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Dolly Parton's 9 to 5 Musical Premiere

  • Written by Rob Manser
  • Category: Rob Manser
Based on the film of the same name and featuring a score by Dolly Parton, 9 to 5 had its highly anticipated opening night on Broadway at the Marquis Theatre on April 30 and all three of the film’s leading ladies – Parton, Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda were in attendance. On stage Allison Janney, Stephanie J. Block, Megan Hilty and Marc Kudisch star in the show, which is directed by Joe Mantello. The story of the musical is pretty much the same as the 1980 film. When pushed to the boiling point by their boss, Franklin Hart Jr. [Kudisch), super-efficient office manager Violet Newstead [Janney), frazzled divorcee Judy Bernly [Block) and sexy executive secretary Doralee Rhodes [Hilty) hatch a plan to get even with the sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot, which quickly spins wildly and hilariously out of control.

Also featured in the cast are Andy Karl, Kathy Fitzgerald, Ioana Alfonso, Timothy Anderson, Jennifer Balagna, Justin Bohon, Paul Castree, Daniel Cooney, Jeremy Davis, Gaelen Gilliland, Autumn Guzzardi, Ann Harada, Lisa Howard, Van Hughes, Brendan King, Michael X. Martin, Michael Mindlin, Karen Murphy, Mark Myars, Justin Patterson, Jessica Lea Patty, Charlie Pollock, Tory Ross, Wayne Schroder, Maia Nkenge Wilson and Brandi Wooten.

The Great Marriage/Beauty Debate gets interesting

  • Written by Rob Manser
  • Category: Rob Manser

We all knew that Gay marriage is nothing threatening to the churches definaition of "holy matrimony" - as really it is a state issue (being that Church weddings have for a long time been seen as seperate entities to a legal government backed ceremony) but since the blow up between the Beauty Drone, Miss California USA and blogger Perez Hilton - another former beauty contestant AND ordained minister, Miss California 2003 (Nicole Lamarche) has come into the argument with some VERY compelling religious points of view - and has gracefully put into words what alot of the world has thought for a long time...

She says:

"As a pastor and a former Miss California, I am often asked to interpret what the Word of God has to say on a particular subject. I am quite confident that God prefers that we human beings stick to speaking for ourselves. And yet there are occasions when God’s Word is used as a weapon, and I feel compelled to speak.

In the past few days, much has been made of the words of Miss California USA, Carrie Prejean. She stated that marriage is between a man and a woman. I write not in response to her opinion, but rather about her comments that followed: that the Bible condones her words. She said, 'It's not about being politically correct, it's about being biblically correct.' While this sentiment is shared by many who seek to condemn gay people and gay marriage, citing pieces of the Bible to further one’s own prejudice fails to meet the Bible on its own terms.

Most people seeking to condemn gay people point to the Book of Leviticus, where we read that men lying with men is an abomination. However, we rarely hear of other verses found in the book of Leviticus that are equally challenging. For example, Leviticus also tells us that eating shrimp and lobster is an abomination. And that a person should not wear material woven of two kinds of material—an impossible mandate for a pageant contestant!

In Paul’s letter to the community in Corinth we read, ‘For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church….’ And yet these words have not prevented Christian denominations from ordaining women, such as myself. Sadly, the Bible has been used to further prejudice throughout history. We have used it to permit ourselves to enslave people; to conquer and kill; and to denigrate the earth.

The truth is that it is difficult to know for sure the intentions of the biblical authors, but we do know something about God. Those of us who know God through Jesus of Nazareth know that he went to great lengths to express God’s love to people who were labeled as outcasts. He spent time with children, prostitutes, and lepers, all of whom were labeled as outside of the grasp of the Holy. As we continue to seek God’s vision for us as a nation grounded in a love for justice, I pray that we might move closer to the cause of grace.”


What do you think about this? 

My Birthday Bonanza

  • Written by Rob Manser
  • Category: Rob Manser

This past week, I managed to pull myself away from the computer and head out to enjoy a few bevvies and shows on the Sydney scene to celebrate the anniversary of my 25th birthday.

On Thursday night, JP and I caught up with Trent who had been talking up the "new" show at the Shift "Dreamgurlz" starring Tora Hymen, Minni Cooper and Prada Clutch. Now, for someone who has been seeing drag shows for as many years I have been alive (i feel totally ol' skool now! lol)  I wasnt really aware of this cast as they have appeared in the time i have been working way too much to party... so, apart from reputations of the ladies (some good some bad) the amount of people that talked the show up - from the venue staff to Trent, made me wary of the fact that it couldnt be "that" good... I had also heard that the show was recycled from four other venues where it had had a run also... was it that good that venues were willing to share the show - or were these performers flogging it to death to anyone that would pay for it???

So... my interest was eventually gained and it was a good excuse to start my birthday celebrations a day early.

The spot shows were funny, entertaining and I even thought that the live singing of Prada Clutch was cutely "bearable"  (kind of reminded me of the old days of Madeleine Von Mantrap belting out a tune as Sydney's "only singing drag queen"...  a few more drinks later and some inaaproriate run ins with boys who thought they had the right to touch my backside without express permission, and it was showtime.

The dreamgurlz show was alas, just what I initially feared... a soundtrack show, with limited adaptation... now thats not a negative, as for that type of show it kicked ass... its just that given the fabulousness of the original soundtrack and the fact that anyone would love the songs, makes it an instant hit...  it just isn't overly "drag" as what i used to love drag for - an ability to make the incredibly comical, diva-ness-ness out of anything and turn it into even MORE of a show... Dreamgurlz is "video clip" drag - replication with "comedy" thrown in where the replication falls soft. (ok - that sounds a tad bitchy, but i AM trying to make a point).

The interesting twists that they did have however were the male cast member, who was girlier than the leading ladies, yet sold a perverted masculinity and comedy styling that the show needed and Tora devouring a hamburger out of a KFC bucket in time with the music... truly a disgusting highlight...  

So, all in all, Showgurlz is a funny yet predictable show - and if you love the soundtrack, you would have a great time... 

In a world first, i ended up at Arq at around 2am and saw one of my favourite's, Mitzi Macintosh battling the crowds to find a new showcast for the Imperial Hotel... funnily enough, there was only ONE contestant - so they automatically went through to the next round... I can't remember the queen's name for the life of me - but she was good.

I couldn't hold out to the production show - but saw the spots, which managed to also include Tora Hymen and Minnie Cooper (what a way to make Thursday night pay gals - good on ya!) and the impeccable drag stylings of Mitzi... it was then off to bed after venturing out to the alley way where the smokers (and most of the cities strange and odd people were hanging out that night) - definitely time to call an end to Thursday's shenanigans... 

The birthday celebrations continued in earnest Friday night, with myself, JP and Marky heading to Mad Mex on Crown Street )and with me being Gluten free - its a total treat to eat out somewhere!)... the food is soooo tasty, and so are the customers... i think we chose it well that night as marky nearly drooled out of his seat.

Then it was off to the Columbian, upstairs, to have more booze and catch up with the gang... from the moment we stepped inside, the photogs were there in force, from the Star Observer snapper, Anne Marie, to other folks who treated us like stars... we headed upstairs where I had a great night catching up with all my friends.

Seeing that venue on a friday night is a real trip... a really mixed, and totally friendly crowd, and to top it off a very funny spot show from my BFF, Maxi Shield... it was just fabbo!

Thats about where my memory of the night ends, as does my birthday adventure...  we headed back to markies and had a few gin and tonics and laughed over YouTube clips that we wanted to post on Guidetogay but as the cold set in at around 2am... JP and I headed home and had a good nights rest....

Thanks to all that made my birthday anniversary a totally brilliant time - heres to next weekend when we celebrate JP's birthday...  god April is fun!