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NOVEMBER 9, 2017 Volume 24 Issue 28

Danica Roem makes history as first trans legislator amid a
Democratic wave that could flip
Virginias House of Delegates.

By John Riley

Francis Lee had some personal issues to work out. So he
made a movie called Gods Own Country and in the process
brought gay romance to a whole new level.

Interview by Randy Shulman

Murder on the Orient Express is a fun, if flawed and
unoriginal, adaptation of the Christie classic.

By Rhuaridh Marr

Real LGBTQ News and Entertainment since 1994
Editorial Editor-in-Chief Randy Shulman Art Director Todd Franson Managing Editor Rhuaridh Marr Senior Editor John Riley Contributing Editor Doug Rule
Senior Photographers Ward Morrison, Julian Vankim Contributing Illustrator Scott G. Brooks Contributing Writers Andr Hereford,
Sean Maunier, Troy Petenbrink, Kate Wingfield Webmaster David Uy Production Assistant Julian Vankim
Sales & Marketing Publisher Randy Shulman National Advertising Representative Rivendell Media Co. 212-242-6863 Distribution Manager Dennis Havrilla
Patron Saint Jack Twist Cover Photography Courtesy of Samuel Goldwyn Films

Metro Weekly 1775 I St. NW, Suite 1150 Washington, DC 20006 202-638-6830
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Spanish Showcase
Spains legendary Francisco Hidalgo returns to Galas Flamenco festival with a U.S. Premiere

REAK OUT THE CASTANETS! GALAS 13TH ANNUAL menco style. Lopez notes that the festivals longtime curator,
Fuego Flamenco XIII continues this weekend with the Edwin Aparicio, appeared at Casa Patas, which hosts the best
U.S. Premiere of Binomio, a bold new piece created by and most authentic flamenco in Spain. By maintaining a con-
Spains legendary Francisco Hidalgo, who enthralled audiences nection with Casa Patas, weve presented several of the leading
last year with the thrilling The Silences of the Dance. Francisco is young, contemporary choreographers and dancers coming out
again focusing on looking at the human connection of flamenco of Spain, he says.
and the energy that flows between artist and creating the work In addition to the weekend performances, which run from
and how they respond to music and how they respond to move- Nov. 9 to 12, the festival will hold a free family day on Saturday
ment, says Abel Lopez, GALAs Associate Producing Director. afternoon, featuring interactive demonstrations in flamenco
Hidalgo will be joined by dancer Anabel Moreno and singers zapateo, castanets, and fans. The Spanish Dance Society will lead
Trini de la Isla and Ana Polanco. The performances feature two sessions, from 11 a.m. to noon, and from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.
musical direction by guitarist Jos Almarcha and musician El With Binomio, were really focusing on the universal appeal
Wafir S. Gabril, who hails from Kurdistan. While this is only of flamenco, says Lopez. Were presenting contemporary
Hidalgos second appearance at GALAs popular festival, its work, which is not just the dance but the music that accompa-
the thirteenth time the theatre has partnered with Casa Patas, nies it, with traditional singers. Its important because it bridges
a world-renowned Madrid tablao, which describes the heavy, both the contemporary and the traditional flamenco genre.
reverberating floorboards that amplify the heart-pumping fla- Randy Shulman

Flamenco XIII continues through Nov. 12 at GALA Theatre, 3333 14th St. NW. General tickets are $45, or $30 for Seniors,
Military, Student, and people 30 and under. Noche de GALA tickets on Friday, November 10, are $55 (single) and $95 (couple).
Call 202-234-7174 or visit galatheatre.org.


Capital Classics, the hump-day series at Landmarks
recently refurbished West End Cinema, continues its
winter season with this nine-time Oscar-winning movie
musical, including Best Picture, and featuring songs by
Lerner and Lowe (My Fair Lady). Vincente Minnelli
directs the Gallic tale about a gawky girl in turn-of-the-
20th-century Paris who transforms into the glamorous
Gigi, yet yearns for something money cant buy. With
Leslie Caron and Louis Jourdan. Happy Hour-priced
beer and wine from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov.

15, at 1:30, 4:30, and 7:30 p.m. Landmarks West End

Cinema, 2301 M St. NW. Tickets are $12.50. Call 202-
534-1907 or visit landmarktheatres.com.

The longtime standup comic, self-proclaimed virginish and asex-
ual, is the funniest panelist on NPRs reliably funny weekend
news quiz show Wait Wait... Dont Tell Me! Poundstone returns for
another weekend run of shows at the Birchmere. Friday, Nov. 10,
through Sunday, Nov. 12, at 7:30 p.m. The Birchmere, 3701 Mount
Vernon Ave., Alexandria. Tickets are $49.50. Call 703-549-7500 or
visit birchmere.com.

The jazzy, bluesy Reinhart came to fame as the sec-
ond runner-up on the 10th season of American Idol.
She has been a featured vocalist on several standout
tracks from Scott Bradlees Postmodern Jukebox,
and returns the favor by featuring Bradlee on piano
on several songs on her covers album Whats That
Sound?, including a winsome rendition of Words
of Love by the Mamas and the Papas. Shes now
touring that charming throwback set, including a
stop at the Fillmore Silver Spring two weeks before
the Postmodern Jukebox headlines the same venue.
Monday, Nov. 13, at 8 p.m. 8656 Colesville Road,
Silver Spring. Tickets are $10 to $20. Call 301-960-
9999 or visit fillmoresilverspring.com.


A leading booster of the local professional dance scene
presents a starry lineup at a concert doubling as a fund-
raiser. Performers on tap at this fall benefit include
Keira Hart-Mendoza of UpRooted Dance, Sarah J.
Ewing of S. J. Ewing & Dancers, Katherine Horrigan of
Company Danzante, Adrienne Clancy of ClancyWorks
Dance Company, Erica Rebollar of RebollarDance,
Tarik OMeally, Robert Rubama and the Terre Dance
Collective, and Nancy Flores. Saturday, Nov. 11, at 8
p.m., and Sunday, Nov. 12, at 4 p.m. Dance Place, 3225
8th St. NE. Tickets are $15 to $30. Call 202-269-1600 or
visit danceplace.org.


Tina Feys hit film transformed as a musical and the hottest
ticket in town especially since its stop at the National
Theatre is a tryout prior to its Broadway debut, set for the
spring. Fey has written the shows book with music by
her husband and 30 Rock composer Jeff Richmond and
lyrics by Nell Benjamin (Legally Blonde). Casey Nicholaw
(The Book of Mormon) directs. In previews. Runs to Dec.
3 at The National Theatre, 1321 Pennsylvania Ave. NW.
Tickets are $48 to $128, although the National will hold a
ticket lottery before each show, and individuals may sub-


mit their names at the box office to win up to two tickets
at $25 each. Twenty lottery seats are available for each
performance, with names drawn 90 minutes prior to the
show. Call 202-628-6161 or visit thenationaldc.org.

focus in the past few years

has been on the classics
whether love songs from the
Great American Songbook to
tributes to her idols Sarah
Vaughan and Ella Fitzgerald.
The latter is the focus of a
concert celebrating 100 years
since the late First Lady of
Jazzs birthday, The Ella
Century. Friday, Nov. 10, at
8 p.m. Bethesda Blues & Jazz
Supper Club, 7719 Wisconsin
Ave. Tickets are $35, plus $10
ANN HAMPTON CALLAWAY minimum purchase per per-
Ann Hampton Callaway has written songs for her mentor Barbra Streisand plus the son. Call 240-330-4500 or
theme song to the old TV series The Nanny. But the lesbian jazz singer-songwriters visit bethesdabluesjazz.com.


Out On The Town

Matt Gould and Griffin Matthews


Every year, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), offers a showcase of new generation
Broadway composers at the Kennedy Center. Previous lineups have included recent Tony winners Steven Lutvak (A
Gentlemans Guide to Love and Murder) and Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (Dear Evan Hansen). Each program features a
different composer or composing team, who either perform themselves or recruit others to highlight songs in their reper-
toire, cabaret-style. This years series features five up-and-coming composers, all offered in free programs at 6 p.m. on the
Millennium Stage. They include Oliver House (Held Momentarily) on Sunday, Nov. 12; Nikko Benson, on Monday, Nov. 13;
Julian Hornik (Giovannis Room), on Tuesday, Nov. 14; Matt Gould and Griffin Matthews (Witness Uganda aka Invisible
Thread), on Wednesday, Nov. 15; Max Vernon (The View UpStairs), on Thursday, Nov. 16; and Andrew Lippa (I Am Harvey
Milk), on Friday, Nov. 17. Call 202-467-4600 or visit kennedy-center.org.

Compiled by Doug Rule A Fabulous Rivalry alternates stars Joan Fontaine as the young Gregory Smith teamed up with
between cinematic focuses on beloved of a brooding, aristocrat- book writer Ellen Selby on a new
FILM Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. ic widower (Sir Laurence Olivier), musical adaptation of the childrens
Hosts New Yorker writer Margaret and forced to live forever in the novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett.
CATVIDEOFEST 2017 Talbot and Movie Mom film crit- shadow of his first wife. Judith Presented by Creative Cauldrons
Filmmaker Will Braden (Le Chat ic Nell Minow conclude the four- Anderson, as the creepy housekeep- Learning Theater Ensemble and
Noir) has assembled another film run with the Michael Curtiz- er Mrs. Danvers, steals the film. directed by Selby and the fledgling
80-minute program thats a fancy directed 1945 classic through which Also with George Sanders. Rebecca Virginia theater companys Laura
feast for cat lovers, chock-full of Crawford snagged her only Oscar. screens as part of the American Connors Hull, A Little Princess Sara
cat videos both popular, as well She was a queen at MGM for many Film Institutes month-long Joan Crewe takes place at Miss Minchins
as new and undiscovered. Yet years, and then they kicked her out Fontaine Centennial series. Friday, School for Girls, capturing the spirit
CatVideoFest, co-presented with very unceremoniously, Minow Nov. 17, at 2 p.m., Sunday, Nov. of the novel and its salute to the
the Bethesda-based, globally says of the film. I think that a large 19, at 11 a.m., Monday, Nov. 20, at power of imagination. To Nov. 19.
focused nonprofit Alley Cat Allies, part of why that is her best perfor- 2 p.m, Tuesday, Nov. 21, at 3 p.m., ArtSpace Falls Church, 410 South
doubles as a fundraiser and net- mance is that she really was suffer- and Wednesday, Nov. 22, at 2 p.m. Maple Ave. in Falls Church. Tickets
working event for fellow feline fans. ing in real life. She really was very AFI Silver Theatre, 8633 Colesville are $20 to $30. Call 703-436-9948
Saturday, Nov. 18, at 5 p.m., and humiliated. And that comes across Road, Silver Spring. Tickets are $13 or visit creativecauldron.org.
Sunday, Nov. 19, at 5 p.m. AFI Silver in the role. Sunday, Nov. 12, at 4 general admission, or $10 for mat-
Theatre, 8633 Colesville Road, p.m. Hill Center, Old Navy Hospital, inee screenings. Call 301-495-6720 ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA
Silver Spring. Tickets are $13 gener- 921 Pennsylvania Ave. SE. Free, but or visit afi.com/Silver. HHHHH
al admission. Call 301-495-6720 or registration recommended for guar- Shakespeares Antony and
visit afi.com/Silver. anteed seating.. Call 202-549-4172
or visit HillCenterDC.org. STAGE Cleopatra is an interesting animal:
not quite historical drama, not
MILDRED PIERCE quite lovers tragedy. The already
Inspired by Ryan Murphys Feud on small Folger Theatre goes super-in-
Alfred Hitchcocks first American The married couple of composer
FX, the Hill Centers film and dis- timate by staging the production
project, the 1940 Oscar winner Matt Conner and lyricist Stephen
cussion series Davis & Crawford, in-the-round and the intimacy gives



Part of a historic first on Star Trek, Wilson Cruz is proud that his costar
publicly revealed a long-harbored, traumatic secret

