Saturday, June 30, 2012

"Sweet Charity" at Lyric Theater commercial



The commercial for the production of SWEET CHARITY I'm choreographing.

Thought I'd share :)

Rochchester bus bullies get their punishment

Almost two weeks ago, I wrote about on the school bus bullying of Karen Klein, the 68-year-old grandmother who was bullied unto tears by a pack of Rochester 7th graders. A video of the abuse went viral, landed both Klein and one of the abuser's fathers on AC360, and led to an online donation campaign meant to provide Ms. Klein with a much-needed vacation. (The campaign has raised north of $640,000 and counting -- Klein says she'll use the money to "pay some bills" and donate to a Down's syndrome charity.)

The Rochester school district has now doled out its punishment to Klein's abusers: One year suspension and 50 hours of community service.

Following individual meetings this week with school and district administrators, each family waived their right to a hearing and agreed to one-year suspensions from school and regular bus transportation," the Greece Central School District said in a statement.

The students will be transferred to a special alternative education program because the district is legally required to give them an education. Each student also will be required to complete 50 hours of community service with senior citizens. They will be able to reapply to middle school after they complete the discipline. In a statement, the school system said each of the students involved admitted wrongdoing, accepted the consequences and agreed to let the district publicly release the terms of their disciplinary action.

Repeat: The offending 7th graders will be forced to perform community service with senior citizens. Hopefully, the experience will prove enlightening for the boys.

My earlier post with the viral video can be found here.

Batgirl Public Service Announcement on equal pay for women


The real MAGIC MIKE - Chippendales in In Touch Magazine


Some very hot Chippendales were asked to pose for a recreation of the MAGIC MIKE movie poster.  Click on the pic to enlarge.

I'm thinking these guys look pretty hot.  And there are mini-interviews with each of the guys.  Just like in the movie, some are veterans, some are newbies.

Check it out in the latest IN TOUCH Magazine.  I like!

What did Liberals do?


The real problem with Obamacare


Friday, June 29, 2012

Katie Holmes files for divorce from Tom Cruise

Katie Holmes is apparently done with the "Cruise" of a lifetime. The 33-year old actress filed for divorce yesterday after seven years of marriage to Tom Cruise, the Mission: Impossible and Rock of Ages star.

Well, I'm shocked I tell you - shocked.

Quel surprise...

Marriage equality to come to France


The new president of France will legalize same-sex marriage in "the next few months," according to a statement from his office reported by Reuters.

President Francois Hollande and his Socialist party campaigned on marriage equality, and with a solid majority in Parliament it is largely up to them on the timing of changes.

The administration also plans to ensure adoption by same-sex couples is legal in France, and it will hold a series of discussions on what can be done to help transgender people specifically. Those moves will happen before the end of the year, administration officials have said, according to the Reuters report.

Romney on healthcare reform: "It's not a tax, it's an assessment"



April 3, 2006 press conference on passing of health care bill by legislature's conference committee.

Mitt Romney calls his version of healthcare reform, which the Affordable Healthcare Reform Act was based on in part, NOT a tax but an "assessment."

Somehow, between then and now, while he approved of such things then, he now finds the same ideas repugnant.

To repeat: the ideas he signed into law THEN, he now finds repugnant.

That was clear enough, yes?

James Davis of the Chippendales on The Dr. Drew Show



One of my favorite Chippendales, James Davis, appeared on the Dr. Drew Show on HLN last night.

With the opening of the MAGIC MIKE movie, a lot of attention is being focused on the male revue, and James had some clear answers about what some of the popular misconceptions are about shows like the Chippendales.


Staging Sweet Charity - "Rich Man's Frug"



Up today in rehearsals for SWEET CHARITY at the Lyric Theater in Oklahoma City - "Rich Man's Frug."

Love the number, love the attitude. Only have three hours to stage it.

This will be fun.

(There was both cynicism and joy in that last sentence....)

Wish me luck.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

MSNBC's "Hardball" on US Supreme Court upholding Affordable Healthcare Act

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


Pete Williams of NBC News reports on the Supreme Courts upholding of the AHA.

I never miss Chris Matthews' HARDBALL. Smart, fair, and did I say smart?

Texas GOP platform: gays "tear at the fabric of society"


The just-published 2012 Party Platform for the Republican Party of Texas, which weighs in on everything from deep-water drilling to NASA to immigration and Israel is truly a sight to read.

Among the more key points is a lot of talk about marriage and family values (including a definition of marriage that certainly doesn't include same-sex couples) and the affirmation "that the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit."

Homosexuality ― We affirm that the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit. Homosexual behavior is contrary to the fundamental, unchanging truths that have been ordained by God, recognized by our country’s founders, and shared by the majority of Texans. Homosexuality must not be presented as an acceptable “alternative” lifestyle, in public policy, nor should “family” be redefined to include homosexual “couples.” We believe there should be no granting of special legal entitlements or creation of special status for homosexual behavior, regardless of state of origin. Additionally, we oppose any criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose homosexuality out of faith, conviction or belief in traditional values.

Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) ― We oppose this act through which the federal government would coerce religious business owners and employees to violate their own beliefs and principles by affirming what they consider to be sinful and sexually immoral behavior.

Bill introduced to provide military benefits to same-sex couples


A bill was introduced Thursday that would provide military benefits to the same-sex spouses and children of gay and lesbian members of the armed services.

Now who could argue with that?

Rep. Adam Smith, the ranking Democratic member of the the House Armed Services Committee, introduced the bill, which would require the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments to recognize the legal marriages of gay service members.

The Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act of 2012 would change the definition of "spouse" in four sections of U.S. Code.

Aubrey Sarvis, executive director of the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, praised the proposed legislation in a statement Thursday:
"Our nation's senior military leaders and commanders on the ground are increasingly uncomfortable with administering two classes of recognition, support, and benefits for our nation's service members — one of straight service members, and a different for their gay and lesbian peers," Sarvis said. "There cannot be two classes of service members, and this legislation addresses that effectively."

