Monday, October 31, 2016

Before I Do: A Legal Guide to Marriage, Gay & Otherwise

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with attorney Elizabeth Schwartz about her best-selling new book “Before I Do: A Legal Guide to Marriage, Gay and Otherwise” published by The New Press. In this must-read book leading gay and lesbian rights attorney Elizabeth Schwartz spells out the range of practical considerations couples should address before tying the knot. She explores the fundamental rights marriage provides and those it does not. With cameos from some of the most prominent LGBT professionals, Schwartz explains all of the implications of marriage from name changes and getting a license to taxes, insurance, Social Security and more. There are also substantial chapters on estate planning, pre-and post-nuptial agreements and organizing finances making “Before I Do” relevant for all couples, young and older and a crucial handbook for anyone considering marriage because as this book maps out, just because you can get married does not mean you should. We talked to Elizabeth about her inspiration for writing “Before I Do: A Legal Guide to Marriage, Gay and Otherwise” and her spin on our LGBT issues.

With the presidential election just days away, when asked what her personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights Schwartz stated, “Right now I’m really focused on this election. I’m really focused on the ways which electing a Democratic president and taking back the Congress, the ways in which that is extremely important on so many levels for the LGBT community, for broader progressive values, for the communities with whom we stand in solidarity. There are so many important aspects to this election up and down the ballot, but certainly as an attorney and activist in the LGBT legal community, I’m extremely focused on our Supreme Court. The statistics show that the next president is likely to appoint up to three Supreme Court Justices just sort of based on the math. Certainly we know we have one vacancy and it’s likely that there will be another two in the next four or eight years. So I say to folks who aren’t sure, or who may not be in love with Hillary, or who think she’s got it on lock and are not worried, or they were Bernie people or they are just not so sure, I say to please just think about the Supreme Court because that is so incredibly important. So yes, four years or eight years are going to go by in a heartbeat but of course the Supreme Court, they’re appointed for life and that’s a long, long time.”

Elizabeth Schwartz has been practicing law since 1997 and is a nationally recognized advocate for the legal rights for our LGBT community. Elizabeth also serves as co-chair of the national board of SAGE (Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders). She is a member of the National Family Law Advisory Council of NCLR and has served as pro bono counsel in several cases that helped overturn Florida's bigoted 1977 ban forbidding gays and lesbians from adopting children. Elizabeth received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pennsylvania in 1993 and her Juris Doctor, cum laude, from the University of Miami in 1997. Elizabeth lives in Miami Florida with her wife writer Lydia Martin.
For More Info: elizabethschwartz.com

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Sandro Isaack Creates “Ava - The Lucky Girl With Two Dads”

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with storyteller Sandro Isaack about his new Kickstarter animation project “Ava - The Lucky Girl With Two Dads”, the sequel to his book “Stork M.I.A.” that was published in 2010. The book tells the story of two dads who get tired of waiting for the stork to bring them a baby. Instead, they decide to find the stork taking them on an adventure around the world which results in gracing them with a beautiful little girl Ava. Now it’s six years later and we have Ava, this fun, smart, determined little girl deciding that she's going to be the first woman president of The United States of America or likely second or third, depending on how history writes itself in the next few weeks, but first she has to figure out how to become president of her second grade class. As innocent as this project appears it’s important for our LGBT community to support Sandro’s project because too many children of same gender couples as well as heterosexual couples are watching cartoons that do not reflect our evolved society. It’s time to introduce kids to a cartoon that features same gender couples and their kids as a regular part of life. We talked to Sandro about his inspiration for “Ava - The Lucky Girl With Two Dads” and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what his personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights and what he would you like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Isaack stated, “It’s the same I have for all civil rights. I want everyone to have opportunities in life and be treated with respect and I think it needs to start as early in life as childhood and that’s where I come in. Most children live a huge chunk of their lives in their imagination. That’s where I want to help by showing we all belong and we can be anything we want to be. That’s why I’m creating a cartoon that features same gender parents and their kids as a natural part of life, not as something special or different and I also want kids to know and understand that they can be anything they want to be especially little girls. The possibilities are endless.

Definitely I would love to see things to be simpler for people to understand that two people that love each other and want to build a family together are a threat to no one; that people being who they are, are a much smaller danger than the violence just trying to control the lives of others and that people understand that The Bible is a book of tales, not a moral manual. It would also be great if separation between church and state became a real thing and not just an idea.”

