Happy Pride Month!

We are officially in June, Pride month, so over the next few weeks you are going to see tons of events celebrating Pride. Keep your eyes on this column to know where to go and what to do.

This week I am highlighting Shafted: The Blaqxsploitation Project, showing for only two days this weekend. Read my interview with Anthony Williams, the producer of the show, then buy your tickets and get ready to roll this weekend with some amazing events.


SHAFTED 2 nights ONLY!

SHAFTED 2 nights ONLY!

Miz Chris [MC]: Where are you from?

Anthony Williams [AW]: I’m originally from Albuquerque, New Mexico, but I am a military brat so I have lived in a lot of different places – Kansas, Virginia, Texas, and even three years in Germany – when I was really young. After spending some time in New York City (including five years in Harlem), I’ve called San Francisco home for the last 10 years.

[MC]: What inspired you to put together SHAFTED?

[AW]: I’m an African-American gay man who is interested in performance and film. I wanted to explore my cultural heritage, and I knew that Blaxploitation movies from the 1970s were a big part of the history of African-American cinema. These films were the first time that Hollywood took on African-American social issues, and the studios made a lot of money on them till the NAACP shut them down with protests about negative images of Black people. When I started researching the films, I

Sheila Collins vs. Foxy Brown

Sheila Collins vs. Foxy Brown

knew nothing about them, and I was afraid they were going to be sexist, homophobic, racist, etc. I was shocked to find out that the films had openly gay characters that were more-or-less celebrated, that the sexist portrayals were balanced by portrayals of strong black women like Coffy and Cleopatra Jones, and that the racism in them is a double-edged sword – yes, there are stereotypes like pimps and drug-dealers, but there are also characters like – crime-fighters and revolutionaries who funnel their anger against racism into defense of their communities.

[MC]: How did you choose the folks that are in this project?

[AW]: The artists came to the project in many ways. Some of them I asked directly, like Star Amerasu, a Black transgender performer who will ask the audience to improvise a song about the assumptions we make. I met MJ Isabell, a Black lesbian photographer who documents

Dennis Jones vs. The Spook Who Sat By The Door

Dennis Jones vs. The Spook Who Sat By The Door

her efforts to clean up the drug trade in the Tenderloin, at an intergenerational film-making workshop. Some of them auditioned, like Dennis Jones, a young community activist with a spoken word piece about the Black Panther Free Breakfast Program. Others I met through the African-American cultural scene in San Francisco, like Ernest

Jolly, a straight installation artist who will present an interpretation of an old film on James Baldwin’s visit to San Francisco during the days of “urban renewal.” The street dancers that open the show were recruited by an old classmate of mine, Agatronica, a white poplocker. I was looking for artists who were really good at their work, and weren’t afraid to tackle the messy issues raised by Blaxploitation movies.

[MC]: Why did you choose this theme for the National Queer Arts Festival?

[AW]: The theme of this year’s festival is Zeitgeist, a German word that means “spirit of the times.” I was inspired by the way people and communities came together recently around the Occupy movement, and

Star Amerasu vs. Coffy

Star Amerasu vs. Coffy

wanted to take a look at the last time mass movements were really popular in the United States – the 1970s. I thought it would be both fun and provocative to look at that through the lens of Blaxploitation films! The show also takes a look at issues of gentrification, because Blaxploitation films were political, and that topic concerns many people today. But community members who came to the film screenings that were part of my research made it clearly known that they wanted to hear about self-love – people treating themselves and others better – so we’ll be dealing with that too!

[MC]: What can we expect the night of the performance?

[AW]: SHAFTED is an interactive multimedia theater show! That means there’s lots of audience participation, and you are invited to dress 1970s style for the DJ dance party at the beginning of the show. Then you will be treated to performances, music, dance and films that makes Blaxploitation relevant today. We expect people will be talking a lot about what they witness during the show – it will open up conversations around race, community and self-empowerment.




200 Grand Ave., Oakland
7:15 p.m.

Queer Argentine Tango Classes on Wednesdays – life is beautiful and let’s dance lovely.

7:15-8:15 p.m. Beginner/Fundamentals with Jonas Aquino, aka Mr. Wonderful
8:15-9:15 Intermediate with David Orly-Thomspon, aka Mr. Body-leg

Beginner’s Class: $10 per class or $35 for four classes in June
Intermediate Class: $12 per class or $43 for four classes in June

Sorry no refunds for missed classes – this is a break-even enterprise!

