Gay and Lesbian center
L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center’s Women’s Night

Hollywood, CA
05.08.08

gay and lesbian centerStars Shine at Chic Celebration; L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center’s
Women’s Night Raises $210,000 for Women’s Services

LOS ANGELES, May 8, 2008–The house lights faded, the spotlight appeared, and the cameras flashed as some of Hollywood’s hottest female stars took the stage Saturday at Women’s Night, a hugely popular celebration that raised more than $210,000 for the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center’s women’s services. More than 600 lesbians, bisexual women and their supporters attended the May 3rd event at The Music Box @ Henry Fonda Theater.

The celebrities who walked down the red carpet and took the stage included: megastar Sharon Stone (Casino, Total Recall, Basic Instinct), whose dedication to HIV/AIDS causes was recognized with the Board of Directors Award; former 4 Non Blondes singer and out music industry powerhouse Linda Perry, author of the Christina Aguilera hit “Beautiful,” who received the Creative Integrity Award; actress Rosanna Arquette (The L Word), who recently starred opposite sister Patricia Arquette on the hit show Medium; and Jane Lynch (The 40-Year Old Virgin, Best In Show, The L Word), a Center board member and one of the co-chairs of Women’s Night.

Roseanna Arquete and Sharon Stone Women's night

Stone surprised the crowd when she suddenly sprang from her seat at dinner, grabbed a microphone and wrested control of the live auction, playfully telling the crowd of chatty attendees, who hadn’t been paying much attention: “You people need to shut the fuck up. Do you think Bette Midler would put up with this shit?” In about ten minutes she raised a record $55,000 for the Center, selling an opportunity to meet Midler and see her show in Vegas for $20,000 and a walk-on role on the final season of The L Word for $16,000.

women's night women's night

Annie Goto, one of the event co-chairs, credited Stone’s incredible charisma with taking the energy at Women’s Night to a whole new level.

“We’re thrilled she seized the moment and took over as auctioneer, raising many thousands of dollars in mere minutes while getting everyone charged up about the cause,” Goto says. “She and the other celebrity guests made this year’s Women’s Night extra hot. We’re also grateful to all our extraordinary volunteers who contributed to the success of the event.

In addition to a VIP dinner, a silent auction and a hot dance party, Women’s Night included live entertainment, hosted by Lynch, featuring comics Suzanne Westenhoefer (A Bottom on Top) and Tig Notaro and Redcar, featuring Heather Reid. Also in attendance were Thea Gill (Queer As Folk) and Michelle Wolff, stars of the here!TV soap Dante’s Cove, Michelle Clunie of Queer As Folk and AfterEllen.com bloggers Jill Bennett (also of Dante’s Cove), Bridget McManus, Cathy DeBuono and Karmen Kregloe.

women's night women's night

The evening also included the presentation of the LACE (Lesbians and bisexual women Active in Community Empowerment) Awards to: Liliana T. Perez, Fabian Nunez’s statewide liaison to the LGBT community; Susan Russell, an out parish priest and the president of LGBT Episcopal organization Integrity USA; Andrea Sperling, the producer of 21 films, including Itty Bitty Titty Committee and But I’m a Cheerleader; Marquita Thomas, founder of the Serafemme Women of Color Music Festival; and Sunnie Rose Berger, co-founder of The Life Group LA, which produces The POZ Weekend Seminar for people infected or affected by HIV.

“This year's Women’s Night was an incredible celebration—a chance to honor our inspirational leaders and celebrate with our community” says event co-chair Kelly Lynch. “Women’s Night provides a vital source of funding for the Center. Important programs for women such as medical services, mental health services, substance-free social events, services for homeless youth wouldn't exist without support from our community. Everyone who attended Women’s Night is an important part of that.”

