Recent Comments


    Donna’s Chronicles, “We often promote the many forms of entertainment…”

    By Donna Sachet–

    We often promote the many forms of entertainment readily available in San Francisco, from Grand Opera to small independent theatre, but rarely does a two-week span so clearly demonstrate our point. We were pulled into a complex character study and civil rights struggle at Theatre Rhino’s A Guide for the Homesick packed into a small space with an audience of 30 and two engaging actors. We were immersed in gorgeous music performed by the SF Gay Men’s Chorus at Davies Symphony Hall for their Disney Pride in Concert, including incredible soloists and passionate personal stories. We enjoyed a dazzling display of musical talent and stage craft by Trixxie Carr at Oasis for her Man-Eater Hall & Oates tribute, truly proving the power of female drag at its best.  We got a sneak preview of Oscar Night with Jan Wahl at The Academy and then watched the Hollywood broadcast that weekend, also at The Academy, in a warm and welcoming environment, hosted by Katya Smirnoff-Skyy and surrounded by friends. That ought to prove the point! And don’t forget, all of these many opportunities will only continue to exist if we, the audience, attend and support them. Let’s put COVID in the rear-view mirror and get out and enjoy all San Francisco has to offer!

    Beyond this tapestry of entertainment, we also found ourselves immersed in grassroots fundraising. Post 448 of the American Legion (the only LGBT post in the country) hosted an old-fashioned beer bust at 440 on St. Patrick’s Day and we joined Gary Virginia in bumping it up to a full-fledged celebration of all things green. Attendees were surprised by humorous Irish-themed awards and even our attire and musical performance gave a nod to the green displayed everywhere. The next day, Krewe de Kinque held their monthly fundraiser, garnering $600 at Midnight Sun with their popular shenanigans. The King & Queen announced details of their upcoming 20th anniversary Bal Masque gala on April 15, 6–9 pm, at The Cafe. The theme is “The 415,“so prepare to celebrate all that San Francisco represents so well! And on Sunday, the call went out to support the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at a fundraiser at The Edge. Emcee Mark Paladini kept the show of entertainers moving briskly with raffle drawings in between. Performer tips, raffle ticket sales, and other donations added up to over $1300 in a few hours. Yes, a weekend of revelry in the Castro can also be a demonstration of community support and important fundraising efforts.

    The San Francisco Bay Times has offered us an amazing public vehicle to share our experiences in the social whirl of San Francisco, particularly within the LGBTQ+ Community that we love so much. In addition, our Editors/Publishers have been so gracious and accommodating in allowing us to veer off into other topics and themes, as the need arises. In the face of the most recent national attacks against Drag, we can stay silent no longer.

    As anyone who regularly reads this column can attest, San Francisco is replete with Drag, welcoming it in all its many iterations at venues across the city and our public life here is largely as a proud member of the Drag Community. We have probably known every significant Drag personality in San Francisco over the decades and we continue to meet new individuals every week. None of them pose any threat to children, the greatness of America, or any such thing. Drag is simply one of the most recognizable faces of the LGBTQ+ Community and as such has become the target of those who are not happy with the tremendous progress our community has made over the past few decades. Our enemies want to reverse every advancement we have made, including job and housing equity, marriage rights, legal protections, and every basic aspect of dignity won over hard fought battles. To them, it is not so bad if we have our little ghettos of Gay bars and businesses, our private clubs and personal fetishes, even our public parades, so long as they stay within the boundaries of their preconceived idea of decency. But when a person dons the attire and even assumes the essence of the opposite gender and speaks with intelligence and attracts attention, then the flags go up and the battle is on.

    When José Sarria used to tell the story about wearing a little piece of paper pinned onto his clothes that read “I am a man” when dressed in drag to controvert the state law against appearing in public in the attire of the opposite sex with the intent to deceive, we could hardly believe it. We couldn’t believe there had ever been such a law. We couldn’t believe his ingenious solution.  And we still can’t believe it is an issue.

    Let’s be clear: There are times and places where underage children are inappropriate. Many times that is obvious, indicated by ID checks, signage, and common sense. Sometimes, the decision is that of the parents, perhaps to supervise or to limit attendance.  But Drag is and always has been a beautiful part of the city and its mere presence is no more a threat to others than wearing a hat. Drag is an expression of who we are and in our 30 years of sashaying around the Bay Area, we have been met with far more appreciation than disapproval. And when that disapproval appeared, many times a candid conversation has built a bridge between what seemed two opposing sides.

    Whether purely for entertainment, comedic or otherwise, or in order to deliver a message of immediate or more far-reaching significance, Drag has given us an opportunity to be so much more than we could ever have imagined. San Francisco has welcomed us with open arms and we remain committed to this beautiful place in all its rich diversity. Blatant attacks against Drag will soon be seen for exactly what they are, another underhanded attempt to damage the strength of the LGBTQ+ Community, splitting our unity and stigmatizing self-expression. No way. Not here. Not now. 

    Donna Sachet is a celebrated performer, fundraiser, activist, and philanthropist who has dedicated over two decades to the LGBTQ Community in San Francisco. Contact her at

    Calendar a/la Sachet

    Friday, March 24
    Divas & Drinks
    Celebrating Gay Softball League’s 50th Anniversary
    & Women’s History Month
    Monthly party produced by the Bay Times & The Academy
    Emcee Donna Sachet, DJ Christie James
    Bacardí specialty cocktails, Extreme Pizza,
    Olivia Travel, SF Federal Credit Union
    The Academy, 2166 Market Street
    6–10 pm

    Saturday, March 25
    CODE: 10 Year Anniversary
    Erick Lopez’s Leather night in the Castro
    DJ Sean McMahon
    The Edge, 4149 18th Street
    9 pm–2 am

    Saturday, April 1
    Song Pairings: An Evening of Wine & Music
    Wine DirectorMichael Wells & hostess Donna Sachet
    Pianists Russell Deason & Katy Stephen
    The Academy, 2166 Market Street
    7:30–9 pm

    Sunday, April 9
    Easter in the Park With the Sisters
    Legendary Dolores Park event
    Music, drag, costumes, fun
    Hunky Jesus & Foxy Mary Contests
    Dolores Park
    12–4 pm

    Donna’s Chronicles
    Published on March 23, 2023