ICM Theatre is partnering with Stamped Film Festival for “The Mattachine: A Hedwig Experience featuring John Cameron Michell,” a one-of-a-kind fundraising gala on Nov. 9 at The Cabaret, 101 S. Jefferson St. “The Mattachine” will feature the creator of the Tony Award-winning rock musical “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” Broadway star John Cameron Mitchell, and will raise money for ICM Theatre’s June 2020 production of the show at Vinyl Music Hall, as well as LGTBQ charities designated by Stamped Film Festival.“
“The Mattachine” is named for the Mattachine Society, which challenged the practice of bars not serving homosexuals in the mid-’60s. The event features Mitchell and partner DJs PJ DeBoy and Paul Dawson, stars of his groundbreaking film of sexual exploration, “Shortbus,” as well as cabaret performer Amber Martin. “The Mattachine” was first thrown in New York City at the infamous dive bar Julius, turning it to an unconventional “It” spot in the process.
The idea was to challenge “homo stereotypes” that had become the norm in gay nightlife. It had unpredictable playlists; an inclusive, non-cruiser vibe; and regular features and antics we’ve never heard of at any other party. “The Mattachine” may be the most unique club event you’ll ever attend, gay or otherwise. They play rock, pop, soul, country, funk, punk, New Wave and hip hop, and the vibe is friendly, open, fun, silly, sexy and political — because what thinking person isn’t?
For the Pensacola “Mattachine,” the evening will feature not just the DJ/cabaret performances by John Cameron Mitchell and friends but will offer a preview of the Pensacola production of “Hedwig,” as well as a deeper dive into the music and story of Mitchell’s creation. “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” centers on Hedwig Robinson, a genderqueer East German singer of a fictional rock band. A botched gender reassignment surgery left Hedwig — formerly Hansel, a self-proclaimed “girly boy” — with a dysfunctional one-inch lump of flesh between her legs, the so-called “Angry Inch” after which her band is named.
For the Nov. 9 event, a “Best of the Coast” drag show will feature top cabaret performers from all over the East Coast doing their own renditions of songs from “Hedwig,” followed by the star of ICM Theater’s production of “Hedwig,” Jarvis Derrell, performing a collection of songs from “Hedwig” live. The evening will culminate with Mitchell himself performing two of the songs he made famous in originating the role of Hedwig.
A one-dollar surcharge added to the price of each ticket to “The Mattachine” will be reserved for LGBTQ charities designated by Stamped. The remainder of funds raised, after event expenses, will help to fund ICM Theatre’s planned June 2020 production of “Hedwig” at Vinyl Music Hall. ICM Theatre is the independent theatre company that produced this year’s highly successful January run of “Evil Dead: The Musical” at Vinyl.
The show explores a variety of queer and trans issues as it follows Hedwig’s career and romantic travails through monologues and concert performances on a tour of dive bars, making Vinyl Music Hall’s rock club atmosphere the perfect locale to stage the show, and setting the production dates during LGBTQ Pride Month makes for an ideal time frame.
As with “The Mattachine,” a nonprofit organization designated by Stamped will receive all funds from a $1 per ticket surcharge on tickets to the show. Tickets to “The Mattachine” are $100 and include your first specialty cocktail. VIP packages including early admission and a pre-show meet-and-greet with John Cameron Mitchell are $200. Attendance is strictly limited to 300, and only 50 VIP packages will be sold.
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