National: Arts & Culture

Gay men feed surge in plastic surgery

Gay men in Britain are fuelling a surge in demand for plastic surgery, with a quarter admitting to having gone under the knife already.

Despite the current economic crisis, the cosmetic surgery industry in Britain is booming, and a rise in demand for procedures such as nose jobs, liposuction and male breast reductions has been attributed to a surge in male requests.    READ MORE »

Gay ? Straight? A model’s dilemma

Did you hear the one about the male model who didn’t like people looking at his pictures?

It seems like the set up to a bad joke. But in reality, it’s the premise of a lawsuit against Genre magazine that has models, lawyers, publishers, and gay fans of models in barely-there tighty-whities in a grand old tizzy.

Self-proclaimed straight model Benjamin Massing, who was featured in the March/April issue of Genre, is suing the publication along with photographer Rick Day. Shortly after a photo session with Day (done, Massing asserts, to acquire shots for his private portfolio), scantily clad photos appeared in Genre (whose gay-as-a-picnic-basket vibe and marketing strategy is undeniable). Shortly after that, Massing filed a lawsuit. It claimed personal damages in the form of being hit on by gay men as well as the perception that his presence in Genre implied Massing has lavender leanings. The resulting fallout has likely caused more damage to Massing’s reputation and viability as a professional model than the Genre photos ever could.    READ MORE »

Gay ‘Wicked’ author entertains crowd

imageGregory Maguire, the gay author of "Wicked," entertained a crowd of about 120 people on Tuesday with excerpts from his newest work and answers to a variety of questions about what it's like to be the author behind the hit musical.

His appearance at Outwriite Bookstore & Coffeehouse was just a few blocks from the Fox Theatre, where a cast was performing "Wicked." Maguire was in town to promote "A Lion Among Men," the third in the darkly political re-imagining of Oz.

During his reading, Maguire delved into the rich fantasy world he's developed, giving fans more of what they came to expect from the author of "Wicked, The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West."

Read more about Maguire and his new book in profiles form Southern Voice and a Q&A with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution,

View the Project Q Atlanta photo album from the event.    READ MORE »

Jerry Lewis under fire for ‘fag’ remark

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation and the Australian Coalition for Equality have called for an apology after Jerry Lewis, who is in Australia performing a stage show, made the remark and mimed swinging a cricket bat effeminately at a televised press conference.

It is not the first time the comedian, whose big break came as the slapstick half of a double act with Dean Martin, has created controversy. During a telethon last year for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, which he has presented since 1966, he pointed out one of the cameramen and called him an "illiterate fag". He immediately retracted the remark and later issued a full apology, saying that, "I obviously made a poor choice of words. Everyone who knows me understands that I hold no prejudices in this regard. In the family atmosphere of the telethon, I forgot that not everyone knows me that well."


Halloween means more for gay Wicans

Ken Hunter was on a date with a nice guy at the posh Cafe Intermezzo in Midtown when he decided to share a bit about himself. He told his date he was Wiccan.

“He walked out on me. He dumped me on the date because I told him I was Wiccan,” Gunter says, shaking his head.

Being gay and being Wiccan — a religion that, in simple terms, celebrates nature — is sometimes a double-edged sword.    READ MORE »

Study explores why gays get hitched

A recently released Boston College study indicates that legal recognition and the opportunity to make a public statement are the prime motivators for Massachusetts gay and lesbian couples to marry.

The college conducted the study 13 months after Massachusetts legalized same-sex marriage. (The state began marrying gay couples in May 2004.) Professor Pamela J. Lannutti surveyed 263 couples, including those who were legally married in Massachusetts and those who plan to marry. The average relationship duration was 7.5 years.

A quarter of couples said they were motivated to marry for legal protections, while 20% said they wanted to make a public statement of commitment, and only 15% cited feelings for their partner.

Others said they tied the knot to receive acknowledgement from family members (14%), legal protection for help in having children (13%), political reasons (4%), and religious reasons (2%).    READ MORE »

Gay website outs straight contestant

One of the finalists in a popular ITV reality show has admitted he is straight after an Australian gay website DNA declared him to be "openly gay."

Austin Drage, who is competing in the "The X Factor," turned to the Daily Star to declare his heterosexuality.

"I am sorry to disappoint but I am not gay," he told the paper. "But I am very flattered to have a gay fan base. And I appreciate all the support I have been getting while on 'The X Factor.'"    READ MORE »

Celeb boyfriends finding new openness?

Ah, celebrities! We just can’t get enough of ‘em. We adulate them, imitate them, fantasize about them, and sometimes, yes, even ridicule them.

And now that more and more celebrities are bravely coming out, we gay and bisexual men and our supporters have more celebrities to fixate on than ever before.

But you can’t obsess over celebrities forever. Eventually the time comes to move on to other things.

What’s that, you say? You think I’m talking about our own mundane lives?

Don’t be ridiculous! I’m talking about these celebrities’ boyfriends!    READ MORE »

Gay icons profiled this week

GLBT History Month continues this week by spotlighting a playwright, singer, pastor and photographer, among others.

The Equality Forum, a gay civil rights group based in Philadelphia, is spotlighting a gay icon each day in October. A video of the daily icon appears on the main page of Project Q Atlanta, while the group's web site includes detailed information about the person.

Read the line up for this week after the jump.    READ MORE »

Shepard’s death still resonates

Matthew Shepard continues to have an intense presence in Laramie, Wyo., the small town where he was viciously murdered 10 years ago this week.

“This time of year, for the people that were close to it, always means something,” said Dave O’Malley, a member of the Laramie City Council who was the town’s police chief when Shepard was lured to a desolate field, beaten mercilessly by two assailants and then left to die.

“That’s a pretty good size group of us here that were involved in one way or another,” O’Malley said.    READ MORE »

Hillary Duff: Stop saying ‘That’s so gay’

“A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” “Friends don’t let friends drive drunk.” “Only you can prevent forest fires.” Since the 1940s the Ad Council has been impacting the culture with slogans like these. Now the venerable nonprofit organization is out to educate teens that antigay slang doesn’t cut it anymore -- and to kick-start the effort, it's recruited Hilary Duff.


‘Out on Film’ dropped this year

Hope you weren't planning to attend "Out on Film" this year.

The gay and lesbian film festival is on hold for 2008 after a shuffle (or scuffle?) between several groups, according to Southern Voice. The event's new organizers hope to stage the event next spring.

There's more after the jump.    READ MORE »

New ad campaign targets anti-gay bullies

For the first time since the Advertising Council was founded in 1942, the organization — which directs and coordinates public service campaigns on behalf of Madison Avenue and the media industry — is introducing ads meant to tackle a social issue of concern to gays and lesbians.

The campaign, which is scheduled to be announced by the council in Washington on Wednesday, will seek to discourage bullying and harassment of teenagers who are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender.

The campaign, created pro bono by the New York office of Arnold Worldwide, urges an end to using derogatory language, particularly labeling anything deemed negative or unpleasant as “so gay.” That is underlined by the theme of the campaign: “When you say, ‘That’s so gay,’ do you realize what you say? Knock it off.”    READ MORE »

Gay elders’ challenges get closer look

Frank Carter was once a globe-trotting professional dancer; his world is smaller now. He battles multiple health problems, walks with a cane and rarely leaves his compact Manhattan apartment.

As an 86-year-old gay man, with no family nearby and many acquaintances long since dead, he’d seem a likely prospect for isolation.

Instead, he has kindled a deep, five-year friendship with Gigi Stoll, a fashion model-turned-photographer half his age. Stoll helps Carter with medical arrangements, writes to him when she travels overseas, and sat with him for six hours during his most recent hospitalization.

"The other guys in the hospital, no one was coming in to see them," Carter said. "To get that gift, you have to be lucky."    READ MORE »

Study: Gay couples committed as straights

Gay and lesbian couples are just as committed in their relationships as heterosexuals and the legal status of their union doesn't impact their happiness, according to new research.

In two new studies that compared same-sex and heterosexual couples using different factors and methods to assess their happiness, scientists found few differences.

"Among the committed couples, there were very few differences that we were able to identify either in terms of how satisfied these couples were, how effectively they interacted with one another or how their bodies responded physiologically while they were interacting with one another," Glenn I. Roisman, of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champagne, said in an interview.    READ MORE »

GLBT History: Del Martin & Phyllis Lyon

As part of GLBT History Month in October, Project Q Atlanta has partnered with the Equality Forum for a daily dose of our history.

Equality Forum is providing a video clip each day profiling an icon of gay history. The series, which appears on the main page of Project Q Atlanta, starts with Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon.

Read more and watch the video clip after the jump.    READ MORE »

GLBT History Month


Tim Gunn is a New York sort of gay

Tim Gunn did a Q&A with Time Out New York for its 40th anniversary issue.    READ MORE »

‘Rent’ take final curtain call

After 5,140 performances over the course of 12 years, the groundbreaking Broadway rock-musical "Rent" took its final curtain call on Sunday.

In 1996, "Rent" quickly went from a small off-Broadway theater to the Great White Way, where today it's the seventh longest-running show in Broadway history. From its humble roots, there was little to suggest the worldwide smash it would become.

Loosely based on Puccini's opera, "La Bohème," "Rent" is about young artists struggling to get by, living in New York City's once-grungy East Village in the mid-1980s. Its characters are gay, straight, cross-dressers and strippers who are facing hardships like AIDS, drug addiction and homelessness.

"We all love, we all lose people, we all struggle with identity," said Gwen Stewart, an original "Rent" Broadway cast member who has returned to the cast for the show's closing.

Read the full story from ABC News.    READ MORE »

Janet Jackson launches new world tour

imageJanet Jackson will kick off her long-awaited “Rock Witchu Tour” Sept. 10 in Vancouver, her first tour in more than seven years.

“This show is for the fans,” she told the Washington Blade, adding that she will perform about 30 tracks during the two-hour show. “It’s a nice mix from ‘Discipline’ and all the other albums.”

She noted that the show is focused on dance tracks and that she hopes to give concertgoers an escape from their problems, citing the current state of the economy.

“It’s a big show,” she said, “a completely different show. It’s very much upbeat. The kids say it shouldn’t be called the ‘Rock Witchu Tour,’ it should be called the ‘History of Janet Tour.’”

As for the vibe and style of the set, Jackson said she’s intrigued by the future so the set design will incorporate futuristic elements. Her costumes will be more elaborate than in the past.

So far, 24 North American dates have been announced, but Jackson said that more U.S. dates will be announced soon and that she’s in talks to take the tour all over the world, including possibly Europe, Asia, Australia, Russia and the Middle East.

For the full story from the Washington Blade, go here.    READ MORE »