HEN WILSON CRUZ WAS A KID, HE WAS way that theyve dealt with it all around, says the openly gay
so obsessed with The Next Generation, he set not Cruz. We wanted to not make a big deal about it. These are two
one, but two goals for himself: I wanted to be in people who happen to be gay, who also happen to be officers in
a Broadway musical. And I wanted to be on Star Trek. The Starfleet, and who also happen to be in a relationship together. I
43-year-old has since achieved both, his Broadway cap-feather love the fact that it wasnt A Very Special Episode.
being Rent, in which he played opposite Anthony Rapp. Rapp, also gay, recently made headlines when he took aim
Recently, the other goal was met, as Cruz is starring in at Kevin Spacey with a horrifying tale of alleged sexual miscon-
Star Trek: Discovery, on which he portrays Dr. Hugh Culber, a duct by the older actor when Rapp was only 14. It was the first
brilliant, young medical officer on the experimental ship. Once of many dominoes to fall for the House of Cards star who, in a
again, he finds himself paired with Rapp, who plays Lt. Paul fumbling, misguided Tweet tried to deflect the issue by coming
Stamets, a fungal expert central to the ships ultimate mission. out as gay.
In a much-lauded move for a Trek series, Culber and Stamets Im really proud of Anthony, Cruz says of his friend of two
are openly gay and in a loving relationship. Set a decade before decades. I stand behind him, and am so proud of the fact that
the boldly goings of the originals Captain James T. Kirk, he has empowered other people to come forward. Cruz, who
Discovery is more visceral and volatile than prior Treks (its also stars in Netflixs 13 Reasons Why, which directly deals with
closest cousin is Deep Space Nine). The new series, which is sexual assault and young people, hasnt experienced harass-
available on the CBS All Access streaming service and hits a ment on the same level, but admits people have said inappro-
mid-season finale on Sunday before going on a two-month hia- priate things to me. I handled it and walked away and didnt put
tus, has a unique, thrilling narrative, with each episode boasting myself in a position for it to go any further.
the highest possible production values, the sort usually reserved He was furious with the Spacey statement in which he
for feature films. conflated pedophilia with coming out.... But I was heartened by
I know a lot of people were upset about the fact that the the response not just from LGBTQ people and their outrage,
show was being streamed and they had to pay for it, says Cruz. but the outrage of our allies.... I think educated people can make
I keep telling people Youre paying for something in which their own assessment about who LGBTQ people really are. The
every cent is seen on that screen. Youre not getting gypped in community has done a really great job at communicating that. I
any way. think a lot of that has happened on television how weve used
The relationship between Culber and Stamets is revealed our stories and TV to really allow people to see and know what
in a nonplussed, almost casual manner. I am grateful for the LGBTQ lives are really like. Randy Shulman

Star Trek: Discovery is available on CBS All Access. Visit cbs.com/all-access.


the play personality. In director
Robert Richmonds cozy circle are
a real Antony and Cleopatra. They
may deliver grand and beautiful
language, they may go to war or
die by asp, but they are without
question, living, breathing people
who smirk, cuddle, and lose their
tempers. A magnificent Cleopatra,
Shirine Babb exudes the necessary
countenance in the gorgeous garb of
Mariah Hale. Babb is the reason to
see this production. The only regret
is that the revolving stage is not
activated during her death scene so
that more of the audience can see
her expressive face as she chooses
her fate. To Nov. 19. Folger Theatre,


201 East Capitol St. SE. Tickets are
$35 to $79. Call 202-544-7077 or
visit folger.edu. (Kate Wingfield)

Lauren Gundersons spirited
drama looks at the literary side
of the actual milie du Chtelet,
a genius scientist, mathematician
and philosopher who, in the early
18th-century, published work that EMPORIYUM
changed the equation describ- Union Market is a haven for foodies year-round, but one weekend every November it
ing one of the fundamental laws
becomes a veritable foodies paradise. In addition to the regular merchants and food
of physics challenging Newton
and the worlds rules about women stalls inside the Market proper, over 100 artisans, producers, chefs and restaurants from
in science. Emilie is most searing around the Mid-Atlantic also set up booths behind the market to sample and peddle their
when relaying the Marquises righ- latest wares and fares. Its a good assortment of tasty edibles and thoughtful gifts, for
teous anger that such learned and
supposedly wise men as her fellow friends and family and yourself. A sampling of the more intriguing vendors on hand
scientists might be almost incapa- this year include: South Mountain Creamery, Zesty Z Spreads & Condiments, Brother
ble of taking her work seriously Floyds Righteous Pickles, the Local Oyster from Baltimore, Tibetan dumplings from
merely because of her sex. Directed
D.C.s Dorjee Momo, liquor-infused ice cream from Tipsy Scoop, dog treats from What
by Rick Hammerly. Extended
to Nov. 19. Gunston Arts Center, The Cluck, New Yorks Sfoglini Pasta Shop, and Bella Rouge Barbeque. The Emporiyum
2700 South Lang Street, Arlington. launches with a Five Year Birthday Party on Friday, Nov. 10, from 6 to 8 p.m. The
Tickets are $10 to $35. Call 703-418- Emporiyum is Saturday, Nov. 11, and Sunday, Nov. 12. Dock5 at Union Market, 1309 5th St.
4804, or visit avantbard.org. (Andre
Hereford) NE. General admission is $15 for admission after 1:30 p.m., $25 for access at 11 a.m. with a
complimentary tote bag, or $40 for VIP access at 10 a.m. plus special bites and sips, and a
MANIFESTO! A THEATRICAL gift bag; the Friday Birthday party is $40, or $80 with an All Access Weekend Pass. Call
800-680-9095 or visit theemporiyum.com.
The latest devised theater piece
from the Helen Hayes Award-
winning troupe Happenstance
Theater is built on text from actual duction faithful to the script and SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE about life, culture and organized
manifestos from the Capitalist to sanctioned by the Wilder Family religion. Yet it still hews to the stan-
Blake Robison directs a produc-
the Communist for a show that the Estate, featuring just seven actors, dard musical mold, from repeated
tion of Lee Halls adaptation of the
Washington City Paper reviewed as who manipulate and animate the musical lines and lyrics, to bois-
bawdy Oscar-winning film from
a delightful romp through the sur- puppets. Closes Sunday, Nov. 12. terous sing-along group anthems,
1998, both riffing on and celebrating
real. Set during wartime at the sur- Mulitz-Gudelsky Theatre Lab, 2001 to sharp group choreography,
the Bard. Nicholas Carriere stars as
realist Cabaret ReVoltaire owned Olney-Sandy Spring Road, Olney, including a tap number. To Nov.
Will among a large cast including
by Madam Proprietor and operated Md. Call 301-924-3400 or visit 19. Kennedy Center Opera House.
Avery Glymph, Jefferson A. Russell,
by Middle-Man and the New Girl, olneytheatre.org. Tickets are $59 to $250. Call 202-
Liz Daingerfield, and Naomi
the cast includes Happenstances 467-4600 or visit kennedy-center.
Jacobson as Queen Elizabeth. To
husband-and-wife leaders Mark SAFE AS HOUSES org.
Nov. 26. Baltimore Center Stage,
Jaster and Sabrina Mandell, as well Pinky Swear Productions worked 700 North Calvert St., Baltimore.
as Gwen Grastorf, Sarah Olmsted with playwright Natalie Piegari THE PAJAMA GAME
Call 410-332-0033 or visit center-
Thomas, Alex Vernon and Mark for over a year to develop a drama In an unusual twist, artistic direc-
Winch. Closes Sunday, Nov. 12. exploring the pull of family and tor Molly Smith turns over direct-
Baltimore Theatre Project, 45 West nature. Megan Behm directs this THE BOOK OF MORMON ing reins for this seasons Golden
Preston St. Baltimore. Tickets are play about a patchwork family pre- Age Musical to Alan Paul, who has
Written by South Parks Trey
$15 to $25. Call 410-752-8558 or paring a suburban house for a vio- proven his mettle with musicals
Parker and Matt Stone, the riotous-
visit theatreproject.org. lent storm and deciding on whether at Shakespeare Theatre Company.
ly funny, audacious musical, which
they should wait it out. A knock at won a whopping nine Tony Awards, Choreographer Parker Esse joins
OUR TOWN the door complicates things further, to try to rouse interest in this clas-
is both cutting edge in shocking
The townspeople become Japanese- as the past comes flooding in. Closes sic battle-of-the-sexes. To Dec. 24.
substance yet traditional in style.
style puppets in Aaron Posners Saturday, Nov. 11. Trinidad Theatre Mead Center for American Theater,
The Book of Mormon may weave
eccentric take on the seminal classic at Capital Fringe, 1358 Florida Ave. 1101 6th St. SW. Call 202-488-3300
in unexpected and provocative plot
by Thornton Wilder. John Hudson NE. Tickets are $35. Call 866-811- or visit arenastage.org.
twists and scenes as well as con-
Odom (Angels in America) stars as 4111 or visit pinkyswear-produc- vey extremely modern sensibilities
the guiding Stage Manager in a pro- tions.com.


The renamed State of the World
Tour stops at the renamed Capital
One Arena more than a year and a
Daniel Kitsons A Short Series of Disagreements half later than originally planned on
account of the superstars decision
is perhaps not short enough. to have her first born at the ripe

old age of 50. Its her first tour in
desk occupied by his laptop, award-winning English monologist Daniel Kitson first set in over a decade that was
spins a tale of urban intrigue in A Short Series of Disagreements Presented Here in actually good, thanks to her wise
decision to reteam with her original
Chronological Order (HHHHH), now at Studio Theatre. The material comes from his producers Jimmy Jam and Terry
investigation into arguments within a neighborhood anti-automobile group based in Lewis. Thursday, Nov. 16, at 8 p.m.
South London. Its a subject astutely chosen for the performers debut in D.C., where 601 F St. NW. Call 202-628-3200 or
visit capitalonearena.com.
municipal life can appear to be governed on a neighborhood to neighborhood basis, and
citizens battle out internecine disagreements in local commissions and listserv threads. JAZZMEIA HORN
Kitson cites as inspiration his random sighting of a ghost bike on a street corner, a A jazz vocalist originally from
poignant image that transcends localities. Everywhere bikes, pedestrians, and cars dart Dallas, Horn is quickly emerging
as one of the genres best new tal-
and dodge, there are passionate urbanites who get involved in trying to even the scales ents, winning prestigious titles in
for one side or the other. The emotion Kitson taps into through a detailed, sardonic the process, including the 2013
excavation of a case of anti-automobile vandalism is genuine, even if his humorous Sarah Vaughan International
Jazz Vocal Competition and the
approach lacks sincerity in the delivery. 2015 Thelonious Monk Institute
Wielding punchy and profane punchlines, Kitson has brought along muffled record- International Jazz Competition.
ings of voicemail messages, and a projector to exhibit barely legible slides of the angry After a headlining concert at the
missives that constitute much of his investigation. A few quips that the audience is wit- Kennedy Center last winter, Horn
returns to the area for two shows
nessing an ongoing reconstruction of the titular events only highlight the performers at Georgetowns celebrated jazz
unsure command of the shows direction. haven. Monday, Nov. 13, at 8 and
The story skitters across two hours from slides to recordings, to rifling through files 10 p.m. Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin
Ave. NW. Tickets are $25, plus $12
and photos, frequently stumbling, despite Kitsons ease with the audience. Theres minimum purchase. Call 202-337-
charm in the performers individuality and empathy, but charm alone cant work the 4141 or visit bluesalley.com.
magic of shaping an affecting comic narrative. Andre Hereford
A Short Series of Disagreements runs to November 25 at the Studio Theatre, 1501 14th Gershwins An American in Paris fac-
St., NW. Tickets are $25. Call 202-332-3300, or visit StudioTheatre.org. tors into a tour of Europe program
led by Gianandrea Noseda and also
featuring Respighis Fountains of
Rome, Chaussons Pome, and Fallas
The Three-Cornered Hat Suites No.
VICUNA & THE AMERICAN He returns to the area in support of porary folk. More specifically, its
1 & 2. Thursday, Nov. 16, at 7 p.m.,
EPILOGUE new album Tail of Lions. Monday, rooted in influences from Chocolate
Saturday, Nov. 18, at 8 p.m., and
Mosaic Theater Company presents Nov. 13. Doors at 7 p.m. Rock and City forebears, from Duke Ellington
Sunday, Nov. 19, at 3 p.m. Kennedy
a Trump-inspired satire by Jon Roll Hotel, 1353 H St. NE. Tickets to Gil Scott-Heron, Roberta Flack to
Center Concert Hall. Tickets are $15
Robin Baitz (Other Desert Cities), are $25 in advance, or $28 day-of Meshell Ndegeocello. She returns
to $89. Call 202-467-4600 or visit
the gay playwright assaulted by a show. Call 202-388-ROCK or visit to the Atlas Performing Arts Center
Trump supporter after the inau- rockandrollhoteldc.com. for the third annual Cecily Salutes
guration. A play about an Iranian DC, a concert followed by a dis-
tailor and his apprentice struggling BETTYE LAVETTE cussion about how to keep gen-
to make a suit out of vicuna wool The great, hard-living soul singer trification from chipping away at
for a real-estate tycoon running for Bettye Lavette has been incredibly what makes the local arts scene
Scott Tucker leads the full chorus
president, Baitz has updated the forthcoming about her many dal- unique, with a panel including
and orchestra along with special
work to include rumination on liances with women, including in Cecily, Art All Night creator Ariana
guests the Thirteen in a perfor-
the assault for the Mosaic Theater her recent memoir, A Woman Like Austin, musician Aaron Myers and
mance of a choral masterpiece that
production. Extended to Dec. 3. Me. The New York Times touted her Washington Project for the Arts
brilliantly superimposes Baroque
Atlas Performing Arts Center, Lang as second only to Aretha Franklin Jordan Martin. Saturday, Nov. 18, at
music over traditional Gregorian
Theatre, 1333 H St. NE. Tickets are among her generations greatest 8 p.m. Sprenger Theatre, 1333 H St.
chants, combines sacred music with
$20 to $65. Call 202-399-7993 or and Lavette has finally been getting NE. Tickets are $22.5 to $28. Call
secular styles, and alternates the
visit mosaictheater.org. some of the credit she deserved 202-399-7993 or visit atlasarts.org.
grandeur of the large ensemble with
when she started in the business
solos and duets. Saturday, Nov. 18,
decades ago. She continues to tour DOM FLEMONS DUO
MUSIC in support of last years Grammy- One of the founders of the great
at 3 p.m. Kennedy Center Concert
Hall. Tickets are $15 to $69. Call
nominated album Worthy, return- black bluegrass band the Carolina
ALEX CLARE 202-467-4600 or visit kennedy-cen-
ing to the Hamilton for the second Chocolate Drops headlines a con-
With a bluesy, clipped voice that has ter.org.
time this year. Sunday, Nov. 19. cert with bandmate Dante Pope
echoes of Adam Levine and Hozier, Doors at 6:30 p.m. The Hamilton, at the new District Wharfs more
the London-born, Jerusalem-based THE MARIINSKY ORCHESTRA
600 14th St. NW. Tickets are $20 intimate concert venue. The Herd
singer-songwriters brand of soul- Valery Gergiev leads this pioneer
to $45. Call 202-787-1000 or visit of Main Street opens. Saturday,
fired, electronica-accented pop/ of classical Russian ensembles in a
thehamiltondc.com. Nov. 18. Doors at 7 p.m. Pearl Street
rock is as captivating a blend as program including Daniil Trifonov
Warehouse, 33 Pearl St. SW. Tickets
his better-known contemporar- performing his own recently com-
CECILY are $14 in advance, or $16 day-of
ies. A few years ago, Clare scored posed Piano Concerto. Strausss Don
Increasingly known by mononym, show. Call 202-380-9620 or visit
success with the stirringly emo- Juan, Prokofievs Symphony No. 6,
young soprano and D.C. native Cecil pearlstreetwarehouse.com.
tive single Too Close which and Mosolovs Iron Foundry are also
Bumbrays sound is rooted in a deep
famously became the soundtrack to featured in the concert presented
appreciation for mid-century soul
an Internet Explorer 9 ad in 2012. and jazz, 90s-era R&B and contem-


by Washington Performing Arts.
Sunday Nov. 12, at 7 p.m. Kennedy
Center Concert Hall. Tickets are
$45 to $115. Call 202-467-4600 or
visit kennedy-center.org.

The winter edition of the seasonal
art series at the Coldwell Banker
Dupont/Logan office focuses on
a series of large paintings by this
Mid City Artist grouped under the
title The Art of Evolution. Murphys
work is an exploration of the mys-
teries of evolution from the Big
Bang to our big brains, with a more


recent focus on images reflecting
large cosmic interactions and small
neurons in the brain. Opening
Reception is Thursday, Nov. 9,
from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. On display
through February. Coldwell Banker
Residential Brokerage, 1617 14th St.
NW. Call 202-387-6180 or visit face-

HOLIDAY SHIMMERS This is our strongest season in a long time, artistic director Thea Kano says of the Gay
Unique enamel pieces by local art- Mens Chorus of Washingtons upcoming year of song, dubbed Make America Gay
ists are justing waiting to be dis- Again. Were really intent on sharing our individual stories. Youll see a lot more of our
covered and purchased as glittering
gifts inside the Torpedo Factory in individual singers stepping forward on stage and saying Hi, my name is Ive sung with
Alexandria and the only gallery out- the chorus for x amount of years, and I come from.... The 37th season kicks off with an
side of California devoted solely to annual cabaret, focused on duets and the power of two, things that go together in song
enamel works. Options range from
and in life. Theres certainly a lot of acknowledgement of love relationships, but also of
beautiful framed pieces to display
bowls and plates to jewelry, all in an how friends hold us up at the end of the day, says Kano, who cast 15 singers to perform a
array of colors. Opens Tuesday, Oct. series of songs, mostly duets, from shows such as Dear Evan Hansen, Into The Woods, and
31. To Dec. 3. Enamelists Gallery, NBCs Smash. The evening culminates in a sweeping finale where all the singers come
105 North Union St. Alexandria.
Free. Call 703-838-1561 or visit tor- together. Its a secret what thats going to be. Its just so stunning, I want people to be
pedofactory.org. surprised. Saturday, Nov. 11, at 4 and 8 p.m. Atlas Performing Arts Center, 1333 H St. NE.
Tickets are $39. Call 202-399-7993 or visit gmcw.org.
A citywide celebration of pho-
tography, this years 10th annual
FotoWeekDC specifically cele- RONI HORN to imagine how Federico Fellini, ums Betty Boyd Dettre Library and
brates Landmarks of Photography Marylands modern art and archi- Charlie Chaplin or Buster Keaton Research Center. Through Nov. 17.
through special exhibitions and tecture-focused Glenstone Museum might have depicted their subjects 1250 New York Ave NW. Admission
installations, events, film screenings, offers an exhibition of more than if they were painters. The result is $10. Call 202-783-5000 or visit
and lectures. Highlights of the event 30 works by Roni Horn, drawn are images that are whimsical and nmwa.org.
taking place at FotoWeekCentral from the museums collection and elusive, rather than strident and
(neighboring host venues Spain Arts
& Culture and the Mexican Cultural
selected and installed by the artist
herself. Spanning four decades of
explicit in their interpretations. To
Dec. 17, with a Gallery Talk with FOOD & DRINK
Institute), include a Competition her career, works on view explore Woodward on Thursday, Nov.
Winners Gallery and Cislanderus, wide-ranging topics including 16. American University Museum BINDAAS FOGGY BOTTOM
the latter an exhibition focused on nature, ecology, identity, landscape in the Katzen Arts Center, 4400 James Beard Award-winning chef
a group of Spanish-speaking peo- and language. Glenstone, set on Wisconsin Ave. NW. Call 202-885- Vikram Sunderams newest din-
ple who, in the late-18th century, 200 acres of rolling pasture and 2587 or visit american.edu/cas/ ing concept reflecting the mod-
migrated from the Canary Islands woodland in Montgomery County, museum. ern-day cuisine of his native India
to what is now Texas and Louisiana, Md., also offers hourly guided out- makes for a similarly satisfying and
where their culture lives on today, door sculpture tours of works by WONDER WOMEN! noteworthy experience. A degree
if barely. In addition, the Dupont Andy Goldsworthy, Felix Gonzalez- From the Guerrilla Girls righting the above fast-casual, Bindaas focus-
Underground hosts the World Press Torres, Ellsworth Kelly, Jeff Koons, wrongs of the art world, to paint- es on the kind of food one might
Photo Exhibition through Nov. 26 Charles Ray, Julian Schnabel and er Edna Reindels tough WWII find on the streets and in the food
and featuring a juried selection of Richard Serra. Through Jan. 28, riveters, to vintage feminist comic markets of Mumbai, yet offered in
photos from photographers in 126 2018. Glenstone Museum, 12002 books, this exhibition at the National a more relaxed and refined envi-
countries, presented by Lightscape Glen Road, Potomac, Md. Call 301- Museum of Women in the Arts fea- ronment. With this just-opened
Foundation. FotoWeekDC launches 983-5001 or visit glenstone.org. tures images of the powerful woman, second outpost, the intimate, not-
with an opening party co-present- real and fictional. The wide-ranging quite-secret Cleveland Park gem
ed with BYT and featuring open WILLIAM WOODWARD: THE selection, including artist correspon- becomes a much bigger and more
bars, small bites, photo booths, live SEVEN DEADLY SINS dence, sketches, ephemera, photo- noticeable jewel in a younger, hip-
music and more, on Friday, Nov. 10, In his two-decades-long series graphs, posters, rare books, museum per, and more diverse part of town.
from 7:30 to 11 p.m. 2801 16th St. of drawings and narrative paint- archival material and artists books, Impressive dishes from the opening
NW. Tickets to the Opening Party ings focused on the concept of sin, draws from the special collections menu include Roadside Sandwich
are $60; the World Press exhibition this Washington native has tried and artists archives of the muse- burgers made from either chicken
costs $10 to $25. Visit fotodc.org or seasonal vegetables and served


on a pao bun with chutney, a
Butternut Squash lentil/rice pan-
cake with green curry sauce, and a
delicious and filling Chicken Curry
with tomatoes, garam masala and
saffron rice. Bindaas also features a
full bar with wine, beer and creative
cocktails made with spirits from
local distilleries, including Green
Hat Gin and Cotton & Reed Rum.
Dont even think of going without
trying the Tamarind soda, house-
made with honey, ginger, clove, nut-
meg and sumac. 2000 Pennsylvania
Ave. NW. Call 202-516-4326 or visit


Yes, its already almost that time
of year, and Strathmores annual
Museum Shop Around is one of the
best and most convenient places
in town for finding unique, artsy
holiday gift ideas. This weekend, 18

museums and art organizations will

be represented at the event sell-
ing memorabilia and merchandise,
including the Audobon Naturalist
Society, the Jewish Museum of
Maryland, Montgomery County
Historical Society, the National

Geographic Museum, the National
Museum of Women in the Arts,
the Kennedy Center, the Phillips
Collection, and the Supreme Court
Historical Society. Each museum
Byron Jones helped develop a new InSeries cabaret that unearths is given its own space, often its
own room, in Strathmores historic
some of Jacques Brels most interesting gems Mansion. Thats enough for most
shops to display as much as 40

percent of their normal inventory.
know what it was, Byron Jones says. The North Carolina native had lived and stud- food and drink available through-
ied in France and earned degrees in both French and vocal music, but it wasnt until out the event, including hot apple
cider. Runs through Sunday, Nov.
he discovered the InSeries, through a listing in the Washington Post, that Jones got an 12, starting at 10 a.m. each day.
education in French music. It came from the 1997 cabaret To Paris with Love, beginning The Mansion at Strathmore, 5301
a 20-year love affair with the songs of Brel. Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda.
Free, but suggested donation is $10.
Many people might know the name from Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living in Call 301-581-5100 or visit strath-
Paris, a 1968 Off-Broadway hit locally produced five years ago by MetroStage. As good as it more.org.
is, though, Jones finds the English-language revue of the Belgian chanson master wanting.
So he helped develop and star in a new revue helmed by director Steven Scott Mazzola. THE PANCAKES
Some of Brels most iconic songs were actually not included in that show, says An import from Los Angeles, this
Jones. So weve taken the most beautiful, the deepest, the most profound of his songs unusual underground art show
and assembled them in one. The result is Jacques Brel: Songs from His World. Jones calls features the work of over 100
emerging artists plus live body
the new cabaret, which features four singers accompanied by musicians, a more distilled painting, live music, and a free
collection of songs, and one that is performed in Brels language, with projected English pancake bar. Pancakes and Booze
translations. is a traveling, Andy Warhol-styled
Except for one: La Chanson Des Vieux Amants. Says Jones, It will begin in French, event that former Hollywood cam-
eraman Tom Kirlin started in 2009
but then youll hear almost a counter-melody in English, which is the translation of whats and has since brought to over 20
just been sung in French. Its a really cool construct for a song...kind of making it a duet cities, including D.C. twice a year.
between the languages. When I was in college, the only
place that was open after a night of
Why Brel and why now? Though he was a child of World War II, his take on life and drinking was IHOP, Kirlin says. I
relationships and the realities and the idiocy of war, it seems so current, Jones says. I always had this silly idea to make
think thats why his songs resonate with us, because theyre about the human condition, a pancake restaurant with a full
and about human relationships, and about struggling with self, and trying to escape from bar. So with the art show, I just
merged the two ideas together.
the situation youre in. Doug Rule Wednesday, Nov. 15, from 7 p.m.
to 2 a.m. Penn Social, 801 E St. NW.
Jacques Brel: Songs from His World runs weekends to Nov. 19 at Source, 1835 14th St. Cover is $15. Call 202-697-4900 or
visit pancakesandbooze.com. l
NW. Tickets are $20 to $43. Call 202-204-7760 or visit inseries.org.


