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Archive for the ‘GLBT’ Category

Bruce Vilanch Donates T-Shirts To ‘Reel to Real: Portrayals and Perceptions of Gays in Hollywood’

Sunday, June 14th, 2015

Broadway World
Doris Roberts, Bruce Vilanch, Barry Livingston, and Many More Stars Support Opening of ‘Reel to Real’ Exhibit
June 13, 2015

4-27-2013 4-17-52 AM

The Hollywood Museum is proud to offer an exclusive new exhibition – Reel to Real: Portrayals and Perceptions of Gays in Hollywood – an entertaining and informative retrospective of LGBT images in film and television throughout the decades. Check out photos from the event below!

The showcase runs through July 20, coinciding with LGBT Heritage Month and Outfest LA (July 10- 20). Featured in the collection are photos, costumes, props and iconic imagery from the past and present. The exhibit provides a unique perspective on how the homosexual community has been portrayed in Hollywood from early stereotypes to modern representations. The Reel to Real exhibition is sponsored by Wells FARGO Bank and The Hollywood Reporter (Media Sponsor).

Among eclectic list of patrons who attended the the VIP reception preview of the “Reel to Real” LGBT History Month exhibit at The Hollywood Museum (Located in the Historic Max Facter Building), that opened to the public on June 12th, were Doris Roberts, Barry Livingston, Ann Walker, Morgan Brittany, Lee Purcell, Jack Betts, Kate Linder, Steve Wishnoff, Barbara Van Orden, Erin Murphy, Jerome Ro Brooks, Shelly Goldstein, Margaret O’Brien, Channing Chase, Carolyn Hennesy, Geri Jewell, Nick Verreos, Scott T. Scofield, Cynthia J. Popp, Judy Tenuta, as well as City Controller Ron Galperin, Deputy Chief Beatrice Girmala, Councilman Mitch O’Farrell and the Reverend Grace.

The Petite Flower, Love Goddess, and Princess of Pantyshields, Judy Tenuta, remarked “I love, love doing shows for my Gays. They are FLAWLESS. The most enthusiastic, and adoring fans ever to appreciate that I even have my own religion: Judyism, and they are the first to worship at my altar! IT COULD HAPPEN!”

Among those who spoke to the gathering were Emmy winner, Doris Roberts, who commented, “I was once asked if I was gay, and I said ‘No … but, I am a Russian Jew.’” CELEBRATED Producer/Director, Cynthia J. Popp, spoke of the importance and honor it is to be part of something as meaningful as the transgender storyline, currently playing out on “The Bold and the Beautiful,” while comedienne, Geri Jewell stated “Over a decade ago I decided to come out … as someone with Cerebral Palsy.” After a pause during laughter, she added “Seriously, just as I was born with Cerebral Palsy, I was also born a Lesbian. This has made me a more understanding, caring, and compassionate human being.”

Among the impressive and eclectic array of paraphernalia and memorabilia on display are items from “Modern Family,” “Orange Is The New Black,” “Life Interrupted,” “Two and a Half Men,” “Hot In Cleveland,” “Days Of Our Lives,” the controversial “K-11,” “The Bold and the Beautiful,” and Tyler Perry’s “The Haves and Have Nots.” Also included are items representing the considerable contributions made to entertainment by out and proud members of the industry including the sheet music for “I am What I am” by Jerry Herman and costumes from his hit productions, such as “LA Cage Aux Folles” and “Hello Dolly!,” costumes worn by noted actors such as Ramon Navarro (“Ben Hur”), Rock Hudson (“Captain Lightfoot”), Agnes Moorehead (“Bewitched”), and Nathan Lane (“Bird Cage”), Lily Tomlin’s extra large rocking chair from LaughIn and the walk of fame plaque commemorating the star she shares with her partner, Jane Wagner, and famous T-Shirts worn by comedy stars Bruce Vilanch and Geri Jewell. Of particular interest to patrons were dresses by designers, Nolan Miller, Bob Mackie and the late creator of the Best and Worst Dressed List, Mr. Blackwell and his life partner of 59 years, R. L. Spencer.

