA. • If you are breastfeeding (nursing) or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed. HIV-1 can be passed to the baby in breast milk.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088. Please see Important Facts about GENVOYA including Important Warnings on the following page.

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(jen-VOY-uh) MOST IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT GENVOYA

POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS OF GENVOYA

GENVOYA® may cause serious side effects, including: • Build-up of lactic acid in your blood (lactic acidosis), which is a serious medical emergency that can lead to death. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of these symptoms: feeling very weak or tired, unusual muscle pain, trouble breathing, stomach pain with nausea or vomiting, feeling cold (especially in your arms and legs), feeling dizzy or lightheaded, and/or a fast or irregular heartbeat. • Severe liver problems, which in some cases can lead to death. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of these symptoms: your skin or the white part of your eyes turns yellow (jaundice); dark “tea-colored” urine; light-colored bowel movements (stools); loss of appetite; nausea; and/or pain, aching, or tenderness in the right side of your stomach area. • Worsening of hepatitis B (HBV) infection. GENVOYA is not approved to treat HBV. If you have both HIV-1 and HBV, your HBV may suddenly get worse if you stop taking GENVOYA. Do not stop taking GENVOYA without first talking to your healthcare provider, as they will need to check your health regularly for several months. You may be more likely to get lactic acidosis or severe liver problems if you are female, very overweight, or have been taking GENVOYA for a long time.

GENVOYA can cause serious side effects, including: • Those in the “Most Important Information About GENVOYA” section. • Changes in body fat. • Changes in your immune system. • New or worse kidney problems, including kidney failure. The most common side effect of GENVOYA is nausea. These are not all the possible side effects of GENVOYA. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you have any new symptoms while taking GENVOYA. Your healthcare provider will need to do tests to monitor your health before and during treatment with GENVOYA.

ABOUT GENVOYA • GENVOYA is a prescription medicine used to treat HIV-1 in people 12 years of age and older and weigh at least 77 lbs who have never taken HIV-1 medicines before. GENVOYA can also be used to replace current HIV-1 medicines for some people who have an undetectable viral load (less than 50 copies/mL of virus in their blood), and have been on the same HIV-1 medicines for at least 6 months and have never failed HIV-1 treatment, and whose healthcare provider determines that they meet certain other requirements. • GENVOYA does not cure HIV-1 or AIDS. Ask your healthcare provider about how to prevent passing HIV-1 to others. Do NOT take GENVOYA if you: • Take a medicine that contains: alfuzosin (Uroxatral®), carbamazepine (Carbatrol®, Epitol®, Equetro®, Tegretol®, Tegretol-XR®, Teril®), cisapride (Propulsid®, Propulsid Quicksolv®), dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45®, Migranal®), ergotamine (Cafergot®, Migergot®, Ergostat®, Medihaler Ergotamine®, Wigraine®, Wigrettes®), lovastatin (Advicor ®, Altoprev®, Mevacor ®), lurasidone (Latuda®), methylergonovine (Ergotrate®, Methergine®), midazolam (when taken by mouth), phenobarbital (Luminal®), phenytoin (Dilantin®, Phenytek®), pimozide (Orap®), rifampin (Rifadin®, Rifamate®, Rifater®, Rimactane®), sildenafil when used for lung problems (Revatio®), simvastatin (Simcor®, Vytorin®, Zocor®), or triazolam (Halcion®). • Take the herbal supplement St. John’s wort. • Take any other HIV-1 medicines at the same time.

BEFORE TAKING GENVOYA Tell your healthcare provider if you: • Have or have had any kidney or liver problems, including hepatitis infection. • Have any other medical condition. • Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. • Are breastfeeding (nursing) or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed if you have HIV-1 because of the risk of passing HIV-1 to your baby. Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take: • Keep a list that includes all prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements, and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist. • Ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist about medicines that should not be taken with GENVOYA. HOW TO TAKE GENVOYA • GENVOYA is a complete one pill, once a day HIV-1 medicine. • Take GENVOYA with food. GET MORE INFORMATION • This is only a brief summary of important information about GENVOYA. Talk to your healthcare provider or pharmacist to learn more. • Go to GENVOYA.com or call 1-800-GILEAD-5 • If you need help paying for your medicine, visit GENVOYA.com for program information.

