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Rob Manser

Rob Manser

Guidetogay.com is the leading travel, news and social network for the LGBTQI community.  Join us on social media.

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It's Australia's election day on Saturday - so who was against same sex marriage?

Well, it's that time again for Aussies to head to the polls and decide which party/parties will run the country for the next few years. One major change that happened for our community in the last session of parliament, was the legalisation of Same Sex Marriage. 

Whilst the conservatives were in power when it happened, Australians suffered through a divisive and unnecessary postal survey which would not guarantee the will of the people would be reflected in the vote by parliament.

The current, non-elected Prime Minister, Scott Morrison abstained from the vote. Whilst pressed recently at a press conference, he states he now backs same-sex marriage, but as a confirmed evangelical, he refused to comment on whether he believed LGBTQIA people would go to hell.

When making up your mind this Saturday - if you have not voted already - check out the list of politicians who DID support our community and those that did not.

The ABC has a full list of those who voted for and against or abstained from the marriage equality vote.

JUDITH LIGHT TO RECEIVE 2019 ISABELLE STEVENSON TONY AWARD

Judith Light to Be Recognized for her Advocacy to End HIV/AIDS and Her Support for LGBTQ+ & Human Rights

 

The Tony Awards® Administration Committee has announced today that two time Tony Award (Other Desert Cities and The Assembled Parties) and two time Emmy Award-winning actress Judith Light will receive this year’s Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award.

 

The Isabelle Stevenson Award is presented annually to a member of the theatre community who has made a substantial contribution of volunteered time and effort on behalf of one or more humanitarian, social service or charitable organizations. Ms. Light will receive the Award for her impassioned advocacy to end HIV/AIDS and her support for LGBTQ+ and human rights.  

 

“To be so generously acknowledged by The American Theatre Wing, The Broadway League and the Tony Awards, and to be included with these outstanding individuals who have received this honor before me, has been one of the most extraordinary gifts I have ever received in my life. The HIV/AIDS and LGBTQ+ communities are inspirations and demonstrations of how to be and live in the world; courageous, honorable, and uplifting. They inspire me and it is my privilege to be of service to them. I am humbled by this recognition from my theatre family, whom I so respect, honor, and love,” said Ms. Light. 

 

Since the early days of the AIDS pandemic, Light has reacted to the divisive response towards the LGTBQ+ community by speaking out and aligning herself with numerous organizations, including Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, GLAAD, NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt, Project Angel Food, Elton John AIDS Foundation, among many others.

 

Light’s commitment to each cause has come in various forms throughout the years. In 1993, she spoke at the LGBT March in Washington. In 1995, Light rode her bike from San Francisco to Los Angeles in the California AIDS Ride to support HIV/AIDS Programs for the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center. In 1996 she joined Elizabeth Taylor, who served as grand marshal, at the National Mall in Washington DC for the display of the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt. In 1998, GLAAD recognized Light with the Vision Award for her dedication to fight HIV/AIDS alongside the LGBTQ+ community. Light traveled to South Africa for the AIDS walk to raise awareness for on the ground care in South Africa and research in the United States. Countless times, Light has lent her voice at Outfest, the LGBTQ+-oriented film festival in Los Angeles, and she sits on the honorary board of Point Foundation, which is the National LGBTQ+ Scholarship Fund.  She has participated in Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS Gypsy of the Year competition and Broadway Bares.

 

She continues to push boundaries with her roles in Jill Solloway’s Transparent (Amazon Prime); Ryan Murphy’s The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story (FX); the film Save Me, written by her husband Robert Desiderio, in which Light produced and starred. The film explored the subject of reparative therapy in a way that had rarely been done before; and The Ryan White Story (ABC).  These roles continue to create conversations about prejudice and bigotry towards HIV/AIDS and LGBTQ+ communities.

 

“Judith is one of the most beloved members of our theatre community,” said Charlotte St. Martin, President of The Broadway League and Heather Hitchens, President of the American Theatre Wing.  “Her talent is as big as her heart and spirit – and her tireless commitment to HIV/AIDS organizations and to the LGBTQ community, are unparalleled.  We are honored to salute Judith at this year’s Tony Awards!”

 

Judith Light is known for her extensive body of television, film, and stage work. This fall she stars in the musical finale of Transparent, Amazon Prime’s Golden Globe–winning series, created by Jill Soloway, for which she received a Golden Globe nomination and multiple Emmy and Critics’ Choice nominations as well as in Ryan Murphy’s Netflix series The Politician with Bette Midler and Ben Platt. Last year, her role in Ryan Murphy’s FX series The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story garnered her an Emmy nomination and a Critics Choice nomination.

Light stars with Alec Baldwin and Mandy Patinkin in Before You Know It which premiered at Sundance and was picked up by distributor 1091; as well as Ms. White Light, that premiered at SXSW; and Lifetime’s Nellie Bly with Christina Ricci. Upcoming, Light can be seen in film Hot Air with Steve Coogan. 

In 2017, Light she starred in God Looked Away with Al Pacino at the Pasadena Playhouse. In 2016, the play, All the Ways to Say I Love You (MCC) garnered her a Drama League Award nomination. For the Broadway production of Thérèse Raquin with Kiera Knightly, Light won an Outer Critics Circle Award.

In 2012 and 2013, Light won two consecutive Tony and Drama Desk awards for her performances in Other Desert Cities and The Assembled Parties; these two performances dubbed her the first actress in nearly two decades to win consecutive Tonys.

For the Pulitzer Prize winning play at MCC Theatre, Wit, she was awarded the Helen Hayes and Eliot Norton awards. In 2011, Light received a Tony nomination for her role as Marie Lombardi in Lombardi, directed by Thomas Kail.

Light starred in and produced the film, Save Me, written by husband Robert Desiderio which premiered at Sundance in 2007. The year before, Light could be seen in the indie film Ira and Abby.   Selected TV includes: “Ugly Betty” (Emmy Nomination), “Law and Order, SVU”, “Dallas”, “Who’s the Boss”, “One Life to Live” (Two consecutive Emmys).

For additional information on Judith Light’s advocacy work, please visit: https://www.judithlight.com/human-rights-aids-awareness.

 

The American Theatre Wing’s 73rd Annual Tony Awards, hosted by James Corden, will air on the CBS Television Network on Sunday, June 9, 2019 (8:00-11:00 PM, ET/delayed PT) live from Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The Tony Awards, which honors theatre professionals for distinguished achievement on Broadway, has been broadcast on CBS since 1978. The Tony Awards are presented by The Broadway League and the American Theatre Wing.

 

The Nominations for the 2019 Tony Awards will be announced live, by Bebe Neuwirth and Brandon Victor Dixon, on Tuesday, April 30, 2019 from the New York City Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. The event will be streamed on Facebook LIVE (at Facebook.com/TheTonyAwards), and covered by CBS This Morning at 8:30am ET.

Follow the Tony Awards on Twitter and Instagram for real-time updates on the nominees as they are announced (@TheTonyAwards). The entire announcement will also be available on TonyAwards.com after the event.

A list of Sydney bars and clubs shut down due to the lockout laws

Just to keep it fresh in your mind - thousands of jobs, experiences and a vibrant night-time economy has been lost since the Libs introduced the lockout laws to "punish" one punch attacks. and whilst these dickheads who come into the city for a night out don't know how to behave the city and its villages are struggling to survive.

Everyone from drag queens to DJs to graphic designers and venues are suffering harshly.  Here is a list of the venues closed because of these draconian laws.

