I was invited to participate in a fall fundraising show for Pride Films and Plays. To make a short speech talking about a PFP project I'm involved with, and to introduce the popular singer Honey West.
My expectations were very modest, mostly to sit in the cramped dressing room for nearly all the show and then pop on for my little bit, and sit backstage some more. The outcome was entirely different.
Executive producer David Zak introduced me to several persons, including the legendary Alexandra Billings. He had me sit right next to her, in the front row, from where I watched the entire performance. In fact I sat with two other transgender iconic entertainers, Honey West and Chili Pepper.
There were excerpts of other Pride Films and Plays shows, some musical songs, and very entertaining fashion parades featuring the exquisite designs of longtime PFP designer. Alexandra opened and closed the evenings with her cabaret style humor and singing, marvelous numbers that were almost shocking in their intensity, courage and honesty. Thankfully a PFP member recorded the final songs and I added a few captions to be sure Alex's lovely words didn't get lost. These clips are embedded below.
My own modest speech went very well. Moved by the moment, I spoke with a conviction and feeling that surprised even myself about my upcoming project for Pride Films and Plays, about the debt I owed the legendary transgender performers in the house tonight, and then I introduced Honey. My reception was very positive, and after many in the audience mentioned how they were moved, and eager to see my work later in the season. It was definitely a Cinderella evening in virtually every way, one that was a milestone, a true turning point.