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Volume 15/Issue 26

Psycho Beach Party Benefits Petronius

Since Petronius was the arbiter of taste during Nero's regime, as well as the inventor of satire, the krewe that bears his name will sponsor two preview performances of Charles Busch's campy satire of 60's beach blanket movies, Psycho Beach Party. The two performances will occur on the night of Jan. 10 at 6:30pm and 9pm. The show opens to the general public Friday, January 16.

Award-winning director Carl Walker brings his hit production of this gender bending farce back to the True Brew Theatre, 200 Julia St., for another run, opening Jan 16. Becky Allen will star with Brian Rosenberg assuming the drag role of Chicklet Forrest, a perky west coast teenager whose Multiple Personality Disorder kicks in whenever she sees the color red. Those personalities include a black supermarket check-out girl, a radio talk show hostess and the accounting firm of Edelman and Edelman.

Charles Busch is one of New York's most successful playwright/drag queens who struck it rich with his long-running hit, Vampire Lesbians of Sodom, which the Krewe of Petronius presented locally to much acclaim.

Tickets for the Krewe of Petronius sponsored performances are $20. and may be obtained from any krewe member, at MRB, 515 St. Philip St., Mon., Tues., Thurs. & Fri., from 9am to 5pm, or by calling 504.525.4498 for reservations and more information.

Christmas Eve Midnight Mass

Most Rev. John N. Rubar will celebrate Midnight Mass on Wed., Dec. 24 at St. Ambrose Holy Catholic Church, which meets at St. George's Episcopal Church, 4600 St. Charles Ave.

Regular Sunday Masses are held at 12:30pm.

St. Ambrose Holy Catholic Church is an inclusive Catholic Church in apostolic succession. The Holy Catholic Church especially welcomes disenfranchised Catholics, and those of all denominations, as well as those who have been hurt or feel left out by society and the church: those who know they are imperfect and are seeking their way back to God, those who are looking for a home church where they will be accepted and loved, just the way God loves them and accepts them, no matter who they are or what they do.

WNOL-TV WB38 "Do Something" Campaign Takes Top Honors

The Community Action Network, a volunteer, non-profit "idea clearinghouse" that collects and shares practical solutions to community problems, recently honored New Orleans' WNOL-TV WB38's "Do Something" Public Service Campaign with a first place award in ceremonies held in New York City.

The 10th Annual CAN Media and Corporate Awards Ceremony honored companies who have found an outstanding way to help their community with social problems. "Do Something" highlights one young person a month who is making life better for themselves and the people around them. "We started the campaign because it was the right thing to do," said general manager Madelyn Bonnot, "winning an award is lagniappe!"

Past "Do Something" honorees include 15 year old Lica Gamble, who volunteers at an AIDS shelter and 14 year old Callie McNair, who is educating her community on the effect divorce has on children. All honorees receive a "Do Something" scholarship check, are recognized with their parents at an awards banquet and are featured in a thirty second PSA.

WNOL-TV WB38 is owned by Qwest Broadcasting, L.L.C., whose owners include Quincy Jones, Don Cornelius, Geraldo Rivera, Willie Davis, Sonya Salzman and Tribune Broadcasting.

New Curator of Paintings Named at NOMA

The New Orleans Museum of Art is pleased to announce the addition of Dr. Gail Feigenbaum to the staff as Curator of Paintings.

Dr. Feigenbaum comes to NOMA from the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., where she most recently worked as Research Curator of French Paintings. During her 13-year tenure at the National Gallery, Dr. Feigenbaum served as co-curator for the exhibition Annibale Carracci Drawings, as Acting Associate Dean of the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, and as Curator of Academic Programs, among other staff positions.

Dr. Feigenbaum earned her doctorate in History of Art at Princeton University in 1984. She received a master's degree in History of Art from Oberlin College and a bachelor of art degree in English Literature from Oberlin. She has been a fellow of the American Academy in Rome and has received numerous awards for her studies. Her articles have been widely published and she is the author of exhibition catalogues on Anthony van Dyck and Ludovico Carracci as well as a contributor to the recent Georges de la Tour exhibition in Washington.

"We are fortunate to have such a notable scholar on NOMA's staff," said Museum Director E. John Bullard. "We look forward to a long and fruitful association with Dr. Feigenbaum."

Retired LSU Art Professor
Subject of NOMA Retrospective

Renowned artist Walter E. Rutkowski, former director of and professor at the Louisiana State University School of Art, is the subject of Walter Rutkowski Drawings, a retrospective now showing at the New Orleans Museum of Art. Rutkowski's meticulously detailed drawings are "precisely rendered personal visions," notes Dan Piersol, NOMA's Curator of Prints and Drawings. While the image may be of something familiar, he said, there is frequently a disturbing or ironic aspect to it. "He sees the dark, the strange and haunting side of life," Piersol said.

Rutkowski works in graphite, sometimes accented with watercolor, to create his obsessively detailed drawings. Some works are nearly abstract with dizzying patterns and repeat motifs; in others, subjects have been the landscape, men in armor, female bodybuilders, and weapons. Rutkowski maintains a strongly anti-gun stance, Piersol said, thus handguns and other weaponry are a common theme.

"There is a weird wit and bizarre beauty to Walter Rutkowski's pictures, the result of the ironic interplay of image and surface," writes Donald Kuspit, catalogue essayist. "Rutkowski's pictures are saturated with the contradiction between ironical surface, decorative beauty and brutal, all-too-familiar yet peculiarly alien everydayness...."

The 51 drawings in the exhibition cover a 20-year period of Rutkowski's career. He began teaching art in 1962 as a Junior School instructor at the Rhode Island School of Design. He came to LSU as the Director of the School of Art in 1976, where he remained until his retirement in 1996. Rutkowski now lives in Connecticut. Rutkowski's work is in the collections of museums in Louisiana, Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee, as well as in the corporate and university collections of the Alton Ochsner Medical Foundation, New Orleans; Davidson College, North Carolina; Stockton Arts Commission, California; Ball State University, Indiana; and Rutgers University, New Jersey.

The exhibition will remain open in NOMA's Prints and Drawings Gallery through March 1. A catalogue is available at NOMA's Museum Shop.

Log Cabin Republicans Applaud Formation
Of National Gay Democrat Group

The recent announcement of the formation of a national gay and lesbian Democrat organization was welcomed by the national organization of gay and lesbian Republicans.

A national meeting of gay and lesbian Democrats in Philadelphia was held on November 23, and they announced the formation of the National Federation of Lesbian and Gay Democrats. The group will adopt the same model as Log Cabin Republicans, with a system of local clubs, a full-time Washington office and an annual convention.

"We welcome the formation of a national gay Democrat group," said Richard Tafel, executive director of Log Cabin Republicans. "We're pleased that they are following our lead. This is another sign that our movement is maturing politically, and a strong national gay Republican organization, joined by a strong national gay Democrat organization, will result in a very successful gay movement over the long term. I look forward to working with them."

"The formation of a specifically Democrat gay organization has integrity, as many other organizations which claim to be non-partisan have actually been staunchly Democrat," Tafel said. "By being honest about their label, this new group is likely to earn respect on Capitol Hill. We hope the organization will thrive and nurture fresh leadership among gay and lesbian Democrats."

"We hope they will challenge President Clinton and the Democrats in ways that other organizations have been unwilling to do," Tafel said. "Log Cabin's role has been to fight the far right on the inside and move the Republican Party to the political center, and we have seen real progress in the last four years. We hope the gay Democrat group will send a strong message to the Democratic Party that rhetoric and empty promises are not enough, and it must stop taking our community for granted."

Janet Jackson Pledges Proceeds
from "Together Again" To AmFAR

Singing sensation Janet Jackson has pledged a portion of the proceeds of her new single "Together Again," to The American Foundation for AIDS Research (AmFAR), in support of its all-important research and advocacy mission.

"Together Again" is the second single from Ms. Jackson's new hit CD "The Velvet Rope" (Virgin Records America). "Together Again" is a moving tribute to friends she has lost to AIDS, and to the love between friends that endures even after death.

Commenting on the significance of the song, Ms. Jackson said, "I believe we have other lives. I don't believe in the finality of death. I wanted to write about friends who have died of AIDS, but without being mournful or sad. I wanted to celebrate their spirit. I'm pleased that 'Together Again' is just that-a celebration, a confirmation that the energy of love will never die." Ms. Jackson added that she is extremely proud to begin this partnership with AmFAR.

Dr. Mathilde Krim, AmFAR's Founding Co-Chair and Chairman of the Board, said, "We thank Janet Jackson for sharing with us, through beautiful music, her feelings of enduring love for friends lost to AIDS. She is also donating to AmFAR crucial funds in support of lifesaving research. 'Together Again' will help AmFAR continue to protect lives and their gift of friendship, and I am deeply grateful to Ms. Jackson for her generosity."

AmFAR's current biomedical research objectives are the development of an AIDS vaccine and immune reconstitution therapies.

Cammermeyer Runs For Congress

R etired National Guard Colonel Margerethe Cammermeyer, whose story of dismissal and reinstatement into the National Guard was told in the made-for-television movie Serving in Silence, recently announced her candidacy for Congress in Langley, WA. In recent elections, a number of openly lesbian and gay candidates won their races, including 3 candidates each in New York City and Minnesota. Kathleen DeBold of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund said, "... Margerethe Cammermeyer has already proven herself worthy of not only the respect of all Americans, but their votes as well." The decorated Vietnam veteran is running to unseat two-term Republican Rep. Jack Metcalf.

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