Questions or to Pre-register: abrazoqueertango at gmail.com
Sponsored by the Abrazo Queer Tango Teacher’s fund: http://abrazoqueertango.wordpress.com/abrazo-queer-tango-teachers-fund/

Check out the home page for Everything We Know about Queer Tango in the Bay Area: http://abrazoqueertango.wordpress.com/

Every third Saturday of the month, we dance high and happy at the little milonga that could: Abrazo, the queer milonga: http://abrazoqueertango.wordpress.com/abrazo-the-queer-milonga/

Our tango event lasts for 24 hrs: two queer milongas, workshops, live-music performances, frolicking and every shade of magic: A Midsummer’s night Queer Milonga. http://abrazoqueertango.wordpress.com/a-midsummer-nights-queer-milonga/


300 Lakeside Dr., Oakland
5:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

We have reached our $500,000 first closing! This is a major milestone in our Community Shares Campaign. We want to celebrate and appreciate the many people who have helped us get this far. You’re invited to celebrate with us on June 5, from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m., at the lovely roof top garden of the Kaiser Center in downtown Oakland.

Come Enjoy…
**Live blues, jazz, and soul by Oakland’s own Tamika Nicole and her trio
**Guest address by Lynette McElhaney, Oakland District 3 City Councilwoman
**Sumptuous seasonal hors d’oeuvres and complimentary beer & wine


2025 Broadway, Oakland
8 p.m.

Fela! The Musical is an extraordinary Broadway Show that has toured the globe and is now coming to Oakland! Michelle Williams from Destiny’s Child has joined the cast to bring you one of the most passionate musicals that you will ever experience! Fela is the story of Fela Anikulapo Kuti – The God Father of Afrobeat. A national hero of his homeland Nigeria, Fela always worked for the people and his music reflected his political beliefs. Take advantage of this opportunity to learn about one of the greatest of all-time and experience the passion that is Fela!




1727 Telegraph, Oakland
5 p.m. – 8 p.m.

This is our last mixer before the big event- The California Music Industry Summit 2013! (https://www.facebook.com/events/143158949168263/) CMIS Music Business Happy Hour Networking Mixer provides serious music professionals with unique networking opportunities.

We will also have a special performance by The Genie! The Genie is an avant garde per­form­ing artist and gui­tar loop­ing inno­va­tor. Tak­ing a DJ approach to gui­tar, he is the cre­ator of a live-looping method called ‘scratch gui­tar’ and a unique brand of live-remixing called ‘g-mixing’.

Come socialize, mingle and increase your business connections in the entertainment community. We appreciate your continued support of our Mixers and look forward to seeing you there!

Registration is FREE but space is VERY limited. Register online here http://www.showclix.com/event/CMISMusicBusinessMixer OR by phone at 888-718-4253.



1970 Broadway, Oakland
6 p.m.

Join ACUDIR in collaboration with BAJI, CJJC and EBC at a film screening of Immigrants For Sale. Immigrants For Sale is a ground-breaking online documentary series that goes inside the private immigrant detention industry, through the lens of those most impacted, the players behind the trade and the multi-billion dollar profits that fuel it all.

We will have a discussion afterwards and will share information on local efforts to fight against this industry and defend our communities rights!


579 18 St., Oakland
8 p.m. – 2 a.m.

It was almost 18 months ago that the full cast and band of the Broadway cast of FELA! , rode a bus from San Francisco to Oakland for a one night only mega performance.

Things have never been the same.

It is our absolute privilege to invite you to the Official Opening Party on June 6. The Broadway production is back is back in town and we’re planning to raise it up even higher this time in celebration of his legacy!!

Original Fela! lead Sahr Ngaujah, no longer with the show, is traveling to Oakland just for the party. We’ve also a special performance by Oakland’s Jennifer Johns and many more. Come see why the 2011 Fela Closing Party was considered one of the greatest parties in the world by the cast and band of Fela! on Broadway. Chicago, NYC, so on and so forth – the world knows what happened in 2011.

Tickets will move quickly. Please note, the Official Opening Party follows the Broadway Production at The Paramount Theater earlier on June 6.

*this is not Fela the musical, but the official opening party following the production at the paramount theater.*




3000 Broadway, Oakland

7 p.m. – 2 a.m.
Free b4 10 $6 after

Huddle up, huddle up…..