GENVOYA, the GENVOYA Logo, GILEAD, the GILEAD Logo, and LOVE WHAT’S INSIDE are trademarks of Gilead Sciences, Inc., or its related companies. All other marks referenced herein are the property of their respective owners. Version date: December 2016 © 2017 Gilead Sciences, Inc. All rights reserved. GENC0126 01/17


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MiFo LGBT FILM FESTIVAL MIAMI EDITION TO OUTSHINE WITH GREAT FILMS By Michael W. Sasser and Rafa Carvajal

or the renowned South Florida LGBT film festival, there has been plenty of change, with some notable consistencies. Reflecting its maturity and scope, what launched 19 years ago as the Miami Gay and Lesbian Film Festival and grew into the MiFo LGBT Film Festival, this year will be renamed The OUTshine Film Festival. "19 years ago, we needed to say, The Miami and Fort Lauderdale Gay and Lesbian Film Festival," stated Mark Gilbert, board chair for the OUTshine Film Festival, in a release making the announcement. "These days, our community has so much more recognition that we wanted the film festival to be more representative of what we've grown into as an organization in our 19 years of existence. Our new name gives us a better and more memorable image, showcases the amazing place that we live in, and speaks volumes about us as a community."

This year's Festival (April 21-30) includes two never-before-seen world film premieres; seven North American premieres; six East Coast premieres; and 12 Southeast premieres. The MiFo LGBT Film Festival opening night will begin at 8 p.m. at the historic Scottish Rite Temple on the Miami River with the screening of its opening night film, Handsome Devil, followed by the Official Opening Night Party with filmmakers and talent to kick off the 10-day event. On opening night, MiFo will also honor two extraordinary individuals – Carol Coombes and Jaie Laplante – as Angel Award recipients. The film festival will also have a special Made-in-Miami film screening on Saturday, April 22 of A Change of Heart – directed by Kenny Ortega and produced by Gloria and Emilio Estefan, both of whom will be honored on-stage as Ally Award winners. For more information about the MiFo LGBT Film Festival (to be renamed OUTshine Film Festival) visit www.mifofilm.com. 14 WIREMAG.COM #16 2017

PHOTO CREDIT: © DEPOSITPHOTOS.COM | OILSLO

So what's stayed the same? "Our goal has always been to showcase educational and entertaining film that helped encourage LGBT dialog – both locally and nationally – and our new name will help us do just that." Under all of its names, the Festival is a bi-annual film festival with a mission to inspire, entertain, and educate the public and encourage a sense of community through international and culturally diverse film, video and other media that offer historical and contemporary perspectives on the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience.


KEPT BOY ACTOR SPOTLIGHT:

GREG AUDINOGREG AUDINO

PHOTO CREDIT: Š DEPOSITPHOTOS.COM | FERGREGORY

KEPT BOY ACTOR SPOTLIGHT:

