Media Contact: C. Manuel Brown
NEW YORK, NY (May 26, 2017) – My True Colors Festival (MTCF) announces its 2017 lineup, including a “T-Day” celebration featuring Free CeCe (June 18, 2017 at Made In NY Media Center by IFP), the critically acclaimed documentary that confronts the culture of violence surrounding trans women of color as told through the voices of Orange Is The New Black’s Laverne Cox and Cece McDonald, who was unjustly incarcerated (talkback with director Jacqueline Gares to follow).This year’s lineup also features one of the best movies at Sundance—the energetic and empowering documentary Kiki (June 17, 2017 at Made In NY Media Center by IFP), which profiles an NYC community known as Kiki, where LGBTQ youth find support and friendship through a chosen form of expression that is dance. Also slated is a screening of the fiery web series from Slay TV, Love@First Night (June 14, 2017 at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema), to be followed by a candid discussion with creators Sean Torrington and his husband, Terry.
What’s more, MTCF represents works that span across the country and around the globe like the British web series As We Are, about gender identity plus the complexities of attraction; the documentary Aleph Melbourne (June 16, 2017 at Made In NY Media Center by IFP), which tells the amazing story of the controversial support group that changed the face of LGBTQI acceptance in Jewish Australia; and La primavera Rosa en México (Pink Spring In Mexico; June 16, 2017 at Made In NY Media Center by IFP), which analyzes the LGBTQ community in Mexico, which ranks second in the world in murders committed against the LGBTQ population even though gay marriage is legal.
Join us June 7 from 6pm to 9pm for our Save-the-Date and Kick Off Party at Brooklyn’s Bedford Hall where we will host a special tribute to community, business, and civic leaders who champion civil and LGBTQ rights. The honorees are: Eric L. Adams, Brooklyn Borough President, MTCF Outstanding Leadership Award; Jean Wimberly, Founder & Executive Director, Circle of Voices, MTCF Pride Vanguard Award; Sean Torrington, Founder & CEO, Slay TV, MTCF Business Innovation Award; Carlos Menchaca, Member, New York City Council, MTCF Community Impact Award; Marc Fliedner, Brooklyn District Attorney Candidate, MTCF Champion of Justice Award; and Vaughn Taylor, Executive Director, GMAD, MTCF Advocacy Award.
“I am honored to receive this award from the organizers of the My True Colors Festival,” says Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams. “Despite all the progress that we’ve made across the country on LGBTQIA+ issues, we still have much more work to do to combat homophobia, transphobia, bullying, and discrimination. Nobody should ever be denied their equal rights due to their sexual orientation or gender identity, and we should remain vigilant as the protections that have been achieved over the past decade face renewed threats,” asserts Adams. “Brooklyn embodies all that is great about this country, and that is its diversity and embrace of all people. I stand proud to represent LGBTQIA+ Brooklynites.”
Now in its third year, MTCF takes place June 14 – July 2, 2017 at multiple venues in Brooklyn, New York, including the Made In NY Media Center by IFP, Brooklyn Commons, and Triskelion Arts. MTCF’s mission is fighting for social justice and cultural diversity through the arts by presenting multidisciplinary works that are for and by underrepresented multicultural LGBTQIA+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, intersex, asexual) storytellers and communities. Since its launch in June 2015 as an official NYC Pride Event Partner (Heritage Pride Inc.), MTCF has presented screenings of film shorts, narrative feature films, documentaries, and original web series; stage plays; musical acts; dance performances; and panel discussions or talkbacks. This includes one-on-one conversations with notable celebrities and allies such as ABC Black-ish actress Jenifer Lewis and For Colored Girls…. author-playwright Ntozake Shange.
“At MTCF, we do the work we do because it’s important to improve public dialogue and encourage artistic activism,” says Co-Founder and Executive Director, Carolyn M. Brown. “Our festival’s programming tackles homophobia and transphobia, raising consciousness on social justice and civil rights issues. We seek to shine a spotlight on individuals who too often have been invisiblized because of race, gender, gender identity, social status, and/or sexual orientation,” continues Brown, an award-winning journalist (2012 GLAAD Media Award, Outstanding Magazine Article “Black and Gay In Corporate America”).
The festival’s organizers point to some of today’s most pressing topics impacting LGBTQIA+ communities such as violence, hate crimes, gender identity, criminal justice, employment discrimination, immigration, healthcare, racial equality, and religious freedom bills. “Now more than ever, as we are seeing all marginalized communities come under attack over the last six months, we need to tell our stories,” adds Co-Founder and Executive Producer Tai Chunn. “We need to stand up and stick together in solidarity to resist those in power who seek to divide us and deny us our rights.”
New this season are four amazing showcases from the winners of MTCF’s first annual Purple Skies Playwrights Awards:
9 Grams, Hollywood screenwriter Maisha Yearwood’s one-woman show recounts her real-life experience living in a 9×10-foot cell at Bakirkoy Prison in Istanbul, Turkey. She was living in Tel Aviv, Israel and was returning to New York City to attend a funeral and college reunion. During a layover in Istanbul, 9 grams of hashish was found in her pocket. After her arrest, she was put into solitary confinement for being an OUT black lesbian.
Dysfunctioning Just Fine is an autobiographical one-woman musical about the life of Meredith Wells, a “kinda gay” and chronically ill woman. The story follows the journey of the differently-abled actress as she navigates through an able-bodied centric institution and profession. Dysfunctioning tackles the intersectionality of identity—what it’s like to be someone who identifies as differently-abled and LGBTQ.
Main Drag is a dark comedy by Jason Aaron Goldberg about Lionel Harris, aka Lion-El, a wardrobe stylist extraordinaire for pop stars around the world. When his car breaks down on a stretch of highway in the rural south, he finds himself caught at the intersection of combustible issues, where he is forced to confront racism, homophobia, fame, fear, narcissism, humility, love, and a big Confederate flag.
Luna Fest is a spoken word and all female rap musical by Sara Newman that centers on love, romance, and the power of jealousy with lesbian swingers and burlesque dancers in the mix. Luna Fest tells the story of two women in a devoted long term relationship who are at a crossroads. A trio of mystical witches summon them to a gathering, to challenge their belief systems through the exploration of the erotic arts.
Additional events will be announced in the coming weeks. MTCF tickets range in costs from $10 to $20 and are available at www.MyTrueColorsFestival.com. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for updates.
About My True Colors Festival
My True Colors Festival is dedicated to bringing together innovative storytellers and is committed to building a bridge between domestic and international lesbian, gay, transgender, questioning, intersex, asexual plus (LGBTQIA+) communities and allies as part of our goal to break through closet doors and demolish divisive concrete walls around the globe. MTCF is a national event produced by MVC Management Productions, a Brooklyn, New York-based backstage events production and entertainment management company, and the True Colors Project, a Jersey City, New Jersey-based social enterprise that develops and produces impactful artistic works.