Sunday, August 23, 2009

Cult Filmmakers George & Mike Kuchar

In this audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson talks with B Ruby Rich, American Scholar and Film Critic about Director Jennifer M. Kroot’s documentary “It Came From Kuchar.” Long before YouTube, there were the outrageous, no-budget movies of underground, filmmaking twins George and Mike Kuchar. George and Mike grew up in the Bronx in the 1950’s. At the age of twelve, they became obsessed with Hollywood melodramas and began making their own homespun melodramas with their aunt’s 8mm camera. They used their friends and family as actors and their Bronx neighborhood as their set. Early Kuchar titles featured in this film include “I Was A Teenage Rumpot” and “Born of the Wind”.

In the early 1960’s, alongside Andy Warhol, the Kuchar brothers shaped the New York underground film scene. Known as the “8mm Mozarts”, their films were noticeably different than other underground films of the time. They were wildly funny, but also human and vulnerable. Their films have inspired many filmmakers, including John Waters, Buck Henry, Atom Egoyan, Guy Maddin and Wayne Wang (all are interviewed in this film). Despite having high profile fans, the Kuchars remain largely unknown because they are only ambitious to make movies, not to be famous.

“It Came From Kuchar” interweaves the brothers’ lives, their admirers, a history of underground film and a “greatest hits” of Kuchar clips into a mesmerizing stream of consciousness tale. For More Info: KucharFilm.com

B Ruby Rich is a professor of community studies and social documentation at University of California, Santa Cruz. She is credited with coining the term "New Queer Cinema."

Monday, August 10, 2009

Congresswoman Baldwin's LGBT Forecast

In the conclusion of our exclusive audio interview with openly gay Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis), Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson asks the essential questions about the future of our LGBT civil rights in the Obama administration. When asked what progress Obama has made for LGBT civil rights since he’s been in office Baldwin honestly answered “There has been some encouragement and some setbacks.” In June Obama pledged his support for Baldwin’s Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act during the signing of an Executive Memorandum permitting domestic partners to purchase long-term care insurance and allowing employees to use their sick leave to care for domestic partners and non-biological, non-adopted children. At this signing Obama also stated that he would personally like to see the Domestic Marriage Act (DOMA) repealed.
The Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD) and Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley have both filed individual lawsuits against the U.S. government challenging the constitutionality of DOMA to seek federal marriage benefits for gay and lesbian couples who have legally married in Massachusetts since 2004. Baldwin expressed that she thought these actions were well-conceived strategies. As for “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” in the military, an inclusive gender identity Employment Non-Discrimination Act and the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Bill, Obama has also called on Congress to support this legislation. Baldwin states that we should see motion on these bills in the Fall.
So, is this a matter of patience or are our LGBT civil rights being dragged through the bureaucratic system at a snail’s pace? In either case, this is definitely a crucial time to stay on top of the Obama administration to ensure they stay true to their commitment to equality for all Americans.
Congresswoman Baldwin Interview on Health Reform

Sunday, August 9, 2009

National LGBTI Health Summit '09 (Audio)

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson talks with Pete Subkoviak, Policy Associate at the AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) where he works on several legislative and advocacy initiatives. Subkoviak runs AFC’s online outreach and advocacy projects and also works on many HIV-prevention programs that target the African-American, LGBT and other at-risk communities. The mission of the AIDS Foundation of Chicago is to lead the fight against HIV/AIDS and improve the lives of people affected by the epidemic. Founded in 1985 by community activists and physicians, the AIDS Foundation of Chicago is a local and national leader in the fight against HIV/AIDS. AFC collaborates with community organizations to develop and improve HIV/AIDS services. Subkoviak also chatted about Obama’s commitment to LGBT issues during his years as an Illinois Senator and recent criticism.
AFC is one of the main organizers of the 2009 National LGBTI Health Summit that is taking place at the Chicago Hilton and Towers August 14th -18th. Subkoviak shares his enthusiasm about this year’s workshops that will be offered and the array of topics that will be covered from the aging of the Stonewall generation to new HIV prevention technologies. There will also be workshops on intimate partner violence, transgender health care, biphobia, body image, club drugs, anti-smoking initiatives, sexual racism and bareback sex to Qigong, yoga and meditation.
For More Info: 2009lgbtihealth.org
AIDS Foundation of Chicago:aidschicago.org


Saturday, August 1, 2009

Celebrity Chef Shares the Dish (Audio)

In this intimate audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson talks with Chef Rossi about the wildest event she’s ever catered for her celebrity clientele. Rossi, writer/painter/celebrity chef is a modern Renaissance woman entrepreneur whose business is flourishing during these challenging economic times. How does she do it? In the culinary world Rossi is the owner and executive chef of The Raging Skillet, one of New York City’s best and wildest caterers. She's been called “a new breed of rebel anti-caterer” by the The New York Times, and “eclectic and off the wall” by the Zagats review. She has also been featured on The Food Network. As a celebrity chef Rossi’s events have satisfied many illustrious guests, including Bill Clinton, Glen Close, Whoopie Goldberg, Rosie Perez, Cher, Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon. As a writer, Rossi has been a features writer for several publications, such as The Daily News, Time Out New York and The New York Post. Her literary work has been published in McSweeneys and she has been the cult hit columnist for Bust magazine for 11 years and running. Rossi’s book of edible memoirs entitled “The Devil and Mrs. Goldstein" is near completion. As a painter Rossi’s works have been exhibited at The Provincetown Art Association Museum, Studio 429 in Soho, Cave Canem (NYC), Bob (NYC), The Cork Gallery in Avery Fisher Hall, the Lawrence Gallery, Long Island City Art Frenzy and The DNA Studio Gallery. She also co-founded The Lost and Found gallery in Crown Heights Brooklyn and is the founder of the Artist’s Room in the Lower East side of New York City where her one woman show “Fusilli”is currently on view. Rossi is openly gay and a strong supporter of LGBT civil rights.
More Rossi @ RossiRant.com

View Our Historic Short on Gay Marriage