Uptown Players to Kick Off 2014 Pride Performing Arts Festival with MYTHICAL BEASTIE, COMMENCING and More, 8/12

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Uptown Players to Kick Off 2014 Pride Performing Arts Festival with MYTHICAL BEASTIE, COMMENCING and More, 8/12

Uptown Players, a professional theater group located in the Uptown area of Dallas, has announced its programming for the 4th annual Dallas Pride Performing Arts Festival. From September 12 - 20, 2014, Uptown Players will present a nine-day festival of plays, cabaret acts, and a concert performance celebrating Dallas Gay Pride, closing with a very special presentation of Savage Love Live, featuring Dan Savage.

Opening the festival on the Kalita main stage will be a concert version of The Last Session, the hilarious and heartbreaking Off Broadway sensation that was part of Uptown Players first season. The Last Session gathers singers in a recording studio to record a new pop/gospel album with an old friend, faded pop star, Gideon. But the mix is dramatically altered by the unexpected arrival of a Bible thumping, homophobic gospel singer. All of them are deeply connected to Gideon yet are unaware that he plans to end his struggle with AIDS after the session. Harmony is restored through friendship and the power of music. Denise Lee and Sara Shelby-Martin return to reprise their roles from the 2002 Uptown production, and Gary Floyd and Peter DiCesare join the cast. This is a performance you don't want to miss!

The festival will close with a special presentation of Savage Love Live, featuring nationally syndicated sex advice columnist and author Dan Savage. A writer, TV personality, and activist best known for his political and social commentary, Savage's sex advice column, "Savage Love," is syndicated in newspapers and websites around the world. In his latest bestselling book American Savage, Dan shares his insights on topics ranging from marriage and parenting to the Catholic Church and sex education. In September 2010, Savage and husband Terry Miller wanted to create a personal message to let LGBT youth know that "it gets better." Today, the It Gets Better Project (www.itgetsbetter.org) has become a global movement, inspiring more than 50,000 It Gets Better videos viewed more than 50 million times.

Between these two special events, there will be a series of plays and a cabaret act presented in the intimate upstairs Franks Place venue.

Mythical Beastie by Bruce R. Coleman
Former college roommates Mark (a gay architect) and Greg (his straight friend) find themselves living together again after years of estrangement. Greg, a serial womanizer, invites his latest crush Wendy home to meet his best friend and to make an announcement that throws everyone and everything into a tailspin. Mythical Beastie is an outrageous, sexy comedy with heart, written by local playwright Bruce R. Coleman.

From White Plains by Michael Perlman
The 2013 Off-Broadway hit, From White Plains follows four men, straight and gay, as they attempt to take responsibility for past actions and move beyond them, aided and frustrated by celebrity, social media and viral videos. The play examines how male relationships change as boys grow into men and asks who speaks for a victim of bullying when he is no longer here to speak for himself.

Commencing by Jane Shephard
The beautiful Kelli can't wait for the blind date her friends have set her up on, until it turns out to be one very disappointed lesbian named Arlin. Mutually appalled, yet appallingly intrigued, they proceed to pull the screws loose on both straight and gay women's culture, to find the common ground beneath in the search for love and self.

Falling Man written by Will Scheffer
Falling Man examines the lives of a diverse group of gay men from various backgrounds. Join Brandon Simmons in a tour-de-force performance as we meet a former drag queen, a young hustler who is taken over by the spirit of Tennessee Williams, the infamous Jeffrey Dahmer, and a former cha-cha champion who just wants to be remembered.

Dysfunctional Divas written by Steven Jay Crabtree
Steven Jay Crabtree presents yet another evening in the lives of his "Dysfunctional Divas." This one man, multi-wig show, includes such outrageous characters as the drama queen of lip-sync, Trayla Park; the superhero, Warrior Woman, the bombastic screen vixen, Martini Glass; plus other of Steven's weird alter egos! Crabtree switches from boy to girl and boots to heels while playing his collection of kooky characters. It's an evening of adult rated fun and surprises, flash, trash and lots of laughs...you'll have a gay ol' time! Rated R for adult language and humor.

General Admission tickets for events in Franks Place are $10-15. Reserved tickets for The Last Session are $20 - $30. Reserved tickets for Savage Love Live are $25 - $40. Festival passes allow you to see The Last Session and all five Franks Place productions for just $75. Performances will take place at the Kalita Humphreys Theater building, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd at Blackburn. Tickets and festival passes can be purchased online at www.uptownplayers.org or by phone at 214-219-2718.

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