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Lambda Honors Rep. Nydia Velásquez

At a luncheon this past Saturday at Aunt Suzie’s, a Fifth Avenue Park Slope eatery, the Lambda Independent Democrats (LID), Brooklyn’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered political club, celebrated its 26th anniversary and honored U.S. Rep. Nydia Velásquez, the grassroots group Marriage Equality New York, and the Rev. Liz Alexander, a neighborhood lesbian minister committed to prisoners’ rights. Comment

Larry Kramer Honored

On Thursday, April 15, Gay Men’s Health Crisis honored Larry Kramer, whose 1985 play “The Normal Heart,” helped spur attention to a disease called AIDS that was killing thousands of Americans, including many gay New Yorkers. The Public Theater is now restaging the play and Kramer’s work as an AIDS activist, writer and gay rights leader is being recognized once again. In the early 1980s, when the administration of Mayor Ed Koch ignored the AIDS crisis, Kramer and a handful of other gay activists formed GMHC, a fledging organization that continues to serve thousands of HIV-positive New Yorkers. Comment

Letter from the editor

In the picture that accompanies this letter, the word “FAG” is scrawled across the front of a Gay City News street box. Comment

Kushner’s New Winning Streak

Is there any upward boundary on Tony Kushner’s rise? His burst into prominence in 1993 with the seven-hour, two-part Broadway blockbuster, “Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes” was astounding. The acclaim was immediate––a Pulitzer for playwriting, two consecutive Tony Awards for best play (for “Millennium Approaches” and then, in 1994, “Perestroika”), two Drama Desk Awards, the New York Critics Circle Award, the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award, and, in London, the Evening Standard Award, and two Olivier Award nominations. Comment

Israeli Activists Visit LGBT Center

Jerusalem held its first gay pride parade in 2002, an event that was fraught with contradiction for an ancient city at the heart of a struggle between two people fighting for their statehood. Comment

Festival Screens Sapphic Flicks

Lesbian cinephiles, get your tickets now for “Lesbian Film Fest 2004.” Comment

Murder Victim Remembered

In a glass-walled gazebo-style cottage at Old Westbury’s colonial era Milleridge Inn this past Sunday, several hundred Long Islanders gathered as part of Parents of Murdered Children’s annual candlelight vigil remembering crime victims from Nassau and Suffolk Counties. Comment

GMAD Loses Critical Federal Funding

The loss of three federal grants that make up nearly 70 percent of its annual budget has forced a leading AIDS group that serves African-American gay men to cut its staff and some salaries. Comment

Health Dept.’s Anti-Crystal Campaign

The city health department has joined efforts to combat the use of crystal among gay men and what public health experts believe is the drug’s contribution to the increase in HIV infections in gay men who use crystal. Comment


Bohuslav Martinu (1890-1959) is for most New York operagoers the mystery man of Czech composers. The Met’s now reviving Dvorák’s gorgeous “Rusalka;” both leading companies have staged at least Smetana’s “Bartered Bride,” and some of Janácek’s masterpieces. Something like “Julietta” or “The Greek Passion” (not what you think!) would seem ideal for City Opera, but the musically cosmopolitan, highly theatrical Martinu operas have been left to the city’s smaller companies and conservatories. Comment

News Briefs

For the first time in American history, a state legislative body has advanced a bill recognizing same-sex marriages. The Judiciary Committee of the California State Assembly voted 8-3 in favor of the Marriage License Non-Discrimination Act introduced by out Assemblyman Mark Leno. It now goes to the Appropriations Committee where it is expected to die this term because it is an election year, the L.A. Times reported. Comment

The Fox that Got Away

Like their lead character Foxwell J. Sly, the producers of the revival of “Sly Fox” know a thing or two about acquiring gold. This slick, breezy production is unabashedly superficial, chock-full of cheesy jokes, and takes the “anything for a laugh” school of low comedy as far as it can go—and then some. Comment

What’s in a Genre?

Reading Kim Levin’s “Farewell to Modernism,” originally published in October 1979 in Arts Magazine, recalls a jubilant and hopeful attitude about possibilities in art. It is a proclamation inviting the impure, politically conscious and synthetic world of art production that Levin freely names Post-Modernism. Reprinted in Richard Hertz’s “Theories of Contemporary Art,” Levin’s piece is illustrated with an image of Judy Pfaff’s 1983 “3-D,” an installation at Holly Solomon Gallery. In this context, Levin’s observation of an art that “scavenges, ransacks, and recycles,” comes alive. Comment

Where Marriage Really Matters

Time is running out for Dan Pacek, an American citizen, and his partner John, a British national.   The two men live together in a New Jersey home they jointly own and have been in a committed relationship for 10 years. Comment