The step follows the official repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" in 2011, which has caused the need for several policies to now be updated to be more inclusive of openly gay service members. Speaking at the Pentagon on Tuesday, Department of Defense general counsel Jeh Johnson said the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" has exposed several inequalities between gay and straight service members that must be rectified.

(via the Advocate)

US Supreme Court upholds Affordable Healthcare Act



Remarks from President Obama on the Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Affordable Healthcare Act.

The Supreme Court ruling on President Obama's health care law is complicated, just like the law itself. Today the court said the law is mostly constitutional. Here is what it means for you:

- You have to buy health insurance or be subject to a tax

- If you are under 26, you can get health insurance from the plan your parents use.

- If you're on Medicare, you can get free mammograms.

- If you have what's called a pre-existing condition, you can get health insurance.

- Insurance companies can't deny you coverage even if you get sick and make a mistake on your health insurance application.

Human Rights Campaign issued this statement:
The Supreme Court’s decision means millions of Americans – including many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and their families – will be better served by our nation’s healthcare system. The Affordable Care Act addresses a number of the barriers LGBT people face in obtaining health insurance, from financial barriers to obtaining affordable coverage to discrimination by insurance carriers and healthcare providers. While there is a great deal more that must be done to ensure that the health needs of all LGBT people are fully met throughout the healthcare system, today’s decision is an important victory in the fight for healthcare equality.

Staging Sweet Charity: "I'm A Brass Band"



Staging "I'm A Brass Band" for SWEET CHARITY today.

Love the number. It's Charity and the boys, lots of great, fun syncopation.

Our "Charity" - Milena Govich - is a strong dancer and likes the big, "boy choreography" steps. She's great. As are the men of the ensemble.

Looking forward to this one.

Channing Tatum busts a flash mob move on the Today Show

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


I gotta say, as a dancer myself, I like watching this guy move. I love that he just does his thing; not self-aware or afraid. He dances like no one's watching - and of course, we all are.

MAGIC MIKE opens Friday.

Minnesota for Marriage says gays should be "put to death"

The anti-gay Minnesota for Marriage, a conservative group trying to prohibit marriage equality, posted this on their Facebook account yesterday.

Such groups often claim to be coming from a place from love, but this message about gay men being put to death proves otherwise.

By the way - I await the Facebook post about Leviticus 11:10-12 which says eating shellfish is an abomination also.  I wonder if Minnesota for Marriage wants the shellfish industry put to death....?

(Via Good.As.You)

Keeping his word: Equality for LGBT Americans



Remember folks. No president has done more for LGBT rights than President Obama.

While Romney supports a constitutional amendment banning marriage equality, and points to the economy and says it's not improving fast enough and he could do better, please think about the facts:

1. After 8 years of bad policies we hit the biggest recession since the Great Depression.

2. You walk 8 miles into the forest, it's 8 miles back out.

President Obama is doing what he said he'd do despite the opposition doing everything they can to slow the economy down in the hopes he won't be elected.

In the meantime, while the economy IS slowing improving, President Obama kept his work to the LGBT community.

I now have a job AND my dignity with a President who believes I'm equal.

Yeah - I'm voting for President Obama 2012.

Beauty and the Beat



Funny - especially if you know the opening of the movie "Beauty and the Beast" really well.

Well done.

:)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Staging Sweet Charity - "Hey Big Spender"



As the adventure continues with staging SWEET CHARITY in Oklahoma City, today I spent time alone mapping out the mammoth "Rich Man's Frug" by myself so I"ll be ready for it Friday with the company.

And I staged the iconic "Hey Big Spender" (video above from the Broadway production of FOSSE) with the ladies of the company. Got it done in two hours. They really rocked and rolled with it. Plus I have the fab Kathryn Murphy assisting (and playing the role of "Nickie") who appeared on Broadway in FOSSE doing "Hey Big Spender." So she was an invaluable help.

Tomorrow is "I'm A Brass Band" - yet another big number, this one featuring Charity and the men of the ensemble. I get three hours to stage that. While I'm doing that Ms. Murphy will spend time going over "Big Spender" with the ladies.

In the afternoon tomorrow, I start with some preliminary "Frug" material with a few people to knock out some bits before Friday.

Having a great time and the company is terrific. Having to move through the material very quickly though, and I'm someone who loves to explore and finesse and "play with" the numbers and there's not much time for that. They have a phrase here - "tick tock summer stock" - meaning "the clock is ticking, we gotta move on."

More later... :)

The Faiers sisters enjoy night out with the Chippendales

Sam Faiers helps Jon Howes get ready for the show as
Billie lends a hand to Dave Abrams

Billie Faiers and younger sister Sam were the centre of attention as they arrived at The Chippendales Las Vegas show at the Rio Hotel and Casino.

The TOWIE stars weren't afraid to show off as they posed with two of the hunky men before enjoying the full scale production.

Party at the Faiers table as Chippendale Jon Howes gives Billie a squeeze

A little shopping after the show

Sam and Billie Faiers get a table side visit from a Chippendale

(photo credit: Scott Harrison)

National HIV Testing Day


Today Walgreens launches a two year partnership with the CDC during which the pharmacy giant will offer free onsite confidential HIV testing at two dozen (mostly) urban locations.
"The goal of having the project at a pharmacy or at a retail clinic is really because of the ease of accessibility and the closeness to people's homes," Paul Weidle with the CDC explained. The partnership also hopes to help eliminate the stigma. Sarah Freedman, the pharmacy manager at the Walgreens in Foggy Bottom, said, "When you come into a pharmacy to get the test, other people don't know if your getting your blood pressure checked, are you picking up medicine. Where as with an HIV bus, everyone knows exactly what you're doing there." Despite testing advancements, more than 200,000 people nationwide don't know they're living with HIV. Freedman added, "We need to find these people and get them into treatment as quickly as possible and this is a great way to do it." The test uses an oral swab, dipped in solution. Patients can get results in less than 20 minutes.
Enter your zip code on this CDC site to find the closest HIV testing location near you.