We sat down with Kept Boy actor Greg Audino socks tied to our junk with rubber bands. It was to discuss the film's upcoming premiere at the the scene by the pool where I end up being thrown in. I'm not sure what it was, but we were MiFo LGBT Film Festival and being an actor. all on different wavelengths unsure of what the Rafa Carvajal: Tell our readers about the writing asked for and how to relay that. We MiFo Miami LGBT Film Festival world premiere shot it a few different days, but we got what we needed. of Kept Boy. Greg Audino: Well, obviously it hasn't happened yet but I couldn't be more excited about RC: How does it feel to be part of the MiFo it! It will be a real privilege to have the pre- LGBT Film Festival? miere in Miami, since I also have some friends GA: Again, it's a great honor. This will be the and family that I'll be hoping to see while I'm first film festival I get to attend and I'm sure the community will be warm and welcoming as the in town. facilitators have been nothing short of friendly RC: Who is your character in the film and how and hospitable thus far. do you relate to them? GA: My character is Jasper. It's been about RC: What does it take to be successful as an a year since we wrapped and the more time actor? passes the more I realize how similar we are. GA: Ha! I'll let you know when I figure that out. I think we share what most early-mid-twen- I guess I'd say persistence, being business savty-somethings share, and that's this facade that vy and most importantly openness – in a million we like to put on. At this age we want to feel different aspects of life. so sure of ourselves and so prepared, but the fact is that there is still so much learning and RC: What are your favorite hobbies? growing happening that all of these little plans GA: That's a fun question! I adore playing socand schemes we have are soon to come out of cer. I have a group that I play with 2-3 times a week and I absolutely need it. I love hockey the wash eventually. as well, but I don't play as often as I did when I was home in Rhode Island. My team is the RC: What is your background as an actor? GA: Well, my career is still in its infancy. I start- Washington Capitals who started their playoff ed when I was 18 and finished college with my run, so keep your fingers crossed everyone. I'm theater degree. Then I moved to L.A. and start- also a big animal freak. I've always loved anied doing it professionally. I'm very fortunate mals and I always will. though; I'm doing it full-time and I've gotten to be a part of some great TV and film, and, most RC: Is there anything else you would like to importantly, I've gotten to travel the world for share with Wire Magazine readers? GA: I don't know if I'm old enough to share numerous jobs. any words of wisdom, so I'll just say that I genRC: How did you get into acting and what do uinely appreciate everyone's support! you enjoy the most about it? GA: July 18, 2008. That was the day I saw The Dark Knight's midnight premiere and it changed my life. A little corny maybe, but Heath Ledger blew me away. He was outrageous in that film and I just felt like I found my calling then and there. I enjoy creating very different characters and altering my persona a lot. It's tough to do that at this stage of my career, as a lot of my focus needs to be on balancing several gigs at once and always finding the next one, so I look forward to getting to that stage, where I can focus on and build one role at a time. RC: What was the most challenging scene in the film and why? GA: You'd think it was the sex scene, but that just ended up being funny since we had these

Greg Audino in Kept Boy. Photo provided by Breaking Glass Pictures

Visit www.wiremag.com to read the extended version of this article. #16 2017 WIREMAG.COM 15


SPOTLIGHT FILMS: 24 OF THE BEST 2017 MIFO LGBT FILM FESTIVAL MIAMI EDITION MOVIES Photos provided by MiFo LGBT Film Festival

A CHANGE OF HEART

(U.S., 2017) Director: Kenny Ortega Cast: Jim Belushi, Virginia Madsen, Aimee Teegarden, Gloria Estefan Frustrated with his life, Hank (Jim Belushi) is man whose circumstances have driven him to fear diversity, yet his Central Florida town is adhering less and less to the white, straight profile with which he's comfortable. After suffering a heart attack, Hank's life is saved by a transplant‌ from a Puerto Rican drag queen? Playing on both the literal and symbolic significance of that most treasured of organs, A Change of Heart reminds us that even the most hardened among us can learn to embrace difference, accept love, and move on with life.

APRICOT GROVES

(Armenia, 2016) Director: Pouria Heidary Oureh Cast: Hovhannes Azoyan, Narbe Vartan, Samvel Sarkisyan Aram, an Iranian-Armenian trans man living in the U.S. since childhood, returns to Armenia to meet his girlfriend's conservative family. Over the course of the day-long journey, Aram's brother helps him prepare for the meeting, while also coming to terms with his transition. Aram sees many cultural, religious, and national differences on the one-day trip, but harder obstacles are ahead. Apricot Groves is a quiet and introspective film which beautifully illustrates the bittersweet notion of reconnecting with a culture that may not be accepting of who you've become.

16 WIREMAG.COM #16 2017

B&B

(UK, 2017) Director: Joe Ahearne Cast: Sean Teale, Paul McGann, Tom Bateman Handsome gay Londoners Marc and Fred plan a weekend of mischief, returning to bait the owner of a remote B&B who they successfully sued a year prior for not allowing them to share a bed. Events take a deadly turn when another guest, with far more sinister intentions, arrives. Marc and Fred's weekend of fun turns into a suspenseful battle for survival in this smart, comedic dark thriller. B&B will keep you guessing 'til the end.

BOYS IN THE TREES

(Australia, 2016) Director: Nicholas Verso Cast: Toby Wallace, Gulliver McGrath, Mitzi Ruhlmann It's Halloween 1997 – the last night of high school for Corey, Jango and the rest of their skater gang. When Corey encounters Jonah, a former childhood friend now victimized by Jango's cruel streak, Corey takes pity on him and agrees to walk him home for old time's sake. What starts off as a normal walk through empty suburban streets descends into something darker and magical. On the night of the grave's delight, even the most buried truths will surface.


