GAYFEST NYC Announces Fourth Annual Festival May 6 - June 6

GAYFEST NYC, Inc., (Bruce Robert Harris and Jack W. Batman, Producers), the country's premier producer of new LGBT-themed plays, announces its Fourth Annual Festival, a five-week event filled with new theatre works spotlighting gay issues. This year, the Festival will include four fully-staged productions featuring professional actors, talk-backs with the authors of the Festival plays, appearances by celebrated members of the LGBT community, plus special events. All proceeds from GAYFEST NYC benefit the Harvey Milk High School. Performances are scheduled from May 6 - June 6, 2010 at the Abingdon Theatre Arts Complex (312 West 36th Street). Casting will be announced in April.

This year's Festival selections, chosen from dozens of submissions worldwide, are:

May 6 - May 16, 2010 (June Havoc Theatre)
U.S. Premiere
Romeo and Hamlet
Written by R. Jonathan Chapman and Kevin Stefan
Directed by Sidney J. Burgoyne

Winner, 2005 Outstanding Original Script, CAT Awards (Canada)

A comedy on marriage equality in the style of William Shakespeare. Romeo goes to the ball where he is soon to meet the beautiful young Juliet, but bumps into the dashing prince Hamlet instead. Naturally, the two fall hopelessly in love. While Hamlet strives to juggle the pressures of his new-found love, his arch-conservative family, and his quest for revenge, he must also keep his secrets from the woman he is sworn to marry: Hell hath no fury like a Juliet scorned.

May 13 - May 23, 2010 (Dorothy Strelsin Theatre)
World Premiere
Mother Tongue
Written by F.J. Hartland
Directed by TBA

A young painter finds his life turned upside down by a new lover with a mysterious past and a mother pursuing a career as a stand-up comedian. Whose side will he take?

May 20 - June 5, 2010 (June Havoc Theatre)
New York Premiere
The Legacy
Written by Adam Siegel
Directed by Martin Casella

Winner, 2008 New Play Festival, South Carolina Center Stage

A famous children's author and illustrator has rarely seen his son since walking out on his family to live with another man more than forty years ago. The son's appearance at his father's doorstep sets in motion a dramatic chain of events that exposes a family's betrayals and secrets as it struggles to come to terms with its past.

May 27 - June 6, 2010 (Dorothy Strelsin Theatre)
World Premiere
This One Girl's Story (inspired by the proud life of Sakia Gunn)
Book by Bil Wright,
Music and Lyrics by Dionne McClain-Freeney
Directed and Choreographed by Devanand Janki

Four girls out on the town, laughing and loving, until a senseless crime of hate turns a night of joy into tragedy. The powerful score includes pop, gospel, jazz and echoes of traditional musical theatre. (Based on a true story.)

"GAYFEST NYC's mission is twofold," said Jack W. Batman, co-Producer of the festival. "First, to develop new voices for the LGBT community and, in doing so, expand the reach and accessibility of both emerging and established playwrights, composers and lyricists while providing high level entertainment to a discerning and supportive audience. The second part of our mission is to give back. To that end, through our fundraising efforts and the generosity of our sponsors, advertisers and supporters, we have established a scholarship fund to benefit students of Harvey Milk High School," continued Batman. "Since 2007, GAYFEST NYC, Inc. has awarded twenty-three scholarships to graduating seniors and established an accredited elective Playwriting program at the school."

Harvey Milk High School (HMHS) is a fully-accredited, voluntary NYC public high school focused on the educational needs of teenagers who are in crisis or at risk of physical violence and/or emotional harm in a traditional educational environment.

"GAYFEST NYC, Inc. is also committed to producing plays that will have a life outside the Festival," said Bruce Robert Harris, co-Producer of GAYFEST NYC, "plays that will represent the Festival in productions around the English-speaking world and which might also be brought to life in television and/or film presentations. Board members of GAYFEST NYC, Inc. include Terrence McNally, Charles Busch, Douglas Carter Beane, Mario Cantone, Kate Clinton and a distinguished group of Broadway producers, actors, writers, artistic and executive directors of regional theatres plus other entertainment professionals."

Sponsors of GAYFEST NYC include American Airlines, HSBC Bank, Bud Light, Grey Goose Vodka, Lladro, RockStar energy drink, Andrew Christian, DG Neary Real Estate, Jamie deRoy, Interactive Male, Sutter Home Vineyards, and media sponsors including the Village Voice, Where New York, IN New York Magazine, Next Magazine, Back Stage, The New York Blade, GO! Magazine, FunMaps, Mark Nelson Events and others. GAYFEST NYC receives generous support from the Office of the Manhattan Borough President.

A 4-Play Festival Passport is available at $65, with single tickets priced at $18 for all productions. Tickets are now on sale at or by calling 212-351-3101. For additional information log onto:



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