“The museum welcomes the opportunity to create and showcase this important exhibition, sharing with the public the artistic expression of the LGBT culture and its transformative impact on the world through the entertainment industry,” says Donelle Dadigan, Founder and President of The Hollywood Museum

In addition to some of his personal effects, The Roddy McDowall Powder Room contains photos and quotes supporting the LGBT community by Antonio Banderas, Kristin Chenoweth, Bette Davis, Rupert Everett, Tina Fey, Portia de Rossi, Ian McKellen, Marilyn Monroe, Daniel Radcliffe, Barbara Stanwyk, Carol Channing, Liza Minnelli, and Betty White, among others. A touching display features a cocktail dress belonging to Elizabeth Taylor, with quotes regarding friends and AIDS.

This and so much more are waiting to be experienced by patrons who visit the museum during the presentations limited run.

The Hollywood Museum in the historic Max Factor Building, located in the heart of Hollywood, just steps from the Hollywood Walk of Fame, houses the largest collection of entertainment memorabilia in the world. It attracts fans from around the world and has been named the #1 top tourist attraction in Hollywood by LA Weekly, and one of the “Top 10” Museums in LA by the LA Tourism and Convention Board.

Bruce Vilanch To Be Judge At Second Annual Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic

Saturday, April 25th, 2015

4-27-2013 3-49-54 AM

NEW YORK, Feb. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/—Stoli® Vodka, in partnership with the Key West Business Guild, today announced its second annual Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic – North America’s largest annual LGBT cocktail competition. The mix-off sees bartenders showcase their skill and ingenuity as they battle to be crowned the 2015 Cocktail Classic Champion at the Grand Finale during Key West Pride 2015.

Using Stoli Vodka as their primary ingredient, participants in 14 cities across North America will create an original cocktail for a panel of local celebrity judges, who will evaluate the drinks on uniqueness, taste and appearance. Aside from being crowned the 2015 Cocktail Classic Champion, the winner will ride in the Key West Pride Parade as the Honorary Grand Marshall and receive $5,000 for a LGBT or LGBT-friendly charity of their choice.

“It is an honor to host the Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic, North America’s largest annual LGBT cocktail competition,” said Patrik Gallineaux, the national LGBT Ambassador for Stoli. “Our community’s hard-working nightlife professionals often do not receive the recognition they deserve. It is amazing to see what our nation’s bartenders can do with their imagination, their cocktail shaker and Stoli THE Vodka!”

In partnership with the Key West Business Guild, an organization of LGBT-owned and LGBT-friendly businesses in Key West, the competition will be hosted by Gallineaux and TV personality Jai Rodriguez. It will also feature a panel of celebrity judges including clothing designer Andrew Christian; legendary funnyman Bruce Vilanch; actress and singer LaToya London; and Key West personality and star of the annual New Year’s Eve High Heel Drop, Sushi.

“The LGBT community has some of the most inventive bartenders in the country,” said Matt Hon, executive director of the Key West Business Guild. “Through the Key West Cocktail Classic, they’re getting the opportunity to showcase their creativity and put a spotlight on the community. Key West, especially during Pride week, is the perfect stage to recognize them and the contributions they make to nightlife.”

The cocktail classic will take place at 14 events in the following participating cities:


  • DallasMarch 2

  • Los AngelesMarch 15

  • DenverMarch 30

  • Miami/Fort LauderdaleApril 6

  • New YorkApril 9

  • ChicagoApril 15

  • Washington D.C.April 20

  • San DiegoApril 23

  • PhiladelphiaMay 5

  • TorontoMay 7

  • BostonMay 12

  • VancouverMay 14

  • SeattleMay 17

  • San FranciscoMay 27

  • Key West (Finale) – June 13

A maximum of seven bartenders will be selected to participate in each local event. For more information about the Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic including how to apply, rules, guidelines and the full schedule of events, visit www.gaycities.com/cocktailclassic.