CENTER OF MY WORLD

(Germany/Austria, 2016) Director: Jakob M. Erwa Cast: Inka Friedrich, Sascha Alexander Gersak, Thomas Goritzki After a summer spent with his best friend Kat to escape his family, Phil goes back to school and starts to question his feelings towards Nicholas, a new classmate.

HANDSOME DEVIL

(Ireland, 2016) Director: John Butler Cast: Fionn O'Shea, Nicholas Galitzine, Andrew Scott This hilarious coming-of-age comedy follows Ned, a willowy, rebellious music-loving outcast forced to share a room with mysterious star athlete Conor, after being sent away to a rugby-obsessed all-boys boarding school. Opposites in almost every way, the pair form an unlikely bond over the course of the school year as they navigate the trials and tribulations of being teenage misfits. When a new English teacher arrives at the school, the oddball friends finally begin to see a way to have their voices heard.

KEPT BOY

(U.S., 2017) Director: George Bamber Cast: Jon Paul Phillips, Thure Riefenstein, Greg Audino Interior designer/reality show star Farleigh Knock has a knack for keeping beautiful things around his home – like Dennis. So when Fairleigh gives him the unthinkable ultimatum for his 30th birthday to get a job or get out, Dennis goes from kept boy to lost man. Based on a novel by Robert Rodi who specializes in gay satires on queer archetypes, George Bamber directs this dark gay comedy that shows life with a sugar daddy is bittersweet and poses the question, what is love and what is the price to keep it?

LIKE FOAM

(Spain, 2017) Director: Roberto Perez Toledo Cast: Sara Sálamo, Diego Martínez, Daniel Muriel An emotional journey of lost human beings trying to find themselves takes place in what could be considered a fairly strange place – an orgy in a Spanish mansion. A message circulates from mobile phone to mobile phone and it is started! All at once, a diverse range of strangers get together, searching for sex, and in doing so they expose their funny, sexy and profound sides. Like Foam shows that things are not always what they seem and never has an orgy been so funny and full of love.

#16 2017 WIREMAG.COM 17


POLITICAL ANIMALS

(U.S., 2016) Directors: Jonah Markowitz and Tracy Wares Cast: Jackie Goldberg, Christine Kehoe, Sheila Kuehl Political Animals tells the story of one of the largest civil rights struggles of this century – the gay rights movement – through the eyes of four elected women, often left out of LGBT histories until now. An emotionally charged film, it follows four groundbreaking lesbians who took the fight for the causes most personal to them and their communities off the streets and into the halls of government. Fierce, determined, focused and passionate, these women had the courage and foresight to begin the critical work of legal rights for the LGBT community.

PROM KING, 2010

(U.S., 2017) Director: Christopher Schaap Cast: Julia Weldon, Mikaela Izquierdo, Lionel Thomas Charlie is a college student who loves love. He loves the way James Dean and Natalie Wood passionately kiss with the sublime punctuation of a swelling orchestra and Laurence Olivier's vow to take Joan Fontaine behind a tree and make "violent love" to her. But when Charlie finds his romantic pursuits leading to icky online encounters, seedy back rooms in leather bars, and the unexpected tears of cute freshmen who aren't "really out," Charlie starts to worry that his homosexuality is an incompatible factor with the classic, Hollywood romance he's always aspired towards.

REBELS ON POINTE

(Canada, 2016) Director: Bobbi Jo Hart Exploring universal themes of identity, dreams, family and love, Rebels on Pointe is a film celebrating the famous Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. The all-male, comic ballet company was founded in the '70s on the heels of New York's Stonewall riots and has a huge worldwide cult following. The film juxtaposes behind-the-scenes access, rich archives and history, intimate character-driven stories, and amazing dance performances. It's a story which ultimately proves that a ballerina is not only a woman dancing, but an act of revolution in a tutu.

SEAT IN SHADOW

(UK, 2016) Director: Henry Coombes Cast: Henry Coombes, Ross Hunter, Jonathan Leslie Out of the imagination of acclaimed artist-filmmaker Henry Coombes comes Albert, an eccentric, aging painter doubling as an unconventional, Jung-inspired psychotherapist. When Albert's friend asks him to counsel her lethargic grandson Ben, whose ongoing boyfriend problems are rapidly fueling an already deep depression, their subsequent therapy sessions reveal as much about Albert as they do about the troubled young man. Coombes' debut feature is a witty, perceptive study of social mores, sexual excess and the bizarre, symbiotic relationship between doctor and patient; teacher and pupil; artist and muse. 18 WIREMAG.COM #16 2017


MEN'S SHORTS:

MAN, OH MAN FAW

Director: Dany Campos, Spain, 22 mins.

IN THE PAINT

Director: Ashton Pina, U.S., 7 mins.

SOMETHING LIKE SUMMER

THE PASS

(U.S., 2017) Director: David Berry Cast: Grant Davis, Davi Santos, Ben Baur

(UK, 2016) Director: Ben A. Williams Cast: Russell Tovey, ArinzĂŠ Kene, Lisa McGrillis

Benjamin is the only guy at his high school with the courage to come out of the closet. Putting up with the bullies and his classmates' whispered condemnations keeps him from pursuing his dream of being a singer. Instead, Ben spends his summer vacation stalking Tim, the handsome athlete who just moved to town. Something Like Summer follows the course of true love over the span of a dozen years, from awkward adolescence through challenging adulthood, featuring seven original musical numbers and the artwork of a talented young artist.

Nineteen-year-olds Jason (Russell Tovey) and Ade have been preparing themselves for a lifetime in professional football for as long as they can remember. On the evening before their first big match, the two of them play out their insecurities in a Romanian hotel room; mock-fighting, preparing their kit, slinging insults, and then one of them kisses the other. The ramifications of this 'pass' reverberate throughout their careers. In a profession where image is everything, fame and fortune comes closely tied with secrets and lies.

THE LAVENDER SCARE (U.S., 2017) Director: Josh Howard

With the United States gripped in the panic of the Cold War, President Dwight D. Eisenhower deems homosexuals to be "security risks" and orders the immediate firing of any government employee discovered to be gay or lesbian. It triggers a vicious witch hunt that ruins tens of thousands of lives and thrusts an unlikely hero into the forefront of what would become the modern LGBT rights movement. The Lavender Scare shines a light on a chapter of American history that has never received the attention it deserves.

VARICHINA: THE TRUE STORY OF THE FAKE LIFE OF LORENZO DE SANTIS

(Italy, 2017) Director: Mariangela Barbanente and Antonio Palumbo Cast: Totò Onnis, Federica Torchetti, Ketty Volpe Varichina was the first openly out homosexual man in Bari in the '70s. Ugly, flashy and campy, he was well known for making coarse advances to every man he saw. He was gay, had nothing to hide, and lived a life of celebration! Funny and heartwarming, Varichina: The True Story of the Fake Life of Lorenzo de Santis is a documentary/fiction hybrid looking at someone who was way out, long before it was socially acceptable.

JOHNNY IS GAY

Director: Pablo Tobon-Gallo, Spain, 11 mins.

LIGHTRIPPING

Director: Marcio Miranda Perez, Brazil, 22 mins.

MARZ

Directors: Bobby Yan, U.A., 11 mins.

MY SUGAR DADDY

Director: Dawid Ullgren, Sweden, 13 mins.

ONE DAY TO THE NEXT

Directors: Julio Montesino & Alexis Bosch, U.S., 16 mins.

THE NIGHT CLEANER

Director: Blair Fukumura, Canada, 6 mins.

#16 2017 WIREMAG.COM 19


TOP TRAX By DJ FR8-O

DEBORAH LOVES WHITNEY

Shortly after the Oscar-nominated film broke box office records, The Bodyguard: Original Soundtrack Album became the best-selling soundtrack of all time, clocking more than 45 million copies worldwide. It featured some of Whitney's biggest anthems, including "I'm Every Woman," "Run To You," "I Have Nothing" and the film's iconic torch song "I Will Always Love You." Cox resurrects all of these songs flawlessly without missing a single note. Why mess with perfection, right? She also tackles a few other familiar Whitney classics also featured in the stage production, like "All the Man That I Need" and the seminal track "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" as effortlessly as the great Whitney herself once did. "Whitney made these songs so iconic, it's hard to hear them sung any other way," Cox explained in an interview with Baewatch. "But I try to keep the essence of the original by allowing the melody and lyrics to tell the story. I make sure the phrasing and tone remain intact. It's

more important the story be told than trying to change what is so special about it in the first place." The only time the Canadian R&B singer takes a slight detour from the original recording is on "The Greatest Love of All," where she delivers an acoustic, yet still goosebump-inducing rendition. From the moment she burst onto the scene with her 1997 debut "Things Just Ain't The Same" and her record-breaking club anthem "Nobody's Supposed To be Here," Deborah Cox has been endlessly bombarded with comparisons to Whitney, eventually leading up to their squeal-worthy duet "Same Script, Different Cast" in 2000. "Our beloved Whitney is an artist we treasure and we love her legacy of music," she affirms. And now with the Grammy-nominee's recent performances onstage and on this incredible EP, the legacy will continue. I Will Always Love You is available now.

If you're a recording artist, producer or musician and would like your work featured in TOP TRAX, hit me up at abarrios@wiremag.com. 20 WIREMAG.COM #16 2017

PHOTO CREDIT: © DEPOSITPHOTOS.COM | KAVRAMM

t's been five years since we lost one of the greatest voices of our generation, Whitney Houston. However, we continue to celebrate her music today in one way or another. Club DJs worldwide keep her remixes in heavy rotation, drag queens honor her with their passionate performances, and moving tributes to the late diva continue to surface all over the globe; the latest being the musical revamp of her 1992 film debut The Bodyguard. This time, the starring role of Rachel Marron, originated by Houston, is now being portrayed by a diva who once sang alongside the most awarded female artist of all time, and – let's be honest – is the only one with the chops to pull it off – Deborah Cox. Inspired by her exciting new role, Cox's latest EP, I Will Always Love You, features studio versions of tracks from the show's national tour, giving us eight more reasons to always love both of these legendary women.


FEATURE

By Michael W. Sasser

THE MAGIC OF MATILDA Photos by Joan Marcus. The company of Matilda The Musical Š2016. Provided by Broadway Across America

Tickets are available at the Broward Center AutoNation Box Office, 201 SW Fifth Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, www.browardcenter.org or by calling 954.462.0222. Wire Magazine sat down with Ensemble performer Stephen Diaz to discuss the acclaimed production in advance of its opening.

Michael W. Sasser: Briefly describe Matilda The Musical for Wire Magazine readers. Stephen Diaz: Matilda The Musical is the musical adaptation of the Roald Dahl story that borrows its title from the name Matilda Wormwood, the story's clever and highly intelligent 5-year-old protagonist. Matilda uses her brainpower and antics to triumph over stupidity and oppressive adults. This little girl is a freethinking individual who doesn't accept the status quo and who inspires others to action by being the author of The three girls sharing the title role are Gabby her own life. Gutierrez, Jaime MacLean and Jenna Weir. The principal cast also features (alphabetically): Jen- MWS: Tell our readers why they should go see nifer Bowles (Miss Honey), Dan Chameroy (Miss Matilda The Musical. Trunchbull), Keisha T. Fraser (Mrs. Phelps), Matt SD: Matilda the Musical is like one big, extremeHarrington (Mr. Wormwood) and Darcy Stewart ly colorful, story-driven drag show. The world of (Mrs. Wormwood). Matilda The Musical is di- the show lives in a heightened reality. The intenrected by Tony Award winner Matthew Warchus tion of such exaggeration is to reveal and vali(God of Carnage), who helms this production date life as it really is. Exaggeration allows the with a book by Tony Award-winning playwright show to make fun of what exists in order to allow Dennis Kelly and music and lyrics by Australian the audience easier access into the cockamamie comedian, musician and composer Tim Minchin. nature of reality, which at its core is ultimately playful. Winner of over 70 international awards including four Tony Awards and a record-breaking seven Olivier Awards, including Best Musical, Matilda The Musical is based on the beloved novel by best-selling author Roald Dahl (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Fantastic Mr. Fox). It is the story of an extraordinary girl who dreams of a better life. Armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, Matilda dares to take a stand and change her destiny.