For more photos of Women’s Night, go to www.lagaycenter.org/womensnightpics




LA PRIDE 2007
Hollywood, CA – 2007






A Night of Dreams • The “Dreamgirls” DVD release party
Hollywood, CA – April 26, 2007
By: Mike Skiff


Reel Gay TV co-hosts the DVD release party for the smash, Oscar-winning musical, “Dreamgirls” at the Club Arena in Hollywood. In attendance were Beth Grant, Jasmine Trias, Judy Tenuta, Pam Trotter, Ty Vincent, Damien Raven, Abigale Spencer, Q Allen Brocka, and the Upright Cabaret.

Pictures by Mike Skiff





Sing Now Or Forever Hold Your Peace
By Gil Kaan

The multi-film festival award-winning indie “Sing Now, or Forever Hold Your Peace” needs some judicial editing, as does its unusually long title. This re-thread of the classic 1983 “The Big Chill” tells of a 15-year reunion of a capella singing group from college meeting up for an upcoming wedding performance.

                

The many moments of good music, fun and heart-tugging sprinkled throughout this comedy (?) were written and directed and produced by “MADtv” director/supervising producer Bruce Leddy. Possibly an objective third eye besides that of the writer/director/producer would have benefited this little film, as tighter editing and/or a stronger script would have made this a real gem.

The seven college chums, now grown-up, act like they never left college. Their hi-jinks, mostly predictable, comprising most of the 94-minute film length don’t jell with the high-drama scenes of near wife beating and gunshooting.

The attractive and talented cast make the most of their respective situations as former college buds and their current girl partners. The wonderful Molly Shannon steals every scene she’s in. Chris Bowers’ sexy laid-back character is understandably very appealing to all the ladies, while being non-threatening to his macho buds. Look for a good scene, albeit short, of naked butts running into the surf.

         

There is a gay ‘storyline’ that seems included to make the prerequisite list of modern day traumas complete (divorce, being a loser, job insecurity, being a loser, fear of commitment, being a loser).

Fans of “MADtv” would expect more laughs to be satisfied. Fans of good films would expect better storytelling to be satisfied.






Winter Party Festival is a celebration of social and cultural events (including art, dance, music, comedy, sports and more) benefiting the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. The week of events culminates with The Beach Party, a world-class dance party attended by over 5,400 visitors in the hottest destination in the United States – South Beach. Approximately 10,000 participants from all over the United States, Canada, Europe, South America and Australia attend the 6-day celebration.

The events are a celebration and tribute to the LGBT community and unique culture. The celebration is non-discriminatory and includes men and women of all ages. Official Winter PartySM Festival events are held at several of the hottest nightclubs and venues in town, and at some of the most popular hotels and restaurants in South Beach, making the event an attractive destination for all participants.
As a result of this annual fundraising event, well over $1 million has been granted to LGBT organizations serving Miami-Dade. Two-thirds of the net proceeds from Winter Party will be distributed to the Miami-Dade LGBT community through a granting program administered by the Dade Community Foundation. The remaining one-third of the proceeds will benefit the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.




“Blades of Glory" Review
By Gil Kaan

Unless you’ve been living in a cave, you surely would have seen the billboards of the rhinestoned-unitard-clad Will Ferrell and Jon Heder in split positions promoting their new ice skating spoof-homage “Blades of Glory.”

My first impressions of the billboards? LOVE the costumes! But with Ferrell’s past skewering of movie characters, I could only imagine the number of bad jokes made at our gay community’s expense. Still I HAD to see this!

So after actually viewing this crazy comedy, I have to admit that I liked this movie. This comedy doesn’t have a single mean gay joke in it! Yayyyy!!! Just when you think the movie is going to go there, it doesn’t! Human reactions instead of homophobic ones, just the way we like them! In fact the ‘gayest’ character (nicely played by “Napoleon Dynamite’s” Heder) gets a girlfriend and actually winces at each male-to-male contact he has to make with his skating partner. Of course, if your partner is the totally chauvinistic sex addict, smelly drunk pig gloriously played by Ferrell, you’d wince too!

