News Round-Up: January 23, 2021

Backstage at CHICAGO with Broadway legend Chita Rivera who turns 88 today

Some news items you might have missed:

Happy Birthday: Sending the biggest birthday wishes to Broadway legend Chita Rivera (above) who turns 88 years young today. I was thrilled to work with the singular sensation during one of my many chapters with CHICAGO the Musical. #HappyBirthdayToYouuuuuuuuuuuuu

BosGuy: It’s Furry Friday every week on the veteran LGBTQ blogger’s site and we’re always so much the better for it. Hit the link 🙂

Instinct Magazine: President Biden’s new Secretary of Defense, Lloyd Austin III, announced during his confirmation hearing that he is definitely in favor of Biden’s plan to reverse the woeful ban on transgender military service members. “I support the president’s plan to overturn the ban.”

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin (screen capture)

The Advocate: President Biden’s nominee for secretary of State, Antony Blinken, says he will appoint an envoy for LGBTQ+ rights and allow U.S. embassies around the world display the LGBTQ+ Pride flag without restrictions.

Washington Post: Federal law enforcement officials are privately debating whether they should decline to charge some of the individuals who stormed the U.S. Capitol out of concern that hundreds of such cases could swamp the courts. Some federal officials have argued internally that those people who are known only to have committed unlawful entry — and were not engaged in violent, threatening or destructive behavior — should not be charged.

Edge Media: Watch this mom take credit for her OnlyFans star son’s ‘biggest asset.’ “Of course I’m proud. I’m your #1 fan. I’m always upbeat, you know that. I made that dick, I want a percentage.”

Trailer: Award-Winning Movie Musical ‘Still Waiting in the Wings’

Guest post by Lawrence Pfeil, Jr.

You can turn off its bright lights, lock up its stage doors, and silence the “Lullaby of Broadway,” but you’ll never take away a gay man’s dreams of being a musical theatre star!

But while the rest of us wait for theatre marquees across America to light up again, we can follow Anthony on his journey in the new movie musical comedy, Still Waiting in the Wings is set for its worldwide release May 15, 2020, on DVD and all digital platforms, including Amazon, iTunes, and Google Play.

Still Waiting in the Wings is a light-hearted musical tale following the triumphs and trials of actors dreaming of the Great White Way, mixing sweet aspirations with bitter drama. Our stars sing and dance while living the reality of slinging hash under the florescent lights at Times Square’s famed “Café Broadway.”

There are truly no people like show people and there’s no telling what can happen when they’re pitted against each other. Sprinkled along the way are special appearances by Nick Adams, Ed Asner, Carole Cook, Lee Meriwether, Patricia Richardson, Chita Rivera, Seth Rudetsky, Sally Struthers, Bruce Vilanch, and Cindy Williams.

Jeffrey A. Johns and Chita Rivera in ‘Still Waiting in the Wings’

“Since theatres all over the country are closed right now, many of us are missing the arts in our life,” says star and co-writer Jeffrey A. Johns. “If this movie can bring the joy of musicals to people right now, I couldn’t be more thrilled. We could all use a smile and some laughter right now and hope the film can bring that to people during this difficult time.”

Still Waiting in the Wings has screened at film festivals across the world and has won several top awards. Highlights include Q Cinema: Fort Worth (“Best of the Festival”), qFlix: Philadelphia (“Rising Star Award in Acting –Jeffrey A. Johns”), Garden State Film Festival (“Best Musical Feature”), FilmOut: San Diego (“Best Ensemble” and “Best Soundtrack”), California Independent Film Festival (“Best Feature Film”), qFlix: Worcester, New England’s LGBT Film Festival (“Audience Favorite”), Cinema Diverse: Palm Springs (“Festival Favorite”), and California Independent Film Festival (“Best Actress in a Feature Film – Rena Strober”).

The movie is directed by Q. Allan Brocka and written by Jeffrey A. Johns and Arie Gonzalez. The cast includes Jeffrey A. Johns, Joe Abraham, Rena Strober, Adam Huss, Blake Peyrot, Harrison White, and Rebekah Kochan.

Still Waiting in the Wings and CD soundtrack are currently available for pre-order at www.JJSpotlightProductions.com

 

Lawrence Pfeil, Jr., is a freelance writer/playwright who has reviewed film and theatre, both on and off-Broadway, for media outlets including The Randy Report, the New York Blade, and Edge Publications. You can follow him at TheOUTfront.com.

Dance Documentary “Transmission: Roots To Branches”

Chita Rivera (L) and Graciela Danielle (R)

Featuring a virtual ‘who’s who’ from the world of dance including Chita Rivera, Graciela Danielle, Andy Blankenbuehler, Warren Carlyle, Susan Stroman and more, the dance documentary Transmission: Roots To Branches does a deep dive into the history, lineage and future progressions of Jazz Dance.

“Don’t you feel wonderful when your spirit finally meets your body, and it turns into dance?”

“It’s not easy. But anything that’s good is not easy.”

Broadway icon Chita Rivera

Featuring interviews and choreography from some of the worlds leading dance voices, Transmission aims to shine a light on Jazz Dance.