22 WIREMAG.COM #16 2017

PHOTO CREDIT: Š DEPOSITPHOTOS.COM | KAVRAMM

t's one of the most lauded theatrical shows in recent years, prompting the New York Post to declare, "Once in a blue moon, a show comes out blazing and restores your faith in Broadway." It's Roald Dahl's Matilda The Musical and it is headed to the Broward Center for the Performing Arts April 25 for a limited two week run through May 7, 2017.


MWS: What should audiences expect from the show? SD: Audiences can expect a feast for all the senses. In addition to an award-winning lighting design, multiple elements pop-out as they envelope you in a world that is vividly alive as perceived through the eyes of a child. This show will make your seat tremble with its sound design and will energize you with its music. It is both satirical and emotional and will serve you so much ridiculousness you will leave inspired to be a little bit naughty. MWS: What would surprise readers to know about Matilda The Musical? SD: Speaking of drag, the show actually does involve a real drag character, played by a man whose performance alone is worth the price of admission. Miss Trunchbull, the Headmistress (also the Olympic hammer throwing champion of 1969) is played by the man Dan Chameroy. The Trunchbull is an unforgiving and shady dictator whose bosom is large enough to feed the entire student-body a serving of wit and realism. You will be schooled by this Headmistress… so take notes. MWS: What is the most challenging thing about your role? SD: Having to go from 0% to 110% in a snap. Imagine having five energy drinks intravenously injected into your system and you will know even that is too slow for the demands of the role. MWS: What do you see as the theme of Matilda The Musical? How do you relate to that theme? SD: Discovering one's sense of belonging is a theme I see throughout Matilda. The proscenium of the theater is strewn with scrabble blocks for the reason that a scrabble piece has the same value to a child as it does for an adult. It is here we leave behind the adult world of labels and enter a shared world that simply is, in all of its absurdity. Leaving behind our labels connects us to a joy that is not dependent on our preconceived concepts but is founded upon the very nature of belonging and existence – we exist, how strange and miraculous that is. Each character, no matter how intelligent or dimwitted, feels this desire to belong. The schoolteacher Miss Honey settles for finding her place in the world by living in a shack under the employment of Miss Trunchbull. Matilda finds her peace in the solitude of her own being. Mr. and Mrs. Wormwood find their identity in each other's gaudiness. Even Miss Trunchbull has hammered out a life for herself. Each has their own depth of understanding of what it means to occupy the world, but ultimately each seeks to realize and affirm that they belong, each the protagonist of his/her own story, and each a player in the larger show we, the audience, witness as Matilda The Musical. It is not a love story per se, but it is about a universal love, about belonging – the way a child understands it. All-inclusive.

MWS: What do you enjoy the most about this show? SD: I enjoy the use of children in this show. Kids are naive and innocent in that they are unfettered by information. As the original director Matthew Warchus intended, he utilizes "the golden emotion that you get for free with child actors"; and they provide this gold both on and offstage. The world is not a competition for them, it's just fun. And they work just as much, if not more, than the rest of the adult cast – so what's my excuse?! MWS: For those who aspire to doing what you do, what's the biggest difference between how you imagined it and its reality? SD: It is work. The seamless unity that an audience sees is an illusion; a production where all the pieces fit together and each role is clearly defined. The reality is a business, and it is messy and dichotomous. Eight times a week we do what we do and everything is regimented, from what we say, to how we move, to when we breathe – life becomes this way backstage, and you must strive, both on and offstage, to retain your humanity and simply to be present... while keeping eyes out for the next gig. The business is work, there is no guarantee for it, and often times the job doesn't go to the most capable of individuals. Your job is to love the work by saying an unconditional "yes" to it (despite your opinions), and at the same time not be the victim of your own life. MWS: Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers? SD: I like this quote from Tim Minchin's beat-poem "Storm," (Minchin wrote the music and lyrics for Matilda). I think it speaks to the inherent pleasure and affirmation of life that seeing Matilda provides – Isn't this enough? Just this world? Isn't this enough? Just this beautiful, complex Wonderfully unfathomable, natural world? How does it so fail to hold our attention That we have to diminish it with the invention Of cheap, man-made myths and monsters?

Visit www.wiremag.com to read the extended version of this article. #16 2017 WIREMAG.COM 23


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Wire Magazine 16.2017 MiFo LGBT Film Festival  

In this week's Wire Magazine cover story we bring you a comprehensive overview of the MiFo LGBT Film Festival Miami edition. We sat down for...

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