(via JoeMyGod)

PA GOP - "Voter ID laws are gonna allow Gov. Romney to win"



This weekend, Pennsylvania Republican House Leader Mike Turzai (R-PA) finally admitted what so many have speculated: Voter identification efforts are meant to suppress Democratic votes in this year’s election.

At the Republican State Committee meeting, Turzai took the stage and let slip the truth about why Republicans are so insistent on voter identification efforts — it will win Romney the election, he said:
“We are focused on making sure that we meet our obligations that we’ve talked about for years,” said Turzai in a speech to committee members Saturday. He mentioned the law among a laundry list of accomplishments made by the GOP-run legislature.
“Pro-Second Amendment? The Castle Doctrine, it’s done. First pro-life legislation – abortion facility regulations – in 22 years, done. Voter ID, which is gonna allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania, done.”
Voter identification efforts disproportionately affect low-income voters of color, a typically Democratic demographic. Despite insistence by Republicans that the efforts are needed to prevent misconduct on election day, voter fraud is less likely than being hit by lighting.

(via ThinkProgress)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Leslie Uggams explains "June Is Bustin' Out All Over" debacle


My dear wonderful Leslie Uggams, Tony Award winner for Best Actress 1968, sat down with the always entertaining "Seth's Broadway Chatterbox" to focus a rare less-than-stellar Uggams moment — an incident that had faded into obscurity until brought to newfound infamy via YouTube. Uggams tells the story of how she almost had to invent a new language to cover the "slipped" lyrics during a live performance of Rodgers and Hammerstein's "June is Bustin' Out All Over."

I've worked with Leslie - a dream to work with: true talent, great work ethic and the most beautiful spirit. It just doesn't get any better. Watch the video and you see the real Leslie. The first one to laugh at herself, and she enjoys a good laugh no matter what.

What a great star.

Leslie Uggams and I opening night of "Hello, Dolly!" which she starred in
and I choreographed at Theater Under The Stars in Houston, TX

From MAGIC MIKE: "Strip clips"



Behind the scene clips from MAGIC MIKE, which opens in three days.

In these behind the scenes clips we get Channing Tatum gyrating while wearing a thong under his sweatpants, Joe Manganiello removing a suit and shirtless cowboys Matt Bomer and Alex Pettyfer face off in a duel.

And more clips from the movie here:



Enjoy!

(via TooFab)

Michael and Delta Goodrem


My husband Michael with the gorgeous and uber-talented Delta Goodrem at the opening of the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre. 

Delta and Olivia are very good friends and recorded a song they wrote together a few years ago in support of the ONJCWC.  Delta appeared at the opening gala to perform the song - "Right Here With You" - with Olivia.

Besides looking handsome, I think Michael looks like he's going to bust just being with Delta.  I've gotten to know Delta and she's one of the most beautiful people both inside and out.

The Pentagon celebrates gay pride for the first time



Wow. Fantastic and terrific.

How far things have, forgive the use of the word - "evolved."

Just great to see.

Mayor Madeline Rogero speaks at Knoxville Pride 2012



"It's okay to say 'gay'" - Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero speaking at Knoxville Gay Pride Day 2012. The last quote is the best!

How fantastic to have a mayor like this in Tennessee. Bravo!

TX: Teen lesbians shot, one dead


One of them has died. MSNBC reports:
Two teenage girls in a relationship were found with gunshot wounds to the head in a south Texas park, with one of them dying from her injuries, media reports say. Police were searching for their assailants. Mollie Judith Olgin, 19, and Mary Christine Chapa, 18, were found in knee-deep grass in a nature area in Portland by a couple Saturday, said Portland Police Chief Randy Wright, who confirmed to msnbc.com details first reported by the Corpus Christi Caller Times. Olgin, originally from Ingleside but recently living in Corpus Christi, died; Chapa, of Sinton, was rushed to a hospital where she had surgery and was in serious but stable condition on Sunday, local NBC affiliate kristv.com reported. Wright said Chapa was still in the hospital on Monday.
Friends say the girls began their relationship five months ago. Police are investigating the shooting as a possible hate crime.

(via JoeMyGod)

Sweet Charity rehearsals - first day

First day of rehearsals for SWEET CHARITY in Oklahoma City for Lyric Theatre.

First number up for staging was "Something Better Than This" with Charity and her two sidekicks Nickie and Helene. This is my partner in crime Kathryn Murphy who is playing "Nickie" - we've worked together several times and she saves me in the rehearsal studio in many, many ways. She's my associate choreographer here and already helping in huge ways.

Staging "Something Better Than This" requires a very latin flair, which in turn HAS to have some "skirt-ography." So, of course, I requested a rehearsal skirt too. After a few minutes though the ladies couldn't see my foot work so off the skirt went.

Got the number done and the ladies look great already! Whoo-hoo!


Here's a clip from the movie starring Shirley Maclaine, Chita Rivera and Paula Kelly doing "Something Better Than This."

Oreo cookies supports gay pride


Posted on Oreo Cookies Facebook page with the statement "Proudly support love!"

Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre a reality

Cyndi Lauper launches initiative to educate public & help homeless LGBT youth



Cyndi Lauper today launched the Forty to None Project, a national program to educate the public and support homeless LGBT youth. The project's name comes from the disturbing number of LGBT homeless youth. With up to 1.6 million youth who are homeless each year, 40% identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender. Lauper wants that number to be "none".

From a statement by Lauper:
We traveled the country, visiting shelters, drop-in centers, outreach programs and advocacy organizations. We talked to community leaders, service providers, government officials and the kids themselves. We held meetings in 10 cities, from Washington to New York to San Francisco to Minneapolis. We looked for the holes in the system, and we’ve developed a five-year plan to make significant changes happen.

