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Scene & Exhibitions
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EDINBURGH WOMFN'S CLUBS VELVET; FUR BURGER Mariners, Commercial Street, Sat 7 Oct; Twist, Dublin Street, Fri 13 Oct
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Clublife for lady-loving ladies in Edinburgh has been rejuvenated of late, with a change of DJs for both monthly nights Velvet and Fur Burger, a change of venue for the latter, and the addition of regular live performances and a pre-club event across the road at Bar Sirius for the
Fur Burger now resides in the basement club of Twist (pictured), which itself has had a makeover in the style bar mould after a long spell as gritty men’s den, the Newtown Bar. The redecoration and lesbi-residency (with record players Dejaybird, the Funki Diva, Boy Toy and Debi Tits) has encouraged a pleasingly mixed-sex clientele in the bar, and the alcoved seating areas and dinky dancefloor downstairs are well-suited to a night where chatting is as important as a boogie. Caroline Crozier, aka the Funki Diva, is pleased with the move. ‘lt’s a more intimate venue, and it’s a Friday night as well. I know the dancefloor’s small, but it’s nice; you’ve got the cosy little caves that people can go and chill out in, so it’s sociable.’
Over the Festival month, Velvet featured performances from Fringe acts including comedian Rosie Wilby and cabaret vamp Holly Penfield, and this feature has been carried through to the autumn. In September, the Truly Truly Scrumptious dancers — denizens of the art of erotic lap entertainment - gave a demonstration, and in October, showgirls troupe Burlesquad will perform. DJs Random and Carpe Diem promise the ‘most diverse club night on the gay scene’ with ‘eclectic and multi-genre-spanning music’, and the club night was voted best in Scotland for women by the Pink Paper. Like Fur Burger, Velvet welcomes gentlemen - so long as they are accompanied by a gorgeous female, naturally. (Robin Lee)
GLASGAY! FILM SEASON
A selection of fine. exciting land or ill .i,'*t7t)avlielriiirigl new Queer Cinema.
This year's programme is strong. and though it lacks the big US names (Todd Haynes. Gregg Araki. John Walters) there is still plenty to sav0ur. Check out Argentinean filmmaker Pablo Sofowch's tale of turkey basters. lesbian parentage and familial farce El Favor (23 8. 29 Oct) if it is mild titillation you seek. This madcap sex comedy has enough geing for it to deserve comparisons to Almodovar's more clunky early comedy dramas — Dark Habits. Matador — and with a deeply sane running time of 79 minutes. as over before there's chance to form an opinion.
Good old-fashioned romantic comedy comes from Spanish writer/director Manuel Gomez Pereira in Queens (Reinas) (15 8. 17 Oct. pictured right). a film as glossy and feel-good as the mass gay wedding scenario it promotes. Set a few days before a collective ceremony. the lives of five mothers. sons. friends. ex~ husbands. lovers and employees are intertwined with winnineg mild hysterical effect. Queens was a critical and commercial success in the States. and it's not difficult to see why.
Best of all is Tim Kirkhani's Sundance award Winner Loggerheads (30 Oct pictured below). a sincere. affecting triptych drama recognismg that being gay may be about something more than just who you're sleeping With. Shot on location in the director's home state of North Carolina. the film is a heartfelt. meditative exploration of love and family. told through three interconnected tales: young drifter Mark (Kip Pardue) and his lover George (Michael Kelly); Mark's adoptive mother. Elizabeth (Tess Harper); and his real mother. Grace (Bonnie Hunt). Be warned: Logger/leads is slow-paced. lacks sensationalism and adheres to a coda of raw emotional naturalisin. If any film here deserves a wider release. its this one.
The double bill My Cat’s Balls/Keep Not Silent (26 Oct) is an unusual but insightful and rewarding pairing. The former is French actor Didier Benereau's enjoyany silly short about feline castration. while Jill Alexander's documentary Keep Not Silent is a fascinating look at the secret lives and times of JeWish Orthodox lesbians in Jerusalem. The best documentary, however, is the excellent Screaming Queens (25 Oct). a retelling of the pre-Stonewall riot at Compton's Cafeteria in San FranCisco in 1966. Also worth a look is Filthy Gorgeous: The Trannyshack Story (24 Oct. pictured top right). an unpretentious record of the legendary west coast club. which features a cameo appearance from the Scissor Sisters' Ana Matronic. For next year's festival Glasgay! could do worse than adopt Trannyshack's motto — we should. after all, try and be a little bit more gorgeous and filthy. (Paul Date)
I Glasgay! film season. CCA 8 Glasgow Film Theatre, Sun 75—Mon 30 Oct. See www. glasgay. com for details.
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