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The Pride
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PART OF a spate of gay-themed plays on the boards in New York this season, two from Off-Broadway present contrasting approaches to the recent history of same-sex male love. The Temperamentals by Jon Marans dramatizes early activism: the creation in Los Angeles of the Mattachine Society by Communist organizer Harry Hay and his then lover, costume designer Rudi Gernreich, and a small circle of friends. The story unfolds in the early 1950’s with America moving from the war years into the McCarthy Era. The Pride, on the other hand, a first play by Alexi Kaye Campbell, is a British import that views the gay present through the lens of the past. It features two different male couples in London in 1958 and 2008; each pair must come to terms with the personal price of gay relations. In 1958, the context is one of social repression; in 2008, one of sexual and social liberation.

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LADY GAGA could be a cannibal. If you don’t believe me, have a listen to the most dental song to date, “Teeth” (from her EP The Fame Monster), in which the 23-year-old New Yorker growls: “Take a bite of my bad girl meat.” The fantasy of being eaten alive recurs in “Monster” with the lyric, “He ate my heart/ He licked his lips, said to me/ Girl, you look good enough to eat.”

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JON MARANS’ new play, The Temperamentals, is about Harry Hay, Rudi Gernreich, and the beginning of the gay rights movement with The Mattachine Society. Today we can talk about “the gay community,” but Jon’s play is about a time before that—our early history—and about the courageous and strong-willed people who stuck their necks out so that we could find each other.

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THIS YEAR marks the 110th anniversary of the birth of William Pahlmann, an internationally acclaimed interior designer who beautified numerous public and private spaces and made a uniquely gay contribution to the U.S. war effort in World War II.

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NEAR THE BEGINNING of A Single Man, the 1964 novel by Christopher Isherwood on which Tom Ford’s new movie is based, a college English professor named George tells his class the story of Tithonus, a beautiful mortal who, after the goddess in love with him asks Zeus to grant him immortality, ages into a very old man because the goddess has forgotten to ask for the gift of eternal youth. …

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Commissioned by the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, The Intelligent Homosexual‘s Guide was designed as the centerpiece of a three-stage “Kushner Celebration,” making full use of the Guthrie’s towering new facility designed by Jean Nouvel. “The play is set in Brooklyn in 2007,” Kushner told Lavender, Minnesota’s GLBT magazine, “and it involves a 75-year-old longshoreman and his three kids.

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… Moz (as he’s known by his legion of queer-friendly fans) has found a reason to believe. And yet, in his newly released album, Years of Refusal, he sings that “only stone and steel accept my love.”

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Andy Warhol is signing his latest book of Polaroids at a large bookstore in Manhattan, hundreds of fans pressing around the table. A young man at the edge of the crowd walks slowly behind the table, arm-length from Warhol, adroitly snatches his wig, tosses it to an accomplice waiting near the door. Both run out into the anonymous streets of New York.

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