In our first five years, Forty to None will work to drive down the number of gay and transgender youth on the streets through a campaign that includes: education and awareness to raise the visibility of these young people and the direct service providers who work with them; advocacy at the state and federal levels; strengthening the network of services, advocates, community leaders and others working on the issue; training service providers to be more inclusive and understanding of the issues specifically affecting these kids; and empowering homeless gay and transgender youth themselves with valuable resources and information.

Joe Manganiello talks "costumes" for MAGIC MIKE movie


Joe Manganiello recently spoke to Huffington Post about the trials and tribulations of "costuming" (or lack thereof) for his upcoming MAGIC MIKE movie:

"The fireman routine was in the script, the silhouette dance was in the script, but the one thing I said going into it was, 'Guys, please, I’m up for these two classical sword-and-sandal pictures and I’m meeting with directors on them. Please don’t put me in a gladiator outfit, I don’t want to scare them off,'" the actor said. "And sure enough, I get to my costume fitting and they’re like, 'Oh my God, we’ve got this great gladiator suit!' And I’m like, 'Guys, I am not doing the gladiator.'"

But sure enough, production had another creative costume idea up their sleeves -- and it involved an abundance of gold body paint.

"So the day of shooting, there was a team of five women and it took over an hour and they just covered me, every crevice, in gold," he said. "And the costumers gave me this gold lamé thong with a fig leaf on the front, and I just went for it."

MAGIC MIKE opens June 29th. Can't wait.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Bullied bus monitor on donation windfall

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy



The online fundraiser for Karen Klein, the bullied bus monitor, has grown to more than $650,000. She appeared on the Today show this morning to discuss the week's events and what she would do with the mounting funds contributed by anonymous internet donors.

Klein said she would invest some of the money, contribute some to charity, and share it with her children.

"I want kids to stop bullying," Klein said.


(via Towleroad)

Greek Pride Festival attacked by crowd

Via Associated Press:
Police say about 50 people threw eggs and plastic bottles of water at about 400 people holding a gay pride parade in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki. Police moved in to restrict the attackers on Saturday, but no injuries were reported. In recent days, Anthimos, the senior Greek Orthodox cleric in Thessaloniki, had publicly criticized the planned gay pride parade. Anthimos, who only uses one name, is known for outspoken speeches on social and political issues.

Karl Rove and Plato


And the whole world dances - "Where the hell is Matt 2012"



Matt Harding leads the awesomest life.

He travels the world, dances with people, and films it. Here is "Where the hell is Matt 2012."

Turns out, everybody dances.

Just fantastic.

WA: Why marriage matters



From the good guys in Washington state, WashingtonUnitedforMarriage.org

Sunday, June 24, 2012

National Council of La Raza, largest Latino civil rights group, supports marriage equality


Following the recent support of the NAACP, the country’s largest Latino civil rights organization unanimously passed a resolution in support of marriage equality.

Eric Rodriguez, vice president of public policy for the National Council of La Raza, told the Washington Blade that there was very little opposition to the vote, which came just weeks after the NAACP passed a similar measure.

Rodriguez told the Blade that La Raza members believe "that marriage equality is consistent with the mission—the civil rights mission—of our organization.” The group will announce the resolution formally during next month's annual convention in Las Vegas.

Documentary: "Me @ the zoo"



I have to admit I wasn't initially interested in this film, the documentary entitled "Me @ The Zoo," which premiered last winter at Sundance.

It's been picked up by HBO, and debuts on there on Tuesday, at 9 p.m.

What changed my mind was watching the video above where the movie's creators discuss the true nature of the film: a meditation on internet celebrity and how social media begins to shape our online personas.

Suddenly I'm curious to see how they shape and share the story of Chris Crocker, best known for his "Leave Britney Alone" video, which now has over 43 million views on youtube.

Hit HBO this Tuesday to see how it all shakes out. Now I'm intrigued.

Vice President Joe Biden and the middle class


Ben Cohen on what you wear


Fabulous for so many reasons.

Ben Cohen is featured today in the New York Times:

When the noted British athlete Ben Cohen — the David Beckham of rugby — walked down the runway this month for an AmFAR benefit at the New York Public Library, odds were that many in this audience thought he was just another handsome, muscular model. With his easy smile, buzz cut and 6-foot-3 frame, Mr. Cohen fit the mold and the clothes.

One of the highest-scoring players in British Union rugby history, Mr. Cohen, 33, was being honored that night. Taking the microphone, Mr. Cohen explained to the crowd that instead of signing a three-year contract, he quit rugby last year to devote himself full-time to battling homophobia.

In 2011, he started the Ben Cohen StandUp Foundation to combat bullying, especially the bullying of children who might be lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender — an issue that has received heightened attention in the last two years after the suicides of several gay teenagers who had been bullied by peers.

And btw - you may have noticed he's very, very good looking :)

Make sure you visit the StandUp Foundation, which he founded, to see what you can do to help Ben Cohen end bullying.

On pride and dignity

Taken at a gay pride event and shared on the Obama twitter account
"The most sweepingly positive changes any president has ever made to address gay rights. How can we not vote for that? I may not have a job yet, but I have my dignity! OBAMA 2012"

I was reading on some of my favorite blogs and saw this comment on JoeMyGod. It was posted as a guest, but I wish I could attribute it to the author.

That sentiment resonates to my core.

While the terrible economy continues to slowly improve - in spite of the GOP obstruction in Congress to keep things from improving so President Obama might not be re-elected - I have to say the statement above says a lot about why and who supports President Obama.

No President has done more for lifitng the level of respect for LGBT Americans than President Barack Obama.

From repealing DADT (which he said he would do, and he did) to refusing to defend the unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act, to supporting marriage equality for all Americans - NO President has done more to help us feel equal.