Young Emerging Talents

“Why wouldn’t a younger musician hate being slapped with the term cabaret?” Jim Caruso asked. “It’s nothing but old ladies and sequins.” This from the impresario responsible for “Cast Party,” the Supper Club’s weekly watering hole that swaps out Kristen Chenoweth for Cliff and Linda Lavin for Norm, but for all intents and purposes is “Cheers” with a piano. Comment

The Accords Come to Amsterdam

The two central characters of Eliam Kraiem’s “Sixteen Wounded” are Hans (Judd Hirsch) a Jewish Holocaust survivor, and Mahmude, (Omar Metwally), a Palestinian freedom fighter. The play is set in a bakery in Amsterdam between 1992-94. Comment

Talented and Fruity

The Fresh Fruit Festival Awards at The Marquee on April 19 honored eleven outstanding talents whose artistic contributions to the community make New York a better city. Among the honorees were Ellie Covan (upper right) who won the Passion Fruit Award for her work as the executive director of Dixon Place as well as her direction of the plays “Nancy Giles’ Notes of a Negro Neurotic,” and “Black Comedy: The Wacky Side of Racism.” Mark Russell (lower right) won the Papaya Award for his stewardship of the arts in his capacity as artistic director of the legendary P.S. 122. The event was emceed brilliantly and hilariously by the inimitable Murray Hill. Comment

Oregon Court Recognizes Gay Marriages

An Oregon circuit court judge has ruled that the state’s marriage statute violates the equal benefits provision of the state Constitution by depriving same-sex couples of the same benefits of marriage that are afforded to heterosexual couples. Comment

Asian Americans express outrage at Details magazine; Peres is contrite

On April 16, approximately 200 protesters picketed outside the headquarters of Fairchild Publications, the publisher of Details, in response to the magazine’s “Gay or Asian?” article in the April 2004 issue. Comment

Saving Graces, Cloudy Skies

Where there’s Sparks there’s fire… or at least flaming homosexuals. Cutie HAL SPARKS has been making the national rounds promoting the new season of Showtime’s “Queer as Folk,” but he finally got to mix with straight folk––well, some––at the Philadelphia Film Festival ( Comment

“Searing Works for Longer Days

I would like to again watch “Butterflies From My Hand,” Donna Uchizono’s latest dance project, performed with depth and grace by Levi Gonzalez, Carla Rudiger, Andrew Clark and Hristoula Harakas, but this time view this wrenching, engaging work in reverse. Comment

Equal Benefits Bill Set to Pass May 5

The New York City Council Equal Benefits Bill (EBB), requiring municipal contractors to treat domestic partners of their employees as they do spouses, was sailing smoothly toward passage last Friday. The Contracts Committee, chaired by Councilmember Robert Jackson (D-Upper Manhattan), voted unanimously to forward the measure to the full Council, where 39 out of 51 members are sponsors, for a vote this week. Comment

Deprivation Enhances Nature’s Essence

On view in three galleries at Cheim & Read in Chelsea is the first solo exhibition of the new work by Paul Morrison, a British artist who has international recognition for his bold graphic black and white paintings, prints, and films. Comment


Bohuslav Martinu (1890-1959) is for most New York operagoers the mystery man of Czech composers. The Met’s now reviving Dvorák’s gorgeous “Rusalka;” both leading companies have staged at least Smetana’s “Bartered Bride,” and some of Janácek’s masterpieces. Something like “Julietta” or “The Greek Passion” (not what you think!) would seem ideal for City Opera, but the musically cosmopolitan, highly theatrical Martinu operas have been left to the city’s smaller companies and conservatories. Comment

Bel Canto Resurgence Flourishes

The New York City Opera’s spring season has proven one of the best in memory, with plausibly-cast revivals and strong co-productions developed elsewhere reaching the New York State Theater already stageworthy. Comment

7 Days and 7 Nights

Out Professionals presents Jeff Leatham, floral director of Paris’ Four Seasons Hotel George V and author of “Flowers by Design.” Meet Leatham and enjoy an illustrated lecture featuring stunning color photography by David Loftus. According to Leatham, “Flowers are the new element in interior design.” His list of celebrity clients includes Gwyneth Paltrow, George Clooney, Diana Krall, Robbie Williams, Kate Moss, Mick Jagger, Tina Turner and Cher. 8 to 9:30 p.m. at the LGBT Community Center, 208 W. 13 St. $10 for nonmembers and $7 for OP members. Visit for more information. Comment

Confirmed Dead and Wounded


AVP Wins A Round With Bowen

The New York City Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence Project has won dismissal of various claims filed against it by William “Billy” Bowen, 42, who asserted that the AVP posted flyers in the Chelsea area defaming him and leading to false criminal charges against him. Comment