  • Backroom (Potts Point)
  • Soho (Kings Cross)
  • Hugo's Lounge (Kings Cross)
  • The Bourbon (Kings Cross)
  • The Flinders (Oxford Street precinct)
  • Trademark (Kings Cross)
  • Bank Hotel (Kings Cross)
  • Q-Bar (Darlinghurst)
  • Exchange Hotel (Darlinghurst)
  • Hot Damn (Darlinghurst)
  • World Bar 
  • La Cita (Darling Harbour)
  • Bar Century (George Street)
  • Goodgod Small Club (Chinatown)
  • The Goldfish Bar (Kings Cross)
  • Beach Haus (Kings Cross)
  • The Cuban Place (Sydney)
  • Jimmy Liks (Potts Point)
  • Grasshopper (Sydney)
  • Absinthe Salon (Surry Hills)
  • Mr Fox (Surry Hills)
  • Swanson Hotel (Erskineville)
  • The Basement (Circular Quay)
  • Love Machine (Potts Point)
  • Dream Girls (Potts Point)
  • Porky's Nite Club (Potts Point)
  • Midnight Shift (Darlinghurst)
  • Moulin Rouge (Kings Cross)
  • Tunnel Nightclub (Potts Point)

 

Is the new RuPaul doll worth $204.33aud?

She is an icon and a real queen for the ages, but the new RuPaul Doll that was shamelessly plugged on this weeks episode of Drag Race from Infinity Toys works out to be 204.33 aussie dohlahs, and thats before shipping.

She is magnificent in her barbie glory, but its apparent from the doll pix that her wig was not a "wigs by Vanity" - that hairline leaves a lot to be desired.

I wanted to buy one so I could go all "Just Jack" like he did with his Cher doll - but this breaks the bank...  between paying for tickets to drag race promoted gigs for all the gurls to this its starting to stretch the wallet thin.

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Sissy that credit card.

Ru's Doll includes:

 

  • 12.5-inch/1:6 scale, fully articulated, vinyl collectible doll, rooted hair and delicately hand-applied eyelashes;
  • Elaborate micro-sequined stage gown designed by Jason Wu;
  • Shoes;
  • Earrings;
  • Miniature RuPaul "chocolate" bar accessory;
  • Miniature "makeup" accessory set;
  • Miniature RuPaul "book" accessory
  • Pair of hands with long manicured nails (new hand sculpt!);
  • Alternate pair of grip hands (new hand sculpt!);
  • Doll stand;
  • Certificate of authenticity.

 

 

Sashay you pay??? 

 

 

BBC TV star to support BGF at Mardi Gras parade

She has topped the charts over multiple decades and is the face of prides across Europe. Now she is heading back home to support Bobby Goldsmith Foundation as they walk up the parade route for the 41st Mardi Gras parade.

With thanks to Bear Bar and BGF, the parade entry will be "GLORIA"ous and holding out for a hero when Kelly take to the stage at the Burdekin Hotel on Parade night. 

You can support BGF by buying a raffle ticket.

 

Alfie Arcuri kicks off Jaguars Mardi Gras campaign

Cut to Taylor Square, where cafes have come and gone and billboards reign supreme.  Throw in DJ Victoria Anthony, drag star Rhuma Hazzet, and some awesome Gayle Beer and Cider, and what do you have? A perfect platform for a media launch to celebrate Jaguar's support of Queer Screen and their #fitforaqueen campaign.

Media and glitterati were invited to the Taylor Square space, where we mingled and got to hear Alfie belt out a few tunes. That boy is not only talented, but he is easy on the eye! (We do apologize to Alfie as our resident snapper cornered him to talk all things Eurovision for most of the night!)

It was a fun event, and a good way to showcase the support Jaguar has giving the lgbtqia community globally... it's support like this that makes a massive difference, its not a cash grab - it's a real and genuine connection to the community in which a company operates.

Sephora came on board too to give some drag makeovers, and the Jag CEO was looking fierce in his bright red kissable lipstick and headdress... 

 

This weekend, the Jag Queen Service Centre will be popping up on Oxford Street for a two-day programme ahead of the Mardi Gras Parade.

 

Celebrating 2019’s spirit of inclusion, and Jaguar’s exciting new partnership with Queer Screen’s Mardi Gras Film Festival, the Jag Queen Service Centre will host Australia’s most celebrated queens this Friday 1st March, who have been invited to participate in Jaguar’s first-ever Jag Queen Catwalk Contest.

 

In the ultimate celebration of self-expression, fiercely competitive participants will be given the opportunity to strut their stuff – in looks inspired by the spirit of the Jaguar cat – for the chance to win a trip to London Pride in July 2019.

 

On Parade Day, the Jag Queen Service Centre will be truly fit for a queen; a one stop shop for festivalgoers, offering touch-ups of lippy or sparkle, and full drag-formations in partnership with Sephora.

 

At both events, Jaguar will be collecting donations for Twenty10, Australia’s longest running LGBTQI+ charity which supports at-risk youth (12-25), their families and communities.

 

A celebration of gender and sexual diversity, the Jag Queen Service Centre will be a safe and welcoming place, true to Queer Screen’s 2019 festival theme of ‘embrace your story’.

 

Jag Queen Service Centre

Saturday 2nd March, 12.00pm – 6.00pm

191 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

alfie acuri jaguar

US Supreme Court Allows Trans Military Ban to go ahead

Justices of the supreme court won’t hear arguments but block lower court orders making one of the most unpopular Presidents in US history's repeated push to ban trans people from openly serving in the armed forces.

The justices, voting 5-4 Tuesday, put on hold lower court decisions that had blocked the administration’s planned ban from taking effect. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan dissented. Neither side provided any explanation.

The court stopped short of agreeing to hear arguments on an expedited basis, as the administration sought. But by letting the ban take effect, the court gave the administration a "major victory" and hinted the justices ultimately will uphold the restrictions.

Transgender troops have been serving openly since June 2016, when President Barack Obama’s administration began lifting a longstanding prohibition. Opponents of the ban say reinstating it would violate the Constitution’s equal protection clause.

Estimates vary of how many transgender people serve in the military. A 2016 Rand study estimated that between 1,320 and 6,630 transgender people were on active duty. The Mattis report said that since June 2016, about 900 people on active duty have been diagnosed with gender dysphoria -- the medical term for a conflict between one’s physical gender and the gender with which the person identifies.

The report also said that a 2016 survey of the military found that almost 9,000 people identified as transgender.

Next Heaven Social Dance to pay tribute to one of its founders, Ian Stumbles.

He made a huge difference to the lives of many of us, and was an integral part of the family that puts on the monthly event "HEAVEN" in Sydney's western suburbs...  a monthly event and lifeline to the LGBTQIA community out west, Ian was the coordinator to beat them all.

His genuine humor, love for life and his friends and his keen eye for a good drag talent has helped launch some global superstars from the west of Sydney that otherwise may not have been seen or given the chance to shine in the way they do.

Heaven's Feb 9 event will be a tribute night to Ian - so we are asking all of our family to come together and share the memories, the love and the glitter that was Ian Stumbles.

Come along and be a part of it - even if you didn't know Ian personally, our community needs to show the love - so we hope to see you there!

View Event Info here

What makes a great celebrant? One year since Australia changes law from man and woman to "two people".

It’s been a full year since the passing of Marriage Equality in Australia – and GayWeddingGuide.com service providers have been making dreams come true all year! In this series, we will be chatting to some of the amazing service providers that don’t discriminate, and spread love all around our great country… we got to catch up with the one and only Shona Tough from Aye Do Weddings to chat about the amazing people that become celebrants, what they do and the impact a year of equality has had on the profession.

Shelly and Rach with son sm 

Hi Shona! Thanks for chatting with us – so what it that made you want to become a wedding celebrant?

 

I was looking for a career change after 20 years in Senior marketing roles I had enough of being stuck in an office all day.  I love public speaking and have always had an interest in theatre and drama.  I was invited to a wedding in the UK,  an outdoor festival wedding, glamping and dancing under the stars.  I loved the vibe and thought it would be great to be part of such a special occasion.  I decided to take the course in 2014 and qualified in 2015.   I felt like I could bring a young, modern and fresh approach to being a celebrant.  

 

So bringing such a fresh approach to the profession - what is your style as a wedding celebrant?