The conservative gays at GOProud love to rally 'round the GOP saying gays rights aren't the only issue and "economic issues affect us all." Yes - economics affect us all, but before you make money, have a job, raise children or even just get up in the morning we all need to feel our worth. Our dignity.

I'm not in campaign mode here, but Mitt Romney does not see some Americans as being as equal as others. He has said he would support a constitutional amendment banning marriage equality for millions of gay Americans. He did not support the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Thousands of American men and women, who put their lives on the line for our country every day,  that Mitt Romney does not feel should be able to serve their country.

Jobs are slowly coming back after the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. There's a saying: "you walk seven miles into the forest, it's seven miles back out." It took eight years of bad decisions on behalf of the last administration to get us into the mess Obama inherited.  The worst recession in 80 years isn't going to be resolved in three.

President Obama is doing his best despite a Republican party that stated that their number one goal was not to create jobs for Americans; it was to deny President Obama a second term. And it's clear that's what their focus has been on.

America's future continues to improve. We are still the great country we always have been. AND the LGBT community has many reasons to support a President who sees us as equals. Who treats us with dignity.

I'm pretty sure that falls under the definition of the word "pride."

Celebrate Pride kids.

Forward.  No fear.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Dear Randy Report readers...

Last dip in the pool before heading to OKC....
Just a heads up to say that I will be posting for the next couple of weeks, albeit at odd times as I will be heading to Oklahoma City to choreograph "Sweet Charity" for the Lyric Theater - where I actually got my professional start in theater 31 years ago... (but age is a state of mind...  ignore the number, what state of mind would you like me to be?)

Along the way I will be posting during the early morning and evening hours - so please keep coming to catch up on the news and my personal spin on life  :)

I also plan to post a "song a day" of what I happen to be working on with the cast of "Sweet Charity" so you know what I'm up to.  That's really the point of a blog anyway, isn't it?

I'll also post pictures from rehearsals and other events when I can keep you informed of life along the way.

Thanks in advance for staying with me and continuing to check in on The Randy Report.

10 straight people LGBT people can be proud of

Ben Cohen, world class rugby player and anti-bullying activist

Since June is gay pride month, the folks at Buzzfeed made a list of a few straight people that have done things for the LBGT community that we can all feel good about.

How do you like the list? Who would you add?

1. Ben Cohen, rubgy player/activist
2. Lisa Lampanelli, comedian
3. Hudson Taylor, wrestler and coach
4. & 5. Theodore Olson and David Boies, lawyers
6. Benjamin Todd Jealous, president of the NAACP
7. Zach Wahls, student
8. Josh Hutcherson, actor
9. Barack Obama, president
10. Dick Cheney, former vice president

Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre opens

Olivia and Michael before seeing the interior of the Centre for the first time.

Michael is currently in Australia with Olivia Newton-John for the grand opening ceremonies for the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre.

Olivia has spent the better part of the last ten years helping raise almost $200 million dollars to build this research, treatment and wellness centre for people diagnosed or affected by cancer.

The Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre will combine research laboratories, clinical treatment and complementary therapies in a one stop shop aimed at attacking cancer from all angles.

Patients will be able to join singalongs in a dedicated music room, take a yoga class or enjoy a massage in combination with their chemotherapy.

Cutting the ribbon on the centre on Friday, Newton-John said complementary therapies were an underrated component in the fight against cancer, which began for her with a diagnosis in 1992.

'I had to find it myself and go to different places or have them come to me,' she said.

'I was lucky I could do that but most people can't so that's why this is wonderful.

'It's actually more than I ever could have pictured or dreamed of.'

The pics below were taken right before Olivia was able to see the inside of the newly built centre for the very first time.


Read more here.

Salvation Army Major: LGBT People Should Be Put to Death



In an interview with Australian LGBT journalists Serena Ryan and Pete Dillon, a senior Salvation Army official said that non-celibate LGBT people should be put to death.

The official, Major Andrew Craibe, is the Salvation Army’s Territorial Media Relations Director for the Southern Territory in Victoria.

Australian pop star Darren Hayes, the openly gay former lead singer of Savage Garden, recently called for a boycott of the Salvation Army because of the church’s anti-gay beliefs (just as I did here in the States). Hayes’s comments caused quite the firestorm, so Major Craibe appeared on Ryan and Dillon’s podcast, Salt and Pepper, to discuss the Salvation Army’s official position on homosexuality and whether it’s evolved over time.

Above is the interview with Salvation Army Major Andrew Craibe in full.

Ryan told Craibe that she prepared for the interview by reading all 170 pages of Salvation Story: Salvationist Handbook of Doctrine, a manual published by the group’s international headquarters in London and available online.

Ryan expressed incredulity that the official Salvation Army handbook cites a scriptural passage which calls for the execution of LGBT people, and asked Craibe how he would respond to a hypothetical LGBT person receiving guidance from the Salvation Army who discovers the homophobic citation (around the 7:00 mark).

RYAN: . . . that says, according to the Salvation Army, that [they] deserve death. How do you respond to that, as part of your doctrine?

CRAIBE: Well, that’s a part of our belief system.

RYAN: So we should die.

CRAIBE: We have an alignment to the Scriptures,  that’s our belief.

RYAN: Wow. So we should die.

There's a lot more at Truth Wins Out.

LeAnn Rimes in concert with LA Gay Men's Chorus


LeAnn Rimes,  amazing vocalist and longtime equality advocate, makes a second appearance with the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles, which marks the group’s first all-country music program, featuring a range of popular classic and contemporary country hits. Tonight and Sunday.

For more information go to GMCLA.org.

