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"Mighty Real"

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National Queer Arts Festival 2002

Mighty Real :The Life of San Francisco Disco Legend Sylvester
Djola Branner, Aimee Bryant, Angela Henderson
Preview: Wednesday, June 5; 2002 8pm, $10-$15 (preview price)
Thursday-Sunday, June 6-9; 8 pm (Sunday, 7 pm)
Saturdayt June 8: Shows at 8 pm
Location: SF LGBT Community Center, 1800 Market @ Octavia, 2nd Floor

Cultural Odyssey, in Association with the National Queer Arts Festival and the National performance Network (NPN), presents: Mighty Real.

Mighty Real is an interdisciplinary performance that chronicles the life of San Francisco disco legend Sylvester. Named for the diva_s best-known song, Mighty Real explores the impact the flamboyant entertainer has had on contemporary music and pop culture, from remakes of his hits to influences on gender bending artists like RuPaul. The show explores Sylvester_s refusal to trade deeply drag-rooted flamboyant image for a more masculine one during the newly hyper-masculine gay male culture of the 70s. Mighty Real also highlight_s the flamboyant diva_s struggle during the advent of AIDS (Sylvester died in 1988 from AIDS). Throughout the show, Djola Branner belts out several of Sylvester_s sweaty disco anthems.

Djola Branner is a performance artist, dancer, actor and writer from Minneapolis. He is one of the founders of the highly influential Pomo Afro Homos (Post-Modern African American Homosexuals). His work with this seminal group and his subsequent solo/group endeavors have been seen internationally.

Aimee K. Bryant is originally from Detroit and received her bachelor of fine arts from Howard University. She has been performing in the Twin Cities for the past five years in everything from "Black Nativity" with Penumbra to "The Tempest", with 10,000 Things Theatre Co. Aimee is also a founding member of Congo Square Theatre in Chicago.

A native son of St. Louis, Angela Henderson is a wife, mother of three, and grandmother. As a member of the Sound of Blackness, she has lent her talents to such recordings as Reconciliation, Time for Healing African to America: The Journey of the Drum, The Night Before Christmas, The Evolution of Gospel, and the motion picture soundtracks Mo' Money and Batman.

Bay Area performer Brian Goranson plays multiple roles along with the girls.

This presentation is made possible by NQAF, Cultural Odyssey and NPN. Mighty Real is one of a series of programs designed by the National performance Network (NPN). NPN is an independent organization begun by Dance Theater Workshop and is comprised of arts organizations in 40 cities and 25 states, including Cultural Odyssey. NPN is made possible through major funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts (a federal agency). For further information, visit the NPN Web site at www.npnweb.org or write National Performance Network, PO Box 70435, New Orleans, LA 70172.