Democracy is Not Coming to Iraq––Say the Hawks

Last week, before the president’s prime time news conference, the famous, even notorious, pollster, Dick Morris, warned that “Americans are not prepared to sacrifice their sons and daughters to assure democracy in Iraq.” Comment

Decency Beheld With Hindsight

All four were, astonishingly, dressed completely in black, as if in mourning, each and every one of them––black T-shirt, black blouse, black sweater, black dress. Even the moderator, NYU librarian Marvin J. Taylor, was jacketed in black, though the violet shirt radiating from beneath that jacket supplied the stage’s one spot of color. Comment

Curtain Call

BLACKBIRD If you can arrange a ticket and show up in time for the curtain, chances are you’re in better shape than our heroes, Baylis, an injured, chain smoking, whiskey guzzling Gulf War vet and […] Comment

Distinctions Easy and Hard to Make

You bash gay Republicans for supporting George Bush even though John Kerry supports an amendment in Massachusetts to ban same-sex marriage there. Gay Democrats said they would not support any Democrat politicians who supported an amendment to the Constitution and they challenged gay Republicans to do the same in their party. Now the Stonewall Democrats and other groups are endorsing John Kerry. Why aren’t you calling them hypocrites? Maybe because you’re a hypocrite too. Comment

House-to-House Combat and Presidential Stumping

It was lemonade time for Pres. George W. Bush. Could he turn a tough week that left a bitter taste into a sweet drink? Boxed in by rising violence in Iraq and an unsparing review of the administration’s anti-terrorism program by the September 11 Commission, the president called a rare prime time news conference and underscored his assertion that war will bring democracy to Iraq, stabilize the Middle East, and vanquish terrorism. Comment

Democrats Sponsor Anti-Amendment Petition

Online and at gay events, party Comment

CDC Money For Communities of Color

Twenty-seven regional and national organizations dedicated to preventing HIV in communities of color will receive a total of $21 million from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the CDC announced on April 7. Comment

Lesbian Survives West Village Assault

Wednesday night, police were still trying to unravel why a woman tried to club a neighbor to death with a hammer in a prominent Greenwich Village apartment building. Comment

Contempt From the Court

When Pres. George W. Bush was asked to describe the type of jurist he would like to name to fill vacancies on the Supreme Court, he mentioned Associate Justice Antonin Scalia as an ideal model. Comment

The Age-Old Challenge of Coming Out

The same-sex marriage debate coming in the midst of a contentious presidential election year certainly serves the aims of gay and lesbian rights advocates who have labored long to move the community’s civil rights agenda front and center. Comment

The Gay Hitler Flap

World of Wonder fails to improve on a shaky book on the fuhrer’s sexuality World of Wonder, a Hollywood-based film production company, has in the dozen years of its existence built a remarkably […] Comment

Trans Teen Murder Trial Opens

On Wednesday, a year and a half after the crime, a criminal trial finally began in the case of the three men charged with the murder of Newark, California transgendered teenager Gwen Araujo. Comment

Bi Choir Director Loses Appeal

Finding that the Hamline United Methodist Church is immune from charges of sexual orientation discrimination under Minnesota’s Human Rights Act, a three-judge panel of the state Court of Appeals rejected a discrimination claim brought by the church’s former choir director and organist, Randall M. Egan, who was fired after refusing to apologize for calling a member of the congregation “homophobic.” Comment

News Briefs

The Board of Selectmen in Provincetown, Massachusetts has voted to issue marriage licenses to all out of state same-sex couples who sign an affidavit that their marriage does not break any laws, the Boston Globe reported. Comment

Maine Lesbian Co-Parent Win

In another impressive victory for Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD), New England’s feisty lesbian and gay public interest law firm, the Maine Supreme Judicial Court ruled unanimously on April 6 that a lesbian co-parent who had bonded with her partner’s child should be awarded full parental rights and responsibilities after the couple broke up, even though she made no previous attempt to adopt the child. Comment

Needle Exchange Heads to Queens

Community Board 2 in Queens is on the verge of approving a syringe exchange plan that supporters are hoping will combat the spread of HIV/AIDS and provide drug addicts with an outlet to seek treatment for their addictions. Comment

An Appeal For Civility in the Marriage Debate

Assembly Member Deborah Glick, a Manhattan Democrat, wrote the following letter to the editor, dated April 13, 2004. Glick is responding to a letter printed in Gay City News on April 5, 2004, that was written by Andrew Miller, an advocate of same-sex marriage, in which Miller criticizes marriage-related legislation Glick plans to introduce in the state Assembly. Comment


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