Via the Advocate

Jerry Sandusky convicted of 45 of 48 counts of child abuse



After two days of jury deliberation, former Nittany Lions defensive coach Jerry Sandusky was convicted late last night on 45 of 48 counts of child sexual abuse. He faces up to 442 years in prison. From CNN:
Sandusky stood slightly hunched, looking down with his hand in his pocket but showing no visible emotion as the guilty verdicts were read out in court. His wife, Dottie, blinked back tears.
Judge John Cleland revoked Sandusky's bail and ordered his arrest. Video showed him leaving the courthouse in handcuffs and heading into a police car destined for the Centre County jail. He didn't say anything as reporters asked if he had anything to say to the victims before he ducked into the back seat.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Chris Hemsworth by my pool shirtless and wet


Ok, so it's not by my pool.  The fantasy got a little carried away...  But the view IS nice.

Susan Lucci's new series "Devious Maids" gets picked up

Marc Cherry (Desperate Housewives creator) has adapted the telenovela Ellas son la Alegría del Hogar, which has now been picked up with a 13-episode order.

Ex-Housewife Eva Longoria is one of the executive producers.

This should give series regular Susan Lucci plenty to talk about  on the Daytime Emmy red carpet. The All My Children legend stars as Genevieve Delacort, a loopy, aging socialite, prone to suicide attempts, and taking much younger lovers.

Apparently, Lucci was testing through the roof for Lifetime, courtesy of her guest stints on Army Wives. I'm guessing that made this happen - and I for one am glad. Everyone I know who's met Ms. Lucci says wonderful things about her.

Billboard Magazine: 21 Great Gay Moments in Music


Billboard Magazine has assembled a list of 21 "Great Gay Moments in Music" that were pivotal in advancing the understanding and acceptance of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

Included are Adam Lambert, Jay Z and President Obama's support of marriage equality, GLEE and more.

Check it out at Billboard.com

Jerry Sandusky's adopted son says he was abused



A new development in the child sex abuse trial of Jerry Sandusky.

The same day jury deliberations began, this bombshell:

WJLA: “Another accuser comes forward: Sandusky’s s own adopted son!”

ABC: “Sandusky’s adopted son signaled to the prosecutor that he was molested too. The jury will not hear this allegation.”

Multiple reports say the adopted son of the embattled former Penn State football coach had been prepared to testify against his father. The Patriot-News’s Sara Ganim reports, Matt Sandusky, who the Sandusky’s adopted as an adult, told prosecutors this week he was molested by the former coach. Ganim told CNN’s John King it isn’t yet clear why Matt didn’t end up testifying.

“Matt Sandusky has been denying that he was a victim in any way of Jerry Sandusky for many, many months. Actually almost a year. Now, he was 18 already when he was adopted but he had been a foster child in the Sandusky home for a couple of years at that point.”

Ganim points out, despite Matt’s past denials, his biological mother testified in early 2011 before a grand jury that she witnessed strange behavior between her son and Sandusky. In fact, Ganim reports, Matt’s biological mother Debra Long first began raising concerns about the coach in 1996 when the Sandusky’s brought her son into foster care.

It isn’t entirely clear why Matt Sandusky never ended up testifying, but ABC’s Jim Avila suggests it might have something to do with the fact Jerry Sandusky didn’t testify in his own trial Wednesday.

“Sources familiar with the case tell ABC News Matt was waiting in the wings in case Sandusky decided to testify. And then could be used as a rebuttal witness.”

But as shocking as the latest might be, NBC reports, it won’t affect THIS trial.

“None of this is known to the jury. The news broke after final arguments and deliberations began. … During the trial jurors heard wrenching testimony from eight alleged victims who described being sexually abused by Sandusky...”

But CNN notes, the allegation could lead to additional charges, including incest.

Jerry Sandusky has pleaded not guilty to the child sex abuse charges against him.

Harrassed bus monitor "vacation fund" goes viral



Over $165,000 $318,000 has been raised for the upstate New York bus monitor who was reduced to tears by a group of horrid schoolboys on the last day of school.

Video of the appalling harassment went viral yesterday, and one person had the bright idea to start an Indiegogo fundraiser for the woman, Karen Klein, so she could take a vacation.

As of 10:50 a.m. it's $168,490 1:07 p.m., it's $216,438 5:10 p.m. it's $318,902 and counting! Upgrading to a butler room at Sandals will not be a problem.
Klein, who lives near Rochester, has been deluged with media requests since the video went viral—she's booked to talk with Anderson Cooper on CNN and appear on Fox & Friends—and this morning she was interviewed by Good Morning America. "I was just was trying to ignore them,” Klein tells GMA. "Usually I sit right in back, and I should have that day, but I sat one seat ahead so there was one boy in back of me and one boy in front of me. They just kept it up. They thought it was funny.” Making a senior citizen cry by threatening to defecate in her mouth and stab her? Hilarious. One of the insults was even more sickening than we initially thought. In the video below, you can hear one of the boys say, "You don’t have a family because they all killed themselves because they didn’t want to be near you." The local ABC affiliate reports that Klein's oldest son killed himself ten years ago.
Kline said she doesn’t want to see those boys expelled but would like to see them banned from riding the school bus for at least a year and not allowed to participate in team sports.

She adds that she's blown away by the public's response.

At a press conference Thursday, school officials said they are still investigating the incident, but promised strong disciplinary action.

See update on ABC News here.

Let's go down the list, shall we?


For all the folks who have a big problem with gay marriage due to your deeply held biblical beliefs, I just want to check to make sure you honor ALL those biblical beliefs.

Sin is sin, you know.

Click the pic to view larger.

Joy Behar on Mitt Romney and the gay vote



JOY BEHAR, HOST: Do you think Romney will ever get the gay vote? I don't think he’s going to get it any way.

HOWARD BRAGMAN, REPUTATION.COM: No, I don’t, unless his sons do a spread in GQ shirtless, and then I think it’ll be fine.

BEHAR: Could it be that the GOProud guys are just attracted to Mitt Romney's sons Matt, Mutt, Tag, Tip, Tack, and Bashful? Do you think that's the issue?

BRAGMAN: I would love a magic underwear photo shoot. I think we could…

BEHAR: What is that, anyway? Haven't they seen “The Book of Mormon?” They call themselves gay and they haven't been to “The Book of Mormon?” Unbelievable.


I just love Joy Behar. Makes me laugh :)

George Zimmerman reenacts shooting Trayvon Martin



Neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman re-enacted the fight he had with Trayvon Martin in police video released Thursday, giving his most detailed account yet of what led him to fatally shoot the unarmed black teenager.

EW: The New Art of Coming Out


Only a short excerpt of this week's cover story is online:
Fifteen years ago, when Ellen DeGeneres decided to come out of the closet, it was big news. Not just big: It was the cover of Time magazine, and a major story on Oprah, Primetime Live, and CNN. Last month, another star of a popular TV comedy went public with his homosexuality. But the news that The Big Bang Theory’s Emmy-winner Jim Parsons is gay was reported with such matter-of-fact understatement that many people’s first reaction was a quick Google search to see if maybe he was out already and we’d all just failed to notice.
Via Boy Culture.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Fosse: "Sing, Sing, Sing"



So good it hurts.

Brilliant.

Southern Baptists: Same-Sex Marriage Not a Civil Right


The Southern Baptist Convention today, at its annual meeting, adopted a resolution saying same-sex marriage is not a civil rights issue.

The resolution, passed nearly unanimously, reiterates the denomination’s long-held belief that marriage is “the exclusive union of one man and one woman” and that “all sexual behavior outside of marriage is sinful,” the Associated Press reports. It also says, “It is regrettable that homosexual rights activists and those who are promoting the recognition of ‘same-sex marriage’ have misappropriated the rhetoric of the Civil Rights Movement.”

I love how those who are not affected by the discrimination of civil marriage for gays and lesbians can so clearly say this is not a civil rights issue.

I've said this many times, but let me repeat: As long as a civil marriage license is required to be married, and a civil marriage license is issued by a civil government, and as long as civil rights are attached to a civil marriage license - allowing gays and lesbians to partake in civil marriage is a civil rights issue.

This isn't hard to understand....

(via the Advocate)

Minnesota: "We Believe"



Carrie Underwood on the backlash for LGBT equality support

Earlier this month while being interviewed by the U.K. paper The Independent, Carrie Underwood revealed that she supports LGBT equality.

"I definitely think we should all have the right to love, and love publicly, the people that we want to love,"she said, before adding, "Our church is gay friendly," she says. "Above all, God wanted us to love others. It's not about setting rules, or [saying] 'everyone has to be like me.' No. We're all different. That's what makes us special. We have to love each other and get on with each other. It's not up to me to judge anybody."

Many wondered how the more conservative members of Underwood's huge fan base would react and a pastor in Tennessee claimed that the singer was operating on a basic misunderstanding of The Bible. Joseph Farah, editor of right-wing website WND takes Underwood to task in a commentary he posted earlier today.

"What is a “gay friendly” church?" Farah asks. "Is it one that affirms people in their sin? Or is it one that welcomes sinners and confronts them with it to bring them to the saving knowledge of Jesus? I suspect Carrie Underwood attends a church that does the former rather than the latter."

Underwood acknowledges feeling pressure during the interview with The Independent. "I was asked a difficult question in the last five minutes of an interview and I answered it the best way I knew how, and after that I do what I do and I love making music and I generally try to stay out of any kind of controversy," she says.

"The role-model word is really scary to me, because no matter what happens in your life, something you do, wear, say, sing, whatever — somebody somewhere is probably not going to like it too well," she said. "I just really try hard to do what I do and try to be nice to people and make great music and if people think they can look up to that, that's wonderful. If not, that's OK too."
(source)

Campaign ad: Tammy Baldwin for US Senate



I've met Tammy and she's the real deal. She clearly wants the best for all Americans.

She's one of the few openly gay members of Congress and she's very well respected.

I'm hoping she wins her race in Wisconsin for US Senate.

Joe Manganiello on THE SOUP

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Broadway's Ed Dixon on The Candi & Randy Show


Listen to internet radio with CandiXRandy on Blog Talk Radio

Ed Dixon, veteran of over a dozen Broadway shows (including Les Miserables, Anything Goes, Sunday in the Park with George and No, No, Nanette) joins Candi & Randy to talk about his bestselling memoir "Secrets of a Life On Stage... And Off."

He has worked with everyone from Busby Berkeley to Ruby Keeler to Leonard Bernstein, to Ann-Margret to Kevin Spacey to Tony Danza to Kathie Lee Gifford to Stephen Sondheim and everyone in between.

At the halfway mark of his very long stage career Mr. Dixon suffered a devastating drug addiction which nearly killed him and left him homeless.

He overcame addiction and went on to rebuild his life & career and have even greater successes in his life and profession.

This show is in advance of Ed's already sold-out show at NYC's Metropolitan Room on July 2nd where Ed will read excerpts from his book and sing selections from his career.

For those who can't be there, hit the "play" button and get the inside scoop in advance with The Candi & Randy Show.

Just a few excerpts from "Secrets of a Life On Stage... And Off:"

• On working with Ruby Keeler in No, No, Nanette: "She launched into the big tap number, "I Want To Be Happy" and she had the most amazing taps.  Even at 60 she was like a riveting machine. She starts doing trenches - which are very hard - and then the company start joining in one line at a time.  We got to the end of the number and the audience leapt out of their seats and threw their programs in the air screaming like graduation day at West Point."

• On doing Leonard Bernstein's MASS at the opening of the Kennedy Center: "He was there, and he was writing it as we were rehearsing it.  West Side Story was the first record I ever purchased and here I was working with the person who created it."  Ed also tells a story of auditioning for the production and thinking Bernstein had brought his young boyfriend to sit in on the auditions, and then later discovered it was a 22 year old Stephen Schwartz who was helping with the lyrics for the show.

