Add the 'Queer Fringe' Festival to Your Pride Weekend Itinerary

Urethra Burns is one of this weekend's performers.

THIS WEEKEND BRINGS the long-awaited debut of The Pilot Dance Project’s Queer Fringe Houston. The inaugural event, a celebration of LGBTQIA+ performance art and activism, was planned more than two years ago, but presenters are just now lifting the curtain due to (you guessed it!) the pandemic. Taking place at MATCH, events on Friday and Sunday are wonderfully complementary to the city’s official Pride parade on Saturday.

The multidisciplinary festival begins with the Friday screening of the aptly titled film Friday I’m In Love, which documents the history of the legendary Houston nightclub Numbers. Throughout the 1980s and ’90s, Numbers provided a hub of excitement and inclusivity for what director Marcus Pontello describes as “every subculture you can think of.” Numbers DJs played everything from gay disco to post-punk, new wave and industrial music. The film includes interviews with several iconic underground musicians who performed at Numbers, including Al Jourgensen of Ministry, who describes Numbers as “Houston’s CBGBs,” and Andy Bell and Vince Clarke from Erasure. While very much a celebration of a moment in time, the film doesn’t shy away from addressing tragedy of its era, including impact of the AIDS epidemic on the Numbers community.

On tap for Sunday is a new film and live performance by Houston choreographer jhon r. stronks, who stylizes his name all lowercase. The as-yet-untitled work was inspired by the 50th anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall Riots, which erupted in a time when same-sex sexual activity was illegal in nearly every state in the U.S. and set the tone for the country’s gay liberation movement. The postponement of the Queer Fringe Houston allowed stronks and his collaborators to spend even more time on the project and explore, both personally and politically, what is means to be a queer individual in the 21st century.

Other performers featured in this year’s Queer Fringe Houston include Atlanta-based dancer and activist Corian Ellisor, Jadd Tank and drag artists Urethra Burns and Guanders the Drag Queen.

Marcus Pontello, director of 'Friday I'm in Love,' which screens Friday

Corian Ellisor

Art + Entertainment
Top Attorney Lauren Varnado Says Networking Is Key: ‘Relationships Are Everything’
How did you get to where you are today? It takes a village. I was fortunate enough to have great mentors and individuals who instilled confidence in me. I think that when you face a challenge or an obstacle, you are able to overcome and make things happen. You can continue moving forward, more resilient over time.
Keep ReadingShow less

Jim Crane and Lynn Wyatt at CityBook's 'Leaders & Legends' party

A WHO'S WHO of Houstonians — from the arts, big business, the media, philanthropy, pro sports and much more — came together to celebrate CityBook and Gittings Photography’s 2022 “Leaders & Legends” portrait series, presented in partnership with Residences at The Allen and Bentley Houston.

The annual event was cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid, so the VIP guests were thrilled to gather in person for the occasion, in Residence’s at The Allen’s sunny hospitality space, in the shadow of its rising hotel and condominium tower. Along with CityBookExecutive Publisher Lisa Holthouse and Editor Jeff Gremillion, The Allen developer Roberto Contreras, himself among the Leaders & Legends honored, welcomed guests with warm remarks.

Keep ReadingShow less

How did Construction Concepts become the “go-to” builder in Houston? My goal from day one is to deliver what we promise and exceed expectations. We are more than a general contractor; we are a partner with our clients. I understand what it is like to invest everything you have in your business, so we go into every project as if it were our own investment. Too often in this industry that’s not the case. Our goal is to understand your business and guide you through every step from concept to completion.

Keep ReadingShow less