Don We Now our GAY Apparel
Virginia Stage Company had an incredibly busy Saturday for our production of A Christmas Carol at the Historic Wells Theatre. Not only was it Military Appreciation Day for our veterans and those serving our country in Hampton Roads; we also hosted two very special receptions for our wonderful partners. The first was with the kind folks that work with our Public Media Partner, WHRO. The second, our ever fabulous and continually growing NightOUT Reception with Hampton Roads Pride. Virginia Stage takes great pride in the special events it holds in partnership with the Hampton Roads Community; from events benefiting CHKD to holiday parties and events to honor and celebrate our veterans. But for me, as an out LGBTQ man myself, no event brings more pride to me than our NightOUT series.
This NightOUT was even more special because it came in connection with A Christmas Carol and by connection, the holiday season as a whole. For many members of the LGBTQ Community, the holidays are a tricky time. Some of them aren’t out, others are and have to keep a huge part of their life off the ‘dinner-table conversation’ list, and some don’t even speak to their families or are cast out. For this event, it was nothing but an atmosphere of love, price, and acceptance. AJ Palacio, a local member of The Doorway Singers, captivated the room with Christmas music abounds while accompanied by the talented Marie Bliss. Audience members helped themselves to food from MJ’s Tavern while bidding in our silent auction and raffle for wonderful original art pieces. It was an amazing evening; raising spirits, money for Hampton Roads Pride, and relaxed holiday atmosphere that told everyone “you are home with Virginia Stage.”
By the end of the evening, more $150 was raised for HR Pride, and hopefully the beginning of many more means to benefit and support this wonderful organization in the future. For those who wonder about the importance of the NightOUT series, it is simply this. We celebrate all aspects of our Hampton Roads Community, and thus our audiences, with special events, performances, and receptions. Veterans, African Americans, Members of our Organization Partners, The Governor’s School, these are aspects of our audiences that we love, partner with, and celebrate year around. So when the NightOUT series began, it was to do just that, to recognize and celebrate the diverse members of our audience and community that help make Virginia Stage, and Hampton Roads, as great as it is.
If you didn’t get to "don your Gay apparel" with us, there’s always the next one! NightOUT will happen again January 28 immediately following A Streetcar Named Desire. We hope to see you out there!.