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Excerpts from “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” will be a featured component of the 11th annual East Central Minnesota Pride event, scheduled for June 7 at Voyageur Park in Pine City. As part of the entertainment schedule, the co-stars of the award-winning Duluth production will present a live soundtrack from “Hedwig”.
Written by John Cameran Mitchell, “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” won three Tony Awards after finally making its way on to the Broadway stage in early 2014, introducing Neil Patrick Harris as Hedwig.
Duluth’s version of “Hedwig” played to standing room only crowds by the closing weekend of its October, 2014, run on the Underground stage at the Duluth Playhouse. It was named best local play by the Northland Reader’s Best of The Northland 2014. Ogilvie-native and Mora High School graduate Alec Schroeder, as Hedwig, won best local actor of 2014 and Tonya Porter, co-strarring as Hedwig’s husband and back-up singer Yitzhak, won best local actress as well.
For those not familiar with “Hedwig”, this rock musical, set in a bar, is the life story in the form of a monologue of Hedwig. Her tale starts in East Germany, where she is a rock and roll, philosophy loving boy with the name of Hansel. In order to follow back his lover back to America, Hansel changes his name and has a botched sex change surgery, which leaves him with an “Angry Inch”. Hedwig then forms a band which she names “the Angry Inch”. Once in the United States, she then meets Tommy Gnosis and starts writing songs with him who in turn leaves her to become a famous rock star with the songs they wrote together. In her search for love, freedom and happiness, Hedwig –and The Angry Inch – follows Tommy around and supports herself by playing in dive bars close to venues that are hosting Tommy’s performances.
Schroeder and Porter will revive their roles as Hedwig and Yitzhak on the Pride stage via a live performance highlighting songs from the Tony Award winning soundtrack. Come and experience hits like Origins of Love, Wig in a Box, Wicked Little Town, and Midnight Radio.
Why go? Robert Lee, Director of the Duluth production, describes it this way: “Hedwig is the triumphant freak. The hero for anyone who has ever felt different, out of place, pushed down, pushed out, spit on or cursed at – you know, everyone. She is calloused, but funny; Jaded, but witty; different, but triumphant. She is deeply flawed and self-destructive, but no one can tear her down.” Come and be moved by the music of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch”.
Photo Credit: Photos provided by Robert Lee and Ryan Fargo
In May, hundreds of bargain hunters will descend upon close-knit Pine City, Minn., for the annual citywide garage sale. About 65 homes will host individual garage sales, and shoppers can walk or drive from sale-to-sale, securing deals on secondhand goods that might have otherwise ended up in the landfill or languished in storage.
One such sale’s proceeds will benefit East Central Minnesota Pride. It is located in the garage of a townhome at 922 7th Street SW, in Pine City, and a wide variety of items will be displayed for sale including, but not limited to, clothes, sporting equipment, electronics, toys and games, household items, furniture, books and gardening equipment.
East Central PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) of Mora will be on-hand with its popcorn wagon with fresh, buttered popcorn for sale. There will also be a delicious bake sale with bars, brownies and cheese cakes.
The Pine City citywide Parade of Garage Sales begins at 7 a.m. on Saturday, May 14. Check the Advertiser or the Pioneer for a full listing, map of sale locations, and sale descriptions.
For some, an annual picnic in the park isn’t enough. For those people, there is the East Central Minnesota Pride (ECMP) planning committee. If you want to take an extra step in community building, changing hearts and minds about LGBT issues, and getting involved with your neighbors has a whole, consider attending an ECMP planning committee meeting.
The planning committee does the important work of putting on one of the few rural LGBT pride events… in the (gulp) world! East Central Minnesota is comprised of Pine, Isanti, Chisago, Kanabec and Mille Lacs counties, and the ideal planning committee would be made of of a good cross-section of members from each of the counties in the region. The ECMP planning committee has generally had between 10 and 15 members, and has been a mix of people who identify as part of the LGBT community as well as straight allies. To get involved, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Volunteering for ECMP is a great way to get involved with your local LGBT community all while having a fun and rewarding time doing it. Some of the tasks of the committee members include: coordination, public relations, outreach, entertainment lineup, food, setup, breakdown, and fundraising throughout the year. ECMP began in 2005 and last year celebrated its 10th anniversary.
For the very FIRST time, East Central PFLAG is organizing a unit in this parade, the biggest in the region. Theme: “A Decade of Pride in East Central Minnesota”. PFLAG is looking for volunteers to help decorate, walk, hold signs, etc. Wear your rainbow bling to show your pride. This is done in effort to thank the overwhelming majority of the Greater Pine City community that has welcomed Pride for 10 years.
The parade begins Saturday, Aug. 2, 2014 at 4 p.m.