On my way to work this morning in the Flatiron District, I noticed that a section of Broadway was closed off and covered in snow. Snow covering the ground when it’s fifty-five degrees out isn’t the first thing you expect to see, but getting off the train this morning the ice greeted me. It took me a minute or two before I saw the cameras and realized it was some kind of film shoot. Tourists were more confused than I was, which always makes me smile. I’m always happy to get what’s going on before those around me. The existence of tourists means this can happen quite often.Read my full post at the3six5.
Saturday, December 4, 2010
Thursday, September 16, 2010
There are very few actual tornadoes recorded in New York City. The strongest was in 2007.
Update: An amazing video someone took from their roof. Go citizen journalism.
Sunday, September 5, 2010
Below are some pictures from the trip, ranging from some anti-gay protesters to Truman Capote's early residence. If you can't view them, just visit the Facebook album.
The local news has more on the protesters.
Thursday, July 1, 2010
I'm excited to be directing & co-producing Veritas, a play based on those real-life events, at The 2010 New York International Fringe Festival. Our performances begin in mid-August, but we need your help to get this production on its feet now.
For $100 or more, you will receive two VIP tickets to any performance of Veritas at the Fringe. You can get your tickets before they go on sale AND have the best seats in the house. Another bonus: $60 of your $100 is tax deductible.
The story of Veritas is timely and the cast features some of Broadway's best young actors. Our benefit reading last month attracted so many theatergoers that we had to add extra seating for the sell-out crowd. You don't want to be turned away this year at the Fringe, when you can reserve two VIP seats now.
Even if you don’t want premium seats in advance, we are grateful for any tax deductible donation you can make. Whether it’s $5, $10 or $20, your generosity will have a significant impact on the success of Veritas and sharing this important story.
Thanks for all your support,
Ryan J. Davis
Director & Co-Producer, Veritas
Photo from May 2010 reading cast.
Thursday, June 10, 2010
On Wednesday night, a gay youth homeless shelter was vandalized with anti-gay graffiti that read; "We don't want gay people here."
The shelter, located in Queens, is operated by New York City's Ali Forney Center, the nation's largest organization serving homeless LGBT youth. "Gay shelter" was also scrawled on the building's door.
"I am infuriated that someone would target our kids in this cowardly way" says Carl Siciliano, Executive Director of the Ali Forney Center. "The young people who come to us for help and shelter have already experienced terrible hardship, and I will not stand for them to be further abused." (In April, I interviewed Siciliano on my Gay History: Uncut podcast on the gay homeless situation in New York.)
Community leaders and police have responded and an investigation is in the works.
On Monday at 6:30, thousands will rally in Union Square to protect homeless LGBT youth. While this rally was planned before last night's bigoted, cowardly vandalism, it's only made more vital because of it.
Speakers include Sandra Bernhard & Lt. Dan Choi and the rally has been endorsed by dozens of human rights and LGBT organizations and individuals.
I hope I'll see some of you on Monday night. Showing that there is visible support for this issue is important, because as many as 40% of the homeless youth in the United States are LGBT. That's hundreds of thousands of young people.
Originally posted on The Huffington Post.
Sunday, June 6, 2010
On Monday, June 14th at 6:30PM, numerous prominent LGBT and progressive leaders and organizations will come together at a highly anticipated rally at Union Square in support of the LGBT Homeless Youth community. (A list of endorsers can be seen below).
As LGBT youth find the courage to come out of the closet at younger ages, thousands are being rejected by their families and forced out of their homes. Most homeless LGBT youth describe having suffered violence and harassment in their homes due to their sexual orientations and gender identities. As many as 40% of the homeless youth in the United States are LGBT. Homeless LGBT youth are subjected to violence and harassment on the streets and in mainstream youth shelters. They face tremendous risk of HIV infection, drug addiction, and criminalization.
This phenomenon of thousands of LGBT youth being forced from their homes due to homophobia, stripped of economic support, and made to endure homelessness represents the most terrible cruelty and intolerance currently directed at the LGBT community. Any community has an obligation to protect its youth when they are being hurt and attacked. We call on the LGBT Community to stand up for our youth suffering on the streets, and advocate that they receive the protection and care that all young people need and deserve.
We call on the members of the LGBT Community, our straight allies, and on all decent people who believe that youths should not be thrown to the streets for being LGBT, to rally in support of the following goals:
- To show solidarity with homeless LGBT youth, to demonstrate outrage that so many young members of our community face family rejection, violence, and homelessness, and to call on the adult members of the LGBT and allied community to demonstrate increased concern, support and advocacy for our youth.
- To advocate that local, state, and federal government funding be made available to provide the housing and supportive services needed by homeless LGBT youth so they can escape the streets, and that efforts be funded to prevent LGBT youth from being subjected to violence and rejection in their homes.
- To advocate that protecting our youth from abuse, rejection, and homelessness be recognized as a major priority in our local and national LGBT advocacy agendas.
Additionally, the rally is also endorsed by many prominent community leaders, including: US Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand D-NY, Carl Siciliano, Sandra Bernhard, Lt. Dan Choi, Joe Jervis, Brendan Fay, NYC Council Member Lewis Fidler, Ryan J. Davis, Ally Sheedy, Cathy Renna, Reverend Irene Monroe, Peter Staley, David Mixner, Yetta Kurland, NYS Assemblymember Micah Kellner, U.S. Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-08), David Badash, Kai Wright, Rod McCullom, Sassafras Lowrey, Editor of "Kicked Out", NYS Senator Tom Duane, NYC Council Member Daniel Dromm, and NYC Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer.
For more information, visit the AFC website.
Friday, April 16, 2010
The pageant is coming up on Monday and I'm giving a pair of tickets away today on Twitter!
To enter to win, all you need to do is Tweet; "Just entered to win a pair of tickets to see Broadway Beauty Pageant, via @RyanNewYork at http://ryanjdavis.blogspot.com." I'll draw and announce the winners late tonight. Please be in the New York City area.
If you don't win, you can buy great $25 tickets using the discount code RAC102 by clicking here.
Sunday, April 4, 2010
I’m directing The Broadway Beauty Pageant, an annual benefit for AFC in New York City on Monday, April 19th. It’s always a great night, for more details click here.
Listen to the podcast below, or click here to subscribe free on iTunes.
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Tony Award winner Christine Ebersole, Charles Busch and Jackie Hoffman will serve as judges for the The Broadway Beauty Pageant, which will be held April 19 at Symphony Space.
As previously reported, Tony Award nominee Tovah Feldshuh (Irena's Vow, Golda's Balcony) returns to host the 8 PM event for the third year in a row.
The fundraiser was conceived by Jeffery Self and will be directed by Ryan J. Davis. The Broadway Beauty Pageant benefits New York’s Ali Forney Center.
Friday, March 26, 2010
Monday, March 22, 2010
Over the weekend I sat down with Jon Marans, author of The Temperamentals, which is currently playing Off-Broadway. We had a great conversation about Harry Hay and the founding of the early gay rights movement in America.
We both recommend reading Stuart Timmons' Trouble With Harry Hay for more information.
Listen below, or subscribe on iTunes. If you missed our first episode on the 1920s Harvard Secret Court, listen here.
Thanks to Veritable Virgo for making me the great podcoast logo!
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Two Beers In! Taxing Soda, Ravitch's Budget Plan, and Yank, A Love Story
On this week's episode of New York's political talk show, hosts Ryan J. Davis and Greg Palmer discuss Ravitch's new budget plan, taxing soda, Mayor Bloomberg's public health efforts, and Yank The Musical.Listen online right here!
We start with Lt. Governor Ravitch's plan to fix New York's longstanding budget problems and why legislators need to learn to do their jobs or face our wrath in this fall's elections. We wonder if the state is insolvent and when we're getting our tax returns, and we talk about how the state can generate more revenue.Ryan thinks we should raise taxes, while Greg says we're already one of the highest taxed states in the country, but we agree that the proposed soda tax is a good idea. Unfortunately, Governor Paterson has gotten behind it, which probably means it's dead on arrival.
Which brings us to Mayor Bloomberg's public health efforts and why a soda tax needs to be partnered with hardcore nutritional education for parents throughout the city. Some kids' best meals are coming from their schools, where the food actually looks like food... unlike a lot of other school cafeterias across the country.
Ryan stops by Yank, a musical love story set in World War II, and thinks we should all go to Monday's equality rally in Brooklyn in response to the vicious gay-bashing that occurred in Carroll Gardens earlier this month. It'd also be a nice gesture to show some support for the 9 year old kid whose teacher taunted him as being "gay."
Coming up next week, loads more fun and a review of the Whitney Biennial. In the meantime, you can subscribe on iTunes and use Facebook Connect to discuss topics from this week's episode below!
Sunday, March 7, 2010
On this week's Two Beers In, we talk about Project Runway, some great new theatre, the MTA's latest proposal to cut service, and what's happening in NYC's public schools.
On Runway this week, trash bags became amazing leather pants, keys became a glamorous necklace, and other items from the hardware store became disasters. (Hope that's not too much of a spoiler!) Ryan and I went to see The Temperamentals, a fantastic play starring Ugly Betty's Michael Urie. It's about the rise of the pre-Stonewall gay right movement in 1950's Los Angeles and is playing at New World Stages in Hell's Kitchen.
Back in the world of policy, we discuss the MTA's latest plan to cut service, which has everyone up in arms - except for our friends in Williamsburg in Bushwick, who would see expanded V train service under the new plan. But student Metrocards go back on the chopping block, and we talk about the economics and the necessity of getting students to school.
And - always a hot topic for us - trying to innovate in the city's public schools to provide every child with a good education. It's good for the kids, and good for the future of our city.
Listen on iTunes, and be sure to check out last week's episode about Governor Paterson's fall from grace.
Thursday, March 4, 2010
It's hard to believe that it's almost time for 2010's Broadway Beauty Pageant, pitting Broadway's hottest guys against each other to benefit The Ali Forney Center. It's an old fashioned beauty pageant with an American Idol twist.
We've just announced that the always marvelous Tovah Feldshuh will return to host for the third time. Announcements on contestants and judges are coming up, it's gonna be a great group!
Get your tickets now, starting at just $25.
This is the forth year that I've co-produced the show with my friends Jeffery Self & Wil Fisher. But, every year the pageant grows and more and more people join to help us make the night a huge success. I'm thankful to all of them!
The MTA is in the process of making some very steep cuts to subway service. But one change will actually benefit residents (I'm one) of Williamsburg & Bushwick, two growing Brooklyn hipster neighborhoods.
Plans to scrap the M train and extend the V train will finally give us a direct route into Manhattan. The M barely went anywhere, but our new V would go everywhere. If this happens, the rate of development will surge around the new V line.
This map shows the proposed new route.
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
He gives a nice little mention to my musical White Noise:
I'm very excited Whoopi has come on board! She is a big fan of the show, saying at a reading in December, "You will never see anything like this. There is nothing like this." I think she may be right, but than again I'm a little biased.
Other well-known artists have played roles not only as presenters but also as producers in recent years. Whoopi Goldberg was a producer on the 2002 musical “Thoroughly Modern Millie” as well as the 2003 revival of “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” in which she starred. She tried to produce a revival of “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf” in 2008, but the recession had begun, and some investors balked, in part because she was not investing substantially in the show.
She is working as a presenter and creative adviser on two musicals aiming for Broadway: “Sister Act,” now running in London and based on her 1992 movie, and “White Noise,” about young white separatists and set for next season or later.
I'm giving away a pair of tickets to Fuerza Bruta: Look Up's special Twitter night on Thursday. It's sure to be a fun night and you're encouraged to live-tweet with pictures and video. More from the show's website.
To enter to win a pair of tickets to Thursday's performance, all you need to do is Tweet; "Just entered to win a pair of tickets to see @FuerzaBrutaNYC, via @RyanNewYork at http://ryanjdavis.blogspot.com." I'll draw and announce the winners late tonight. The tickets have to be used Thursday, so be in the New York City area.
FUERZA BRUTA: LOOK UP is a non-stop collision of dynamic music, visceral emotion, and kinetic aerial imagery.
Featuring mind – blowing visual effects that must be seen to be believed – a man running full throttle through a series of moving walls, women frolicking in a watery world suspended just inches above the audience – FUERZA BRUTA: LOOK UP is a theatrical experience that floods the senses. Come experience a 360° heart-pounding theatrical experience!
If you don't win, there are discount tickets available.
Monday, March 1, 2010
On this week's episode, hosts Greg Palmer and I discuss Governor David Paterson's fall from grace and Harold Ford's Stonewall visit.
Or listen on iTunes, and be sure to check out last week's episode where we discussed renaming the Freedom Tower.
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
The 80s Satanic Panic, or the Satanic Cult Phenomenon, is a perfect example of a "moral panic," similar to the Salem Witch Trials & McCarthyism. For more information, read Satan's Silence and watch the documentary Witch Hunt.
Download the podcast here or listen on iTunes.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
The Ritz's Valentines Ice Sculpture.
Monday, February 22, 2010
My guest is Stan Richardson, author of the play Veritas that I'm directing this year. We spoke about the subject of his play, the 1920 Harvard Secret Court.
Download here. Now available on iTunes.
Sunday, February 21, 2010
Listen online right here!
Or listen on iTunes, and be sure to check out last week's episode, all about Governor Paterson's sex habits (kidding... sorta).
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
On this week's Two Beers In, Ryan J. Davis and Greg Palmer talk about the sexual influences of the Governor's Mansion, Harold Ford's financial troubles, and Eliot Spitzer's political future. It's a good episode, so check it out!
Download the MP3 here. Or listen on iTunes, and be sure to check out last week's episode.
What do you think? Does Eliot Spitzer have a political future?
Monday, February 8, 2010
I'm giving away two pairs of tickets to Alexi Kate Campbell's new play The Pride today. I'm seeing the show Saturday night, here are the details from MCC's website.
Oliver, Philip, and Sylvia are caught in a kind of erotic time warp. Their complex love triangle, replete with conflicting loyalties and passions, jumps from 1958 to the present and back in a maelstrom of fantasy, repression and rebellion in this innovative new drama. After taking London by storm last season in an Olivier Award-winning production at the Royal Court, The Pride now makes its American premiere at MCC Theater. Tony Award-winning director Joe Mantello (Take Me Out, Blackbird) joins playwright Alexi Kaye Campbell (Apologia), to stage this alternately tough and touching look at love and betrayal. Four of Britain's most acclaimed young actors, Hugh Dancy (Adam, Journey's End), Adam James (Last Chance Harvey), Andrea Riseborough (Happy-Go-Lucky) and Ben Whishaw (Bright Star, Brideshead Revisited) will star.To enter to win a pair of tickets to a preview performance this week, all you need to do is Tweet; "Just entered to win a pair of tickets to see The Pride, via @RyanNewYork at http://ryanjdavis.blogspot.com." I'll draw and announce the winners late tonight. The tickets have to be used this week, so be in the New York City area.
Sunday, January 31, 2010
We're two beers in again this week with our special guest Dorian Davis. We've got the latest Project Runway gossip, our view on holding the KSM trials in New York City, Christine Quinn's chances for becoming the next mayor, plus it's Greg's birthday!
Download the MP3, or subscribe on iTunes, and be sure to check out last week's episode.
Thanks to Revolution of the Beer 1000 for being our awesome sponsor this week - they'll brew custom beers for any occasion. If you'd like to sponsor Two Beers In, hit us up.
Update: The Obama Admin gave in to NY politicos and won't hold KSM's trial in the city. It's a disappointment.
Saturday, January 30, 2010
President Barack Obama took questions from House Republicans at a conference in Baltimore today, in an event that looked like something out of British Parliament. One by one, the president was able to address and refute the Republican talking points. It’s amazing to see these (mostly) little men getting schooled by our professor-president in such a calm and scholarly way.
Politically, it was a nice win for Obama, and the White House should focus on doing similar things. We’ve actually got a pragmatic president who is detail-oriented and understands policy. It’s wise to use that. Make it a monthly thing. At some point, Republicans are not going to be interested in engaging with Obama, once they learn that their attempts at political spin are thwarted.
It’s been fun watching MSNBC and CNN (plus most liberal/moderate bloggers) fawning over the president’s performance. That kind of thing can’t hurt, and I can’t wait to see more of it.
Now lets see if these words can translate to a real jobs bill and finally passing healthcare reform.
Originally posted on The Hill.
Friday, January 29, 2010
I chimed in on today's Big Question on The Hill.
Where should the Obama administration move Khalid Shaikh Mohammed’s trial if it is not held in New York?
Khalid Shaikh Mohammed should face trial in New York City, where he murdered over 3,000 people. To say it's too "expensive" or "inconvenient" for the City to be a part of him getting justice is flabbergasting. Who do people think Mohammed is, Magneto from X-Men? Does anyone think he's really going to escape? Is it a remotely serious notion that his buddies will attempt to bust him out of prison? Try the coward downtown, stop pretending he's more powerful than he actually is, and bring him to justice in New York City.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Listen on iTunes, and be sure to check out last week's episode.
Next week we'll have Dorian Davis as our special guest! Watch out, it's gonna get crazy...
Friday, January 22, 2010
Will Dems push ahead with healthcare reform?
I don't know if they will push forward with reform or not, but they certainly should. It's time for House Democrats to pass the Senate bill. Maybe they can add more reforms through budget reconciliation after, or maybe they can't. Either way, it's clear that the Senate bill is far better than the status quo. Failure to pass health care reform brings more than just electoral problems. We're talking about 30 million Americans who will finally gain access to health care because of this bill. Progressives need to hold their noses and vote for it. We don't have to lose this one.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
New York, NY. January 18, 2010. The Stonewall Democratic Club of New York City will honor five community leaders and organizations at the club's fourth annual Women's Awards on Thursday, January 21, 2009 to be held at the Stonewall Inn.
"This year's honorees are not only leaders in the community but role models for many, advancing women and women’s issue in the LGBTQ communities," said Yetta Kurland, founder and chairperson of the Woman's Awards Committee. "Stonewall holds this event to recognize those who have made a difference - both big and small – for women and to ensure that women’s voices are heard in the LGBTQ movement as well as the greater New York community."
The event will be held from 6 to 9 PM at the historic Stonewall Inn at Christopher Street and Seventh Avenue. It will be attended by several elected officials with a host committee that brags the likes of Governor David Paterson, NYC Public Advocate Bill deBlasio and NYC Comptroller John Liu. In addition, Broadway Speaks OUT, an organization that mobilizes people from Broadway and the entertainment world to fight for LGBTQ equality has arranged a host of celebrity appearances including Meredith Patterson from Boston Legal, as well as Broadway stars Brian Charles Rooney, Nick Adams, Kate Pazakis, Ryan J. Davis, and Marti Gould Cummings.
This year's honorees are:
CATHY MARINO-THOMAS is the communications director and board president for Marriage Equality New York, a grass roots, all-volunteer organization with more than 3,000 members and supporters. MENY is oldest marriage equality advocacy organization and will be launching their Political Action Committee with Ms. Marino-Thomas’ leadership this year.
JOANNE SMITH is the executive director of Girls for Gender Equity, an organization she founded in 2000. Girls for Gender Equity serves over 600 NYC girls and boys offering them a safe place to achieve academic excellence, explore career education, and maintain healthy lifestyles.
JANET WEINBERG is the Chief Operating Officer at Gay Men's Health Crisis and previously served as its Senior Managing Director. She previously served as Development Director at the LGBT Community Center in Manhattan.
THE NATIONAL CENTER FOR LESBIAN RIGHTS is a national legal organization committed to advancing the civil and human rights of LGBT persons and their families through litigation, public policy advocacy and public education.
*SNAPSHOT* is a weekly mixed queer party in NYC featuring art, music, film, photography and exposure.
The event is co-sponsored by GO! Magazine, the Stonewall Inn and Broadway Speaks OUT.
Tickets are available at $15 to $75 sliding scale. You can RSVP to the event at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Our reading cast included; Chad Lindsey, Seamus Mulcahy, Kevin Michael Murphy, Steven Kane, Michael Hirstreet, Vince Rimoldi, Brian DeCaluwe, Mitch Dean, Micah Shepard, Saum Eskandani, & Adam J. Thomspon.
Special thanks to midtown's The Ritz for letting us use their upstairs space.
Listen on iTunes, and be sure to check out last week's episode.
(PS - We'll be doing the Project Runway Rundown every week, which is gonna be awesome!)
Monday, January 11, 2010
What do Abraham Lincoln and Harold Ford have in common? Easy. They're both topics of this week's episode of Two Beers In, the weekly podcast I co-host all about New York City. That and much more...
Monday, January 4, 2010
"[Closely-related] species don't differ [by] more than one percent, [while] this cockroach is four percent different," agreed Professor Mark Stoeckle. "This suggests it is a new species of cockroach."I hope this pans out for the students, it would be an impressive discovery. Now if I can only get them to test some of the crazy huge rats I see roaming my Bushwick streets.
Further investigation is essential before it can be determined whether the students' discovery is a new species or a subspecies. If their finding is confirmed, it is traditional that the discoverers -- Ms. Tan and Mr. Cost in this case -- will be granted naming rights for the new species.
Originally posted on CitizeNYC.
In this week's episode of Two Beers In, Greg & I cover airport security, the Four Amigos, Mayor Bloomberg's third term, and how to smoke pot legally in the city. You can listen here, or subscribe free on iTunes.
I chimed in on The Hill's Big Question today.
Has the Obama Administration made us safer? Explain.
To answer this question, you'd have to buy into the idea that the United States wasn't safe to begin with. Nate Silver looked at the airline stats over the last decade and found only a 1 in 10.5 million chance of dying in an act of air terror. On the other hand, it's a 1 in 500,000 chance of being struck by lightening. I'd say both events are rare, but hijackings fall in the extremely, rare category. Most pundits and people approach these issues with a startling lack of perspective.
I'd say America is safer when more of its citizens have health care, access to quality education and a decent standard of living. Obama is working towards those goals.
Friday, January 1, 2010
Originally posted on The Huffington Post:
In 2000, my first year living in New York City, I attended over two hundred different theater productions. This year, I clocked in barely a hundred. Below are my top five in no particular order.
Looking forward to what New York City theatre has to offer in the year & decade ahead.