Best LGBT things to do
Over the past 20 years, artist Mark Beard has collected the works of his great-uncle, painter Bruce Sargeant, whose paintings of athletic men displaying homoerotic athleticism have been largely overlooked since his early death at the age of 40. Now, Beard brings together murals of Sargeant's from around the world, and ushers in his rightful inclusion to the queer canon.
Theater review by Adam Feldman [Note: This is a review of the 2017 production at Second Stage Theater. That production has now transferred to Second Stage's Broadway venue, the Helen Hayes Theater, with the same cast.] For gay history to stay alive, torches must be passed. So it is with Second Stage Theatre’s welcome and well-assembled revival of Harvey Fierstein’s plangently funny and touching play, which opened on Broadway in 1982 and ran there for three years. Then called Torch Song Trilogy, it was four hours long and covered a range of topics related to gay men in the window between Stonewall and AIDS: self-esteem, dating, violence, adoption, family tension. What it isn’t about is shame: Its central character, Jewish drag queen Arnold Beckoff, accepts his own queerness without fuss and with plenty of pithy quips. The original version was a Neil Simon–ized vehicle for writer-star Fierstein; director Moisés Kaufman’s production retools it effectively for its new star, the different but very appealing Michael Urie. More than an hour shorter than before, the play remains a triptych. The first part, "The International Stud,” is the story of Arnold’s flickering romance with the handsome, bisexual Ed (Ward Horton), and is told mostly in monologues; the second, “Fugue in a Nursery,” is a country-house sex comedy staged with all four characters—Arnold, Ed, Arnold’s pretty-boy lover (Michael Rosen) and Ed’s wary girlfriend (Roxanna Hope Radja)—in one giant bed. The third section,
Frank J. Avella's drama, inspired by true events, depicts the brutalization of young gay Russian men by groups that entrap them to be beaten and humiliated on camera. Avella shares directing duties with Carlotta Brentan.
As an NYC DJ, Bright Light Bright Light brings kitschy pop classics to his reverent, nostalgic day parties all over town. And on the global stage, he’s a beloved solo artist, delivering earnest lyrics and high-profile pop collaborations with Elton John, Jake Shears and others. He hits Public Arts with a gleeful performance to celebrate his new release, Tough Love.
The gleefully dark storyteller and queer comedy leader Matt Smith McCormick brings one of his most bleak creations to the PIT for this batshit solo show. Meet Pammy Pittsley, the chain-smoking, apocalyptic schoolbus driver of Pink-Eye Village, MA. She—and you—are about to stumble into a white-trash TED talk you'll never forget.
They're taking over; get used to it. Defiantly dope comedians Jess Salomon and Sophie Santos invite their flyest queer friends to shut down Union Hall with unapologetically woman-oriented sets. They're joined by Emma Willmann, Lauren Ashley Smith and Eman El-Husseini.
One of our favorite parties in NYC continues its total nightlife domination with a new residency at Drom. Step into a wicked, wild arena for women-identifying revelers and their queer buddies, featuring aerialists, dope DJs, late-night food and drink specials and go-go dancers of different genders ready to entice you.
If the tryptophan doesn’t put you under, head to Williamsburg’s cinema-meets-bar to spend Thanksgiving evening immersed in everyone’s favorite whodunit. Sidle up to a board game or kick back with a slice of pumpkin pie and a nightcap from the evening’s special brandy menu. The camp classic runs continuously from 4pm to 1am, so if you don’t know all of the lines already, you will by the night’s end.
One year into our political world order, and there’s still endless comedy to be mined. Gonzo storytellers Harmon Leon, Peter Marino and Erez Ziv throw this satirical and cathartic festival of strife, with a brilliantly curated lineup that includes the LGBTQ Russian Disaster Roast Hour; Then What: Stories from Activists; Don’t Hate Me Because I’m a Republican; and Trump: An American Musical.
The divas of the Highline Ballroom turn out in tinsel at special holiday-themed editions of the iconic weekly brunch shindig. Prepare for a lot of Mariah Carey lip-synchs.
To build a café for cats is genius; to populate it with drag queens is inspired. Join divas Goldie Lox and Ona Louise and a host of feline residents for some campy—and dare we say catty—bingo at this night combining everything you like about everything.
Among this club night’s selling points are host Laura Martinez, DJs Freddy and Joss, tequila drink specials and sexy sombrero-wearing bartenders. There’s no better place in town to shake to reggaetón and cumbia.
Head to Henrietta Hudson every Thursday for a seemingly endless happy hour (till midnight, seriously) and chill jams from veteran DJ Tikka Masala, who keeps you grinning all night with beloved soul and hip-hop classics.