The film is still being shot and the creators are looking to raise funds for the next block of filming.

Head over to the official website for more info.

Watch the teaser below. It looks to be a fascinating film.

News Round-Up: January 23, 2017

Pennsylvania state Rep. Brian Sims

Some news items you may have missed:

• Woofy out Pennsylvania state Rep. Brian Sims has re-introduced legislation that would ban so-called ex-gay/conversion therapy. Could we love this guy any more?

• White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer says he doesn’t know if President Trump plans to retain or repeal the previous administration’s executive order that bans anti-LGBT discrimination among federal contractors in place.

• US intelligence teams are investigating calls between Mike Flynn, President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, and Russia’s ambassador to the US in regarding Russian activities in the US. Ruh-roh.

• A Texas state lawmaker has filed legislation that would completely remove access to abortion in his state saying it would “force” women to be “more personally responsible” with sex. Seriously?

• Donald Trump is the first president to begin his administration with less than 50% approval rating in Gallup Poll.

• Happy 84th birthday, 2-time Tony Award winner Chita Rivera! I’ve found the gayest & grooviest dance clip I could to celebrate. Watch below:

News Round-Up: January 17, 2017

Some news items you may have missed:

• The weather forecast for Friday in Washington DC? 90% chance of rain. See forecast above. How terrible… 😉

• Some of Broadway’s biggest stars – including Tony Award winners Betty Buckley, Chita Rivera, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Kelli O’Hara, Jessie Mueller and Billy Porter – will be spending Inauguration Day at a concert in New York City that raises money for human rights organizations.

• Over 50 Democratic members of Congress (53 at last count) will not be attending the Trump inauguration.

• Speaking of the inauguration, scalpers are having a tough time unloading tickets they bought for the event this Friday.

• Team Trump is having such a tough time getting supporters to the inaugural festivities they are using targeted Facebook ads to up free ticket attendance.

• One more inauguration item: don’t miss Randy Rainbow’s hysterical interview with Tony Award winner Jennifer Holliday regarding her recent kerfuffle when she confirmed then cancelled her appearance the “peaceful transfer of power.”

“Concert for America: Stand Up, Sing Out!” Starring Tony Award Winners Betty Buckley, Billy Porter, Chita Rivera, Bebe Neuwirth & More

This is all kinds of awesomeness 🙂

Click here for all the details for Concert for America: Stand Up, Sing Out!, the first of a monthly benefit concert series with Broadway, TV, film and recording stars that will debut at The Town Hall on Friday, January 20, 2017, at 3:00pm.

The concert will feature performances by Betty Buckley, Sharon Gless, Andrea Martin, Jessie Mueller, Bebe Neuwirth, Rosie O’Donnell, Rosie Perez, Billy Porter, Chita Rivera, Brian Stokes Mitchell and more.

Proceeds will benefit several national organizations working to protect human rights, including Planned Parenthood, Southern Poverty Law Center, National Immigration Law Center and the Sierra Club Foundation.

Tickets range from $25 to $50 and are available at TicketMaster.com and at The Town Hall box office (123 W 43rd St.). Participating performers are subject to change.

But here’s the best part – if you can’t attend, no worries! The concert will be broadcast on Facebook Live at 3:00pm EST on January 20th, directed by Emmy Award winner Debbie Miller.

How super cool is that? So buy your tickets if you’ll be in the NYC area on January 20th, or set your calendar to remind you at ten minutes to 3PM EST that day to hit the link and watch your favorite Broadway stars “stand up, and sing out!”

Chita Rivera To Headline At Carnegie Hall “Chita: Nowadays”

Broadway legend and 2-time Tony Award winner (The Rink, Kiss of the Spiderwoman) Chita Rivera will make her solo Carnegie Hall debut November 7 at 8PM with her new show, Chita: Nowadays.

From Playbill:

Directed by Graciela Daniele, the evening promises favorites from Rivera’s career, as well as new material and special collaborations with her guest stars, including Alan Cumming and Andy Karl.

A “very unique version” of “America” from West Side Story is also promised. Michael Croiter will lead a 15-piece band.

“I’m absolutely thrilled to play one of the most prestigious venues in the world, Carnegie Hall. We’re going to have a ball!” Rivera said in a statement.

The evening is produced by Daniel Nardicio. “Chita is a national treasure, musical theater goddess, and as anyone who knows her can attest, one incredible lady,” Nardicio said in a statement. “Once I tackled Carnegie Hall with Alan Cumming and we nailed it with a sold-out show, speaking with friend, and Chita’s music director, Michael Croiter we came up with the idea to honor Chita’s career in a huge celebration.”

Head over to ChitaInConcert.com for more details.

Broadway’s Chita Rivera On The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon

Chita Rivera dropped by The Tonight Show to chat on Jimmy Fallon about her Tony Award-nominated performance in THE VISIT  plus her love of The Walking Dead which she would LOVE to guest star on.

Chita charmingly asks Fallon if anyone had ever “eaten his face.” And that’s how we segue into Walking Dead.

Cute moment. Love seeing Chita get the attention she deserves.

Watch below:

And here, the divine Miss Rivera teaches Jimmy some Fosse moves: