Culture

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Mardi Gras!

Local bars host Fat Tuesday parties with beats and beads

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Singular sensation ‘A Chorus Line’ comes to Atlanta

'A Chorus Line' at Cobb Energy Centre

It’s an iconic image: 17 eager dancers on a bare stage auditioning to get a role in an upcoming musical. “A Chorus Line” — the longest running American Broadway musical ever and winner of nine Tony awards — is about to return to Atlanta as part of the Gas South Broadway Series, with openly gay actor Paul Flanagan in the cast.

Flanagan stars as Al in the musical. Al is 30 years old, from the Bronx, and a very experienced dancer who is in the audition with his wife, Christine.  “He is ready to settle down and is at the audition to settle down Christine,” he says.

The actor has been in “A Chorus Line” once before, back in a Hilton Head production when he was 20. He started with this tour back in the fall and will be with it until the late spring, when the tour goes international in Tokyo.

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Interview: Takeover artist Tabatha Coffey turns her infamous scrutiny on herself

Tabatha Coffey stars on Bravo's'Tabatha's Salon Takeover'

From the first moment audiences encountered Tabatha Coffey on Bravo’s “Shear Genius,” she has never been shy with an opinion. Her reputation as the dominatrix of deep-conditioning led to her own series on the network, “Tabatha’s Salon Takeover,” now in its third season.

Each episode features Coffey in a struggling salon, doling out tough love to the owner and staff. In each installment, it is absolutely guaranteed someone will cry, Tabatha will be gobsmacked by someone’s incompetence, and at least one person will call her a bitch. Sometimes this all happens in the same scene.

In her new memoir, “It’s Not All About The Hair: The Honest Truth About Life, Love and the Business of Beauty,” Coffey opens up about growing up in the dressing rooms of drag queens, coming out at fifteen, the nearly fatal experience of getting breast implants, and why it doesn’t matter if the truth hurts. She talked to the GA Voice while packing to leave Hollywood, following her TV Guide Channel coverage of the Academy Awards.

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Actor’s Express needs $50,000 by end of March

Hedwig and the Angry Itch at Actor's Express

Actor’s Express, the gay-inclusive Atlanta-based theater company, is in danger of closing its doors unless the company can come up with significant cash by the end of this month.

Artistic Director Freddie Ashley, who is gay, sent out an email last week explaining the situation the company faces. “Our theatre is at a critical juncture — a true life or death moment. As you know from our many recent calls for support, we are fighting to make it through an extraordinarily difficult time for the arts in Atlanta. Decreased discretionary spending and a reduction in philanthropic support have dramatically impacted our revenues.

“Our staff and board have worked tirelessly to do more with less — cutting our spending while continuing to present works of the highest quality and importance. In spite of our efforts, though, we are faced with an impending deficit that quite literally threatens our existence,” the email explained.

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Ga. teacher: Protest a silent statement of support for gay students

David Dixon, a teacher who was fired from his Haralson County High School drama position last year after showing a scene from a gay-themed movie to his class, spoke to GA Voice today about a planned protest to be held in support of a Texas student trying to establish a gay/straight alliance at her high school.

Nikki Peet of Corpus Christi first approached Flour Bluff school officials in November with the idea of establishing a GSA, only to be told by officials, including school principal James Crenshaw, that such a club would not be approved, according to media reports.

Dixon, who is straight, said the planned gathering on March 5 at Buchanan Square in Haralson will be a silent statement of support for LGBT students.

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‘Hacktivists’ take on anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church

A group of “hacktivists” known as Anonymous has joined forces with an unlikely ally, another hacker known as th3j35t3r, in a coordinated attack on the websites of anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church. WBC owns and operates several websites, including godhatesfags.com, yourpastorisawhore.com and westborobaptistchurch.com.

The congregation is based in Topeka, Kansas, and is made up mostly of family members of Rev. Fred Phelps. The clan is infamous for its “God Hates Fags” mantra and protests at funerals ranging from slain gay Wyoming college student Matthew Shepard to U.S. military members killed in combat.

Click here for our interview with Westboro members when they came to protest Grady High School.

Anonymous and th3j35t3r have sparred in recent months over the controversial media outlet Wikileaks. There's quite a back-story, but simply put, Anonymous supports Wikileaks and th3j35t3r does not.

It seems they agree on hating Westboro.

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Video for Lady Gaga’s ‘Born This Way’ debuts online

Lady Gaga released the video for her latest single “Born This Way” this morning on music video website VEVO.

The single is the first from her upcoming album of the same name. The single has been called "the next great gay anthem."

From the VEVO blog:

“As are most of planet earth, we are very excited to see what Queen Gaga has in store for this next video. As we saw in her Grammy opener, theatrics and high performance activity are still in. Actually, it looked as if Gaga spent her entire hiatus stepping up her dance abilities (did you see her body!?), focusing more on moves one might see at Merce Cunningham or perhaps a Bill T. Jones production instead of atop the GRAMMY stage.”