Bruce Vilanch To Be Celebrity Judge For The Second Annual Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Stoli® Gives Bartenders a Shot at Cocktail Glory with its Second Annual Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic

4-27-2013 4-00-51 AM

NEW YORK, Feb. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/—Stoli® Vodka, in partnership with the Key West Business Guild, today announced its second annual Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic – North America’s largest annual LGBT cocktail competition. The mix-off sees bartenders showcase their skill and ingenuity as they battle to be crowned the 2015 Cocktail Classic Champion at the Grand Finale during Key West Pride 2015.

Using Stoli Vodka as their primary ingredient, participants in 14 cities across North America will create an original cocktail for a panel of local celebrity judges, who will evaluate the drinks on uniqueness, taste and appearance. Aside from being crowned the 2015 Cocktail Classic Champion, the winner will ride in the Key West Pride Parade as the Honorary Grand Marshall and receive $5,000 for a LGBT or LGBT-friendly charity of their choice.

“It is an honor to host the Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic, North America’s largest annual LGBT cocktail competition,” said Patrik Gallineaux, the national LGBT Ambassador for Stoli. “Our community’s hard-working nightlife professionals often do not receive the recognition they deserve. It is amazing to see what our nation’s bartenders can do with their imagination, their cocktail shaker and Stoli THE Vodka!”

In partnership with the Key West Business Guild, an organization of LGBT-owned and LGBT-friendly businesses in Key West, the competition will be hosted by Gallineaux and TV personality Jai Rodriguez. It will also feature a panel of celebrity judges including clothing designer Andrew Christian; legendary funnyman Bruce Vilanch; actress and singer LaToya London; and Key West personality and star of the annual New Year’s Eve High Heel Drop, Sushi.

“The LGBT community has some of the most inventive bartenders in the country,” said Matt Hon, executive director of the Key West Business Guild. “Through the Key West Cocktail Classic, they’re getting the opportunity to showcase their creativity and put a spotlight on the community. Key West, especially during Pride week, is the perfect stage to recognize them and the contributions they make to nightlife.”

The cocktail classic will take place at 14 events in the following participating cities:

Dallas – March 2
Los Angeles – March 15
Denver – March 30
Miami/Fort Lauderdale – April 6
New York – April 9
Chicago – April 15
Washington D.C. – April 20
San Diego – April 23
Philadelphia – May 5
Toronto – May 7
Boston – May 12
Vancouver – May 14
Seattle – May 17
San Francisco – May 27
Key West (Finale) – June 13

A maximum of seven bartenders will be selected to participate in each local event. For more information about the Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic including how to apply, rules, guidelines and the full schedule of events, visit www.gaycities.com/cocktailclassic.

About Stoli Group USA, LLC
Stoli Group USA, LLC is the North American subsidiary of SPI Group, recognized globally for pioneering heritage and the outstanding Stolichnaya® brand of premium vodkas. New York-based Stoli Group USA reflects significant growth investment in the U.S. market by parent company SPI Group and will drive the brand forward through new marketing, sales and brand innovation. Internationally distributed Stolichnaya vodkas are bottled in Latvia and are known for award-winning flavor and impeccable clarity. Considered a trailblazer in the vodka industry, Stolichnaya vodka defines the benchmark for quality with meticulously crafted liquid that meets the highest Alpha Spirit standard. The Stolichnaya brand portfolio includes Stolichnaya® Premium Vodka, ultra-premium elit™ by Stolichnaya®, Stolichnaya® 100 Proof Premium vodka, the super-premium Stolichnaya® Gold and Stolichnaya® Flavored Premium vodkas including Ohranj®, Razberi®, Vanil®, Citros™, Peachik® and Hot™. For more information visit www.stoli.com or follow on Facebook at www.facebook.com/stoli and on Twitter @Stoli.