 

It depends on the couple, it’s their special day and I am there to facilitate it and make sure it is everything they wish for. I listen to each couple and understand what would be appropriate to meet their needs. I like to tell their story and bring out their personalities.  I am a fun and friendly person and that comes through in my ceremonies.  I have had plenty laughs and smiles from guests, I am never too serious, it's a special celebration so it should be fun and friendly (or funky and flamboyant as one couple asked for!)

 

How do you see the differences between same-sex couple and heterosexual couple's ceremonies?

 

The same-sex couples are very emotional because a lot of these couples have waited many years to be able to make their commitment. The older couples generally have family members that they want to involve and this makes it really special.   I have had gay men being given away by their daughters, a lesbian couple involving their daughter, one couple who had their young niece and nephew as witnesses.   These family members fought long and hard for equality so to be part of the day is an honour and quite emotional for everyone.

 

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For the full article, visit our sister website www.gayweddingguide.com.au

 

ANZ and Mardi Gras dish out grants

Community members and groups across the country have been awarded LGBTQI community grants as part of the inaugural grants program; ANZ & Sydney Mardi Gras community grants.

18 grants have been distributed across Australia, from the Cairns AIDs Council at the top of the country, right down to Adelaide, where a queer formal is being coordinated by Minus18.

Additionally, an LGBTQI refugee support group and a historian aiming to preserve LGBTQI history are amongst the recipients of the grants which are valued up to $10,000 with the aim support the work of LGBTQI not-for-profit community organisations, charities and individuals.

One of the recipients of the inaugural grants program is Heather Grace Jones, who is Project Officer of STARTTS, a NSW-based specialist non-profit organisation that provides culturally appropriate and cutting edge psychological treatment and support to refugees.Heather has been spearheading the organisation’s new Rainbow Refugees project and is thrilled to be able to further their work thanks to the grant: “Many of the LGBTQI refugee community have fled countries where sexual and gender diversity is punishable by death and upon arriving in Australia, require support to rebuild their lives and own their identity. This grant is extremely important as it means we will be able  to create a safe space in Sydney’s western suburbs for all LGBTQI refugees to feel welcome and connected.”

The partnership between ANZ and Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras has spanned over 12 years, the grants program is an extension of the partnership beyond official festivities and ensures ongoing support of LGBTQI communities and projects.

Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras CEO, Terse Casu, said: “After receiving over one hundred submissions, we are reminded of the incredible and important work being done within the LGBTQI community. We are so pleased to be able to make a difference in the lives of many of our community members across the country and announce the winners of the much deserved grants thanks to the ongoing support of ANZ.”

Chief Financial Officer and Executive Sponsor of the ANZ Pride Network Michelle Jablko said: “As a supporter of diversity, inclusion and respect, ANZ is proud to provide financial support to 18 community groups and individuals across the country.

“From sporting clubs and choirs to mental health support services, there are so many ways people are working to better the lives of the LGBTQI community members.  We look forward to seeing how these grants make a real difference to Australians far and wide,” she said.

The ANZ & Sydney Mardi Gras Community Grants program was developed to provide financial funding for a wide range of purposes including education and training, community development and creation, arts and culture – anything under the rainbow.

ANZ & Sydney Mardi Gras Community Grants recipients:

 

  • Robert Bernard French
  • Samuel Leighton Dore
  • Dunghutti Elders Council (Aboriginal Corporation) RNTBC
  • First Nations Rainbow
  • STARTTS
  • Ten Forty Matrix Inc
  • Twenty10 inc GLCS NSW
  • Queensland AIDS Council, Cairns
  • Cairns Transgender Adult Support Group
  • Leichhardt Community Group Inc.
  • Minus18
  • Dexter Rosengrave
  • Working It Out
  • Headspace
  • Residency Projects
  • Assisting Your Life To Achieve (AYLA Inc.)
  • Gay and Lesbian Singers of WA
  • Perth Pythons Hockey Club Inc. (auspice for Perth Pride Sports Festival)

 

For more information please visit www.mardigras.org.au/grants

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