Attention Players: We’re comin’ to Oakland…..AND to a brand spankin’ new Virgin Venue :o)

On Friday JUNE 7 we’re Poppin’ our Oakland Cherry and breaking in a wonderful & fabulous **Virgin Venue** nestled away in a Broadway location you’ve probably passed many times on your commute to and fro. This is a great new spot guys, so let’s keep it special…..We hope you’ll help us with this one…..and hopefully we didn’t confuse you too much with the event shifting slightly from it’s regular “fourth Friday” slot. We now welcome and entertain the idea of FirstBase Dance Party after the wonderful Art Murmur/First Fridays in Oakland on Telegraph Ave!

If you are into art at all……Beforehand come out in the early afternoon to experience all that is art, music, & happening culture in O-Town these days. Oakland…….We Hella Heart You!


762 Fulton, SF
7:30 p.m.

It’s 1970s San Francisco. In a hood bulldozed by “urban renewal,” an intergenerational, multigendered, pansexual gang of badasses – a rainbow of Blackness! – bands together to raise CLUB MYSTIQUE from the rubble of gentrification. The joint is jumpin’ with a crowd-of-all-colors-genders-sexualities singin’ “the only home we have is the love we have for ourselves” as they participate in SWEET SWEET BLAQ’S BAADASSSSS VARIETY SHOW.

The communi-tay takes 1970s Blaxploitation flix like Superfly, Coffy, Blacula, Black Shampoo, Cleopatra Jones, Black Belt Jones, and The Spook Who Sat By The Door and turns them inside out in this night of interactive performance, music, dance, spoken word and film that gets down with SOUL POWER. Dress code is 1970s disco, soul & funk, dig it?

SHAFTED features Star Amerasu, Brock Cocker, Sheila Collins, M. J. Isabell, Ernest Jolly, Dennis Jones, DaCarla Kilpatrick, Derek Lassiter, Mia McKenzie, Marc Scruggs and Anthony Julius Williams – with special appearance by Agatronica and Loan Hoang – and vinyl by DJ Lamont!

SHAFTED is directed and produced by Anthony Julius Williams.

This production be dedicated to anyone searching for home.


410 14th St., Oakland
8 p.m. – midnight

You don’t want to miss this next edition of GET FAMOUS or DIE LAUGHING Comedy Jam. We have Oakland’s funniest comedians back for ONE NIGHT ONLY…

Town Business Edition features:

Daniel Dugar http://www.danieldugarcomedy.com/

Kirk McHenry

Born and raised in Oakland, CA, Kirk has had a variety of experiences. Life in the inner city, prep school in the suburbs, college life in the south and even a successful four-year stint in the United States Marine Corps. He blends all of his life experiences together into a storytelling brand of comedy that has been described by some as Bill Cosby with a Richard Pryor twist.

Comedian Tristan Johnson

Comedian Tristan Johnson was raised in Oakland, California always had charisma, being quick witted became known as silly. But in 2009, he gave birth to being a comedian. Comedy was life changing and Johnson became smitten with the mic creating his three stage personas: himself; his “silly side,” Trissie Tris; and his “thug-silly side,” Hoody 2 Shoes. His aggressive style of comedy landed him producing his own show Nutty Mondays, in the heights of Sacramento.

Reyna Amaya – Reyna was born and raised in Oakland, CA, but now resides in L.A. She is also pursuing her acting and modeling career while continuously growing in her comedic career. This is her FIRST TIME performing in the BAY!!!

Jerrell Parker – Jerrell Parker’s motto. At 26, he has been gaining fame through out the Bay Area
performing stand-up in Berkeley, Richmond, Fairfield, Hayward, Oakland and his hometown Vallejo, CA. He also performed in Sacramento and at The Comedy Store in Los Angeles. The first performance Jerrell did, he was 18. It happened at downtown Vallejo’s Listen and Be Heard.

Hosting the show is funny man Christopher Riggins!!!




Saturday, June 8
La Pena Community Center
3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley
8:00 p.m.
$12 Advance / $15 Door

*Tom Cho* is an artist from Melbourne, Australia. His first book was a collection of fictions called Look Who’s Morphing. Look Who’s Morphing was shortlisted for various awards including the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize for Best First Book. Tom’s now traveling around the U.S. while working on his new fiction book, which is called The Meaning of Life and Other Fictions. His website is at tomcho.com

*Ingrid Rojas Contreras* is a Colombian writer living and working in San Francisco. Her work has most recently been published in American Odysseys: Writings by New Americans (Dalkey Archive Press) and Wise Latinas (University of Nebraska Press).

