Monday, December 23, 2013

Kate Clinton Reviews LGBT Progress In 2013 & More

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Kate Clinton, our favorite lesbian political humorist. As we head into the New Year it’s time to reflect on 2013 and chat about what 2014 will bring our LGBT community. This has definitely been the year of marriage equality for our community with US Supreme Court ruling Proposition 8 and DOMA unconstitutional. Perhaps the state-by-state marriage equality concept may be working faster than we thought because within a few days after talking to Kate, New Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled in favor of gay marriage and in Utah a Federal judge found the state’s ban of gay and lesbian marriages unconstitutional. However, as we move forward with LGBT equality in America, countries like Russia, Uganda, India and even Australia have implemented anti gay laws. We talked to Kate about these tribulations and her spin on our LGBT civil rights.

When asked what she would you like to see happen for LGBT Civil Rights in 2014 Clinton stated, “I think we really need to work and be more cognizant of trans issues. You know be they immigration issues, be they imprisonment issues, I think that we can in Obama’s last years, we can really push agencies to just make changes. You know, do executive orders to say that when a trans person is put in jail, if it’s a woman you don’t put that trans person into jail with men. That’s just a recipe for rape. I think that there are a lot of agencies throughout the government that are ready to have some really simple ideas that President Obama through executive order or whatever, can just put into effect. That’s the kind of thing that I would love to see. I know places like GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network) and the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force have really been working hard with agencies throughout the government to make that kind of change. I hope they can do it before we lose the support of President Obama; just because he’s leaving office, not that he’s changing his mind.”

Clinton is also very involved with LPAC (Lesbian Political Action Committee) conceptualized by her partner Urvashi Vaid and founded in July 2012 by committed activists and donors to positively influence the current political and social landscape in this country. LPAC’s agenda is to give lesbians a real and meaningful seat at the political table. Currently Kate is working on a new book and has revealed the name of her new 2014 national tour #KATECLINTON2014 coming to Houston, Boston, Boulder and Provincetown with additional cities to be added soon.
For More Info: kateclinton.com

Monday, December 16, 2013

Gay Activist & Producer Christin Mell Speaks OUT

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Christin Mell, Executive Producer and CEO of tello Films that focuses on stories for our lesbian community. Christin is proud to be one of the Executive Producers and the distributor of "Nikki & Nora", the first un-aired network pilot to be re-imagined as a digital web-series premiering on December 22nd. “Nikki & Nora” follows New Orleans locals Nikki Beaumont (Liz Vassey) and Nora Delaney (Christina Cox) former NOPD cops turned private investigators. They navigate the channels of their personal life together alongside their dedication to uncovering the truth in a city that really likes to keep its secrets. We talked to Christin about her web-series "Nikki & Nora" and her spin on our LGBT civil rights.

When asked what her personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights Mell stated, “Illinois just passed equal marriage which was so exciting and my wife and I have been very strong supporters. My wife (Deb Mell) is a politician here in Chicago. She was the first openly lesbian to be elected to the Illinois State Legislature and she’s now serving as an Alderman. She’s also the first open lesbian to be an Alderman for the city of Chicago and so on the house floor, my wife announced our engagement. At the time, civil union wasn’t even an option in Illinois but Iowa had equal marriage. So this was the first time someone who was a lesbian got up and announced a marriage for a gay couple. That really prompted a lot of discussion and a lot of people started to talk about it. At least in Illinois, civil unions passed first. So the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun Times both had editorials in favor of gay marriage and then Deb and I were featured on the cover of the Sun Times after we did get married because it was the first openly gay legislator to get married. We really had the opportunity to talk about the inequality that was happening. Here my wife can make laws and represent people in her home state of Illinois, but we had to go to Iowa in order to get married. It really sparked a dialogue for people here and real recognition of how weird that was that there wasn’t equality in our own state. We were so happy when civil unions passed and as I mentioned just recently gay marriage passed. The governor signed it into law and it starts the end of June. So we’ve been very committed and very open about our relationship. My wife had breast cancer and thank goodness we married and civil unions were recognized in Illinois because if anything happened I was there to legally make decisions and ‘in sickness and in health’ is a really serious concern and everyone should have those rights and opportunities. So we’ve been very active in the fight for equal marriage.”

Christin Mell has produced eight projects and just as many in various levels of pre-production. In January of 2013 OneMoreLesbian.com and tellofilms.com merged as a digital media powerhouse that produces stories for the lesbian community.
For More Info: onemorelesbian.com/tello

Monday, December 9, 2013

Michael Petry Author, Artist & Gay Activist Speaks OUT

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Michael Petry, author, artist and Director of the Museum of Contemporary Art in London about his new book “Nature Morte: Contemporary Artists Reinvigorate the Still-Life Tradition”. “Nature Morte” reveals how leading artists of the 21st century are reinventing still life, a genre traditionally associated with 16th and 17th century Masters. Among the artists represented in the book are John Currin, Saara Ekström, Elmgreen & Dragset, Renata Hegyi, Damien Hirst, David Hockney, Gary Hume, Jeff Koons, McDermott & McGough, Beatriz Milhazes, Gabriel Orozco, Marc Quinn, Sam Taylor-Wood and Cy Twombly. On December 17th, the Sundaram Tagore Gallery at 547 West 27th Street in New York City will be hosting a book party event for “Nature Morte” from 6P to 8P. Petry and the New York-based artists who appear in the book will be in attendance. We talked to Michael about his new book and his spin on our LGBT issues.

Originally from Texas, Michael has lived in London since 1981. When asked what it’s like living in the UK since the passage of the Equality Act in 2010 Petry stated, “I would first say that I don’t know that we have full LGBT rights in the UK. I mean a group called Stonewall definitely would say that there’s still a lot of work to fight for but in comparison to what’s going on in the States, yes it’s easier to say we have full equality. One of the things that just happened is we have an Olympic Diver Tom Daley who just came out and fortunately it was not that traumatic for him, but he was definitely suffering from online troll behavior in some people making really bad comments about him. He’s got a TV show coming out soon and I think he just wanted to put to bed that kind of bullying. I think for those of us in the West it’s important to remember even when you have legal rights that doesn’t necessarily mean that your life is going to be a ‘bowl of cherries’ but equally it’s a darn sight better than most people have in Africa and of course Russia and lots of other places. The second thing is I have been involved with so many aspects of LGBT history over the years whether it’s to do with HIV/AIDS, preservation of historical information or writing specifically about work made by our community. I’m 53 years-old and I’ve been active as an adult for over thirty years.”

Michael Petry graduated Rice University in Houston, received his Masters from London Guildhall University and has a Doctor in Arts from Middlesex University. Petry has authored numerous books since 1994 including “Hidden Histories: 20th Century Male Same Sex Lovers In The Visual Arts” in 2004, which was the first comprehensive survey of its kind. His one man show The Touch of the Oracle at the Palm Springs Art Museum in 2012 was accompanied by a ten year career review book distributed by Thames & Hudson which is also the publisher of his new book “Nature Morte: Contemporary Artists Reinvigorate the Still-Life Tradition”.
For More Info: michaelpetry.net

Monday, December 2, 2013

“America’s Got Talent” Jonathan Allen Speaks OUT

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with singer Jonathan Allen who touched our hearts singing his way into the semi-finals on “America’s Got Talent”. When Jonathan first took the stage before delivering a stunning performance of "Por Ti Volare" he announced that he was kicked out of his parent’s home when he turned 18 because he was gay. This performance has been called the most emotional audition ever in the show’s history. Since the show wrapped, Jonathan has become a YouTube sensation with over 7 million views and counting. Allen will make his L.A. debut at Rockwell Table and Stage on Wednesday, December 18th. We talked to Jonathan about his music and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what his personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights Allen stated, “My personal commitment isn’t so much to LGBT rights as much as everyone. I just want everyone to be equal and everyone to have a purpose in life. I’ll be working with The Trevor Project soon and I’m launching an organization called “The Personal Stories Project” which I’m very excited about. It’s the power of sharing stories and how that impacts people’s lives and how that kind of gives people hope hearing about other people’s stories and what they’re going through. I think it’s going to be a great organization and I’m really excited.” On the advancement of LGBT Equality in America Jonathan added, “We kind of live in a country where the advancement of LGBT equality has evolved over time. This past year I’m really excited; it seems like its definitely moving forward… I really hope we can become a country where equality is what we’re known for and I really think we can become that.”

Jonathan Allen a Tennessee native has been singing for as long as he can remember in his 21 years. He often used music as a safe place from the daily troubles of his childhood and grew up with a love for classical music, especially Pavarotti. Frequently compared to Josh Groban because of his operatic pipes, Jonathan has now set out to pursue his solo career and is working on a CD that infuses classical music with pop and dance music. His debut at Rockwell Table and Stage on Wednesday, December 18th in L.A. will include all genres of music including classical, pop and holiday favorites.
For More Info & Tix: jonathanallenmusic.com