• Being the first replacement (as "Thenardier") in the original run of Les Miserables: "It was the hottest show in the world.  You couldn't get a ticket.  Every single seat was sold every day.  To come into something that was that "hot" was an amazing experience.  To be in a hit that was that big and important was just amazing."

• On talking so openly about his bout with drug addiction: "It's really why I wrote the book.  It's been more than 20 years since this event, and I thought enough time had past, and I have established my reputation, that I could talk about this.  I was 40 years old and it never occurred to me that something so life changing could happen to me.  I thought I knew who I was, what I was.  I did the wrong thing one Monday afternoon, and the minute I did I knew something terrible had happened."

• Working with Ann-Margret: "You can't imagine how fantastic she was.  She was kind and warm and loving all the time to everyone.  It was like traveling with Buddha - she just gave love to everyone she met."

If you have any interest in what goes on behind the scenes in the theater, join us to hear first hand about an amazing life lived on and off stage.

For more info about Ed, visit www.eddixon.biz

98 Degrees to reunite for Mixtape Festival


Although rumors were denied earlier this year, it looks like the buzz about a 98 Degrees reunion is at least somewhat true. The boy band will reunite for a one-off performance at Pennsylvania's Mixtape Festival in August, Nick and Drew Lachey confirmed.

The brothers called in to Ryan Seacrest's radio show Wednesday (June 20) to talk about, among other things, their band's reunion. "We're very excited about the opportunity," Drew Lachey told Seacrest, "and we've been toying around with the idea for a couple years of: 'if we got back together, when would be the right scenario, and this music festival right here just kind of seemed like the right time to get back together and do a show and kick the tires and see how it feels."

Boy band fans will have no shortage of acts to see at Mixtape Fest. Besides 98 Degrees, The Wanted, New Kids on the Block and the supergroup NKOTBSB are also slated to perform over the weekend.

Read more at Billboard

This is how to campaign - Joe Biden

Buddha - peace, wisdom and fashion


Poll: Washington state marriage equality support 51% vs 42%


Talking Points Memo looks at a new Public Policy Polling poll on marriage equality in Washington state, and finds good news:

The results of the latest survey shows 51 percent of Washington voters believe same-sex marriage should be legal, compared with 42 percent who believe it should be illegal. A state law legalizing same-sex marriage was passed earlier this year but is facing a November referendum.

PPP pressed deeper on the issue, asking voters whether gay and lesbian couples should be allowed to legally marry, form civil unions or be given no legal recognition at all. The overwhelming majority said that same-sex couples should be given at least some legal recognition, with 47 percent saying they should be allowed to marry and 30 percent saying they should be legally permitted to form civil unions but not marry. Twenty-one percent said same-sex couples should receive no legal recognition.

Read more at Talking Points Memo

Marco Rubio and "what society should tolerate"


Christianity Today later in the day posted a long interview with Rubio about his faith and issues related to it. One of them was same-sex marriage:

The debate is about what society should tolerate, and what society should allow our laws to be. I believe marriage is a unique and specific institution that is the result of thousands of years of wisdom, which concluded that the ideal — not the only way but certainly the ideal — situation to raise children to become productive and healthy humans is in a home with a father and mother married to each other. Does that mean people who are not in that circumstance cannot be successful? Of course not.

It’s not a discriminatory thing. I’m not angry at anyone because of it, but I also have to be honest about what I believe marriage should be in our laws.

In May, Rubio reiterated that he opposes gay marriage for religious reasons, but that the decision should be left to the states. He also knocked Obama for using the issue as a political tool.

(via Towleroad)

Obama for America: "Mosaic"

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Wish for the day


Former Minnesota Governor denounces anti-gay marriage amendment


Former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura says he'll do anything he can to defeat the anti-gay marriage amendment on the ballot there in November, the Post Bulletin reports:

Ventura said the issue is personal for him because when he was a professional wrestler he had a friend who was gay who had been with his partner for more than 20 years. When his friend's partner got sick, he was unable to be by his bedside because hospital rules allowed only spouses or next of kin.

"And because they are not allowed to be married, he's neither. That's cruel," he said.

Ventura said he believes the majority should not be able to make decisions about the civil rights of a minority.

"If you did that, we would still have slavery because the majority isn't going to think about the minority," he said. "You have to have politicians with courage, who will stand up and say this is a civil rights issue, and where do we get off that the government should decide who you should fall in love with and marry?"

(Via Towleroad)

14 year old NYC student blinded in anti-gay attack


The parents of a 14 year-old Brooklyn boy say they will sue the city after their son was blinded in one eye during a brutal anti-gay attack by two fellow students.
Kardin Ulysse, 14, has undergone two surgeries on his right eye since the June 5 beatdown at Roy H. Mann Junior High School in Bergen Beach. It is unclear whether the bullies’ multiple punches or the broken shards of lens from his eyeglasses caused the damage to his cornea. “The doctor says he needs a transplant,” Pierre Ulysse said. “For me to send him to school with two eyes and come back with one eye is really absurd. “I want the world to know about this,” he added. Kardin, an eighth-grader, was set upon by a pair of seventh-graders who were calling him a “fucking faggot” a “pussy,” a “transvestite” and “gay,” according to a Department of Education occurrence report. While one schoolmate pinned the victim’s arms, the other rained punches on Kardin’s face, head and neck. Kardin broke away and the fight continued in the cafeteria until school safety officers and school aides finally intervened.
The parents' lawyer is calling on police to investigate the assault as a hate crime. Both suspects are charged with misdemeanors in Family Court.

I have to ask: what kind of parents do the attackers have?

At a time when you have anti-gay groups like the National Organization for Marriage and Family Research Council fighting gay couples rights, why are they not instead fighting parents like these attackers seem to have?  These are kids hunting, beating and blinding 14 year old boys.

Tony Perkins - why don't you work to prevent THIS?
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