Take the scene where Ferrell and Heder first rehearse their partnering on ice. Ferrell is holding Heder by his waist in what is best described as an upright 69 position. Their individual priceless reactions to other’s crotches in their respective faces are completely understandable from any orientation, gay or straight.

Joining these two in this ice skating send-up, real-life married couple “Arrested Development’s” Will Arnett and “Saturday Night Live’s” Amy Poehler deliciously steal their scenes as the brother/sister team and reigning partners champions who will resort to anything to eliminate their competition. “The Office’s” Jenna Fischer provides the sweetness and morality to the movie.

The producers have not hidden the fact that the four leads have little-to-no skating abilities. In fact, they’re actually bragging about it. The flawlessly edited skating sequences are done sometimes in slow-mo, and a lot of times in close-up combinations, with the actual skating scenes executed by keenly matched stunt doubles digitally enhanced with the principles’ faces. The costumes (again!) of the skaters (by Oscar and Emmy winner Julie Weiss) are the bomb! (Heder’s peacock costume is just too, too much!) Nice touch to have actual Olympic skaters in cameos throughout the film.

You will laugh. Maybe not every minute, but enough to make it worth checking this comedy out.





Gay, Straight or Taken?
(Lifetime, Mondays @ 8pm et/pt)
By Gil Kaan

Lifetime’s newest entry into the reality/game show arena, “Gay, Straight or Taken?” sets up one girl with three men, of which she has to chose the one who’s straight and available. If she chooses correctly, she wins a vacation with her straight guy. If she makes a wrong choice, the guy she picked gets the vacation with his girlfriend or boyfriend. So how good is your gaydar???

My apprehensive reaction upon hearing this premise was greatly alleviated after screening the first two episodes. Thank God, the straights didn’t get all nellie to fool the girl! As a matter of fact, my gay-dar, or guydar as Lifetime calls it, was a bit off. I did figure that the most metro-sexual guy had to be straight (although I was very surprised to see what his girlfriend looked like when the partners joined the participants at the finale of the show. They did not look like a couple).

 

 

The show presents intriguing situations for the girl to analyze her guys’ straightness and availability, including a massage, a karate lesson, firewalking, and sketching a live model, a live naked male model. I love that Lifetime provides a graphic displaying her choices as to who’s gay, straight or taken throughout the show. I think she changed her mind as much as the audience (95% gay) I was with did.

I would wager that most of the time most gay guys won’t be able to figure which contestant was family. And, you know? I think that’s a good thing!

It would have been fun to get the guys’ different responses to whom they thought their fellow contestants were G, S or T.

Looks like Lifetime (the channel for women and gay men) has another hit on its hands!





Clay Aiken CD Signing at Virgin Megastore
of "A Thousand Different Ways"
September 26, 2006 - Virgin Megastore
Hollywood, California USA






Macy's Passport Gala 2006 -
September 28, 2006 - Barker Hanger
Santa Monica, California United States


MACY'S and AMERICAN EXPRESS raised $1 million for HIV/AIDS organizations Thursday night in Los Angeles, at Barkar Hangar in Santa Monica, as BROOKE SHIELDS, SEAN COMBS and JIMMY SMITS mugged for photographers on the arrival runway. MACY'S launched PASSPORT, an awareness-raising fashion show in their employee cafeteria 24 years ago, and it has grown into one of the most exciting fashion events in Los Angeles.

Dame ELIZABETH TAYLOR rose from her wheel chair to greet the crowd and deliver her annual "State of AIDS" address. SHARON STONE took her 8th turn as auctioneer extraorinaire, raisning more than $100,000 from the 2,000 in attendance. The show of course included the much anticipated underwear fashions, and included model takes by COMBS, SMITS and Mayor ANTONIO VILLARAIGOSA. Italian pop-opera sensation VITTORIO closed the show with his first live performance in the United States. Congratulations and thanks to MACY'S!






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