Danica Roem makes history as first trans legislator amid a Democratic wave
that could flip Virginias House of Delegates. By John Riley

EMOCRATS SWEPT TO LARGER-THAN-EXPECT- Republican Caucus Chairman Tim Hugo of Centreville,
ed victories in Virginia, winning all three statewide remain on top, Democrats and Republicans will each hold
offices on the ballot and picking up at least 14 state 50 seats, forcing both caucuses to negotiate a power-shar-
House seats. Chief among those wins was Danica Roem, ing agreement similar to the one that existed in the House
who became the first transgender lawmaker elected to office of Delegates from 1999 to 2001. If Democrats pick up one
in Virginia and will become the nations first transgender additional seat in the remaining recounts, they would win
person to serve in a state legislature when she takes the oath outright control of the lower chamber.
of office in January. In either case, the makeup of the House changes the fate
Roem defeated 13-term Republican incumbent Bob of progressive legislation, and particularly pro-LGBTQ bills,
Marshall, a co-author of Virginias now defunct constitu- which have overwhelmingly passed in the Virginia Senate,
tional amendment banning same-sex mar- only to be killed in secret, unrecorded votes
riage and the sponsor of bills to ban LGBTQ in House subcommittees.
people from serving in the national guard, A lot of the members of our caucus have
and prohibit transgender people from using complained about that, Democratic Caucus
public restrooms that match their gender Chair Charniele Herring said of those sub-
identity. committee votes. We want more light on
Despite personal attacks from Marshall our government, because people have a right
and the GOP that targeted her over her to know how their representatives are vot-
transgender identity, Roem stayed on ing.
message, focusing on issues such as trans- For LGBTQ residents, shared control
portation, education, and job growth. could result in votes that put anti-equal-
In this race, [our campaign] never went ity legislators under scrutiny when they
personal, she said by phone from her vic- attempt to defeat bills that would protect

tory celebration in Lake Ridge, Va. We hit LGBTQ people from being discriminated
on public policy, and we stuck to the issues against in employment or housing. And with
of this race. I said, after the June primary, Democrat Ralph Northam ensconced in the
that this race was a referendum on fixing governors mansion, any pro-LGBTQ bill
Route 28. If anybody thought I was going Roem that passes the House would almost certain-

to have something else as my lead priority, they were sorely ly be signed into law.
mistaken. Democratic and LGBTQ victories were not limited to the
Roem also acknowledged that her election to the nations commonwealth last night. At least 61 LGBTQ candidates
oldest legislative body is historic, and can send a positive were seeking elective office in a series of local or special elec-
message, particularly to transgender youth who may feel tions from coast to coast, with at least 35 declaring victory.
they are limited in what they can achieve. In Seattle, voters elected Democrat Jenny Durkan to
This is a win for inclusion, for equality, for equity, and be their next mayor, doubling the number of out lesbians
for every trans kid who was ever too scared to ever speak serving as mayors of major U.S. cities. In Atlanta, Alex
their truth, and anyone who was worried about whether Wan advanced to a Dec. 5 runoff election for City Council
they could succeed by being themselves, Roem said. We President. In Pennsylvania, Tyler Titus was elected to the
just showed that no matter what you look like, where you Erie School Board, making him the Keystone States first
come from, how you worship, who you love, how you iden- elected transgender official.
tify, or how you rock, if you have good ideas, and if youre In Minneapolis, Democrat Andrea Jenkins became the
qualified, then bring them to the table because you can first transgender woman elected to the city council of a
serve, too. major U.S. city, winning a four-way race for the District 8
In another race in the Richmond area, nurse practitioner seat with 73 percent of the vote.
Dawn Marie Adams was leading Republican incumbent In the race for the Councils District 4 seat, transgender
Manoli Loupassi by more than 300 votes, with provisional man Phillipe Cunningham was running second, with 41 per-
ballots still to be counted. That race may go to an automat- cent of the vote in a four-way race. Because Minneapolis has
ic recount, due to the margin of victory, but Loupassi has instant runoff voting, where voters rank their preferences in
already conceded, making Adams, presumptively, the first order, it will take a few days to determine a winner, as votes
out lesbian elected to the General Assembly. are allocated from the third- and fourth-place challeng-
At least four other House races may also head to recounts. ers to Cunningham and incumbent Council Member Barb
If Adams and Donte Tanner, who appears to have unseated Johnsons totals. l



Gays Against Guns protesters stage die-in inside Hart Senate Building. By John Riley

ight Gays Against Guns members were arrested at ularly within the Republican Party, receive from the NRA.
the Hart Senate Building on Monday after staging Borrowing tactics from the AIDS advocacy group ACT
a die-in to protest the recent church shooting in UP, Gays Against Guns has held other die-ins protest-
Sutherland Springs, Texas. ers wearing white T-shirts fall to the ground and remain
The massacre, which occurred at the First Baptist motionless to represent those killed by mass shootings.
Church in Sutherland Springs, killed 26 people, including an The groups D.C. chapter posted several videos of the die-in
18-month-old toddler, after 26-year-old Devin Patrick Kelley and the resulting arrests by Capitol Police on its Facebook
opened fire inside the church. The protesters demanded page. The post was tagged: Thoughts and prayers are fine,
Congress approve gun control measures, such as Sen. Chris but they wont stop gun violence. The time has come to
Murphys (D-Conn.) Background Check Expansion law and [act].
Sen. Dianne Feinsteins (D-Calif.) Assault Weapons Ban. Other LGBTQ organizations similarly called for gun
Gays Against Guns has also asked Congress to reinstate reform in the wake of the First Baptist Church shooting,
funding to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention with the Pride Fund to End Gun Violence condemning
so the organization can research firearm injuries and deaths Republican politicians inaction. Jason Lindsay, the Pride
something that it has been prevented from doing since Funds executive director, said the massacre was another
1996 due to the threat by a Republican-controlled Congress reminder that no one is safe when access to guns is so easy.
to defund the agency if it dared to study gun violence as a Republicans are bought and paid for by the gun lobby,
public health crisis. and, despite over 90% of Americans supporting gun reform,
Since its founding following the Pulse nightclub massa- legislation wont pass due to the Republicans, Lindsay said
cre last year, Gays Against Guns has fought against accusa- in a statement, adding: There are two solutions to this
tions from the political Right that talking about gun reform problem. First, get loud. Every American who is ready for
in the wake of shooting tragedies is politicizing the loss of change has to get loud and demand action right now from
life. But they argue that it is never too soon to talk about our elected officials. Dont let Republicans get away with
gun reform. They also maintain that opponents of gun inaction and obstructing progress any longer. Second, we
restrictions are trying to silence dissenters or those who have to defeat every Republican who stands in the way of
point out the financial support that many politicians, partic- progress at the ballot box. l

Nevada man allegedly kills teen son because he was gay. By Rhuaridh Marr

NEVADA MAN HAS ALLEGEDLY KILLED HIS physically and mentally and spiritually for many, many years.
14-year-old son because the youth was gay. Police Las Vegas Now reports that Giovanni Melton and his
in Henderson, NV, report that Giovanni Melton was sibling were abandoned by their mother and subject to an
shot dead by his father, 53-year-old Wendell Melton, on ongoing custody battle. Court records show that Wendell
November 2 in an apartment where the teen reportedly lived Melton had a history of illegally owning firearms and using
alone. Giovannis former foster mother, Sonja Jones, said them to threaten his family.
that the argument that ended in him being shot was over his Jones alleged that Wendell Melton had previously drawn
sexuality, KSNV reports. a gun on his son, after catching Giovanni with his boyfriend.
[Wendell Melton] hated the fact that his son was gay, Jones I hope they throw the book at him. I hope he never sees
said. Im sure that inside of his mind, he would rather have the light of day, Jones said. I hope every day when he looks
a dead son than a gay son. She added: Giovanni was abused in the mirror, he sees his sons face. l


Americas top leaders have remained shamefully and deafeningly silent
on matters of state-sponsored LGBTQ persecution. By Ty Cobb

HE WORLD IS WITNESSING A FRIGHTENING and Egypt. In Bangladesh, authorities arrested 28 men at
wave of anti-LGBTQ persecution. Since April, and a private social gathering in May and publicly outed them.
accelerating through last week, there have been In Indonesia that same month, police arrested 141 alleged-
attacks and state-sponsored persecution of LGBTQ people ly gay men and, in a separate incident, two men accused
in Chechnya, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Georgia, Tanzania, of a same-sex relationship were publicly caned. Other
Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, and Egypt. human rights abuses have occurred
For the past several years, the across the caucasus region from
United States and its leadership mob attacks on gay men in Georgia
would stand strong against such to mass arrests of those accused of
persecution, but Donald Trump, The outbreak being LGBTQ in Azerbaijan. And
Mike Pence, and Rex Tillerson in September, twenty people were
have failed to address these horrific of LGBTQ arrested at an education program on
abuses. With each passing day they HIV/AIDS in Tanzania.
remain silent, the United States is persecution This outbreak of persecution
failing in its leadership responsibil- across the globe endangering lives
ity to defend human rights around
the globe. Now more than ever, we
across the globe and freedom of LGBTQ people and
allies every day is taking place
desperately need that leadership.
In September, authorities in
is taking place at exactly the same moment that
U.S. leadership on human rights has
Cairo arrested seven people who
had been photographed at a con-
at the same time hit rock bottom. President Trump,
Vice President Pence, and Secretary

cert raising a rainbow flag. A wide- Tillerson have failed to make a sin-
spread crackdown on LGBTQ gle statement condemning these
Egyptians followed. Within a week, attacks, despite our repeated

the Egyptian government banned requests and pleas. Just last week,
the state-run media from showing HRC President Chad Griffin wrote
any kind of support for the LGBTQ to Secretary Tillerson, urging him

on human
community. Subsequently, the once again to raise his voice.
Egyptian media have published arti- Americas top leaders have
cles encouraging hate speech and remained shamefully and deafen-

rights has
hate crimes targeting LGBTQ peo- ingly silent. This must end. They
ple. Now Egyptian lawmakers have must forcefully and unequivocally
put forward a legislative propos- condemn these atrocities and take

hit rock
al that would not only criminalize action to stop them. They must
same-sex activities, but would also make it clear to other leaders that
throw community members and human rights violations are unac-

allies into jail just for speaking out ceptable, and that the U.S. will not
in support of LGBTQ lives. turn a blind eye.
Egypt is just the most recent They must show leadership,
case. For nearly eight months, our now. Lives are at stake. l
community has been demanding
action from officials across the globe Ty Cobb is the Director of HRC
to address terrifying reports out of Chechnya of state-spon- Global. He leads a team of experts who run groundbreak-
sored arrests, detainment in secret prisons, and torture of ing programs and campaigns that advance and protect the
as many as 200 LGBTQ people. Up to 20 LGBTQ Chechens human right of LGBTQ people around the world, including
have been killed and Chechen leaders have actively encour- those who are immigrants and refugees. Reach him on
aged citizens to torture and kill family members who might Twitter at @tywesleycobb.
be LGBTQ. Dozens were forced to flee and leave behind
their family, their jobs and their lives, lest they be killed by The opinions expressed in Forum do not necessarily reflect
their own relatives. those of Metro Weekly or its employees. Add your voice to
Unfortunately, the crisis is not limited to Chechnya Forum. Discover how at metroweekly.com/forum.