About Key West Business Guild
The mission of the Key West Business Guild is to promote LGBT travel to Key West through marketing and the promotion of specialty events; to support gay-owned, gay-managed, and gay-friendly businesses; to strengthen the Gay community’s position within the local community by supporting relevant LGBT issues. The KWBG was founded in 1978 by 8 local gay business owners and has grown to approximately 400 members, which work together to continue efforts to brighten the rainbow over the island, an island now known as Gay Key West. Promotion of events, such as Key West Pride, Tropical Heat and Womenfest, has made Key West a year-round LGBT travel destination.

Video: Bette Midler And Bruce Vilanch In 1971 Documentry “Vito”

Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

Video: Trailer And July Fundraiser Campaign For “Scrooge And Marley ! ~ Donate What You Can!

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

Be A Part Of The Movie-Making Process
‘Scrooge & Marley’ Debuts Trailer,
Launches ‘Christmas in July’ Fundraising Drive

CHICAGO —SAM I Am Films, producers of “Scrooge & Marley,” a modern-day variation on Charles Dickens’ classic holiday story, “A Christmas Carol,” has posted the first trailer of the film, which will be released in December. Acclaimed out actor David Pevsner portrays Ben Scrooge while former SNL star Tim Kazurinsky appears as the Ghost of Jacob Marley.

The trailer kicks off a series of “Christmas in July” fundraising events that will include house parties, a cabaret benefit and an Indiegogo.com online pledge campaign – all designed to raise awareness and excitement about the film’s holiday release and to aid producers of the independent feature in securing additional post production funds.

To support the Indiegogo campaign, visit the Indiegogo.com website and search for Scrooge & Marley. The direct link is: http://igg.me/p/124360?a=396864

The trailer will be released on Indiegogo, the film’s website (www.scroogeandmarleymovie.com) and Facebook page, and more photos will be posted on the Facebook page and website in July. The trailer includes the first peek at other notables in the movie—Rusty Schwimmer, Bruce Vilanch, Megan Cavanagh, Ronnie Kroell, David Moretti, Richard Ganoung, and JoJo Baby.

“Scrooge & Marley” was shot in Chicago in May and also highlights a host of recognized theatrical actors who round out the cast: Drew Anderson, Christopher Allen, Nicholas Bailey, Allison Torem, Fawzia Mirza, Peter Mohawk, Scott Duff, PJ Powers, Amy Matheny and many more.

The house parties are being held at private homes with the main public event taking place on Thursday, July 26, 6-9 p.m. at 3160 Cabaret (3160 N. Clark), where several scenes in the movie were shot. Guests will have a chance to win exclusive “Scrooge & Marley” merchandise and will be treated to music from the film performed live by cabaret entertainers Becca Kaufman and Dick O’Day (alter ego of Richard Knight, Jr., co-director and co-writer of the film), who appear in the movie. The trailer and never-before-seen behind-the-scenes photos will also be shown. The event is free, but donations will be requested.

About SCROOGE & MARLEY
“Scrooge & Marley” is a modern-day variation on Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” Recounted from a gay sensibility, with heart, comedy and music, the magic of Dickens’ timeless tale of a man’s redemption at the holidays—thanks to the help of three ghostly spirits—comes alive from a fresh perspective that will appeal to audiences of every persuasion. The film is based on an original script by Ellen Stoneking, Knight and the late Timothy Imse. It was directed by Knight and Peter Neville. Executive producers of the film are Tracy Baim (“Hannah Free”) and David Strzepek (“Foodgasm”), joined by several co-producers (Knight, Neville, Stoneking, Kroell, and Moretti) and noteworthy crew.

Full cast and production team bios at http://www.scroogeandmarleymovie.com .

Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/ScroogeMarleyCH .

On Facebook see https://www.facebook.com/ScroogeAndMarley

The Edge’s BeBe Sweetbriar Interviews Bruce Vilanch

Thursday, June 28th, 2012

The Edge
Bruce Vilanch :: Exercising his muscles (and fund-raising)
by BeBe Sweetbriar
Wednesday Jun 27, 2012

You can’t help but notice him when he walks into a room wearing his trademark t-shirt with an emblazoned slogan. You can’t help but laugh at his jokes and stories. Those are givens when it comes to award-winning comic writer Bruce Vilanch (the Oscars, Donny and Marie Show, Hollywood Squares).