 Sandro Isaack is a storyteller who started as an actor and can be currently seen in Amazon Studios' Golden Globe winner series, “Mozart in the Jungle” playing Pavel. He's also the author/illustrator of the children's book “Stork M.I.A.” published in 2010. Sandro’s Kickstarter campaign for his animation series “Ava - The Lucky Girl With Two Dads” will only be funded if at least $58,000 is pledged by Friday December 2nd 2016.
For More Info: kickstarter.com

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Country Artist Brandon Stansell Sings OUT (AUDIO)

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with country artist Brandon Stansell about his new EP and music video “Slow Down”. Stansell brings a fresh face to the country music scene and there’s more that meets the eye with this crooner with Nashville roots breaking into the epicenter of his "California Country" sound. He is also navigating the path of an openly gay country artist. Though Brandon’s not the first to chart these waters, he is one of few people in the industry willing to lay everything out for the listener and the result is an honest, beautiful musical experience. “Slow Down” co-written with Mylen, was produced by Nashville-based producer, writer and guitarist Erik Halbig. Stansell met Erik a few years ago through mutual friend Ty Herndon who is also featured on the track. Director Trent Atkinson once again joined his team directing the “Slow Down” music video building on the cinematic scope after their first collaborative work “Dear John” which was released in early 2016. We talked to Brandon about his inspiration for “Slow Down” and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what his personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights and what he would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Stansell stated, “I think that really the first step for anyone is just being honest and being genuine to who you are. For me that is I write and sing country music so I think it is my responsibility to be genuine in the music I put out there and how I portray myself. I think it’s really important that you see me with someone that I would be with and that is a man. If it’s a song about heartbreak or breakup or anything that we country people like to write about the visual is genuine to the artist. I think that is the first step for anyone.

Well I think over the past few years we’ve made great strides thanks to people better than I and I am so thankful and grateful for that and benefit from those things. I think we still have a long way to go and I would love to figure out my part to help in that. One of the things that I think about is the fact that we still have states including my home state where people just like me can be fired from their jobs just for loving the people they love and I think that is grossly unfair and un-American and not right and something I would love to see changed. I came out as a 22 year old man and at the time was working at a job where I didn’t know how my boss felt about me being gay. They didn’t know and I really relied on my paycheck like most people do. I don’t think that anyone should have to go through fear of coming out to their boss for fear that they are going to lose their jobs. It is a horrible feeling and experience and something I personally had to go through and something I just want to shield others from ever having to experience. So I would love to see that pushed forward and make this something that people in the LGBT community don’t have to worry about anymore.”

Brandon Stansell grew up in Tennessee about an hour away from Nashville. He spent five years living in Nashville before moving to New York and then eventually landing in Los Angeles California where he is based. “Slow Down” is available for purchase via iTunes. 
For More Info: brandonstansell.com

Monday, October 3, 2016

Playwright Peter Darney New Work “5 Guys Chillin”

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with UK writer-director Peter Darney about his award winning play “5 Guys Chillin” that opened September 27th for fourteen performances through October 9th at the SoHo Playhouse in NYC. Darney script was born from more than 50 hours of interviews with guys contacted through apps like Grindr about their experience with the toxic exploration of meth driven gay sex parties. From surgeons to students this is an original look into a drug-fuelled, hedonistic, highly secret world of Chem-Sex, Grindr and instant gratification. The resulting play comes with unexpected humorous perspectives as well as brutally hard-hitting moments. The play also tackles crucial issues like HIV status, STDs and the less glamorous side of this recreation activity that may seem foreign to some but for others this kind of party will be painfully familiar. “5 Guys Chillin” is winner of the Brighton Fringe Award for best LGBTQ theatre 2016, winner of the Doric Wilson Intercultural Dialogue Award at the Dublin International Gay Theatre Festival and winner of Boyz Scene Award for best London play. We talk to Peter about his inspiration for “5 Guys Chillin” and his spin on our LGBT issues.

Being from the United Kingdom when asked what his personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights and what he would like to see happen for LGBT equality in his country Darney stated, “I’d say that my commitment is more to fighting discrimination of any kind. Through my art, through my theatre I shine a light on untold stories to make people think about things, to make people get out of their own box, get out of their own comfortable norm and think about other people. So I’d say it’s more about that than specifically targets towards LGBT civil rights for me although obviously I have worked on a lot of plays that are trying to push those rights forward but inequality in general and ignorance in general is what I try to fight.

(In the UK) I would like to see people able and this is starting already in some cases, people able to come out at a very early age. I would like to see people not have to go through school denying their sexuality. I would like there to be open dialogue and education within our school system and our community group so that young people do not have to grow up holding a secret that makes them feel bad and guilty and ashamed and different and don’t have to form a lie behind every relationship that they have through this secret as they grow up because I think ultimately that is what we need in order to be able to achieve a better or happier level of intimacy as adults.”

 Peter Darney was trained at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. His credits include: Signal Failure (Soho Playhouse-Off Broadway 6 week run). Kindness- BBC Radio 4 (Pick of the week- the Independent), Frank Sent Me (Soho Theatre/ The Underbelly/ Theatre 503), Githa (St James Theatre, W/E and York Theatre Royal), Pinocchio (Sutton Theatres), Tom’s Midnight Garden (Orchard Dean: open air production), 6 Degree’s (Soho Theatre: Main House, Edward II (The Rose Theatre), Mysterious Skin (Gilded Balloon, The Drill Hall, Teacher’s Club, Dublin), Arden of Faversham (The Rose Theatre) and Beautiful Thing (BAC). Peter is also a recipient of the prestigious BBC Carlton Hob’s Award. “5 Guys Chillin”will return to the King's Head Theatre from the October 15th to November 5th in London, UK.
For More Info & Tix…