It's my absolute delight to share the fantastic news below. Please join at the vigil and be sure to promote and like the FB page. Protect LGBT Russians!
Contact Melanie Nathan: firstname.lastname@example.org
Facebook Event Page: https://www.facebook.com/events/433652160084761/
Tomorrow night, Friday, September 6 at 7:00 pm, an LGBT activist including members of Gays Without Borders, BoycottRussianVodka.com and PCI-Justice, will stage an informational vigil, outside the San Francisco Opera’s gala opening night at the War Memorial Opera House, located at Van Ness and Grove Street.
Today coalition organizer Melanie Nathan received a personal statement of support from married openly lesbian opera mega-couple, Patricia Racette and Beth Clayton, in support of a letter of solidarity for Russia’s LGBT community as well as a vigil to be held at the opening of the San Francisco Opera’s MEFISTOFELE, starring Ms. Racette.
The couple has agreed to lend their prestigious names to a letter which appears hereunder. First, here is their note to the activists:
Thank you for reaching out to Patricia. I am her partner, Beth Clayton, and we have indeed received your messages via Patricia’s management at Opus 3 Artists.
Patricia and I would be most happy for you to add both of our names to your cause in protest to Russia’s stance on LGBT [human rights protections].
Of course we make this statement as private citizens and not as any affiliation with San Francisco Opera, although she will obviously be singing at War Memorial Opera House on Friday night in the season opening of MEFISTOFELE.
Operatic singing is a sport in itself really, and I can’t imagine Patricia or myself being ‘boycotted’ from performing in any country for any reason based on our sexual orientation!
We wish this peaceful but meaningful protest all success and will be following closely the progress to rectify this mistake in social justice.
Fortitude be yours!
Beth Clayton and Patricia Racette
While the San Francisco Opera Company is unable dedicate the performance to the cause, the management has been fully supportive and contacted the coalition to offer assistance to ensure that the vigil receives accommodations at the theater. The Letter of Solidarity states:
We, the undersigned, stand in solidarity with Russia’s LGBT community at this time, due to the rise in violence against them, resulting from the Russian government’s recent enactment of anti-gay propaganda laws, and the government’s oppression of human rights defenders and activists.
Tonight, Friday, September 6, 2013, the opening night of the San Francisco Opera company’s season, we add our voices to the growing international chorus deploring the anti-gay propaganda laws and escalating attacks.
We are a diverse group of individuals from many backgrounds, countries and stations in life. Some of us are singers and performers, patrons and promoters of the arts, political activists, gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgender people, straight allies and citizens of the world.
Together we believe it is of the utmost importance to dedicate ourselves, our performances, our hopes and prayers and wishes for a Russia that respects the human rights of all its peoples, especially the LGBT community members.
Melanie Nathan, Lesbian Writer
Michael Petrelis, Gay Blogger
Patricia Racette and Beth Clayton, Opera Divas
Robbie Sweeny, LGBT Community Organizer
If you wish to add your name to the list of signatories please email me: MPetrelis[at]aol.com.