But how many times does do the titles ’musical theater performer’ or ’songwriter’ come to your mind when you think of him?

As it turns out, they should since Vilanch both starred in musicals and written songs. Bruce Vilanch was in the first national company of the Tony-winning musical “Hairspray,” and has written songs for Eartha Kitt and the Village People.

Always poised to take command of an awards show or benefit with his wit on the microphone, Vilanch, however, will call upon his song and dance skills at the upcoming benefit event One Night Cabaret Benefit in San Francisco for the Richmond/Ermet AIDS Foundation which is far more commonplace for the funny man than we might imagine.
Making it happen


BeBe Sweetbriar: I think it is wonderful that the One Night Only Cabaret benefiting Richmond/Ermet AIDS Foundation at which you are set to appear on July 2 in San Francisco with the cast of Green Day’s ’American Idiot’ will give many in audience their first chance to see you in a musical-type forum. Many of us have not had the privilege of seeing you in the touring company of ’Hairspray’ as Edna Turnblad, and think will be surprised to see your performance at this event.

Bruce Vilanch: Nobody’s going to be more surprised than I am (laughs). I’m going to be on the road until I get to San Francisco the day before the show, so me and the cast of ’American Idiot’ will be working on something when I arrive. If not, you’re going to get me to host the thing and I will see what little musically I can come up with (alone).

I’ve done this a bunch of time. When there is a big musical in town, Richmond/Ermet gets with the cast of the show on their night off and turn it into a benefit. I’ve done it with ’Young Frankenstein ,’ ’Hair’ and now ’American Idiot .’ The thing about ’American Idiot’ is that it is all Green Day music, so these guys (and gals) are doing Green Day eight times a week (Tuesday-Sunday with 4 shows on weekends). They are probably going to use this opportunity to sing Puccini and Britney Spear’s ’Toxic .’... all the musical literature they would like to expose to a San Francisco audience. In that vein I will try and come up with something to match what they are up to. I’ve seen this company of ’American Idiot’ when they played Los Angeles, and they are incredible—extraordinarily talented.
’Benefits ’R Us’

BeBe Sweetbriar: It’s fair to say that you will be in good company…

Bruce Vilanch: Very good company, because a lot of them were actually in ’Hair.’ They went from ’Hair’ to ’American Idiot’ because they are both rock musicals, and they require similar skill sets. When I was in ’Hairspray’ we did the same thing (benefits). We did a lot of Monday nights all over the country.

BeBe Sweetbriar: You know, many times when I speak to actors doing some real serious Shakespearean-type theater, they use working in comedy as kind of a release to get out of that serious vein. Is this musical-type performing like that for you—a release or break from the comedic writing that you do all the time?

Bruce Vilanch: Yeah! I’m just ’Benefits ’R Us’! That should be my corporate logo. I’ve done so many of these over the years. I’m beginning to wonder what am I breaking away from… other benefits?

The fundraising needs to be done, but I guess it is an opportunity for me to get to exercise the performance muscle as opposed to the writing muscle. It is out of the ordinary because it is not what I generally do.

Extraordinary… but common


BeBe Sweetbriar: Because you present yourself to us, the public, the audience, as sort of ’one-of-us,’ I think we sometimes forget about the Hollywood insider that you are. I mean your skills that you utilize to do the writing for all four of the major entertainment award shows (Academy Awards, Tonys, Emmys, Grammys), so many variety shows, and concert shows (Diana Ross, Bette Midler, Michael Feinstein) has established you in high regard in the Hollywood circle. We forget about this because you are so approachable and down to earth.

Bruce Vilanch: Well, Oh! I’m common, what can I tell ya? Extraordinary… but common.

BeBe Sweetbriar: To even think that we can put ’songwriter’ in front of your name when introducing you…

Bruce Vilanch: (interjecting) Funny, I did have a hit disco song. I had a disco career 30 years ago. I wrote a song for Eartha Kitt called ’Where Is My Man?’