come. 7-9 p.m. 11810 Sunrise
Valley Drive, second-floor bar.
For more information, visit

HIV TESTING at Whitman-

Walker Health. 9 a.m.-12:30
p.m. and from 2-5 p.m. at 1525
14th St. NW, and 9 a.m-12
p.m. and 2-5 p.m. at the Max
Robinson Center, 2301 MLK Jr.
Ave. SE. For an appointment
call 202-745-7000 or visit whit-

IDENTITY offers free and

confidential HIV testing at

two separate locations. Walk-

ins accepted from 2-6 p.m.,
by appointment for all other
hours. 414 East Diamond Ave.,
Gaithersburg, Md. or 7676
New Hampshire Ave., Suite


411, Takoma Park, Md. To set
up an appointment or for more
information, call Gaithersburg,
301-300-9978, or Takoma Park,
Local clubs offer Social and Duplicate Bridge games on alternating weeks

Appointment needed. 1012 14th
some people I knew played bridge, but I never got a chance to, because there never St. NW, Suite 700. To arrange
seemed to be enough people to get a game going, says Tim Holtz. I couldnt play, an appointment, call 202-638-
but I wanted to for quite a while. Then, as an adult, I got a computer game that taught 0750.
me how to play. I eventually found the Tom Davoren and Lambda Bridge clubs through a
SMYAL offers free HIV Testing,
social network about 23 years ago. 3-5 p.m., by appointment and
The Tom Davoren Social Club, which plays social bridge, and the Lambda Bridge Club, walk-in, for youth 21 and
which plays duplicate bridge, meet on alternating Wednesdays at the Dignity Center, younger. Youth Center, 410 7th
St. SE. 202-567-3155 or test-
across from the Marine Barracks in Southeast D.C. While open to everyone, both clubs ing@smyal.org.
have a majority gay male membership.
The clubs are not the best place for beginners, however. Holtz, who runs the clubs, rec- STI TESTING at Whitman-
ommends that newcomers attend an event just to watch until they get the gist of the game. Walker Health. 10 a.m.-12:30
p.m. and 2-3 p.m. at both 1525
He also suggests looking at online resources, including those made available through the 14th St. NW and the Max
American Contract Bridge Leagues website. Robinson Center, 2301 Martin
We dont really give people training. But if someones learning how to play, theyre Luther King, Jr. Ave. SE.
Testing is intended for those
welcome to come and watch us. Then, once theyre ready, they can join in. John Riley without symptoms. For an
appointment call 202-745-7000
The Tom Davoren Social Bridge Club meets on the first and third Wednesdays of each or visit whitman-walker.org.
month at the Dignity Center, 721 8th St. SE. The Lambda Bridge Club meets for Duplicate
Bridge on the second and fourth Wednesdays, also at the Dignity Center. Narcotics Anonymous Meeting.
For more information, call Tim Holtz at 301-345-1571. The group is independent of
UHU. 6:30-7:30 p.m., 3636
Georgia Ave. NW. For more
information, call 202-446-1100.
THURSDAY, Nov. 9 mation, visit swimdcac.org. Christian Church, 5 Thomas
Circle NW, 7-9:30 p.m. Casual WOMENS LEADERSHIP
Weekly Events DC FRONT RUNNERS run- dress. 301-257-0517, dclamb- INSTITUTE for young LBTQ
ning/walking/social club dasquares.org. women, 13-21, interested in
ANDROMEDA welcomes runners of all ability leadership development. 5-6:30
TRANSCULTURAL HEALTH levels for exercise in a fun and DC SCANDALS RUGBY holds p.m. SMYAL Youth Center, 410
offers free HIV testing and HIV supportive environment, with practice. The team is always 7th St. SE. For more informa-
services (by appointment). 9 socializing afterward. Route looking for new members. All tion, call 202-567-3163, or email
a.m.-5 p.m. Decatur Center, distance is 3-6 miles. Meet at welcome. 7:30-9:30 p.m. King catherine.chu@smyal.org.
1400 Decatur St. NW. To 7 p.m. at 23rd & P Streets NW. Greenleaf Recreation Center,
For more information, visit 201 N St. SW. For more infor-
arrange an appointment, call FRIDAY, Nov. 10
202-291-4707, or visit androm- dcfrontrunners.org. mation, visit scandalsrfc.org or
edatransculturalhealth.org. GAMMA is a confidential,
DC LAMBDA SQUARES gay voluntary peer-support group
DC AQUATICS CLUB practice and lesbian square-dancing THE DULLES TRIANGLES for men who are gay, bisexual,
session at Takoma Aquatic group features mainstream Northern Virginia social
questioning and who are now
Center. 7:30-9 p.m. 300 Van through advanced square group meets for happy hour at
or who have been in a rela-
Buren St. NW. For more infor- dancing at the National City Sheraton in Reston. All wel-
tionship with a woman. 7:30-


9:30 p.m. Luther Place Memorial The DC Center invites the larger SUNDAY, Nov. 12 UNITARIAN CHURCH OF
Church, 1226 Vermont Ave NW. community to celebrate Veterans ARLINGTON, an LGBTQ welcom-
GAMMA meetings are also held in Day and commemorate the CHRYSALIS arts & culture group ing-and-affirming congregation,
Vienna, Va., and in Frederick, Md. sacrifices of our troops with a visits Smithsonian Museum of offers services at 10 a.m. Virginia
For more information, visit gam- WREATH LAYING CEREMONY Natural History to see new exhi- Rainbow UU Ministry. 4444
maindc.org. AND MEMORIAL SERVICE at the bitions. Free admission. Lunch Arlington Blvd. uucava.org.
grave of Technical Sgt. Leonard follows. Meet at 11:30 a.m. past
The DC Center holds a meeting Matlovich, in the LGBT section of security inside the 10th Street and UNIVERSALIST NATIONAL
of its DC LGBTQIA DISABILITY Congressional Cemetery. 12-2 p.m. Constitution Avenue NW entrance, MEMORIAL CHURCH, a welcom-
GROUP to support, educate and 1801 E St. SE. For more informa- near Federal Triangle Metro ing and inclusive church. GLBT
empower people with disabilities. tion, call The DC Center at 202- Station. Contact Craig, 202-462- Interweave social/service group
8-9 p.m. 2000 14th St. NW, Suite 682-2245. 0535 or craighowell1@verizon.net. meets monthly. Services at 11 a.m.,
105. For more information, contact Romanesque sanctuary. 1810 16th St.
Andy Arias, andyarias09@gmail. Weekly Events Weekly Events NW. 202-387-3411, universalist.org.
DC AQUATICS CLUB holds a prac- LGBT-inclusive ALL SOULS MONDAY, Nov. 13
(AND THIRTIES), a social discus- Aquatics Club. 8:30-10 a.m. 7600 celebrates Low Mass at 8:30 Weekly Events
sion and activity group for queer Takoma Ave., Takoma, Md. For a.m., High Mass at 11 a.m. 2300
women, meets at The DC Center more information, visit swimdcac. Cathedral Ave. NW. 202-232-4244, DC AQUATICS CLUB holds a
on the second and fourth Fridays of org. allsoulsdc.org. practice session at Dunbar Aquatic
each month. Group social activity
Center. 7:30-9 p.m. 101 N St. NW.
to follow the meeting. 8-9:30 p.m. DC FRONT RUNNERS running/ DC AQUATICS CLUB holds a For more information, visit swim-
2000 14th St. NW, Suite 105. For walking/social club welcomes run- practice session at Wilson Aquatic dcac.org.
more information, visit thedccen- ners of all ability levels for exercise Center. 9:30-11 a.m. 4551 Fort Dr.
ter.org. in a fun and supportive environ- NW. For more information, visit GETEQUAL meets 6:30-8 p.m. at
ment, with socializing afterward. swimdcac.org. Quaker House, 2111 Florida Ave.
SATURDAY, Nov. 11 Route distance will be 3-6 miles. NW. For more information, email
Walker meet at 9:30 a.m. and run- DC FRONT RUNNERS running/ getequal.wdc@gmail.com.
ADVENTURING outdoors group ners at 10 a.m. at 23rd & P Streets walking/social club welcomes run-
hikes 6 miles along the C&O Canal NW. For more information, visit ners of all ability levels for exercise NOVASALUD offers free HIV test-
in far western Maryland near dcfrontrunners.org. in a fun and supportive environ- ing. 5-7 p.m. 2049 N. 15th St., Suite
Cumberland. Bring beverages, ment, with socializing afterward. 200, Arlington. Appointments: 703-
lunch, about $20 for fees, and DIGNITYUSA sponsors Mass for Route will be a distance run of 8, 10 789-4467.
money for dinner on the way home. LGBT community, family and or 12 miles. Meet at 9 a.m. at 23rd
Probable return to D.C. area after friends. 6:30 p.m., Immanuel & P Streets NW. For more informa- STI TESTING at Whitman-Walker
9 p.m. Call Craig, 202-462-0535 or Church-on-the-Hill, 3606 Seminary tion, visit dcfrontrunners.org. Health. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at both 1525
visit adventuring.org. Road, Alexandria. All welcome. For 14th St. NW and the Max Robinson
more info, visit dignitynova.org. DIGNITYUSA offers Roman Center, 2301 Martin Luther King,
Catholic Mass for the LGBT Jr. Ave. SE. Testing is intended for
community. All welcome. Sign those without symptoms. For an
interpreted. 6 p.m. St. Margarets appointment call 202-745-7000 or
Church, 1820 Connecticut Ave. visit whitman-walker.org.
NW. For more info, visit dignity-
washington.org. The DC Center hosts COFFEE
UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST 14th St. NW. For more information,
welcomes all to 10:30 a.m. service, call 202-682-2245 or visit thedc-
945 G St. NW. firstuccdc.org or center.org.
US HELPING US hosts a black gay
HOPE UNITED CHURCH OF mens evening affinity group for
CHRIST welcomes GLBT commu- GBT black men. Light refreshments
nity for worship. 10:30 a.m., 6130 provided. 7-9 p.m. 3636 Georgia
Old Telegraph Road, Alexandria. Ave. NW. 202-446-1100.
Join LINCOLN WATER POLO TEAM practices 7-9
CONGREGATIONAL TEMPLE p.m. Newcomers with at least basic
UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST for swimming ability always welcome.
an inclusive, loving and progressive Takoma Aquatic Center, 300 Van
faith community every Sunday. 11 Buren St. NW. For more informa-
a.m. 1701 11th Street NW, near R in tion, contact Tom, 703-299-0504
Shaw/Logan neighborhood. lincol- or secretary@wetskins.org, or visit
ntemple.org. wetskins.org.


services at 9 a.m. (ASL interpret- for newly diagnosed individuals,
ed) and 11 a.m. Childrens Sunday meets 7 p.m. Registration required.
School at 11 a.m. 474 Ridge St. NW. 202-939-7671, hivsupport@whit-
202-638-7373, mccdc.com. man-walker.org.


a Christ-centered, interracial,
welcoming-and-affirming church,
Queer-identifying women who
offers service at 10 a.m. 680 I St.
have survived violent or traumatic
SW. 202-554-4330, riversidedc.org.
experiences and are looking for


support are invited to take part LGBT Clinic, Alexandria Health
in a bi-weekly QUEER WOMEN Department, 4480 King St. 703-
WORKING THROUGH TRAUMA 746-4986 or text 571-214-9617.
GROUP at The DC Center. james.leslie@inova.org.
Participants are encouraged to
do an intake assessment with OVEREATERS ANONYMOUS
moderator and social worker Sam LGBT focused meeting every
Goodwin. 6-7 p.m. 2000 14th St. Tuesday, 7 p.m. St. Georges
NW, Suite 105. For more infor- Episcopal Church, 915 Oakland
mation, email Sam at samantha@ Ave., Arlington, just steps from
thedccenter.org. Virginia Square Metro. For
more info. call Dick, 703-521-
The DC Center holds a meeting of 1999. Handicapped accessible.
its COMING OUT DISCUSSION Newcomers welcome. liveandletli-
GROUP for those navigating issues veoa@gmail.com.
associated with coming out and
personal identity. 7-8:30 p.m. 2000 WEDNESDAY, Nov. 15
14th St. NW, Suite 105. For more
information, visit thedccenter.org. BOOKMEN DC, an informal mens
gay literature group discusses A
The DC Centers TRANS History of Gay Male Literature, by
SUPPORT GROUP provides a Gregory Woods at The DC Center.
space to talk for transgender people All welcome. 7:30 p.m. 2000 14th
and those who identify outside of St. NW, Suite 105. Visit book-
the gender binary. 7-8:30 p.m. 2000 mendc.blogspot.com.
14th St. NW, Suite 105. For more
information, visit thedccenter.org. The TOM DAVOREN SOCIAL
BRIDGE CLUB meets for Social
Weekly Events Bridge at the Dignity Center, across
from the Marine Barracks. No
DC AQUATICS CLUB practice partner needed. 7:30 p.m. 721 8th
session at Takoma Aquatic Center. St. SE. Call 301-345-1571 for more
7:30-9 p.m. 300 Van Buren St. NW. information.
For more information, visit swim-
dcac.org. Weekly Events
DC FRONT RUNNERS running/ AD LIB, a group for freestyle con-
walking/social club welcomes run- versation, meets about 6-6:30 p.m.,
ners of all ability levels for exercise Steam, 17th and R NW. All wel-
in a fun and supportive environment, come. For more information, call
with socializing afterward. Route Fausto Fernandez, 703-732-5174.
distance is 3-6 miles. Meet at 7 p.m.
at Union Station. For more informa- FREEDOM FROM SMOKING, a
tion, visit dcfrontrunners.org. group for LGBT people looking
to quit cigarettes and tobacco use,
DC SCANDALS RUGBY holds prac- holds a weekly support meeting at
tice. The team is always looking The DC Center. 7-8 p.m. 2000 14th
for new members. All welcome. St. NW, Suite 105. For more infor-
7:30-9:30 p.m. King Greenleaf mation, visit thedccenter.org. l
Recreation Center, 201 N St. SW.
For more information, visit scan- Submit your community event for
dalsrfc.org or dcscandals@gmail. consideration at least 10 days prior
com. to the Thursday publication in which
you would like it to appear. Email to
THE GAY MENS HEALTH calendar@metroweekly.com.
HIV testing and STI screening
and treatment every Tuesday.
5-6:30 p.m. Rainbow Tuesday


SMYALs Annual Fall Brunch at The Marriott Marquis
Sunday, Nov. 5 Photography by Ward Morrison
See and purchase more photos from this event at www.metroweekly.com/scene


Love Story
Francis Carson Lee had some personal issues to work out. So he
made a movie called Gods Own Country and, in the process,
brought gay romance to a whole new level.

Exclusive Interview by Randy Shulman

without internet. I mean, theres a tiny little bit,
but its very slow, says the director of Gods Own
Country. It kind of depends on the time of day.
If its late at night, I can send emails, but beyond
that, its useless. I live a very isolated life. So
what does he do in his spare time? I think about making films.
Good thing, too, because Lees first film is a knockout. Gods
Own Country has been hailed by critics as the Yorkshire equiv-
alent to Brokeback Mountain, and currently has a 99% approval
rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The praise is beyond deserved: The
movie is one of the most resoundingly powerful love stories to
hit screens in years, gay or straight. Honest, intense, authentic,
its the former actors (I was a bad actor I was very uncom-
fortable with it) inaugural plunge into writing and directing,
and the result makes you sit up and take notice of the sheer,
instinctive talent on display. Seasoned filmmakers have tried
(and failed) to produce even a tenth of the emotional power pro-
duced in all of Gods Own Countrys hour and forty five minutes.
Lee, it turns out, is extremely reserved and shy, sweetly so.
He prefers not to address details about his life Im not great
talking about personal stuff, he warns and his reticence to
answer is invariably offset by a charmingly polite, Im so sorry.
Yet if you push gently enough, you get a tiny bit of insight into
this gay rural England-born 48-year-old who decided to work
out his feelings by writing a romance between a slowly souring,
isolated young man toiling on his family farm, and the migrant
Romanian farmhand who opens his heart (see review, page xx).
Im no cinephile, says Lee, speaking from a hill near his
Yorkshire home because, in addition to poor internet, he gets
no cell reception, but my biggest influences on this film were




An Officer and a Gentleman, Bridges of Madison County, and be uncomfortable to sit through for whatever reason but what
Working Girl. comes out of it actually changes your mind about what youve
The movie has been open in the U.K. for several months and just seen, slightly. So, with the lamb skinning, I loved the idea
has garnered a huge following and its not only gay men. that the death became renewal and hope.
In the UK and the other places where its been released MW: Ive read that you had the actors do their own farm work.
Australia and New Zealand the audience has been predom- Obviously, when Johnny is arm deep in a cow, thats not digital.
inantly women, he says. Of all ages, of all persuasions. But Did they do the skinning too, or was that a stand in?
weve also had a lot of straight men, weve had obviously a lot of LEE: Everything you see in the film, they do. It was really, really
gay men, a lot of queer women. I think what people respond to important to me because I love immersive cinema, and I knew
is the love story. that if I sat and watched this film, and we cut to a close-up of
More than two months into its UK release, the film is still a hand dealing with a lamb or a cow or whatever it was, and I
going strong. People are seeing it five, six, seven times, he mar- knew that it wasnt one of those actors hands, I would always be
vels. There are some die-hard fans who have been like 12 times. pulled out of the film at that point. I didnt want that.
Theres little social groups who have built up from people who I also wanted the two boys to fully experience the physical
have met at the movie and they now have little nights out at the life within this landscape. In the same way in which I said to you
movie. There are people whove bought jumpers very similar to earlier, that landscape had physically formed me, I wanted it to
Gheorghe and they all meet up in Gheorghe jumpers. Im just impact on them and their performances. So they both went off
so thrilled that its had this personal connection to people. for weeks and weeks before the shoot and worked on local farms
And in the home town where I grew up, which is in in Yorkshire. Josh OConnor, who plays Johnny, worked on the
Yorkshire, called Halifax, its the biggest selling film that theyve farm where we shot the film, and Alec Secareanu, who plays
had ever. It even outsold Dunkirk. Gheorghe, worked on my dads farm. They did long shifts. They
would start at 6 a.m. and would go through until 6, 7 p.m. They
learned to do everything, so that all of that work became such
METRO WEEKLY: How did you come up with the idea for Gods second nature to them sweeping manure, birthing lambs, all
Own Country? of that stuff they became incredibly proficient at it. They were
FRANCIS LEE: It basically started with the landscape. I grew up able to translate that into the physicalities of their characters.
on the hills of Yorkshire, very similar to where the film is shot. MW: Johnny and Gheorghes sexual relationship is both sudden and
My dad is still a sheep farmer there, and I now live back up on powerful in the way it starts. Its not a soft or romantic build, but is
those hills. Growing up here, I always had this kind of notion rather like two bulls going at one another, fighting for dominance.
that the landscape was very important to me. It felt as if it Its actively aggressive. Yet it gradually becomes romantic and,
formed who I was, both physically and emotionally. But I always later, almost comfortable. The impact of the romance, however,
had this odd feeling about it. On the one hand, it felt incredibly seems to be most felt on Johnny.
freeing and open and wild and creative and expansive. But, on LEE: I have this character, Johnny, who isnt particularly artic-
the other hand, it felt kind of problematic and isolated and bru- ulate verbally or emotionally, and I really wanted see the spark
tal. So my starting point, when I started to think about doing a within him. A brilliant way to depict that was how he had sex.
film, was exploring this landscape that I felt to be totally part of The first time we see him having sex, its with the young auc-
me. At the same time, I was working out that thing of falling in tioneer in the back of a cattle trailer at the auction house, and
love, and the idea of if youre going to fall in love, you have to we instantly understand him from the way in which he has sex.
make yourself vulnerable and open enough to love and be loved. Hes not interested in intimacy, hes not interested a connection
So, those things collided. hes interested in a physical act. Hes not interested in care or
I had seen the Yorkshire landscape represented on film many communication or any of those things.
times and had also seen farming represented on film many times What I loved was then seeing, through the intimate scenes,
and same-sex relationships. But I had never seen it in a way in was how that begins to change through him knowing Gheorghe.
which I saw it. I wanted to explore a very personal view not We see him start to accept intimacy and touch and pleasure and
biographical at all of how I saw all of those things. make himself vulnerable. I love visual storytelling rather than
MW: The farming angle of the movie is as vital to the narrative as telling stories through dialogue and its important to show that
the love story. And its very authentic, particularly with regard to who this character was, and how he changed.
the scenes with livestock. MW: Did you have any challenges directing the sex scenes. They feel
LEE: I love truth and authenticity in storytelling. Whether that graphic at least for America.
is an emotion or a character or an action, or whether or not that LEE: When I first started to meet people for the characters, I was
is the world in which the characters inhabit, to me it has to feel very upfront from the get-go about why those scenes were there
as truthful and authentic as it possibly can. Obviously, growing and what they would be like. The script was very detailed in its
up in a similar situation and being around livestock, I was very descriptions of those scenes, so everybody knew exactly what
used to seeing that cycle of life and death. It felt very common they would be. I explained why they were there emotionally
to me. And so, it was about representing that, again, as truthfully for these characters. And then I also spoke about how my main
as I could. focus would always be those actors and I would protect them [on
MW: I must say, I was not prepared for the scene where they skin set]. They would be respected, and they would be able to work in
the dead baby lamb. It was alarming you did not cut away from a place with safety to deliver their very best.
it, at all. At first I thought, Why are we watching this? Then, of MW: I need to bring up Ian Hart. He is probably one of the best
course, the meaning becomes clear. Its a stunning, yet beautifully known people in your cast and yet I didnt realize it was him. Its a
simple, moment of character revelation. magnificent performance.
LEE: What I love about storytelling is seeing something that may LEE: I always been a huge admirer of his work and I thought that
be uncomfortable to see, but is the truth of the situation. It may actually what he could bring to it would be real depth. I sent him


the script, he read it, he loved it, we met and I talked about what film made me cry. And I dont cry at anything. So theres something
I would like to do, and he wholeheartedly accepted. innately powerful in this movie. It feels deeply personal, as though
Ian is a brilliant actor because he will go and do all the only a gay man could have made it.
research. He met with people who had had strokes. He went LEE: I can only tell stories that I have a personal connection to
and spoke with speech therapists about what happens to people, and that Im trying to work out something for myself. And that
once theyve had a stroke, with their language skills. When we can be about anything, you know? Whether that be about the
were shooting the film, in between takes, he would remain phys- landscape or about the love or the character or the relationships.
ically in that character. So he would still walk with his sticks and And so, yes, I put a lot of myself in it. For me, its always about
he would still speak in the way in which he did. the truth.
That characters hard because his personality has been Im the kind of writer and director who has to explore things
formed by being on that farm and having to do that work and that they have experienced, or that they are experiencing, or that
how that farm has basically broken him physically, and also by they have knowledge of, and I put myself in it. I made the film
the fact that his wife left him with a very small child years and the way in which I wanted to make it I didnt bow to people
years before and he was left to bring up this child. He
cares deeply for Johnny, his son, and loves him but, We instantly understand Johnny from the way in
obviously, this isnt a family that articulates. He wants which he has sex. Hes not interested in intimacy,
the best for Johnny but, unfortunately, Johnny is
reacting badly to the situation.
hes not interested a connection hes interested in
Ian wasnt afraid to shy away from Martin being a physical act. HES NOT INTERESTED IN CARE OR
unlikeable, which is a great thing. Some actors will COMMUNICATION OR ANY OF THOSE THINGS.
always try and find the likeability in their characters.
And also, the actress who played Deidre, Johnnys grandmother who asked me to make it a different way, I was steadfast in how
and Martins mother, shes called Gemma Jones and shes I wanted to make it because this is how I saw it. Which is a very
extraordinary. Shes very famous in the U.K. And again, she dangerous thing. If Id have done this and nobody would have
wasnt afraid to really tackle a character who, sometimes, could liked it, then first of all, I would have to take all the responsibility
be unlikeable. for that. And second of all, I probably would have taken it quite
MW: A lot of critics are comparing Gods Own Country to personally. Its about making, for me, anyway, work that means
Brokeback Mountain, calling it Yorkshire Brokeback. Do you get something to you. On many levels.
tired of hearing about Brokeback comparisons? Or was Brokeback MW: Did you find what you were looking for personally in creating
in your head when devising it? There are parallels. this art?
LEE: Ive only seen Brokeback once, when it first came out in the LEE: On many levels, yes.
cinema. And I was very moved by it I think its an incredible MW: And on some levels, no?
film, I think its beautiful. I think its two central performances LEE: Yeah. Ive not made a film before, so this is a very new expe-
are extraordinary. And I think that when you make work, every- rience. I didnt go to film school. I didnt go and do a directing
thing that youve seen in some way impacts on what you do. We course or a writing course. So this world is very new to me. If
all stand on the shoulders of what has come before. youre somebody who makes something and you go to yourself,
But I dont know if I was consciously channeling it in any Okay, thats perfect, I have explored everything I wanted to
way. Certainly not in the writing of it. Its a huge, flattering explore, it all works, it all is there, I feel satisfied, you wouldnt
comparison, really. I think Ang Lee is a master filmmaker, but make anything else. You would put a full stop after it.
I do think the films are very different. Brokeback is dealing with But of course thats not happened. Which propels me to make
a situation where two guys cant be together society is totally my next film, because I want to explore more human relation-
against them, so they live a lie and they marry women. Its a ships and conditions and situations. There are more things for
love that dare not speak its name. Whereas Gods Own Country me to work out, so its very satisfying on lots of levels but Im
is more centered around a boy who cant fall in love because of hoping there always will be levels that I want to explore.
himself, not because of his sexuality or because of society. MW: Whats the next film, can you say?
MW: Are you closer to Johnny or Gheorghe? LEE: Im not allowed to talk about it. But it is something that Im
LEE: [Laughs.] Im not sure if Im going to answer that, Im so writing, it is about relationships, its a period film. Its set quite a
sorry. long time ago, and it doesnt really feature any men.
MW: Why is that a hard question for you? MW: Thats quite the tease. Do you have a favorite film in terms of
LEE: Because its a very personal film. Its not autobiographical in gay cinema?
any way, really. The family in the film are certainly not my fam- LEE: Its always such a difficult question.
ily. My dad is a very emotionally resonant man who talks a lot MW: True. Theres a lot to choose from.
about how he feels, and about how he feels about other people. LEE: There are. I really love My Beautiful Laundrette. Thats one
Nobody asked me to write the film, it wasnt developed of my favorites. Its super close to the things that I really like.
because a producer came to me and went, Oh, I think youre For me, I dont think its necessarily about sexuality I think
really interesting, do you have any stories? I just wrote it. its about class and relationships. I like how difficult that central
Because I had a need to write it, to explore the themes within it, relationship is within it.
because I was exploring them for myself. MW: Now, Ill warn you this is another personal question, and I
MW: As I watched the film, I felt such a connection to the love story know you hate those, but I have to ask you about your beard. Its
presented. I was totally swept away by it. Their relationship is such amazing. Youve got to tell us how you maintain it.
natural blossom of romance that by the end and Im not going to LEE: [Laughs.] Weirdly, I grew this beard when I was writing
give it away my friend turned to me and said, Are you crying? Gods Own Country. I grew it because I was fed up of shaving.
And I went, No, Im not crying. But truth is, I was crying. Your This tells you how out of touch I am with the world. I was tired


of trying to conform to certain stereotypes about what I should moors. Those kinds of things. Being outside, hiking. Im very
look like, so I thought, Oh, Im just going to be anti-fashion and lucky, I live in a very beautiful, remote moorland, very close to
anti-everything and Im just gonna grow a massive beard. Not where the Bronte sisters lived and worked, so every day I get to
long afterwards, I went and met a friend in East London, and hike out over the moors.
suddenly realized that everybody there had a massive beard. So MW: Have you or do you hope to ever find love like what youve
it was a big surprise to me that beards were, you know, popular. represented on screen?
How do I maintain it? I have one barber called Matthew who LEE: I mean, I dont know if I will find what Ive represented on
I really trust, but I dont get to see him often because he works screen, but I can very confidently tell you that Ive found a love
in London. So every time I go to London, I go and see Matthew that is very meaningful to me.
and he makes it look nice. And then I make my own beard oil out MW: You are a hard nut to crack.
of almond oil and black pepper essence. LEE: [Laughs.] Yeah.
MW: I love that. MW: Can I at least ask if youre a romantic person?
LEE: And I occasionally wash it. LEE: I mean, I think Im a caring person, but romance means
MW: Okay, another personal question. Are you happy in your life different things to different people, right? I mean, I think the
right now? most romantic thing in Gods Own Country is when Johnny and
LEE: Yes. Gheorghe call each other freak and faggot. To me, that is
MW: You paused. You had to think about that. pure romance. So maybe that tells you something about how
LEE: Because life is a big thing, isnt it? I mean, there are always romantic I am. l
going to be things that make us unhappy or that we would like to
fix. But generally, personally, yeah. Gods Own Country opens Friday, Nov. 10, at Landmarks E Street
MW: What makes you happiest? Cinema, 555 11th St. NW. Visit landmarktheatres.com or call the
LEE: My family and my friends. And being able to hike over the theater directly at 202-783-9494.

The gay romantic powerhouse Gods Own Country is the movie Brokeback Mountain should have been.

HEN WE FIRST MEET JOHNNY SAXBY IN tenderness, as well as the power of a first kiss.
Francis Lees breathtaking, emotionally redolent The remainder of Lees movie follows very familiar tropes,
Gods Own Country (HHHHH), hes violently retching but it does so in such a natural, beguiling way, you barely notice.
up his previous night at the local pub, a scene, we soon learn, is Everything about Gods Own Country feels fresh, as if this were
all-too-familiar. Im not cleaning up your sick, barks his steel- the first gay romance ever made. If it doesnt put your heart in
eyed grandmother, Diedre, as the glum 24-year-old starts his your throat, youre likely dead.
day of work on the familys Yorkshire livestock farm. Its not a Lee infuses his film with a grim and gritty authenticity.
glamorous life, and Johnny takes to his chores with a begrudging Where an estimable movie like Brokeback Mountain, with which
sullenness, constantly berated by his father Martin, incapacitat- Gods Own Country shares massively similar DNA, generated
ed a few years back by a stroke. Everything rests on Johnnys its emotions through poise and polish, Lees film aims for the
shoulders, like it or not. And he doesnt like it. jugular of true intimacy. It helps that there are no recognizable
Johnnys anger is fueled by loneliness and regret. From his stars apart from Ian Hart, magnificent as the stroke-addled
farms vast fields, he can see the lights of the town below. But Martin. The movie is as much about the brutal, punishing, often
hes only part of it inasmuch as he can down a dozen or so pints. grisly life of farming as it is about two men finding romance. Its
His friends have all moved away, to better things, leaving him about the realization that while we can be our own self-imposed
trapped in a rural, mind-numbingly dull nightmare of sweeping islands, surrounded by resentment and anger, things are so
manure, mending fences, and birthing lambs and calves. much better when you have someone making you morning eggs
His sexual encounters are confined to quick, coarse, decid- and fresh goats milk cheese.
edly unsafe spit fucks with a young, local auctioneer. After one As Johnny and Gheorghe, Josh OConnor and Alec Secareanu
such occasion, the boy asks if Johnny would like to get a beer are equally phenomenal, matching each other in both ferocity
sometime, an attempt to humanize an otherwise unappealing, and a familiar, playful casualness. OConnor is particularly good
feral sexual encounter, and Johnny merely scoffs. Johnny, of in conveying Johnnys primordial nature, while Secareanu plays
course, is an animal instinctive, primal waiting to be domes- Gheorghe with steady, serene, knowing calm and compassion.
ticated, waiting to be born. The actors bring the authenticity of first love to the screen in a
The promise of rebirth arrives in the form of Gheorghe, a way that is exceedingly rare for any movie, Hollywood or oth-
migrant Romanian worker hired by Martin to help with lambing erwise.
season. Johnny is at first desultory to the swarthy young man, Gods Own Country is the Beautiful Thing of today. Tender,
calling him a gypsy, but the attraction is evident. After the pair heartbreaking, emotionally shattering and satisfying, it is the
spend a few nights in a remote stone shelter, tending to the movie that (the admittedly great) Brokeback Mountain only
newborn lambs, a transformation occurs. Their first encounter is wishes it could have been. Randy Shulman
eruptive, messy, passionate, stark, but it soon gives way to some-
thing more, as Gheorghe literally teaches Johnny the meaning of Reprinted from an earlier edition.



Child Play
An elegant new book reveals Paul Childs view of his life in France with his soon-to-be extremely famous wife

TS SUCH AN INTERESTING SHOT, SAYS ALEX ly candid, exemplify the exhale of a country that had recently
PrudHomme, referring to a photograph taken by his great emerged from the second World War. You see everything from
uncle, Paul Child, of wife Julia casually on the telephone. sort of surrealistic experimentations to real street photogra-
All you see are her legs in casual splay. Paul saw photography phy to landscape and portraits, says PrudHomme. He really
like hunting. He said you have to always be ready to pounce. He worked at it.
took a snapshot like you or I might do, but it was a well-trained The photographs also celebrate Julia Child in a way that is
snapshot. He brought a lot to each picture. delightfully ordinary.
PrudHomme is the author, with Katie Pratt, of a collection of He basically took pictures and wrote notes about their
Paul Childs photographs from 1948 to 1954, when he and Julia lives every day, says PrudHomme, who in 2004 helped the
lived in France. The assortment of more than 200 black and treasured, late chef pen a memoir entitled My Life in France.
white photographs, some deliberately composed, others captive- Whats interesting about the pictures of Julia in this book is


that were seeing her when she was unknown to the world. She pushed her forward into the limelight just as her first cookbook
was a diplomatic wife, toiling away in obscurity with her two was being published. It was amazing how he did that. But it
French friends, teaching cooking classes, working on the book didnt mean that he became subsidiary. He was very important.
that would eventually be published in 1961 as Mastering the Art She said, Without Paul, I would not
of French Cooking. But at the moment these pictures are taken, have had my career. And he always
we are seeing Julia becoming Julia Child. Julia before her debut said, Without Julia I would have been
on the national stage. From that perspective, its an interesting a miserable misanthrope.
documentation of her evolution. Randy Shulman
For the first half of their marriage, Paul, who was 10 years
older than Julia, was the senior member, he continues. He France is a Feast, $35, is published
had the big job, and she was toiling away in the background by Thames & Hudson. Its available
on cooking. They retired in 1961, and settled in Cambridge, both at local bookstores and online at
Massachusetts, and he very intentionally stepped back and Amazon.com.



lover Ruggiero, who has been bewitched

Strange Magic
into a wild infatuation with Alcina. If the
plot creates dramatic tension and allows
the lovers long, gorgeous agonies, it also
presents the problem of how to show or
Washington National Operas Alcina showcases baroque music suggest the action when so much of it is
with a contemporary soul. By Kate Wingfield suspended during a lengthy aria. Here,
there is a tendency to a bit too much

agitation on the central circle of stage,
UIETLY AFFECTING, THE WASHINGTON NATIONAL OPERAS NEW and a few too many lugubrious entrances
production of Handels Alcina (HHHHH) is a gift to baroque lovers and any- and exits during which the cursed former
one who needs a bit more 18th century harpsichord in their life. With clean, lovers carry their cubist seating. Though
abstract sets and costumes echoing an early 20th century Europe, director Anne Bogart opera has moved away from the park and
makes the interesting choice to pull the story out of its historical trappings and give it bark model, the other extreme can be too
the slightly surreal feel of a modern Tempest. Thoughtfully evoked, Alcinas island is much distracting busywork and there is
suggested with set designer Neil Patels glistening floor and schematic circles one a whiff of it here.
raised center stage and the other a massive cut-out behind the action. Their emphasis Thankfully not overdoing it is Angela
and cosmic power come and go with Christopher Akerlinds subtle static projections Meade in the title role. A quiet yet com-
and deep glowing colors, the moods changing almost imperceptibly, and the effect manding presence, she convinces as the
works well in the Kennedy Centers smaller Eisenhower Theater. powerful sorceress, singing with a lus-
It is a pared-down vision, one that director Bogart offers as an invitation to hear the trous, rich soprano. If she doesnt bring
music in a new way. Handel may have composed in a time of powdered wigs and beauty every dexterity to the baroque runs, there
marks, but in Bogarts amorphous netherworld, the baroque voice, with its long vocal is something majestic in her almost lan-
runs and extended riffs on single-minded emotion, becomes ripe for a timeless kind guid approach. She sits in interesting
of contemplation. Who would have thought to use the human voice in such a strange, juxtaposition to Ying Fangs Morgana,
affected way? Why does it touch the soul? Alcinas younger sister, who falls madly in
If Bogart captures Handel in this lovely, serene space (and conductor Jane Glover love with the disguised Bradamante. Fang
brings an appealing effort from the WNO orchestra), there are some challenges. We has an unassailably true-toned, beautiful
join Alcina in her prime, a sorceress who flits from lover to lover, turning them into soprano and she is technically won-
stones and animals when she tires of them. Her kingdom of victims is forever disrupted derful but there is something almost
when Bradamante, a young woman disguised as a male soldier, arrives in search of her rebelliously compelling, and perhaps more


her chemistry with her concerned col-
league Melisso, sung with pleasing gusto
by Michael Adams, is solid. Also effec-
tively sung is Rexford Tester as Oronte,
Morganas erstwhile boyfriend.
But along with Meade, the real stand-
out here is Elizabeth DeShong as Ruggiero,
traditionally sung as a trouser role. A
truly excitingly singer, DeShongs deeply
powerful mezzo soprano electrifies the
night. She is precise, utterly engaged and
she breathes compelling life and urgen-
cy into her Handel. If there is little to
no chemistry between her and Alcina,
it doesnt matter all that much this
Ruggiero is angry at himself, questioning
his personal integrity, asking himself how

he could have been so easily bewitched.

Between Ruggieros trouser role and
Bradamantes disguise as a man, there is an
interesting play on gender here. Director
expressive, in Meades less pristine approach. Bogart continues the theme with another trouser role in Barney
As Bradamante, Daniela Mack is tasked with much of the OHanlons charmingly choreographed interludes of dance.
over-egged running around, as she fends off the ardent Morgana Together, these gentle acknowledgments of gender fluidity give
and then realizes the fate of her lover. She sings with much the piece a quiet contemporary resonance.
appealing expression, but it can feel slightly forced at times Thus, this thoughtful production sates the needs of the
and there is not quite enough savoring of Handels nuance. baroque lover, but it will also fascinate anyone with a curious
Still, Mack delivers her character with convincing angst and mind and an open musical soul. l

Alcina runs to November 19 in the Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater. Tickats are $69 to $195.
Call 202-467-4600 or visit kennedy-center.org.



brightest, particularly during an emotional

Bumpy Ride
late-stage scene as they work through
the mystery and intrigue in Christies tale.
None of these characters is who they first
seem, and when one is brutally mur-
Murder on the Orient Express is a fun, if flawed and unoriginal, dered after the Orient is derailed by an
adaptation of the Christie classic. By Rhuaridh Marr avalanche their true natures and selves
are slowly revealed.

Christies story remains devilishly good
T CAN BE DAUNTING TO ADAPT A CLASSIC NOVEL FOR MODERN AUDI- fun 80 years later, and screenwriter Green
ences. Even more so when the story in question is Agatha Christies 1934 Murder on has tried to modernize certain elements
the Orient Express. Already produced thrice before for screen an acclaimed 1974 including more diverse casting (and
film, a derided 2001 TV film, and a middling 2010 episode of Agatha Christies Poirot a couple of character changes) in Cruz,
trying to sell audiences on a whodunit that many have likely already encountered is Odom Jr. and Manuel Garcia-Rulfos roles.
no mean feat. Theres even references to Stalins ide-
Undeterred, Kenneth Branagh steps both in front of and behind the camera, as als, and discussions about the interracial
protagonist and brilliant detective Hercule Poirot and director of Murder on the Orient romance between the Doctor and Miss
Express ( ). Adapted by screenwriter Michael Green, Branagh promises Debenham. But theres only so much that
sumptuous filmmaking, a starry cast, and a quantifiable reason to spend money and 114 can be done to alter Christie often,
minutes reliving one of Poirots most famous cases. certain lines of dialogue land with a thud,
The setup is simple: Poirot, on a break from sleuthing, is asked to come to London regardless of the caliber of actor delivering
to investigate a case. To do so, he hitches a ride on the famed Orient Express, where them.
he meets an eclectic group of individuals who, at first glance, have nothing in common. And while Branagh seems to be having
If Murder truly delivers in one area, its in assembling an excellent cast. While its not a blast as Poirot, complete with a comi-
quite as name-heavy as Sidney Lumets 1974 classic, theres plenty to satiate, including cally oversized moustache and an abun-
Dame Judi Dench as Russian Princess Dragomiroff, Johnny Depp as sleazy business- dance of one-liners, every one of Poirots
man Edward Ratchett, Michelle Pfeiffer as divorcee Caroline Hubbard, Penlope idiosyncrasies has been greatly amplified
Cruz as the missionary Pilar Estravados, Star Wars Daisy Ridley as governess Mary to almost ludicrous effect. Thats not all
Debenham, Willem Dafoe as a racist Austrian professor, Josh Gad as Ratchetts associ- thats amiss: several unexplained logic
ate, Derek Jacobi as Ratchetts butler, and Leslie Odom Jr. as Dr. Arbuthnot. leaps jar against the moments when he
Each actor happily chews through the gorgeous scenery on offer Pfeiffer shines chooses to ponderously spell something


Its needlessly long exposition, and it contrasts
against his masterful handling of the Istanbul train
station where the Orient departs from, as he focuses
in on the central characters amid the mayhem of a
bustling crowd. Its here that Branagh should have
opened, and where his skill can be fully appreciated.
Instead, in this two-hour film, its about 50 minutes
until theres an actual murder on the Orient Express.
Once on the train, the films set design and
costuming threatens to outshine Murders stars.
It is gorgeous to behold, nailing the 30s aesthetic,
the luxury, the decadence of those lucky few who
could enjoy the Orient. And when Branagh and
cinematographer Haris Zambarloukos work with
the confines of the carriages, there are some breath-
taking scenes, such as a tracking shot of Poirot as he

storms down the train to confront the 12 passengers

accused of murder. Other times, Branagh seems to
want to escape, his camera flying out and around
out for the audience, rather than trust them to keep up. Perhaps the train, or experiment, such as top-down shots and extreme
he needs another film a sequel is heavily hinted at to bed close-ups that, if youre too close to the screen, can make for
into the role, but Branaghs take on the Belgian detective could uncomfortable viewing.
stand to be edited and refined. Ultimately, if you know the whodunit and have seen the 74
The same could be said for his direction. Branagh is no original, theres little reason to rush out and see Branaghs adap-
stranger behind a camera, but he seems to be struggling with the tation. But for those unaware of Christies masterful conclusion,
tight confines of the narrative both literally and figuratively. the film does decent service to one of her greatest tales. And even
Nowhere is that more evident than the films opening scenes, if you know where the Orient is ultimately going, its a pretty fun
which introduce us to Poirot as he solves a robbery in Jerusalem. ride nevertheless, flaws and all. l

Murder on the Orient Express is rated PG-13 for violence and thematic elements, and opens in theaters everywhere on Friday,
November 10. Visit fandango.com.


NightLife Photography by
Ward Morrison


Mr. Maryland Leather Victory Party at the Baltimore Eagle
Saturday, Nov. 4 Photography by Ward Morrison
See and purchase more photos from this event at www.metroweekly.com/scene

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in the Nest, featuring DJ Men in Underwear Drink
only $4 21+


Patio open 6pm DC Bear Men of Secrets, 9pm
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11pm Doors open at 9 1/2
10pm For those 21 and Happy Hour: 2 for 1 on any
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18-20, $15 Club: 18+ and $5 Bulleit Bourbon,
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Saturdays, Code Bar, Kelly, 11:30pm-close 10pm-12am $12 after BALTIMORE EAGLE four glasses of champagne $5 Rails and House Wines
8pm-2am Code enforced $100 Cash Prize to Winner midnight 21+ Lizzie Beaumont and or mimosas, 1 Bloody & Half-Priced Pizzas
after 9pm in the Code Bar $5 Cover Betty Whitecastle present Mary, or coffee, soda or
Dance Party in the Nest, TRADE Queens Who Brunch, juice Crazy Hour, 4-8pm TRADE
9:30pm-close $10 Cover NELLIES SPORTS BAR Doors open 12pm Huge 12-2pm $34 per person Karaoke, 9pm-1am Doors open 12pm Huge
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Level One, 11am-2pm and Buckets of Beer, $15 12-10pm Beer and wine gested and can be made with Kevin downstairs, 12-10pm Beer and wine
2-4pm Featuring Kristina only $4 online beforehand Furry 9:30pm-close only $4
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Over DC, 10pm-close BacK2bACk, 9:30pm Doors at 9pm, Shows mixers) Misty Barflys Zang Bloody Marys, Nellie
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$10 Cover SHAWS TAVERN DJ Don T. in Ziegfelds her mother, 6-8:30pm 11am-close Buckets of Happy Hour: 2 for 1 on any
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Drag Show, hosted by Miss Bret Law, 10pm-close 9 1/2 $3 Rail, $3 Bud Light, No Cover to 50% off Micro Brew
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Karaoke, 10pm-close video by DJ Wess Drag drink, 2-9pm $5 Absolut Karaoke, hosted by Robert SHAWS TAVERN $4 all day SIN: Service
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Happy Hour: $6 Top Shelf, Happy Hour, 4-7pm $3 Happy Hour, 5-9pm, all Happy Hour: 2 for 1 on any Happy Hour, 5-9pm, all SmartAss Trivia Night, 8pm
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People say the queerest things

I would like to ask [Kevin Spacey] how it feels to lose a lifetime of success and hard work all because of
10 minutes of indiscretion.
Author GAY TALESE, to Vanity Fair, on the allegations of sexual misconduct brought against actor Kevin Spacey. I hate that actor
that ruined this guys career, he continued, referring to Anthony Rapps allegation. So, O.K., it happened
[more than] 10 years ago... Jesus, suck it up once in a while!

We apologize for anyone

negatively impacted by this bug.
It is not consistent with our values as a company.

The TWITTER SUPPORT account, in a series of tweets apologizing for a technical glitch in which searches for hashtags
relating to sexuality, including #bisexual, #bisexuality, and the term transsexual, were blocked.
LGBTQ activists said the companys apology didnt go far enough.

I leave the game full of pride

of what I have accomplished as a person and a player.

LA Galaxys ROBBIE ROGERS, announcing his retirement from soccer in a statement released by the team.
Rogers thanked his coaches, his teammates, Galaxy staff and fans for their strong support and acceptance
of him after he came out as the first openly gay professional soccer player.

Within the lifetime of this parliament, this nations laws created suffering and perpetrated injustice.
The legislation we have published today
addresses this injustice.
Scotland First Minister NICOLA STURGEON, speaking to Scottish Parliament about a bill introduced to pardon gay and bisexual
men convicted under Scotlands laws banning consensual gay sex. The bill would also allow those men
who are still living to get the convictions removed from their records.

While Seattle voters chose Jenny because of her proven track record...it is also
an undeniably proud moment
for the LGBTQ community,
which continues to see this strong leader break down barriers.

AISHA MOODIE-MILLS, CEO and president of the Victory Fund, on out lesbian Jenny Durkans victory in the Seattle mayoral race.
Durkan will also be the second female mayor in the citys history, and the first woman elected citywide in nearly 92 years.