*Brian Bauman* is a playwright and artistic director of Perfect Disgrace Theater. He is the author of more than a dozen plays, and has produced experimental, queer plays. http://www.perfectdisgrace.com/

*Marci Blackman*’s first book, Po Man’s Child, won both the ALA Stonewall Award for Best LGBT Fiction and the Firecracker Alternative Book Award for Best Fiction. In her second novel, Tradition, Blackman uses fast – paced lyrical narrative to elegantly move between present – day small town Ohio and the thriving African-American community that existed there before and during World War II.

*Janani* is a South Asian electron spinning around the Bay Area making art and scholarship. They like thinking about apocalypse, decolonizing the food system, and making space for quantum queers everywhere. They’re assistant editor at Black Girl Dangerous, and one-half of the spoken word duo DarkMatter (bit.ly/queerdarkmatter). You can read more of Janani’s work atqueerdarkenergy.sqsp.com.

*Tara Jepsen* is a writer, comedian, performance artist and filmmaker. She writes about skateboarding for xoJane.com.

264585_523663671026198_1133851980_nAMOR ETERNO
1227 18th Ave., Oakland
7 p.m. – midnight
New space unveiling and 25+ artists express Amor Eterno, eternal love.
DJ Casper + Aztec dancers + tacos + beer!
Raffle for tattoo time and swag from AM and The Roll Up Bicycle Shop and Art Space

The unveiling of Amor Eterno in its new space, June 8 with an art exhibition dedicated to Amor Eterno, eternal love. Celebrating our expansion we wanted include all the artists who supported us through our adventure. 25 of the brightest and hardest working artists in the East Bay give their interpretation of deep, unwavering and passionate love.

Sal and I named the shop Amor Eterno for so many reasons; our love for each other, our love for art and tattoos, and our love for our family and the community of Oakland. It is the love and support from our family, friends and clients who have made it possible for us to grow. Truly a testament to the empowerment of the community, that with love, anything is attainable.

On Saturday, June 8, we will have hot tacos, cold beer and DJ Casper spinning oldies, doo wop and street jams.

We are pleased to have an Aztec blessing at 7 p.m. by Ollin Anahuac from Union City

Come celebrate art, Oakland and Amor Eterno.

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Disco Volante!
347 14th St. Oakland
9 p.m. – 2 a.m.


Resident Crate Diggers:

DJ LadyRyan (Soulovely || BUTTA)
DJ Ai.Lo ((The Formula || Isa Collective)
DJ Trinity (Living Room Project II T.W.N)

“Great food, music and people – rich” ♥





1745 San Pablo, Oakland
3 p.m. – 8 p.m.


Come get your groove on with the the Soulovely Crew…
every Second Sunday
DJ Emancipacion
DJ Lady Ryan
MC and host Aima the Dreamer
special dance set by Heaven Mousalem

celebrating the birthday of DJ Emancipacion!

sassy, soulful daytime outdoor party
come get your drink on with us
grub by our special guest chefs
chill and dance all day long


Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts
2868 Mission St., SF
6 p.m.
$8 – $15 Sliding Scale

Join us in celebrating how Queer im/migrant and 1st/2nd generation folks unapologetically navigate their bodies, gender, culture, sexuality, and history through a night of intergenerational performance art, dance, music, mixed media, and spoken word!
Guest Artists include:

* La Chica Boom * Taijhet Nyobi * Yosimar Reyes * Jean Melesaine * Amir Rabiyah * Kat Evasco * Jamaesori * Vai Fuatino Alefosio * Tre Natro * Enajite Loicy Pela * Lindsey Adams  * Celeste Chan * Cuahtemoc

With DJ Agana on the ones and twos!

Buy your tickets early, this event will sell out!

* This venue is wheelchair accessible *

****Important Note to the Lovely Folks on Will Call****

If you have already purchased your tickets online through the Brown Paper Tickets website, please plan to arrive by 5:45 p.m. next Sunday, June 9! Doors open promptly at 6 p.m. & because this event is going to sell out, we WILL have to sell unclaimed tickets. For that reason, *please* plan to arrive by 5:45 p.m. so we can welcome you & get you seated without issue. Thank you for the ongoing support & you are always welcome to email callequmbia@gmail.com if you have any specific questions or concerns around ticketing. Thank you!
In 2012, this intergenerational series ran for the first time and successfully sold out The Mission Cultural Center to a crowd full of beautifully fierce jotatistas. Last year, SQD also launched a paid eight week creative writing workshop for youth led by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, published an anthology, and showcased a total of 22 local artists of color. All resources raised through this grassroots organized series go directly to paying artist stipends and developing independent arts education spaces for Queer/Questioning youth of color.


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