BeBe Sweetbriar: Yes indeed! I remember that song by Eartha very well.

Bruce Vilanch: And then the guy I collaborated with which was Jacques Morali, who created the Village People (’Y.M.C.A. ,’ ’Macho Man ,’ ’In The Navy ,’ ’Go West’). So, I did an album for the Village People, which is called ’Sex Over The Phone.’ It was banned by the BBC (laughs).

I got to work with the Village People and Eartha Kitt in the second and third acts of their careers, respectively. This was after their HUGE hits. I didn’t have those. Only God knows what I would have done with all that money! That has been the extent of my songwriting career, up to now, except for a lot of parodies.

Solo show on way?


BeBe Sweetbriar: Like San Francisco’s own Tom Orr. He writes a lot of parodies for himself and other local celebrities to perform.

Bruce Vilanch: He’s hysterical! I love Tom Orr. I just saw him in ’Hot Greeks.’

BeBe Sweetbriar: Another thing we forget is the numerous awards you have received for your charitable work for the  fight against AIDS and the gay rights movement.

Bruce Vilanch: I have a Lucite shelf! I have many items of varying shapes and sizes in crystal and Lucite, and it’s all waiting for an earthquake.

BeBe Sweetbriar: I’m really kind of scared to ask to describe the shapes of every one of those items you have on the shelf (laughs).

Bruce Vilanch: Oh, my God! Well, there’s a shaft I’m looking at. Quite a few shafts, as a matter of fact. It’s very nice, very encouraging. When you are sitting in the middle of the night by yourself and thinking this is crap that I’m writing, it’s never going to play, and then I look up at the shelf and go ’well, something worked.’

BeBe Sweetbriar: Well, there was the one-man show you wrote and performed, ’Almost Famous,’ sometime ago… 12 or 13 years ago. Is there any chance we may see that in a reprise with a rebirth?

Bruce Vilanch: Well, I’ve been doing a one-man show steadily since, it’s just, the stories keep changing as new things happen. It’s essentially the same idea. I have no act, I’m just talking about the things I’ve done for other people, and things I’ve been involved in. So, it’s not exactly the same show, and I don’t do those songs any more. I’m actually working on a ’wholesale’ new one. I’m going around the country doing pieces of it here and pieces of it there, and sooner or later it will coalesce into something. Then I’ll bring it back and try and sell some tickets.

BeBe Sweetbriar: It’s funny also, because I see you at so many awards shows that you host or present, and you have so many great one-liners and wonderful anecdotal stories that you tell that are hilarious, and yet, when we see descriptions of who you are and what you do, we never see something like stand up comic in there.

Bruce Vilanch: Because I don’t really push it. I’m not a club comic. They expect that type of performer in those clubs. I perform in those types of clubs for benefits, but I don’t like to. I like to perform in places where people come to see me. I don’t like to perform in a room where they (audience) are in the room anyway. And if they don’t like you, they will just talk, and heckle, and drink until the next guy comes on.

The ritual is different. That’s why I’d much rather play in a theater than in a club. (It’s) just not my scene. I also don’t say I’m a stand-up because it means a certain type of performance which I don’t think I do. I have elements of it, but I call myself a ’sit-down’ comic (both laugh), because I tell stories a lot and you have to pay attention. There can actually be silences while people are absorbing and being interested, as opposed to a sort of laugh-a-second that club comics get.

BeBe Sweetbriar: Some times that one-second laugh is the only laugh many stand up comics ever get in a short-lived career. I’d take longevity of laughter in the career of Bruce Vilanch, sit-down or otherwise, any day!

Bruce Vilanch will appear and perform with the cast of Green Day’s ’American Idiot’ in the ’One Night Cabaret Benefit’ for Richmond/Ermet AIDS Foundation at the Marines Memorial Theater in San Francisco on July 2. For info and tickets Richmond/Ermet AIDS Foundation.

Follow the upcoming whereabouts of  Bruce Vilanch on his website.

Watch this clip of Bruce Vilanch performing: