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Thursday, 22 November 2012

November 22nd in Queer History

Born this day

Andre Gide (1869 – 1951), French. Author
French author and winner of the Nobel Prize in literature in 1947. Gide's career ranged from its beginnings in the symbolist movement, to the advent of anticolonialism between the two World Wars.
In 1893 and 1894, Gide traveled in Northern Africa, and it was there that he came to accept his attraction to boys.He befriended Oscar Wilde in Paris, and in 1895 Gide and Wilde met in Algiers. There, Wilde had the impression that he had introduced Gide to homosexuality, but, in fact, Gide had already discovered this on his own.

Benjamin Britten (1913 – 1976), UK. Composer.
English composer, conductor, and pianist, and probably the most important English composer of the twentieth century (certainly of opera). He first came to public attention with the a cappella choral work "A Boy Was Born" in 1934, and continued to produce important works for four decades. Having previously declined a knighthood, Britten accepted a life peerage in 1976 as Baron Britten, of Aldeburgh, a few months before his death.
He and his partner the tenor Sir Peter Pears, are one of the best known gay couples in music. Their two graves lie side by side in Aldeburgh.

James Gleeson (1915 –  2008), Australian. Artist, Poet, Author, Critic
Australia's foremost artist. He was also a poet, critic, writer and curator. He played a significant role in the Australian art scene, including serving on the board of the National Gallery of Australia. Gleeson's themes generally delved into the subconscious using literary, mythological or religious subject matter. He was particularly interested in Jung's archetypes of the collective unconscious.
Gleeson died in Sydney in 2008, aged 92. His life partner was Frank O'Keefe, who had died the previous year.

Nicholas Dante (1941 – 1991), US. Dancer, Author
American dancer and writer, best known for the musical A Chorus Line, which earned him the 1976 Tony Award and Drama Desk Award for Best Book of a Musical and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The story of Paul, the homosexual Puerto Rican dancer whose early career consisted of working in a drag show, was based primarily on Dante himelf.

Peter Adair (1943 – 1996) US. Director / Artist
Filmmaker and artist, best known for his pioneering documentary, Word Is Out. The film, the first of its kind to present gays and lesbians in a positive light, was a critical hit nationwide. It was as much a vital part of his own coming out process as it was an attempt to show gays and lesbians in a very human and non-sensational manner.

Billy Jean King (1943 – ) US. Tennis
Life Magazine named Billie Jean King one of the "100 Most Important Americans of the 20th Century." A tennis champion and an outspoken advocate for gender equality in sports, King has become an icon and legend for her contributions to the advancement of women's sports.
An outspoken advocate against sexism in sports, King hoped "to use sports for social change." In 1973, King became the first woman to defeat a former male Wimbledon Champion in "The Battle of the Sexes." The Women's Tennis Association named King its first president that same year.
She was married for 22 years and struggled for a long time with her sexuality. Since coming out in 1988, she has helped further the visibility and inclusion of the GLBT community.

Art Sullivan (1950 – ), Belgian. Singer
Belgian singer.He was successful in many countries, including Belgium, France, Portugal and Germany.

Horse McDonald (1958 – ), UK. Singer, Musician
Scottish female singer-songwriter. She has a wide following in the United Kingdom, including many lesbian fans, has toured with Tina Turner and secured several record chart hits in Europe.

Christopher Ciccone (1960 –  ), US. Artist,Screenwriter, Director
Artist, film director, artistic director, dancer, best selling author, and interior and furniture designer. He is the younger brother of Madonna.

Stephen Hough (1961 – ), UK / Australian. Pianist, Composer, Author
British-born classical pianist, composer and writer.  Hough performs as a recitalist and chamber musician, and has appeared as a soloist with major orchestras around the world. In addition to his career as a performer, he is also a music teacher and a composes.

He joined the Roman Catholic Church when he was 19. He has written about his homosexuality and its relationship with both his music-making and his religion.

Rickard Engfors (1976 – ), Swedish. Drag Queen, Model, Entertainer
Swedish drag queen, model, and stylist.
His career began in 1996 as an artist in Swedish drag troupe After Dark and he was quickly appointed to "Christer Lindarws crown prince" and was also known as "Sweden's best looking girl". He has performed for royalty, won awards for his artistic efforts and shared the stage with many of Sweden's most beloved artists.
In 2004 the Swedish fashion house Panos Emporio chose Rickard as its house model for a swimwear range, which caused so much controversy that it was re-shot using a Greek model called Aleka

Yves Steinhauer (1976 – ), Canadian, Luxembourg. Singer
Lead singer for "Marilyn's Boys", the first openly gay boy band in Germany. Born in Luxembourg, he later lived in the US, and Canada, then Germany.

Lucian Dunareanu (1977 – ), Romanian. Activist, Editor
Romanian gay rights activist and the executive director of Be An Angel Romania, an LGBT rights organisation based in Cluj-Napoca.Dunareanu is the owner of the Toxice musical group, which is the first professional drag queen band in Romania

Alasdair Duncan (1982 –  ), Australian. Author, Journalist
Author and journalist, based in Brisbane on the east coast of Australia. He is a section editor at weekly music magazine Rave.

Pedro Marin (1961 – ) Spanish 
Singer / Actor / Presenter

Died this day

Friedrich Alfred Krupp (1854 - 1902), German. Businessman
German industrialist, of the Krupp steel manufacturering company, taking over the leadership of his father's company in 1887. He committed suicide in 1902, a week after the Social Democratic magazine Vorwärts claimed in an article that Friedrich Alfred Krupp was homosexual, and that he had a number of liaisons with local boys and men.

Rose Cleveland (1846 - 1918 ) US. First Lady
First Lady during the first of her brother, U.S. President Grover Cleveland's two administrations. She was the sister (not the wife) of President Cleveland. When her elder brother won the presidency, she became first lady and lived in the White House for two years.
When President Cleveland married Frances Folsom, Rose resigned and began a career in education. At age 44, she started a lesbian relationship with a wealthy widow, Evangeline Simpson, with explicitly erotic correspondence. However things cooled off when Evangeline married an Episcopal Bishop of Minnesota, Henry Benjamin Whipple. By 1910, he died and the two women rekindled their relationship and eventually moved to Bagni di Lucca, Italy to live there together.

Lorenz Hart (1895 - 1943), US. Lyricist
Lyricist half of the famed Broadway songwriting team Rodgers and Hart. He "had a remarkable talent for polysyllabic and internal rhymes", and his lyrics have often been praised for their wit and technical sophistication.
For years Hart was a bachelor and lived with his widowed mother. He suffered from alcoholism. He would sometimes disappear for weeks at a time on alcoholic binges. Hart died in New York City of pneumonia from exposure on November 22, 1943, after drinking heavily.


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